outside antenna for a BCD396XT?

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phantomdaz

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Madison County KY
Looking for some sort of outside antenna for my 396 to help me pull in broadcasts from about 30 miles away.
They are mainly on the 400-800 bands

Currently they will not hold squelch most of the time so i am hoping that is my issue

Any help is appreciated
Dan
 

ka3jjz

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Depending on the terrain (among other factors), 30 miles on 400 or 800 is pushing it. Likely as not a beam, set up nice and high, would do the job, assuming that these services are all in the same general direction.

Grove sells one, and I believe so does DPD Productions (and the head of DPD is a RR member...)

HTH...Mike
 

phantomdaz

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Joined
Aug 24, 2004
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Madison County KY
Depending on the terrain (among other factors), 30 miles on 400 or 800 is pushing it. Likely as not a beam, set up nice and high, would do the job, assuming that these services are all in the same general direction.

Grove sells one, and I believe so does DPD Productions (and the head of DPD is a RR member...)

HTH...Mike
Thanks for the info
I do have an outside roof top TV antenna where I could mount something although it is on the other side of the house

Yes they are all in the same general direction, a few hills that are not too big, fairly clear line of site, I sit higher than the city I am listening to by about 200 Ft I would guess from casually looking at my GPS

I will take a look at those antennas

Thanks
Dan
 

tuberadiogeek

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Lima OH
You can make a simple 1/4 wave ground plane for relativity cheap Here is a link to a very simple build using very inexpensive parts. To figure out the exact lengths you will need, you can use this calculator. It will give you numbers for a half wave and a quarter wave. It works,that is what i use on my scanner. If it is going to be used on multiple freqs, build it with the lowest frequency in mind. Antenna Length Calculation OR you can buy an already assembled Discone antenna on ebay for around 40-45.00. They are usually good for coverage from abut 20MHZ-1300MHZ
 

phantomdaz

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Joined
Aug 24, 2004
Messages
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Location
Madison County KY
You can make a simple 1/4 wave ground plane for relativity cheap Here is a link to a very simple build using very inexpensive parts. To figure out the exact lengths you will need, you can use this calculator. It will give you numbers for a half wave and a quarter wave. It works,that is what i use on my scanner. If it is going to be used on multiple freqs, build it with the lowest frequency in mind. Antenna Length Calculation OR you can buy an already assembled Discone antenna on ebay for around 40-45.00. They are usually good for coverage from abut 20MHZ-1300MHZ
Thanks for the info
can you give me the link for the simple build?

I did get the calculator

Many thanks
Dan
 

ka3jjz

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It's unlikely that a simple ground plane will do the job - at 800 mhz, in fairly hilly terrain, 30 miles is really at the fringes of the possible coverage. This depends on a lot of factors - the height of the transmit antenna, the power output, the terrain, frequency, the height of the receive antenna, any coax losses and other factors. You do have an advantage of being slightly higher in elevation than your targets, and that will definitely help

You lose very little by trying it. I just wouldn't expect miracles...Mike
 

phantomdaz

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Aug 24, 2004
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Madison County KY
Thanks for the info,
I dont mind spending a little money for a good antenna, what do you think about this one?

DPD Productions - Scanner, Aviation, NOAA, Mobile Radio Antennas for Commercial & Hobbyist Applications

OmniX Multi Band Scanner Model Antenna


FEATURES
Gain: 3 VHF 4 UHF dBi
Pattern: Omni-directional
Wavelength: 1/2
Elements: 3
Tuned: 118-137, 148-175 & 225-900 MHz
Band: UHF & VHF
Connector: N Female
Cable: RG8X
Cable Length: 16 Inches
Height: 45"
Width: 30"
Weight: 2 lb

Multi Band-Wide Coverage: The uniquely designed OmniX is tuned to multiple bands, giving it wide frequency coverage. Unlike antennas that were originally designed for the ham bands and then marketed as a scanner antenna, the OmniX was specifically designed for scanner radio use and tuned to popular commercial and civil service bands. Elements are specifically tuned for 118-137 MHz, 148-175 MHz and 225-900 MHz, but other bands can be received as well. This antenna can be quite esthetically pleasing compared to discones and it's also more efficient.

DC Grounded: A metal ground plane is not needed with this design.

Solid Construction: The antenna is constructed of 1 1/2" aluminum tube for the core element and solid 1/4" aluminum round is used for side elements. No flimsy tubing or dimple rivets are used. All aluminum is given a brushed finish.

Isolated Mast: The actual vertical structure is comprised of UV resistant plastic. This allows the actual elements to be raised into 'free space', away from your metal mounting mast.

Weather Resistant: All fasteners are stainless steel and the feed point is protected by shrink tube.

High Quality N Connector: Instead of the usual UHF connector that's included with most antennas, this antenna includes a 50 ohm female N connector, on the end of a small cable pigtail. N connectors are more water resistant and handle high frequencies better. Need help choosing your main cable? Checkout the Coax FAQ

Includes Mounting Hardware: Price includes mounting clamps to allow attaching the antenna to any standard 1 1/4" mounting mast.

Only Partial Assembly Required: The core antenna is completely assembled, along with the feeder cable. The only things that need to be done yourself are attaching the side elements, and putting up a mast.
 

LtDoc

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Joined
Dec 4, 2006
Messages
2,145
Location
Oklahoma
In general...
An outside antenna is typically 'better' than an indoor one.
At VHF/UHF height of the antenna can and does make a big difference. More higher is more better.
directional antennas tend to hear better than omnidirectional antennas... In one (or more) directions, but worst in others. The 'hard' part is aiming the @#$ thing.
A 1/4 wave vertical outside will tend to hear better than a standard (whatever was included with the radio) antenna inside. That's true till the required feed line get's to be too long (losses).
Painting the @#$ thing pink will always make it better!

The only recommendations specific to your situation that I can think of is get the antenna outside and as high as possible. That will increase what you can hear. No idea how much 'increase', but I'd bet on 'some'.
- 'Doc
 

thewenk

Idaho DB Admin
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Dec 19, 2002
Messages
661
Location
Eastern Idaho
All DPD Productions antennas are very good and well made. I currently utilize two DPD antennas, the Omni-X and the 700-1000 MHz LP (original version). I've had them for several years and I'm very satisfied with both antennas.

Dave
 
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