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Best low cost intro beam

dave457

Sr. Member
Jan 3, 2009
1,183
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Why does most people than run straight 4 transistors amps push them well past saturation point?? 800-1k.. In my book is not good for the amp. Run them within manufacture specs not what the builder says it can do.
Just my two cents
 

lonestarbandit

4-2-9 Central TX
Dec 30, 2006
398
567
103
Why does most people than run straight 4 transistors amps push them well past saturation point?? 800-1k.. In my book is not good for the amp. Run them within manufacture specs not what the builder says it can do.
Just my two cents
Don't know. Why did people back in the day push their PDX and Phantom sweep tubers to over 1kw? Human nature I suppose. Like I say I run mine at half the builders recommended max drive and get good numbers (500-800 pep depends AM, SSB and mic used.) Now just need to add that to a beam and exponentially increase my directed "clean" power (Hammers dont start with me I know class B bias isn't "clean" in your world but in 11m it does the job)
 
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Shadetree Mechanic

808 On The North Side of Dover
Oct 23, 2017
4,642
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The First State (Delaware)
Be interested to see what you think. I'm a little afraid of that low power rating.

I found some of these spec sheets havent cleaned them up nor determined their validity but here they are. Perhaps someone more learned than I can determine which one has the most gain it appears the Vquad but I cant imagine that can beat a 4 element?
The Sirio 4 element is rated for 1000 watts continuous and 3000 watts for a "short time". It says "short time" in the manual, what ever that means. I don't plan on running more than about 600 to 800 watts peak, so its fine for what I am doing for now. This will probably be just a practice antenna for me any way, I cant seem to get the idea of a Maco 7 element out of my head. As far as the advertised gain, I believe it is just a guide line to compare antennas of the same manufacturer. Otherwise the numbers are made to make the antenna sell better. I bought a Tail Twister rotor used from a local, hopefully the last one I will ever need to buy.

As far as the rotor goes, the Channel Master that everyone used is no longer made as you know. I got lucky a few months ago and found an Amazon seller that had a bunch of the Radio Shack Channel Masters new old stock for almost $200. I bought one to replace the Channel Master on my TV antenna that finally broke inside, after 15 years. That's with an antenna that it was designed for and we don't live in a windy area either. The RCA rotator that you can get now days, is made for a small digital TV antenna and would probably not last long with any thing bigger. Would it work with a V Quad? Probably. For how long? It would work right up to the point that it doesn't. I would suggest spending a little extra for a good rotator, that way you wont have to buy twice.

Chris
 
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lonestarbandit

4-2-9 Central TX
Dec 30, 2006
398
567
103
Yeah, you got a good rotor lol.
Trouble is it isn't a little more than the RCA, it's a lot more. Around here people are mighty proud of used slightly dodgy gear.
I saw a poor looking tailtwister something myself used, they wanted 300 for it and the control. I am leaning towards the Vquad purely on the light weight of 8 pounds.
I am also watching estate sales etc hoping to snipe a deal on a real (old) rotor. That RCA scares me. I found "stats" for it but I don't believe them. Supposedly:

50 lb max at 6 inch away from the rotation axle. The max torque is 300 lbs/in.

I think if someone put 50 pounds on that RCA it would move. Once. To launch your antenna to the ground.

Congrats on the tailtwister and channelmaster.

And don't aid me in my beam sickness lol I must not be waylaid by 7 element dreams I need small but effective

Looking forward on hearing your Siro results.
I have seen 2 sets of specs for the Siro and one set said 1000 pep max vs the manufacture claim of 3000 peak. Sadly for me I think that Siro is too big for my application in residential area. Even the Vquad might get unwanted attention ...
 
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lonestarbandit

4-2-9 Central TX
Dec 30, 2006
398
567
103
I would really love to use one of these control boxes so sexy 1960s lol
 

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Robb

Yup
Dec 18, 2008
11,427
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Silicon Valley CA, Storm Lake IA
I would never install a beam for the 11 meter band on the Horizontal side.It kills all local & mobile signals by about 20 db due to the difference in polarity.A vertical beam works great for Skip since when the signal bounces off of the ionosphere it changes polarity many times.Why limit your signals when you can have both worlds available? I also would avoid the V-Quads like they were the Plague.I had one & I hated it so badly I gave it to a friend who purchased the stacking kit so he could stack it with the one that he had to improve it.He got disgusted with them & threw both of them away because they SUCKED.so badly.We both ways of mounting them & they still were Terrible.My Starduster M-400 & Super Scanner both worked far better than the V-Quads even the stacked ones.

SIX-SHOOTER
Very true.
So, another solution is to run two antennas. One horizontal beam for skip and a vertical antenna for local ops. An antenna switch makes it possible to switch between the two. Running a horizontal beam has many added perks. One is that many signals reaching the beam are either vertically, horizontally, or circularly polarized. But if you already have a vertical; then adding a horizontally polarized antenna will literally hear stations that a vertical antenna cannot pick up nearly as well. The next perk is that a horizontally polarized antenna rejects man made noise and interference, making the incoming signal much brighter and clearer. Been there; done that . . .
 

SIX-SHOOTER

Sr. Member
Oct 2, 2010
969
1,256
153
Macclenny,Fla.
Very true.
So, another solution is to run two antennas. One horizontal beam for skip and a vertical antenna for local ops. An antenna switch makes it possible to switch between the two. Running a horizontal beam has many added perks. One is that many signals reaching the beam are either vertically, horizontally, or circularly polarized. But if you already have a vertical; then adding a horizontally polarized antenna will literally hear stations that a vertical antenna cannot pick up nearly as well. The next perk is that a horizontally polarized antenna rejects man made noise and interference, making the incoming signal much brighter and clearer. Been there; done that . . .

Whatever works for you.I'd go with what I said above.73

SIX-SHOOTER
 
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lonestarbandit

4-2-9 Central TX
Dec 30, 2006
398
567
103
For those interested heres the guts of that chinesium RCA rotor. I tore it apart to add lithium grease and loctite to the motor screws to address its two most common points of failure shown on Amazon reviews. Happily I can report the gears and the pinion gear are both metal. There were some reports they were plastic. At least in my case they are not. Put it all back together but havent recalibrated or hooked up wires yet to control unit. The Maco V Quad is back ordered and working with a forum member here to get a push up pole so I am not in a rush. The housing materials are quite light and believe it to be made from a low grade cast aluminum if I had to guess.
 

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Shadetree Mechanic

808 On The North Side of Dover
Oct 23, 2017
4,642
7,340
623
49
The First State (Delaware)
For those interested heres the guts of that chinesium RCA rotor. I tore it apart to add lithium grease and loctite to the motor screws to address its two most common points of failure shown on Amazon reviews. Happily I can report the gears and the pinion gear are both metal. There were some reports they were plastic. At least in my case they are not. Put it all back together but havent recalibrated or hooked up wires yet to control unit. The Maco V Quad is back ordered and working with a forum member here to get a push up pole so I am not in a rush. The housing materials are quite light and believe it to be made from a low grade cast aluminum if I had to guess.
Thanks for the report on the metal gears, maybe there is hope for this little guy.
 

Crawdad

Down in the mud invasive species
Nov 11, 2016
653
1,350
153
Moxon.
Easy, simple small, decent gain, great front to back rejection. No matching network 50 Ohm direct connection.
Can build it quickly, or buy it reasonably.

Homer is absolutely right. Anyone who wants to homebrew a beam should try one.

73
 
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