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Top loaded whip vs. base loaded antenna

Alexis Mercado

Well-Known Member
May 17, 2016
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I have two types of magnet antenna. A Titanium 3001 Sirio Antenna ( around 5 feet long, base loaded with a stainless steel whip ) and an adjustable Firestick Antenna ( around 3 feet long, top loaded, tip is adjustable ) .

Which one will perform better ?
 

whiteastro

Sr. Member
Feb 22, 2019
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A lot of your antenna choice depends on your needs and environment you operate in. While everyone wants as tall a antenna as they can get you have to think about ruining it banging into obstacles. I live in N/E PA and we deal with Trees, Bridges, Canopies, and Parking garages. How often do you want to get out and dismount or lay down your antenna. On my Astro Van a K40 antenna is about as tall as I can deal with and go most places but I always have to remember it is up there. While they are right in saying Higher is better, but that is not all you have to think about . Choose wisely so you don't take the fun out of life.
 

144inBama

Sr. Member
Apr 22, 2020
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Lower Alabama
A lot of your antenna choice depends on your needs and environment you operate in. While everyone wants as tall a antenna as they can get you have to think about ruining it banging into obstacles. I live in N/E PA and we deal with Trees, Bridges, Canopies, and Parking garages. How often do you want to get out and dismount or lay down your antenna. On my Astro Van a K40 antenna is about as tall as I can deal with and go most places but I always have to remember it is up there. While they are right in saying Higher is better, but that is not all you have to think about . Choose wisely so you don't take the fun out of life.

I run a Wilson 1K on top of my 2017 GMC Sierra, I can tell you from experience that 6' fluorescent bulbs can NOT take the impact of the whip and the local Churches Fried Chicken uses 3 sets at their drive-thru
 

Captain Kilowatt

Professional Amateur
Staff member
Apr 6, 2005
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Nova Scotia,Canada
according to my book cb radio for dummies a top loaded antenna is more efficient

But that assumes the SAME antenna configuration. This is different. One antenna is considerably longer than the other and that will mean that it will be the better performer. The difference in performance between top loaded and base loaded for the same antenna is quite small actually.
 

whiteastro

Sr. Member
Feb 22, 2019
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To add to thought ! Once I had to lay my K40 down to get thru my bank drive thru canopy and forgot to stand it back up. After a few miles down the road I turned the radio back on a could receive nothing. Then I remembered and got out to stand it up but found it was mangled from dragging the road. That lesson cost me about another $100 bucks to replace it !
 

Slowmover

BANNED
Feb 17, 2015
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Where the West Begins.
To add to thought ! Once I had to lay my K40 down to get thru my bank drive thru canopy and forgot to stand it back up. After a few miles down the road I turned the radio back on a could receive nothing. Then I remembered and got out to stand it up but found it was mangled from dragging the road. That lesson cost me about another $100 bucks to replace it !


It’s not that hard to get around most places in my tractor (Kenworth t680 sans 53’ trailer) with a pair of 7’ antennas reaching close to 14’.

It does mean I’m more careful about route-planning. Driving shouldn’t ever be mindless (bad fuel economy = poor operator skill), so, an antenna reaching to 11-12’ isn’t any impediment on my pickup.

A different route to X?

Park on side road versus parking garage?

Not an imposition.

Making the change between the drivers ears the only real block.

.
 

whiteastro

Sr. Member
Feb 22, 2019
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It’s not that hard to get around most places in my tractor (Kenworth t680) with a pair of 7’ antennas reaching close to 14’.
You tractor drivers sure have your special problems with your big rigs but not all of us want to be tractor drivers and we also deal with country dirt roads which presents different problems with our short cuts. Happy Truckin !
 

Slowmover

BANNED
Feb 17, 2015
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Us veterans fought wars so we have freedom of choice and speech which includes many areas of life.



CB is the radio some others will have when their Jesus-phone ain’t working any more. It’ll be the majority of those who CAN communicate.

Do as you will. Same problem in answering questions about fuel economy (longest vehicle life). Changes need to be made to driver habits.

“Nice, so long as I’m not inconvenienced” .(confuses emotion for rationality).

Carry an extra long antenna you can swap.
I carry from 5’ to 9’.

But are you sure you’ll know when to swap? Won’t be on TV or AM radio or electronic billboard.

You’re at the right forum to explore it further.

Good luck.

.
 

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