Is the 1/2 silver rod the best antenna in the world ?

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InTheClouds
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Is the 1/2 silver rod the best antenna in the world ?

Post by InTheClouds »

when all is added up i wonder if it is the best all round cbers antenna. I mean by any brand. I state my case:

1) various options through the world, UK made one and Sirio (anyone know any other variants?)
2) very simple
3) very light for portable activities
4) SWR very easy
5) cheap
6) puts a signal out barely any worse than any antenna 5 times the cost
7) versatile, attach to any thing metal and big gate or a pole
8) easy to handle and mount for portable
9) easy for home base set up
10) not too big
11) inspired the antron 99 (and performs no worse than one for cb frequencies)

If I had a wish I wish I could get a quality coil like the sirio with the lightness of the sigma ones (bit less lossy)
the sigma is best for me cause of lightness and ease to put up mobile, the sirio is too much of a pain with all the screws and stuff
and weights more as it is not aluminium.

if anyone knows about the history or has really old photos of boxes and brands or used in their set up.
I think we could celebrate and show our love this simple and well performing twig.

Sincere thanks for your replies and comments.
Am I gettin aaat ? My CB gear = any old long antenna, any 11m radio, low SWR, good coax, get it up high, and most important of all a respect all radio colleagues attitude.

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Avenger
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Re: Is the 1/2 silver rod the best antenna in the world ?

Post by Avenger »

It won't be the best in the world but you can't deny its a good basic antenna and for the money takes some beating, Back in the day it was down to personal preference but I bet about 80% of twigs were either silver rods or the thunderpole mk11. There was one marketed as the "hygain" silver rod.
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chazwozza
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Re: Is the 1/2 silver rod the best antenna in the world ?

Post by chazwozza »

Wire has a strong case

Tim
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Re: Is the 1/2 silver rod the best antenna in the world ?

Post by Tim »

The simple dipole, in either 1/2 or 5/8 wave form is for base use about the best all rounder. your position in altitude, ASL, and what you have around you such as trees and buildings will affect performance but you can enhance and improve the performance by adding ground plane wires measured to 8ft 6 inches stretched out between 35 and 45 degrees, these also act as guy wires as well but obviously you will need cord, like para cord, to extend them to peg to the ground. A minimum of 2 wires is all that's required, positioned opposite each other but better if you have 4 as 2 can make it slightly directional. I made a homebrew 1/4 wave using flex weave, 3 equal lengths of 8 feet 6 inches, one vertical for the driven element and 2 for the ground planes again stretched out and pegged to the ground at 45 degrees and mounted on a 10 meter telescopic fishing pole fixed to an aluminium stage speaker tripod that in itself extends up to 8 feet. This antenna cost peanuts and performs equal to the 1/2 wave dipole although with only the 2 ground plane wires is ever so slightly directional. If you use a telescopic mast of any type avoid aluminium and carbon fibre as these are obviously conductive and can give you tuning issues.

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InTheClouds
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Re: Is the 1/2 silver rod the best antenna in the world ?

Post by InTheClouds »

I hear you both there regarding wire from which all antennas surely originate, the 1/4 wave sounds interesting I guess no coil so less loss. I imagine a little less practical in terms of needing space to space the ground planes out. Does a 1/2 wave ideally need the proper 1/4 wave radials or is it more forgiving with regards output pattern than the 5/8 wave when no radials are present ? 10m pole sounds great. Dipole is a bit more tricky I think to feed when portable as the coax needs to be coming from the horizontal I think.

Would be interested in historic photos of silver rods.
Am I gettin aaat ? My CB gear = any old long antenna, any 11m radio, low SWR, good coax, get it up high, and most important of all a respect all radio colleagues attitude.

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Re: Is the 1/2 silver rod the best antenna in the world ?

Post by Tim »

I'm not technically minded but I do believe that the optimum physical length for a ground plane is a 1/4 wave length, certainly for 11 meter band anyway. A 1/4 wave antenna can be constructed in several ways and the driven element and ground planes can be made up using ordinary covered electrical wire, the driven element could be take apart sectional or telescopic, like a car antenna, a good old tank antenna is good.

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Re: Is the 1/2 silver rod the best antenna in the world ?

Post by QRZ-934 »

I never had the silver rod so cant really comment on it but it obviously worked well.
For me the most common antenna I used was the old GAP half wave sited on a free standing steel mast that was over 20 feet long itself. Tip of antenna was 47 feet and higher than the old willow tree at the bottom of the garden.
That antenna was up for many years only coming down when the weather was turning thundery, its quite a laugh to have to jump out of bed at 02.30am and scoot down the garden in the p*ssing rain, heave the whole assembly off its vertical supporting pole(about 3 feet tall and slid inside the main pole) and walk it down to the ground hoping not to get hit by a bolt! :) I got quite adept at balancing the whole thing before it was on the ground.

I used to try out others including one of the best skip antennas I had tried which was the starduster. It was useless for local stuff though so I went back to the GAP.
Had the obligatory DV27 in the loft, a hygain "disguise" antenna hanging out the back window and a dipole at times along with a couple of firestiks.
Fun times.
Now have a co-linear on 934 and a sirio gainmaster for 27. Need to put a quarter wave up in the loft again also. :)

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Re: Is the 1/2 silver rod the best antenna in the world ?

Post by wa10 »

Not the best but by far the most common cb antenna round here up to the a99 coming out, most silver rod style antennas do perform on par with the a99,

The old 1970's early 80's gp/silver rods had circuit board matching transformers that would smoke at much over 100w,
the tube they used varied from crap gp27xx through half decent HY-GAIN silver rod to very good 4 section ARMCO,

Back then you could buy a cheap recycled twintub washing machine lid silver rod for £6.99 or an ARMCO for about 11 quid, Hy-gain cost more,

in the early 80's along came HEMBRO with wire matching & crap soft ill fitting tubes, then the Hi-gain silver rods,

it all went down hill from there as far as silver rod type antennas are concerned,

Todays silver rods handle more power but the tubes are thin wall soft tube that fit together very loosely,
ok for portable where quality & wind survival don't matter.
W8JI
"An antenna with a poor ground using few radials cannot have a support mast grounded to the radial common point (at least it shouldn't if designed properly) There is no exception to this!

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InTheClouds
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Re: Is the 1/2 silver rod the best antenna in the world ?

Post by InTheClouds »

Nice details wa10 especially the circuit board matching, good knowledge.

I imagine the design originated in the USA initially?

Found this :
Image

I do think the short ground radials make it look the business even if they were somewhat ineffective. Anyone use them and notice any difference ? If it was measurable on a model for some clever ham it would be interesting. I think they were abut 40cms long.
I think there is just something classic about em, when you use one you are really using a bit of CB radio history.
Am I gettin aaat ? My CB gear = any old long antenna, any 11m radio, low SWR, good coax, get it up high, and most important of all a respect all radio colleagues attitude.

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Re: Is the 1/2 silver rod the best antenna in the world ?

Post by Tim »

Those short banana radials are only effective as perches for small birds up to blackbird size, other than that they perform no useful function at all. As for the loose fitting of the sections, all you need to do is have a thin file and file out the pinch slots a tad so that they close better when you jubilee them up.

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Re: Is the 1/2 silver rod the best antenna in the world ?

Post by wa10 »

Early Hy-gains used circuit board matching, later clr2's used wire, not sure about the later silver rod, never seen inside one,

i would guess that style antenna started in the usa since its the home of cb radio but they had different brands of similar looking cb antennas in the 70's, no idea which came first.
W8JI
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Re: Is the 1/2 silver rod the best antenna in the world ?

Post by Mudslinger »

1/2 waves are ok but I consider a good 5/8 with ground planes far superior.
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InTheClouds
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Re: Is the 1/2 silver rod the best antenna in the world ?

Post by InTheClouds »

I agree if I had a choice of 5/8 with big radials or a 1/2 wave I would go with the 5/8 for extra performance in a permanent set up. Given the many types of install, I still think the silver rod has an all rounder capability. Radio is truly amazing and so are aerials.
Am I gettin aaat ? My CB gear = any old long antenna, any 11m radio, low SWR, good coax, get it up high, and most important of all a respect all radio colleagues attitude.

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Re: Is the 1/2 silver rod the best antenna in the world ?

Post by ChrisMagpie »

I once had a Hi-Gain Silver Rod MK2 (legal version) which was a pollarded silver rod with a top loaded loading coil. It was about 1.65m long, which complied with the restrictive legislation at the time :angel:

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InTheClouds
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Re: Is the 1/2 silver rod the best antenna in the world ?

Post by InTheClouds »

cool what is pollarded ?
Am I gettin aaat ? My CB gear = any old long antenna, any 11m radio, low SWR, good coax, get it up high, and most important of all a respect all radio colleagues attitude.

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