Portable Antenna Recommendations
I live in an HOA neighborhood in which I cannot so much as sneeze without my neighbors knowing. I currently have a dipole in my attic, which is better than no antenna, but not great due to noise. I'm thinking about getting something I can setup in my backyard in a few minutes while operating, then take down. Does anyone have any experience good/bad with the various options out there? Examples include Alpha, Wolf River Coil, Buddipole, etc. I'm sure there are many others. Thanks for any feedback.
Having lived in an HOA community with small lot sizes I share your pain. I experimented with stealth dipoles, end fed, and portable verticals on my patio. None performed as well as portable antennas in parks and open space areas. I don't bother with anything at home any more other than a portable vertical (Buddistick/Yaesu ATAS-25) on the patio occaisionally. Most of my operating is done portable because of much better results with those same antennas.
In addition to stealth requirements in the neighborhood you are dealing with poor topography and neighbor generated noise. Difficult to overcome these maladies.
I got out of amateur radio when I moved into an HOA in 1996. A ham buddy of mine claimed stealth antennas work fine. This info got me back into amateur radio. In my particular neighborhood they did not work very well. I kind of suspect a good performing stealth antenna is a mythical beast.
@ecstein Thanks, I often do the same and leave the qth for a park. It’s amazing how much better the reception is away from suburban rf.
You might consider the Packtenna either EFHW or 9:1 random wire. They can deploy quickly, use super stealthy 26 AWG wire, can handle up to 100watts. They sell out quickly and are currently available at packtenna.com. They also have an active groups.io for support. I'm using the 9:1 with a 29ft. random wire portable but it requires a tuner. At 100 watts you may need a choke on your feed line. The EFHW and dipoles are resonant. Also, just using the 534-26 AWG wire from TheWireman.com and you can create a nearly invisible wire antenna of your choosing. That stuff is hard to see (until it snows).
Honestly, if I were in an HOA, I'd go with a 6BTV vertical on a tilt base. HOA doesn't have a say if it's not up permanently. Lay down some radials and you're good to go with no-compromise performance. 2nd choice would be a high-power mag loop but they can easily run a couple grand...
AB0L (Formerly N0KAI)
Kenwood TM-V71A, Kenwood TS-590S, Icom ID-4100A, Yaseu FT-891, TYT MD-UV380, TYT MD-380, Kenwood TH-D7A, BTECH UV-5X3, µBITX V5, µBITX V4, QRPGuys 40/30/20m DSB Digital Transceiver
@ab4ba Thanks for the recommendation. I have a couple of George's antennas as well. If I'm at home I put them up on a fiberglass pole and they work really well.
@3d0g Thanks, I will definitely check that out. A tilt base may be just what I need to make this work.