Originally Posted by md gp
I have a new JKU and am trying to decide on the best antenna mount. Which Diamond mount did you use? Do you think the hood metal will hold up over time?
I have a fender mount in the same general location on my 98 TJ. It tore the fender metal with a 4 foot spring mounted antenna. I got the tear welded, added a brace and went to a three foot antenna. Now it's very stable. My TJ just has a CB for short range use.
I'm a Ham, looking to add a Yaesu FT7900R or FT857D in the JKU. I've read quite a bit about the various tailgate and other rear mounts, but I'm looking for the best possible antenna mount. Thanks in advance for any additional advice.
The one pictured on the hood is a Diamond K515. I wouldn't put an HF screwdriver antenna on the K515. I have used a K400 with both a Yaesu screwdriver HF/2M and a baby Tarheel on the hood of an F250 for years. The Tarheel is a great antenna by the way but the Yaesu AT screwdriver works seamlessly with the FT857 (which I've owned in the past). The Yaesu is easier to use until it gets wet inside.
Using a lip mount on the Jeep hood in that location should be relatively safe because the metal is curved giving it more strength than a flat section. I park in a garage so I can't have a very tall antenna on normally. I keep a dual band on normally and if I go on a trip I put the tri-band antenna SBB15 on which is about 5 feet long. I've used that antenna on the K515 mount on a door in the past without issues.
I tried my K400 mount on the rear gate lip mounted between the hinges. I ground strapped the door and the mount appeared solid and didn't interfere with the rear window opening when the gate was fully open. This put the radiating portion of the antenna above the metal of the Jeep body but then I noticed that it was within 6 inches of the defroster lines in the rear window. If you are running 50watts or more I would be concerned that (apart from high SWR) that the defroster wiring might act as a receiving antenna and potentially feed RF back into the electrical system of the Jeep. I have fried other electrical systems running only 100w in 6m so be careful.
As I'm considering where to mount my HF antenna I will probably use one of the Tarheel antenna mounts and move the antenna to the drivers side rear corner to get it away from the body of the vehicle and down nearer the road to reduce overall height and improve radiation. Mounts
If you haven't previously done HF mobile before be prepared to spend many hours tracking down RF noise and then ground strapping and adding RF beads to all sorts of things in your Jeep. Getting rid of noise in a mobile HF rig is half the fun of Ham radio
I used to do CW while traveling but my Morse skills have degraded to the point where I only do voice or psk on HF now.