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Linear Actuators for tilting antenna mounts?

Discussion in 'Mobile Radio Systems' started by KC8QVO, Oct 29, 2015.

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  1. K0BG

    K0BG Ham Member QRZ Page

    Once you get it all built, and installed, send pictures of what it looks like after you forgot to lower it.
    WA8FOZ likes this.
  2. KC9UDX

    KC9UDX Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber Life Member QRZ Page

    That's where a pneumatic one shines.
  3. K0BG

    K0BG Ham Member QRZ Page

    I don't mean to harp on this ad nauseam, but as I said before, I've tried just about every scenario to accomplish exactly what the poster is envisioning. No matter what you do, sooner or later, pneumatic or not, the operation will be forgotten with predictable results.

    I haven't given up, but I did resort to a milled-in break point at the base of the mast which supports the cap hat. I've managed to snap that a few times, even though I have a warning system in place. Not only that, but I've hit enough birds doing 70 mph to know exactly what does happen which you hit something hard enough, alive or otherwise. So the bottom line is, you MUST have some sort of failsafe fallback, or a big fat checkbook to pay for all of the damage you will inevitably suffer!
  4. KC9UDX

    KC9UDX Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber Life Member QRZ Page

    If an electric actuator is used, the antenna mount assembly could be attached to the actuator with a spring in such a way that it stays vertical in the wind, but pushes back if something strikes it.

    I use springs on my antennas, which are fixed upright, except for the springs. I use springs rated so that the antennas stay mostly vertical on the road, but they do tip over if I drive into the garage, which I frequently do.

    I've thought about making a spring-loaded break-away mount so that if I do hit something (usually trees), the antenna(s) tip and stay down until I manually reset them. That makes them much easier to remove if for some reason I can't get out from under whatever they are stuck under.
  5. AK5B

    AK5B Ham Member QRZ Page

    Not to delve off into another direction but until this thread I never knew about these linear activators (or at least by what they are called).

    Makes me wonder if one might be a good way to mount a stealth vertical monopole in home installations; as in "fold-over Butternut or AVQ-14," etc. Have it laying over on the back lawn most of the time and just hit the "Up" button come sundown or whenever it was time to put it upright.

    Back on the subject; I do like the "14' high garage" as the best solution!
  6. KC9UDX

    KC9UDX Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber Life Member QRZ Page

    "Linear Actuator" is the term.

    For something in the back yard, a winch would be much simpler and probably much cheaper.

    Of course, these are pretty slick, too:
  7. K0BG

    K0BG Ham Member QRZ Page


    You have got to be kidding! Here is what happens when you hit something. In this case, there was a spring at the top of the antenna, just under the whip.

    Attached Files:

    WA8FOZ likes this.
  8. KC9UDX

    KC9UDX Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber Life Member QRZ Page

    None of my antennas have coils under them. If they did, the spring would be under the coil.

    I've hit all manner of foliage, and my garage door countless times with zero harm.

    I've seen an awful lot of antennas installed with springs under them that are far too stiff and don't do anything useful. The last guy I bought a spring from tried to convince me that I needed a much stronger one.

    I only want one strong enough to keep my antenna mostly vertical on the highway. If I can't push the antenna over with my fingers, it's too stiff.
  9. KK4YDR

    KK4YDR Ham Member QRZ Page

    Alan hah you are so ... meanie weenie sometimes hahaha! We love you still.

    I want a linear actuator so that I can lower my Scorpion SA680 to go through the chickfila Drive Thru that is 9 feet clearance without having to disembark and remove the whip. I do not part my truck in a garage and even if I did have a linear actuator to lower my gargantuan antenna my truck only clears by 2 inches and I still have 2 NMO antennas on the top, my nmo 2/70 larsen and my nmo-27 larsen 10m/cb antenna that is nearly 5 freaking feet long. I also want an actuator to lower my antenna because I dont always want people to see my massive antenna visibly thereby provoking the little grubby thieving fingers from figure out how to steal it. Don't want to steal what isn't advertised or something like that.
    AK5B likes this.
  10. KK4YDR

    KK4YDR Ham Member QRZ Page

    If that were a Scorpion it would have knocked your house down and still would have been ready for a long qso on 75 meters.
    K0UO and AK5B like this.

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