New UHF antenna, but which one (AE4018 K3 or AE4702)?

Submitted: Wednesday, Sep 09, 2015 at 14:05
ThreadID: 130243 Views:5084 Replies:6 FollowUps:5
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Looking at both of these antenna's (AE4018 K3 or AE4702) as a replacement to my existing broken AE4018. But don't really understand the differences, pro's and con's of each type.

Any help would be appreciated.

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Reply By: HKB Electronics - Wednesday, Sep 09, 2015 at 14:39

Wednesday, Sep 09, 2015 at 14:39
Probably depends were you going to mount it, I had an older version of the AE4018 K3 on my bull bar and it broke from the vibration, they tried to sell me the AE4018 K3 but once bitten twice shy, I would go for the 4702 if bull bar mounting. Also generally the bigger the antenna the better the reception.


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AnswerID: 590183

Reply By: Stu & "Bob" - Wednesday, Sep 09, 2015 at 18:46

Wednesday, Sep 09, 2015 at 18:46
My favourite is the AE409L. Ground plane independant, comes with both 6 and 9 Db gain antennas in the kit, and the earlier instructions rated them at 100W PEP. (strangely, there is no power rating on the latest instructions.) I have been using them since 1988, no complaints.
AE409L Antenna

Can be had on-line for roughly $70 delivered.
AnswerID: 590190

Follow Up By: Shaker - Thursday, Sep 10, 2015 at 09:20

Thursday, Sep 10, 2015 at 09:20
Mine didn't last long once I hit corrugations, it snapped off halfway along the Oodnadatta Track!

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Follow Up By: Stu & "Bob" - Thursday, Sep 10, 2015 at 12:21

Thursday, Sep 10, 2015 at 12:21
I have had mine mounted on the front guard using a "Z" mount. Up until I sold my 100 series, the antenna had been on 3 different cars over 20 years. I would like to have kept it, but couldn't get the blasted thing off...

They don't like the vibrations from a bullbar mount.
FollowupID: 858219

Reply By: TomH - Wednesday, Sep 09, 2015 at 19:24

Wednesday, Sep 09, 2015 at 19:24
I had a AE 4018k2 for 3 years and only ever broke the whips when driving under a low door (stupidity) and it never had any trouble.
I did however get a piece of polypipe and cable tied it around the spring to stop it waving and vibrating so much. Was on the L/H end of the bull bar on a solid mount
AnswerID: 590191

Reply By: Idler Chris - Wednesday, Sep 09, 2015 at 19:41

Wednesday, Sep 09, 2015 at 19:41
Depends on what performance you want. I have an RFI CDQ5000, not cheep, but awesome performance and extremely well built in Australia.
What other people think of me is none of my business.
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AnswerID: 590192

Reply By: Member - Boobook - Thursday, Sep 10, 2015 at 05:20

Thursday, Sep 10, 2015 at 05:20
It depends on what you mainly want to use it for.

If it is mainly high country stuff then either is fine, and probably the AE4018K3 is a little less of an eyesore.

If you do more outback stuff then the 4706 is part of a family and interchangeable with other higher gain antennas. At additional expense.

BUT if you simply mount it on the bulbar, then neither will be much chop and it doesn't matter anyway. The elevated feed AE4018K3 may give some small advantage. Just go for whichever you think looks best, like 99% of 4wders.

If you are serious about getting any decent range then you must put the antenna on the roof. A simple angle bracket can be made up to act as a knock down bracket for carparks etc. On the roof the lighter the better, the 409 suggested above is a good alternative.

See if you can find a UHF antenna anywhere but on the roof on a professionally installed emergency / commercial vehicle. They are rare, because bull bar mounting doesn't work very well.
AnswerID: 590202

Follow Up By: The Bantam - Friday, Sep 11, 2015 at 21:28

Friday, Sep 11, 2015 at 21:28
I have to agree that of all the places you could mount a uhf aerial on a 4wd ...... for a variety of reasons the bullbar is the worst possible.

Ive been running a knock down bracket on the side of my roof rack for arround 5 years now.
It puts my aerial high and clear,
In the middle of the wheelbase where vibration is less
It lies flat when not in use, and knocks down if struck.

Gets better results from a cheaper aerial


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Follow Up By: Member - Boobook - Saturday, Sep 12, 2015 at 05:30

Saturday, Sep 12, 2015 at 05:30
LOL last year I was crossing the Simpson with 3 other vehicles, all of which had bull bar mounted antennas including one that had a massive broomstick, must have cost him $250.

On one occasion there were some vehicles coming the other way, but about 10 - 15 km away. I was having a discussion with the oncoming group for several minutes, chatting about traffic, track conditions, chit chat etc. They came in loud and clear. After the conversation I asked our group if they got all that, and all said they could really only hear my transmissions. The guy with the huge broomstick said he could occasionally make out something, but could not understand anything of what they said.

My lil ol AE409 for $100 on the roof left em for dead. Also it has a PL259 connector and I replace it with a 6" rubber ducky antenna when there is a lot of overhead trees and we are in a tight group. Another story is prior to moving the antenna from the bull bar I could never trigger a repeater on Mt Dandenong from my house with a 6.5db antenna. After moving it to the roof, even my little rubber dick antenna could contact the repeater reliably.

The down side is that I always end up leading or tail end charlie on dusty dirt roads so we can spread out more. Not enough range for 3 - 4 vehicles with a bull bar mounted antenna to allow the tail end to talk to the front.

I recon bull bar mounted antennas were started by ARB putting a mount there and people sheepishly followed. It make no sense and ARB is a steel company, not a radio company.

FollowupID: 858266

Follow Up By: The Bantam - Saturday, Sep 12, 2015 at 08:02

Saturday, Sep 12, 2015 at 08:02
yeh people simply don't grasp that UHF is pretty much line of sight ....... high and clear is what gets the job done.

gain and radiation pattern are pretty much irrelivent if you are not close to line of sight and unobstructed.

going from the bullbar to the roof rack can gain 2 to 3 feet in extra height ...... that can gain a hell of a lot of range in certain terian.

OH and at the risk of harping ........ plenty of the expensive big white sticks either have less gain than the common elivated feed antenna or only so little more it makes no difference.

the 6.5 db elivated feed whip remains the best bang for bucks uhf aerial available ...... this is why just about everbody makes one.

FollowupID: 858269

Reply By: 322 - Friday, Sep 11, 2015 at 21:48

Friday, Sep 11, 2015 at 21:48
I have an RFI aerial. Not sure on the type. But it snapped in half driving down a track in Kakadu a few weeks back. Emailed RFI and they wanted proof of purchase etc. I had explained that we are travelling Oz and couldn't provide receipts at present. And I was prepared to sent the aerial back for them to take a look at it. At my expense. They were completely dismissive of my request. I'll only buy GME from here on in.
AnswerID: 590271

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