Codan 8558 Auto tune

Submitted: Saturday, Jan 28, 2006 at 02:28
ThreadID: 30181 Views:8746 Replies:9 FollowUps:5
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I have recently purchased a Codan 8528 HF Radio & 8558 Auto tune antenna. I have experienced some problems receiving signals and getting the antenna to Tune.
The radio has been inspected by a Codan dealer and has had a circuit board replace, this has inproved the reception but at times the antenna fails to tune. The radio make the "beeping" sound while it attempts to tune but comes up with "Fail"
The dealer suggested I purchase a new antenna at a cost of $1500.00.
Are the 8558 antenna's repairable? Ant assistance would be appreciated
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Reply By: Eric from Cape York Connections - Saturday, Jan 28, 2006 at 06:23

Saturday, Jan 28, 2006 at 06:23
If it is the old round type I am lead to believe they are unrepairable and to buy a new type. The cost of $1500 hasn't changed I replaced my one about 7 year ago and was the same price then.
Is it like the one on my old buggy.

All the best

AnswerID: 151393

Reply By: Peter 2 - Saturday, Jan 28, 2006 at 08:42

Saturday, Jan 28, 2006 at 08:42
If it the parallel sided tube type with either a fibreglass type finish or smooth matt finish there are no parts available, Codan refused to support them after a few years and the only solution is to buy a new tapered one or go back to using a tapped whip.
I tell anyone buying a secondhand Codan (and have done so a few times on Exploroz) that they are only buying the actual transmitter, the earlier antennas even if working are going to fail. Canny (deceitful) sellers will demonstrate that it works on a couple of frequencies which they will do before total failure.
AnswerID: 151401

Reply By: Darian (SA) - Saturday, Jan 28, 2006 at 10:20

Saturday, Jan 28, 2006 at 10:20
Hmmm - bugger - as mentioned above, you could get a tapped whip antenna (they still cost quite a few hundred) and move the tap wire manually, when you change channels (about a 3 second job) - if, for example, you were only interested in VKS737 membership (or similar network) and simply wanted to monitor skeds for messages etc, you could stay on one channel foroever (just about) - very little tap work. If, on the other hand, you want to get into use of quite a lot of channels at varying times, while mobile, a new autotune seems the go. Don't forget that the new autotune will probably mate happily (check on it) with newer Codan models (like the 9323) or even the NGT if you needed to change radios later. So it can be seen as an investment of sorts in your future comms of course. Nothing wrong with used HF systems as an idea - that's what I've done (twice). You just need a reliable seller. PS: If the old antenna is to be discarded, why not pull it to bits yourself and look for anything obvious - you might find a wire off, or some corroded joints etc.
AnswerID: 151417

Reply By: The Explorer - Saturday, Jan 28, 2006 at 10:32

Saturday, Jan 28, 2006 at 10:32
Hello - yet again the soothsayers of doom are at it - just because there are no parts available doesn’t mean the antenna is "unrepairable" and should be thrown in the bin (though it may well be the best, cost effective option in the long run). All depends on what is wrong with it. I had a malfunctioning 8558 a few years ago and I repaired it without the need to purchase any maybe you will have the same luck.

The antenna is relatively easy to pull apart - I followed instructions on taking the unit apart that I downloaded from

Bens Oz radio Page

Unfortunately this web site appears to be down but should be (?) back up soon. I have no idea where the copy of the file is on my computer (well about 3 computers ago - sorry)

In the mean time go to the codan_outback_radio and ask a few questions there. Also look in files section here under Aerials – Auto Tune – there is a word document there with a brief account on how someone fixed their non tuning 8558 (without the need for genuine parts).

Best I can do – good luck
I sent one final shout after him to stick to the track, to which he replied “All right,” That was the last ever seen of Gibson - E Giles 23 April 1874

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AnswerID: 151422

Follow Up By: Peter 2 - Saturday, Jan 28, 2006 at 14:56

Saturday, Jan 28, 2006 at 14:56
I probably should have said in my original post that have a go at fixing it, they are pretty simple and I fully agree that having a go at fixing it is the way to go if you have the necessary skills but as the piece of equipment involved is an item of emergency/safety item and could be relied upon in a life and death situation by someone who has absolutely no knowledge of how it works let alone attempting to fix it.
As a repairer/dealer/seller/whatever the retailer/person affecting the repair has to consider the best long term and most reliable route for the customer, repair to original specs or if the parts are not available then replacement.
The repurcussions upon a repairer not fixing the equipment correctly and then that poor repair costing a life in an extreme case don't bear thinking about. Why do you reckon that Codan from XYZ date refused to support those antennas any more?
By all means have ago at repairing it, the individual affecting his own repairs has nothing to lose apart from time. But as no new parts are available and the labour cost of a repairer attempting to fix the broken bits it soon becomes cost ineffective for the customer with the problem of poor design still remaining.
If those antennas are subject to the vehicle vibrations from corrugated roads continually they will fail sooner or later. Yes there are lots still around and still working but I'd bet that most that are still around have seen most use on smooth highways rather than corrugated tracks.
Your paragraph in parentheses says it all.
FollowupID: 405101

Follow Up By: The Explorer - Saturday, Jan 28, 2006 at 15:13

Saturday, Jan 28, 2006 at 15:13
Peter - no worries - understand where you’re coming from - just figure he may as well have a go at fixing it. To tell you the honest truth I myself would throw it in the bin as well and just use a whip - more reliable. I don’t like auto tunes of any type..convenient I suppose but when you only use 2 or 3 channels its overkill (bit like the HF radios 400+ frequencies!!). One of the main reasons I suspect Codan no longer supports old gear (including the radio in question) is that they want you to buy the latest models, not because the old gear is unreliable.
I sent one final shout after him to stick to the track, to which he replied “All right,” That was the last ever seen of Gibson - E Giles 23 April 1874

Lifetime Member
My Profile  My Blog  Send Message

FollowupID: 405106

Follow Up By: Peter 2 - Saturday, Jan 28, 2006 at 15:52

Saturday, Jan 28, 2006 at 15:52
Having tried to repair quite a few and also built one out of two or three several times (I used to install them for a dealer) only to have them fail during the next trip out west it is mostly due to poor design (a core with teeth in it is never going to stand up to corrugations) when mounted on a bullbar. We had a couple that failed very quickly when mounted on a semi prime mover just because of the engine vibrations!
FollowupID: 405112

Reply By: lindsay - Saturday, Jan 28, 2006 at 11:47

Saturday, Jan 28, 2006 at 11:47
Try tuning it to the oposite frequency range that you want to go to, say if you want to down, go up first, get it to tune, then tune down .I had an older one and that was what i did and it sorted itself out. There is an electric motor in the base and it turns a block up & down a nylon thread. There is a small nylon/plastic coupling that can play up.
There is a bloke in Heathcote (Victoria) that is very good on them. He is in the VKS network.just forget his name ,but could findout. Make sure all your connections are good. Also give it a good clout when it attemts to tune. They can be pulled to bits. A mate of mine fixed his.
AnswerID: 151431

Follow Up By: Darian (SA) - Saturday, Jan 28, 2006 at 13:51

Saturday, Jan 28, 2006 at 13:51
Alec Daws - number was 0417 566 022 awhile back.
FollowupID: 405093

Reply By: VK3CAT - Saturday, Jan 28, 2006 at 12:02

Saturday, Jan 28, 2006 at 12:02
Try dismanteling the bottom section of the antenna 7 alter the impedance setting tap. This can help tuning. I used to have a 8558 & did this to give better tuning with the rear wheel carrier mounting. the details were on Bens Codan site which I have a link to on my site
The 9350 is a much better antenna.
FAMPARC make a cheap tapped HF whip for VKS737 for around $100.00
Cheers Tony
AnswerID: 151434

Reply By: charlie horse - Saturday, Jan 28, 2006 at 14:13

Saturday, Jan 28, 2006 at 14:13
This antenna has a known fault and does not tune well above 8mHz.

As I understand they are not repairable.

The recommended price is about $1300 check it out at a couple of dealers.

I would ring Codan in Adelaide and see what they suggest.

Good Luck
AnswerID: 151463

Reply By: fox - Sunday, Jan 29, 2006 at 10:57

Sunday, Jan 29, 2006 at 10:57
My 2 cents worth is to forget the 8558 antenna as I had one on my old 8528 back in the nineties...they have a clear former tube in them which will eventually fall to bits...and you already know about "MURPHY".

Get a Codan 9350 antenna, they are streets ahead in design and if you don't want to pay $1500 for a new one or even $1300 from another dealer in NSW...I advertised for a S/H 9350 antenna and I have just picked up a S/H 9350 antenna and now I have just had an e-mail from another response to my ad, which might benefit you. The response is as follows:

"i have some 9350 starting at 500 for a good working unit
up to 750-00 for a unit that has been refurbished by codan
units are complete with s/s whips and cotrol cable
regrads graham"

This guys e-mail is

Give it a go
Good Luck
Rick & Julie
AnswerID: 151591

Follow Up By: Gypsy3 - Sunday, Jan 29, 2006 at 18:06

Sunday, Jan 29, 2006 at 18:06
Many thanks for the lead. I will send them an Email. Thanks again
FollowupID: 405231

Reply By: DesC - Monday, Jan 30, 2006 at 18:26

Monday, Jan 30, 2006 at 18:26
I had an 8525 that wouldn't tune and i had a Codan agent check it out. He said the ariel was BUGGERED and to buy another one. I bought another s/h 9323 radio and fitted it. SAME #$%@ING PROBLEM. Turned out to be the Coax cable.
AnswerID: 151870

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