UHF antenna & Heat Shrink???

Submitted: Monday, Mar 17, 2003 at 07:45
ThreadID: 3884 Views:4500 Replies:7 FollowUps:3
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Have just purchase a AE4706.

I am thinking about covering the white shell of the anteena with black heat shrink for protection.

Will the heat shrink affect the antenna's performance? Does anyone have an opinion on me doing this?
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Reply By: Member - Chris - Monday, Mar 17, 2003 at 12:38

Monday, Mar 17, 2003 at 12:38
Heat shrick doesn't have any effect upon the electrical characteristics mate, but it may change the flexibiltiy of the antenna and cause more flexing in places that weren't designed for it. That might result in breaking the winding which may reduce the effectiveness of the antenna.Chris
<- 1996 Troopy, the best!
AnswerID: 15365

Reply By: Bob Y. - Monday, Mar 17, 2003 at 14:35

Monday, Mar 17, 2003 at 14:35
Black matt spray tin will do the job, and you have plenty for touch ups.
AnswerID: 15371

Follow Up By: Member - Chris - Monday, Mar 17, 2003 at 15:52

Monday, Mar 17, 2003 at 15:52
I've not seen the antenna up close, but if the white bit is fibre glass, then there are some issues coating the antenna with any sort of paint, particularly if the antenna is sanded to provide a key. Paint may be conductive and therefore might track the transmitting power to earth, reducing your efficiency and making you clean the damn thing more often. It may crack more than the original surface an increase the tracking/ peeling effects more - again you get to clean it more often.

Buy a steel one if the white rod is too bright at night. Chris
<- 1996 Troopy, the best!
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Follow Up By: Bob Y. - Monday, Mar 17, 2003 at 19:07

Monday, Mar 17, 2003 at 19:07
I only paint the rear of the aerial, up to roof height, to reduce glare at night. Prefer to keep rest white. As for conductivity, wouldn't have a clue, but a 4706 will just about blast through anything, with 5W up the bum. Steel units have a longevity problem when subjected to vibration.
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Reply By: Mike - Monday, Mar 17, 2003 at 16:08

Monday, Mar 17, 2003 at 16:08
what about trying black insulation tape, at least it would be easy to take off!
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Reply By: Truckster - Monday, Mar 17, 2003 at 17:55

Monday, Mar 17, 2003 at 17:55
IM betting heating it up wont do it any favors either.

Im have my 27 meg ariel covered in electrical tape, with a white band where the height of my truck is. so when I drive under things, I know if Im going to hit!

heaps easier and cheaper. Also coating in heat shrink could can your warranty if need be.
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Reply By: Nat - Monday, Mar 17, 2003 at 21:10

Monday, Mar 17, 2003 at 21:10
Why paint it black when you can buy them in black brand new in the 4706 series???
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Reply By: Rob - Tuesday, Mar 18, 2003 at 13:18

Tuesday, Mar 18, 2003 at 13:18
I'm not familiar with the 4706, but if it is a hollow fibreglass (this is called a "Radome")type antenna then adding heat-shrink may detune the antenna. Best thing is to check with the supplier/manufacturer.

Rob
AnswerID: 15486

Reply By: Jarrod - Tuesday, Mar 18, 2003 at 16:33

Tuesday, Mar 18, 2003 at 16:33
Dolfn, you should not cover your antenna in anything. - a band of insulation tape at the roof level of your car to give you an idea of how high your car is, is the only thing you should put on your antenna. -

Reasons: Heat shrinkable plastics contain high levels of PVC locked Carbon. these are the chemicals that give it it's shrinkable characteristics. Basically, when heated, tiny PVC molecules (like little tiny bean bag balls) come together, and shrink - this is how it works. The problem is the carbon content. Whilst not enough to conduct electricity (insulated by the PVC) Carbon absorbs RF (radio frequency) energy. (converts it into heat). Whilst not enough to heat up an antenna, it will definitely reduce performance by a large amount. Most antenna's, If heat shrunk, use very thin Teflon based film. Others are firbreglass formed or the best - straight un-anodised stainless steel.

The VSWR will remain unaffected, the antenna is doing exactly what it is supposed to - absorb th RF energy from the Transmitter, but the problem is it is not being radiated.

Check paints/sprays for Carbon content. Its in everything. They even cover Stealth planes with it !!! ( for the very reasons above!!!)


Regards. Jarrod.
AnswerID: 15492

Follow Up By: Member - dolfn - Wednesday, Mar 19, 2003 at 07:01

Wednesday, Mar 19, 2003 at 07:01
Thanks Jarrod,

I wont do it then.

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