Red Hot Antenna Aids Communication
The Red Hot Antenna is mounted above the cockpit on this Kolb FireStar taildragger to protect it in case of an inadvertent nose-over, and also to give the radio system better transmission/reception capability. Left: Doyle Langford sells the antenna system, complete with BNC connector, stranded-wire coax cable and mounting bracket.
Doyle Langford says he started developing his Red Hot Antenna "after a friend in our local flying club told me about nosing over his FireStar." The accident broke his antenna's insulation and his friend didn't notice the connection had failed. "The next time he transmitted, he blew his transceiver," Langford relates, "so now he needed a new radio and antenna."
Necessity being the mother of invention, Langford "set out to design a better antenna that would satisfy his communication needs and still be durable, efficient, user-friendly and economical," he says.
"The Red Hot Antenna is built with quality materials for durability, longevity and performance," Langford explains. "It has a stainless steel whip, aluminum brackets, heavy-duty chrome-plated connections and stranded-wire Belden coax cable. It is easy to install and easy to inspect on preflight.
"The antenna is a good solution for all ultralight flyers who are interested in improving their communications and safety."
Langford indicates the Red Hot Antenna has been tested on many makes and models of ultralights, including Challengers and Quicksilvers, as well as planes such as Kolb aircraft and the AirCam. "It also works well on ground mobile vehicles," he notes. "In all test cases, this antenna allows the user to transmit and receive farther distances using the same previously-installed transceivers.
"SWR (signal-to-wave ratio) readings of 1.0 to 1.1 have been obtained on most installations. The majority of the transceivers are hand-held units. In our club, most members live 10- to 60-miles apart. Good radio systems are essential for good communication when flying short cross-country flights with three to eight other ultralights."
The Red Hot Antenna kit includes BNC connector, coax cable, a custom mounting bracket and the heavy-duty antenna. "Knowing the make and model of your aircraft will allow us to send you a custom bracket and the correct length of cable," Langford adds. "This will help ensure an easier and cleaner installation. We also carry brackets to mount your hand-held radio to your aircraft."
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