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Re: [TowerTalk] C31XR versus SteppIR

To: <>
Subject: Re: [TowerTalk] C31XR versus SteppIR
From: <>
Date: Fri, 11 May 2007 21:30:52 -0400
List-post: <>
I was going to ask the very same question Jay did, what is the protocol that 
OptiBeam does not conform to?   I own one OptiBeam - an OB2-40 40m antenna 
and it is very well made and the customer service from Tom DF2BO is very 
outstanding.  Regarding the subject tribanders, the C31XR is essentially 
three monobanders on the same boom, there are no moving parts, you can 
instantly change bands, and there is some element interaction which reduces 
the gain somewhat.  The SteppIR, has no element interaction problems because 
the element lengths are adjustable, however the spacing is not adjustable 
and not optimum.  It's also mechanically more complicated and you have to 
wait for the elements to adjust when changing bands.  Mechanical problems do 
occur, however there are not a lot of posts on this subject so hopefully it 
is uncommon.    I'm sure either antenna works well and it is up to the user 
to chose the one that best fits his operating and maintenance needs.   If 
you want optimum performance, monobanders offer the most gain and make SO2R 
contesting set up very easy.  For example: according to Force 12's catalog, 
on 15m the C31XR (31' boom) has 6.3dB gain and their EF-515X 15m monobander 
(30' boom) has 7.9dB gain.  6Y1V recently stated that their stacked 
monobanders were 2 to 3 S unites stronger than their stacked MonstIR's, of 
course some of this difference is due to different stacking heights which 
brings up another point.  It is more difficult to stack multiband antennas 
and maintain the desired patteren on all bands since you cannot adjust the 
stacking distance.

John KK9A

To: <>
Subject: Re: [TowerTalk] TowerTalk Digest, Vol 53, Issue 30
From: "Jay Terleski" <>
Date: Fri, 11 May 2007 18:24:30 -0500
List-post: <>

Currently Force 12 and SteppIR are the only manufacturers that use our
protocol to produce useful  comparable performance figures.  If Optibeam
figures were produced  similarly, then I'd be more inclined to believe them.

Steve     K7LXC

Dear Steve,

I don't want to get into an argument; you and I are friends, So try to
understand this is not a flame but hopefully and educational message. What
exactly would those "LXC standards" be exactly? We want to play.

I remember when you asked me for an OB9-5 beam from OptiBeam it was, if I
remember correctly, I had to "donate" the antenna.  And I told you I really
cannot donate a $1200+ beam to you to keep as I remember. We declined
politely and I thought that matter was settled. But that doesn't mean the
antennas are not any good, and their numbers cannot be believed. Hence this

So for the record. OptiBeam antennas are selling very well, especially the
big ones.
And Tom at OptiBeam takes splendid care of his customers, much more then I
have ever seen anyone in the antenna business do. I wouldn't carry them if
they even balked at backing up the antenna. Which they do very well and have
done since I started repping them, 7+ years now. Even when it is not their
fault I have seen them airfreight in parts!  So anyone considering a top of
the line (yes expensive but well built) antenna should feel good that
OptiBeam is there and backs up their product.

The gain, SWR, and F/B number of the Optibeam antennas can be believed 100%!
And the ARRL agrees. Remember when we were advertising them in QST WITH gain
figures? To do so one has to abide by their rules which are published on
their site. They will allow gain figures and F/B figures to be published it
you follow the rules. And we did.

We gave them fully tapered models and Mr. Dean Straw ran them on NEC-4 and
agreed with them 100%. They did NOT ask us to reduce any of the gain figures
we gave them even by.001dB to advertise in QST.  When was the last time you
saw gain figures in QST from your favorite antenna companies?  Well I assure
you it was our OptiBeam ads. And it was because we jumped through that hoop.
I could advertise OptiBeam gain figures anytime I want with QST. As a funny
side affect the QST people told they had allot of guys email and call them
upset that we were allowed to advertise our gain figures. Can you imagine?

So let's see the other companies do the same. It doesn't cost anything to
get the ARRL and MR. Straw to run the models.  Then we really will have a
standard. I will match any antenna you like against an OptiBeam model of a
comparable antenna.  These antennas are that good.

And I am not slamming SteppIR or F12 here so don't get me wrong. Mike
Mertell and I had a load of fun at Visalia. What Mike and his team are doing
is really cool too.

Best Regards to the group and thanks Steve. I hope I misunderstood you.

Shameless Plug:

And be sure to see us at Dayton, the Hilberling radios and the SPE linears
are here and they look beautiful guys and gals! I also will have the new
OptiBeam small wire beam flying in our large booth area. Come in for a cold
one or a cup of coffee and have a look.

Oh and Steve if you want to evaluate the OB10W-5 I will send it to you.
It makes a nice small lot antenna and a DX-pedition antenna, 5 bands, Moxons
on 20 and 17, and Yagis on the other 3 bands.

Jay, WX0B 


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