[VHFcontesting] 12 foot rover mast too high?

Pete K0BAK via VHFcontesting vhfcontesting at contesting.com
Mon Dec 22 10:47:25 EST 2014

To the rovers:

I have a walk-up mast system (Penninger Radio) for my minivan rover beams that I previously had to construct on-site at each stop. I've been working toward getting a real ham rotor on the bottom of the mast, and to travel with the beams up to increase my operating time by not having construct at each site.

I just put the system together yesterday. The combination of the pivot device, the rotor, and mast sections I'm using altogether put the top of the mast slightly over 12 feet from the ground. It looks dangerously tall to me for driving.

Before I spend more time on getting the mast more stable with some metal between a ring bearing and the roof rack, do you guys have an opinion about driving with a mast that high? On interstates and state roads, it shouldn't be a problem, but I'm wondering if you have a mast that tall with antennas (I will have 4 ~10' beams) while driving to good sites on heavily-wooded roads with antenna-snagging low branches.

What would you consider the maximum reasonably-safe height for travel in the Northeast with it's narrow back roads, tree canopies, and old railroad bridges (I'm from Pennsylvania)?

Thanks, Pete K0BAK

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