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To stubby antenna or not to stubby antenna?

Discussion in 'Audio & Video' started by pacman_gptx, Apr 25, 2015.

  1. Apr 25, 2015 at 5:55 PM
    #1
    pacman_gptx

    pacman_gptx [OP] New Member

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    Interior LEDs, Cargo/Reverse LEDs, Foot Well LEDs, McGard Tailgate Anti-Theft, Pilot Stubby Antenna
    I have been combing the forums all day looking for thoughts, opinions, good reliable information on stubby antennas such as the stubby by crave speed. I've gone through Tacoma and Tundra forums alike, has anyone on here ever bought one and actually used it/gotten good FM reception not just for looks. I'd hate to throw $20+ at an antenna that doesn't really work as advertised. Please let me know how you guys feel about the stubby and even the 8", 9", and 13" antennae I see in use. Do these things really work? Or is it all just for looks?
     
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  2. Apr 25, 2015 at 6:05 PM
    #2
    Sean266

    Sean266 #ThinBlueLine Staff Member

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    Check out my build. I've had it on this truck, and two others without any issues.
     
  3. Apr 25, 2015 at 6:50 PM
    #3
    pacman_gptx

    pacman_gptx [OP] New Member

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    Interior LEDs, Cargo/Reverse LEDs, Foot Well LEDs, McGard Tailgate Anti-Theft, Pilot Stubby Antenna
    Is that the Antennax 13" or 15"?
    Also... after you've had it for a year has it faded, flopped over or is it still as good as it looks in the build pic?
    You say you haven't had any problems so I guess you mean your reception is as good if not better than the stock antenna, I listen to the radio quite a bit so it's important to me to have good reception. I live in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area so signal strength wouldn't be a problem. Do you live near the city or in a rural area?
     
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2015
  4. Apr 25, 2015 at 7:01 PM
    #4
    Sean266

    Sean266 #ThinBlueLine Staff Member

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    I believe it's the 7" shorty...I think.

    No, no fading.

    I listen to FM and Pandora a lot. Zero issues.

    I love in the city, but travel to rural areas on occasion.
     
  5. Apr 25, 2015 at 7:20 PM
    #5
    tat2ude39

    tat2ude39 MYota

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    I got the 13", works great, love the look.
     
  6. Apr 26, 2015 at 6:28 AM
    #6
    matluth

    matluth Fish On!

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    18"X9" FN BFD's rims, 295/70R/18E Cooper Discoverer STT Pro's, upgraded to Old Man EMU coil-overs/shocks. Toytec shackles Next: true dual exhaust, new UCA's.
    I had a metra roadworks 13 inch on my Tacoma and now on my Tundra. I remember getting decent reception even when going thru northern BC and Yukon Territory where you need to be able to tune to new stations for ALCAN highway winter road conditions and local info as you head north. Nothing fancy,looks good,$10 at Auto Zone.
     
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2015
  7. Apr 26, 2015 at 10:52 AM
    #7
    csuviper

    csuviper Moderator Staff Member

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    I've heard not to go smaller than 13 as it has to do with the size of the wavelength.
    I have the antenex as well. In town I have no problems with it but certain stations get fuzzy in areas.
     
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  8. Apr 26, 2015 at 11:44 AM
    #8
    matluth

    matluth Fish On!

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    18"X9" FN BFD's rims, 295/70R/18E Cooper Discoverer STT Pro's, upgraded to Old Man EMU coil-overs/shocks. Toytec shackles Next: true dual exhaust, new UCA's.
    Most auto antennas like the OEM ones on the Tundra are actually 1/4 wavelength. Manufacturers that make short antennas get away with it by adding an inductive coil which allows for the shorter lengths and insures antenna can meet resonance spec. There is usually less gain than 75cm(1/4 wavelength) auto antennas.
     
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2015
  9. Apr 26, 2015 at 5:17 PM
    #9
    robie56

    robie56 New Member

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    I live in a rural area in New England and my Stubby antenna is solely for looks, it doesnt pick up diddly!I tend to listen to my ipod, so its not a deal breaker for me.
     
  10. Apr 26, 2015 at 6:32 PM
    #10
    dandailey

    dandailey New Member

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    I just ordered an AntennaX 13". I'll post how it works when I get it.
     
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  11. Apr 26, 2015 at 7:38 PM
    #11
    pacman_gptx

    pacman_gptx [OP] New Member

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    Interior LEDs, Cargo/Reverse LEDs, Foot Well LEDs, McGard Tailgate Anti-Theft, Pilot Stubby Antenna
    I appreciate the feedback from everyone. I look forward to hearing back from you after you install it Dan.
     
  12. Apr 26, 2015 at 8:05 PM
    #12
    UPSed

    UPSed New Member

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    Installed a 7" stubby from Pep Boys today and see (hear) no difference from the factory antenna.
     
  13. Apr 27, 2015 at 6:53 AM
    #13
    pacman_gptx

    pacman_gptx [OP] New Member

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    Interior LEDs, Cargo/Reverse LEDs, Foot Well LEDs, McGard Tailgate Anti-Theft, Pilot Stubby Antenna
    What brand is it and how much was it? I'm down to go buy one at pep boys or autozone to try it out, I just don't want to pay $20 and wait 2 weeks and find out it was a worthless POS. It seems everyone who uses the ANTENNAX brand 13" has given fair reviews but mostly for how it looks.
     
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  14. Apr 27, 2015 at 7:17 AM
    #14
    matluth

    matluth Fish On!

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    If you live in a highly populated area with a lot of powerful radio stations you most likely won't hear any difference in reception. Your too close. In the city, your trucks' metal acts as a giant ground plane. That's why you can take off your antenna and still get some reception. It's not until you get to remote or rural areas, canyons, that you would see a difference.
     
  15. Apr 27, 2015 at 8:25 AM
    #15
    UPSed

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    It's a Pilot from Pep Boys. Only cost $14.99. I also purchased a 3" stubby for my FR-S with the same results. Worst case I planned on taking them back if they didn't work but compared to stubbys I've had in the past they are very solid. [​IMG]
     
  16. Apr 27, 2015 at 9:49 AM
    #16
    FunkinTundra

    FunkinTundra New Member

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    I have a stubby from Amazon...The signal ins't great but there is really only 1 station I need. The rest of the time my iphone is plugged in.
     
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  17. Apr 27, 2015 at 10:28 AM
    #17
    msg148

    msg148 Hulk Smash

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    Just ordered the 13". I will let you know how it goes.
     
  18. Apr 27, 2015 at 12:04 PM
    #18
    pacman_gptx

    pacman_gptx [OP] New Member

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    Interior LEDs, Cargo/Reverse LEDs, Foot Well LEDs, McGard Tailgate Anti-Theft, Pilot Stubby Antenna
    Gonna give Manny, Moe & Jack a shot after work today and see if the have the pilot here in North Texas.
     
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  19. Apr 27, 2015 at 6:47 PM
    #19
    pacman_gptx

    pacman_gptx [OP] New Member

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    Interior LEDs, Cargo/Reverse LEDs, Foot Well LEDs, McGard Tailgate Anti-Theft, Pilot Stubby Antenna
    Picked one up at Pep Boys today but it was pouring rain when I got home so I'll have to wait until tomorrow to try it out. I hope it works out.
     
  20. Apr 28, 2015 at 5:54 AM
    #20
    matluth

    matluth Fish On!

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    18"X9" FN BFD's rims, 295/70R/18E Cooper Discoverer STT Pro's, upgraded to Old Man EMU coil-overs/shocks. Toytec shackles Next: true dual exhaust, new UCA's.
    I am going to head up to Clear Creek canyon this weekend above Golden (Coors). There are some dead air spots along the canyon. I am going to compare reception with the OEM antenna, a Metra 13", my son's Antennax 17", and a 7" pilot my neighbor was kind enough to let me borrow off his car. Just curious what difference there might be. Should be a fair test since my truck will be the control and I will be swapping out the antennas in identical conditions. I'll update after I get back with the results.
     
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  21. Apr 28, 2015 at 5:56 PM
    #21
    pacman_gptx

    pacman_gptx [OP] New Member

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    I opened the package and although the instructions were missing the installation was simple and straightforward. I matched up the adapter to the OEM thread and tightened it up. I didn't drive around to check reception but I got damn good reception with my Tundra sitting in the garage. All my favorite stations (and the freak stations at the top and bottom of the dial) sounded great. The Pilot universal antenna gets a thumbs up from me as far as reception quality and two thumbs up for looks.
    image.jpg image.jpg
     
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  22. Apr 28, 2015 at 10:29 PM
    #22
    csuviper

    csuviper Moderator Staff Member

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    Definitely interested in the results. This experiment might even demand its own thread.
     
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  23. Apr 28, 2015 at 10:30 PM
    #23
    csuviper

    csuviper Moderator Staff Member

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    Good news. Let us know how it works after driving around town.
     
  24. Apr 29, 2015 at 11:14 AM
    #24
    UPSed

    UPSed New Member

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    Well the 3" Pilot stubby on my FR-S works perfect! The 7 inch on the Tundra not so much. Stations fade in and out and I generally have good reception with the stock antenna. I'm guessing it works on my car as it is on top of the roof. Maybe others will have better results.
     
  25. Apr 29, 2015 at 11:32 AM
    #25
    matluth

    matluth Fish On!

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    I am supposed to have the pilot 7 inch off of my neighbors Beetle on Sat. He says it works fine. Just want to test it up in the mountains. 3 inch might be too short for great reception on the truck because of where it is positioned. Just guessing on that.
     
  26. May 2, 2015 at 3:58 PM
    #26
    matluth

    matluth Fish On!

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    Just got back from my drive up near Central City. Actually way above around 11,000 ft. On the way up I stopped in Clear Creek Canyon. I had my stock antenna attached, and brought along a 13" Metra Roadworks carbon style, 7" Pilot stubby, 17" antennax, and a 14" Raptor shorty rubber. Yes you read that right. Shorty Rubber. I was tuned to KBPI, a fairly powerful station in Denver. I found a dead spot with the factory setup and pulled over. Swapped in the four aftermarket antennas. They all had no reception. I would have been surprised if otherwise. I then moved to a spot where the signal came, back but weak with stock antenna. Did the swaparoo again. The 17" Antennax received the signal but weak like stock. The 13" Metra and 7" Pilot both had zip for reception. The l4" Raptor rubber that I picked up at Auto Zone this morning because it looked cool actually got decent reception. It was $7.99 Go figure. I then drove up to my friends property above an old mining town called Apex. All the antennas had good reception even thought the typical Colorado spring afternoon thunder showed up making it too dicey to fool around any more. This was not the most scientific of tests but still practical. I think antennas 7" or less are really for top mount euro style mounting. They might have gotten better reception mounted on top of the cab instead of next to the windshield. Apparently price does not factor in with these particular antennas. I left the $7.99 14" Raptor antenna on. ( By the way, doing this test like I did would be a good excuse to the wifey to go 4 wheeling.)
     
    Last edited: May 2, 2015
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  27. May 2, 2015 at 4:41 PM
    #27
    UPSed

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    Thanks for the comparison. Any chance you could post up a pic of the Raptor installed?
     
  28. May 2, 2015 at 5:24 PM
    #28
    matluth

    matluth Fish On!

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    CAM00057-1.jpg CAM00058.jpg

    Sorry for the delay. This antenna is really flexible.
     
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  29. May 2, 2015 at 5:40 PM
    #29
    matluth

    matluth Fish On!

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    I looked at the fine print on the packaging and it is a Metra Roadworks model#B-AW-RM1R. It actually will bend somewhat with the wind.
     
    Last edited: May 2, 2015
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  30. May 2, 2015 at 9:50 PM
    #30
    pacman_gptx

    pacman_gptx [OP] New Member

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    I drove out about an hour outside of the Dallas area and had very good reception. As I got outside of the area (about 70 miles give or take) I lost reception completely, it's safe to same I'm good while within a 70 mile radius of any large city but once in the sticks it's over and time to switch over to Pandora. Overall I'm happy with my Pilot antenna, it looks good and works where I need it to.
     
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