Posted on: 1st September 2008
My review about the difference between the Titanex LP5 and my New Steppir 3 elm. Finally I made the choice to buy a Steppir. In the beginning, when we went overhere in 2005 I had an FB33 on the roof. This antenna can only operate on 10-15-20mtr., everybody knows that. It’s a good solid design, but I would like to have 12-17mtr as well. So I made up my mind to make a selection for a few antenna’s with this option. Will it be a Steppir or a Titanex. I chose the Titanex LP5. Why? you might say. First: the size, second: the element space and third: the boomlength. After almost 2 years I’m beginning to wonder did I make the right decision? After all, I didn’t. Why? Performance from the Titanex Lp5 and the construction. I had to fix the antenna over 4 times. The clamps didn’t even fit with the install. One element didn’t fit in the clamp. That’s why my element came down on the middle of the street during a storm. Luckily it didn’t hit any car in front of the house. After 6 months I checked the antenna again and now one element is starting to break. So it’s time for another antenna. Been thinking and thinking… I would like to have minimum of elements, not a long boom and max. performance. A few models came out. A monoband 5 band beam 6mtr boom with 8 elements. A FB33 with a 12-17mtr option. 6,5mtr boom length and only 2 elm. on the warc. Or a Steppir antenna. After putting al the plus and minus I made my choice. The Steppir will be the new antenna! It’s an expensive antenna. But for me this is the best solution. Only 3 elements max performance on a 5mtr boom and also 6 mtr is included. It also can be upgraded with a 30/40mtr trombone.
After I ordered the antenna I had to make the remote cable interface. There is one point, I like to disconnect when lightning will be around my home. So what I did is very easy. I made a remote cable connection in two pieces. One from the shack to the Lightning box. And another from the Lightning box to the Steppir antenna outside. Just be careful with the disconnect. First disable the power from the remote. There is still power on the motors and when you make a fault the drivers will be blown up. Here is a sample of how I made it. (see above) The cable I took for the inside is a signal cable 24 pairs and not weather proof. For the outside I took a rubber cable 24 pairs shielded and weather proof. Just put a gender changer in between to make a small patch field and you’re done. It took me 4 hours to make those cables. Better to do it up front, then doing it on the day you put up the steppir. To rush is no good and will not help ya finish the job properly.
The results i tested with the Steppir 3 elements beam. The front to back is really great. Almost 40db front to back is what you want in a beam. I made some contacts and I can say I didn’t need the Amp. Before that I used the Amp. day by day and now you only have to call and people hear you. The rotate of 180 degrees is really fast and a very good option in the steppir beam. When you put the beam in a 180 degrees the gain is less and the front to back is a bit better. It’s a compromise on the beam. In the normal postion the gain is a bit better and the front to back is less. So, good to know when we want to work a Dx station with a big pile up, hihi. Yesterday 08-05-08 we spoke with the US and the signals where absolute 9++ all the time. I worked several stations and made a lovely long qso with them. So if anybody likes to hear my comment in compare with the Titanex LP5, there is one thing to say: don’t buy the Titanex design, it’s worse and the gain is bad. Also the front to back is on all bands low 10db is almost max what you can get. The compare is almost like comparing cars.. would you like a BMW or a Mini cooper. Both are cars but it’s about performance. Catch you all on the band Marco Pe2mc.
Results of many antennas can be found !!here!!