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Author Topic: 11 meter activity on handheld CB - Uniden PRO 401HH + Cobra HA-TA Antenna  (Read 651 times)

Offline R4002

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I picked one of these up on eBay several months ago as part of my radio emergency kit - the Uniden PRO 401HH is their bare-bones 40 channel AM CB handheld, similar in form and function to the PRO 510XL and PRO 520XL mobiles, pretty cheap too.  Performance is the same as my RadioShack CB HT but it accepts regular AA batteries (compare to the RadioShack's basically dead unable to keep a charge NiCd pack).

The stock rubber duck antenna is meh so I picked up a Cobra HA-TA telescopic whip (which, according to my tests, actually works really well).  Hearing truckers chatting away on channel 19 - 27.185 MHz AM locally as well as some skip on channels 6 and 11 27.025 AM and 27.085 AM with the telescopic whip.  Did a radio check on 19 and a trucker came back with a good report, he was only about 1.5 miles away but that's not bad for an urban environment with a stock radio. 

« Last Edit: January 29, 2019, 1456 UTC by R4002 »
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Offline ThaDood

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Certainly not a bad thing to have. In the Fall of 1990, I was ground floor apartment complex bound and looking for an alternative that was flexible. I was told about the Realistic TRC-221, and bought all accessories with it.    https://www.radiomuseum.org/r/radioshack_cb_transceiver_trc_221.html     and       http://www.radioshackcatalogs.com/html/1991/h056.html      I still have it, since it's such a kick-ass CB portable, as well as being used as a mobile and a base. On the telescopic whip, out on a balcony, I have talked to base stations +10 miles away. Stock mic MAX's the MOD to about 75%, while an Astatic D-104-M6B mic pushes it to +90%. (Still haven't figured out where the fixed ALC is to bump that up.) Great RX Adjacent Channel Rejection (For a portable.). Takes 8 AA alkalines, or 10 NiCAD's, and came with two aluminum dummy batteries to use the alkalines. Internal adjustments include being able to crank AM carrier to 6W, and MOD doesn't sound affected with a good antenna match. That 2W Low Power setting kind of sucks, since I want lower, like 1/2W. Get this tweak! An adjustable RX AGC in this portable! Ever seen another CB with that feature? It's a first for me. So, you can actually adjust the RX sensitivity to better than .5uV, but be aware if you use it as a mobile afterwards, as close stations will sound too distorted. Like-wise, too much AGC the other way makes it pretty deaf, but it's definitely not an RF Gain control.  I also have a Cherokee AH-100 AM / SSB portable from 1998, but the RX / TX quality of the TRC-221 just blows the AH-100 out of the water in every way. Not knowing the actual manufacturer, but I would suspect that it's Uniden. But, if your Uniden PRO 401HH is anything like a TRC-221, then you indeed have a keeper. 
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Offline R4002

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Re: 11 meter activity on handheld CB - Uniden PRO 401HH
« Reply #2 on: January 04, 2019, 1917 UTC »
The older RadioShack handheld CBs were actually pretty nice so I believe it.  The one I used as a comparison is a RadioShack TRC-234, side by side comparison with the Uniden PRO 401HH.  Unfortunately the Radioshack CB's battery is effectively kaput.  A solid radio nonetheless.  Runs off 12 volts (as does the 401HH) for use as a mobile. Both radios have that "heavy" feel in the hand that older school handhelds had.  With an external antenna these handhelds work just as well as a mobile radio. 

There's also something to be said for the propagation characteristics on 27 MHz in hilly outdoor terrain compared to, say, the UHF band (FRS, which has mostly replaced CB for handheld purposes).  Of course, the big difference is the antenna, the Cobra HA-TA does the job and isn't annoyingly long. 

I forget the model number but years ago I had a 3-channel "5 watt" RadioShack handheld CB with crystals, I remember it operated on channel 14 and I forget what the other two channels were (I think it had 19 as well?) but that thing had a massive telescopic whip with a loading coil in the middle and worked perfectly for walking around the neighborhood (so distances of maybe 2 miles).  This was back before FRS handhelds were available...
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Offline Josh

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Re: 11 meter activity on handheld CB - Uniden PRO 401HH
« Reply #3 on: January 04, 2019, 2226 UTC »
For a portable, it can help to have a 1/4 length of insulated wire to use as a counterpoise to the stub antenna, just need to find a ground point to connect it to on the chassis. This applies to HAM handhelds, the wire typically being called a "tiger tail". I have some for HAM rigs, they have a clever metal plate that just pops onto the bnc connection and contacts the bnc of the duck antenna when assembled to the radio. Should also help with handheld scanner reception.
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Offline shadypyro

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Re: 11 meter activity on handheld CB - Uniden PRO 401HH
« Reply #4 on: January 29, 2019, 0745 UTC »
I have been thinking of getting a cobra HA-TA telescopic whip for my handheld cobra 38 WX ST, would it be able to work on that handheld?
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Offline R4002

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Re: 11 meter activity on handheld CB - Uniden PRO 401HH
« Reply #5 on: January 29, 2019, 1456 UTC »
If the Cobra 38 WXST has a BNC antenna connector (which it does) then yes the Cobra HA-TA antenna will work with it.  You'll notice marked improvement over the stock rubber duck antenna.
U.S. East Coast, various HF/VHF/UHF radios/scanners/receivers