Got my new mobile antenna.
Overall, I liked the Chameleon V2. I complained a lot because it wasn’t easy to make contacts. It was short at 4’2″ and band conditions had to be just right. But, it did work fairly well as intended.
My requirements weren’t met though. I wanted an antenna that had a better chance of reaching someone in case of emergency while in the mountains. At the same time, I didn’t want some huge ugly looking antenna on my truck. I found the balance…the Chameleon V2L. I sold my V2 and an old iPod that was laying around to pay for it.
The nice thing about this antenna is that it’s 2’6″ longer and instead of being this big ugly stick, the top section is a stainless steel whip. It’s less “in your face” when you look at the truck and has less wind resistance.
The other cool thing, is that the top section can be replaced with a longer whip. Perfect for operating in remote locations. Chameleon Antenna sells a MIL Whip that can make it a 12′ antenna instead of 6′. It uses a standard 3/8-24 thread so just about any antenna with that thread can be screwed in. Heck, I could probably grab a 102″ stainless steel whip from Radio Shack and accomplish what I want. Of course something this long should only be used stationary. Most likely, I’ll purchase the MIL Whip from Chameleon since it is collapsible down to 29 inches. Perfect for storing behind the seats in my truck.
So far, it’s performed pretty well…as expected. I haven’t had a lot of time to test it out. I did make some contacts up and down the west coast while sitting in my driveway. I was never able to do that with the V2. I usually had to be on the road or parked somewhere more out in the open.
I can tune the antenna down to the 40 meter band WITHOUT a UNUN or the CAUM (Chameleon Antenna Universal Mount). I did try and use the CAUM. I mounted in the original antenna location and tried it on the back of the truck, but I still couldn’t get it to tune 80 meters. Deal killer? Not even close. It’s just something I need to work out. Either relocate the antenna or do some more research on what the problem might be.
Even through I can’t tune down to 80 Meters, I still like the antenna and believe it will serve me well. Do I need to have 80? Nope, but if it’s supposed to be capable of working on 80, I want it to. Since the other bands seem to be working well, it’s just an annoyance, not a problem.
I’m not affiliated with Chameleon Antenna in any way and that should be obvious by my concerns in previous posts.