NFR New Car Purchase - Antenna Options - SFR

Brian Miller

Be vewy vewy qwiet, I'm hunting Cutthwoat Twout
This may sound like a dumb question but I haven't bought a new car in a very long time (and haven't had a car payment since 1982). The SUV I use for fishing is getting up there in mileage and we will also probably want something newer to go on some road trips with so we're casually looking. Anyhow I see most modern mid-sized and compact SUVs have either a short whip antenna or a "shark fin" on the roof. I want to be able to secure my (mostly) inflated Watermaster onto the roof rack and don't want to risk damaging the antenna. Do dealerships give you a choice of antenna types or is that pretty much fixed by the mfg, model, or trim packages?
 
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Brian Miller

Be vewy vewy qwiet, I'm hunting Cutthwoat Twout
Buy a roof rack when you order you vehicle
Many of the small and mid-sized SUVs I see with a roof rack on the road have a whip antenna mounted at the rear (some in the front) of the roof in the center, and they are higher than the top of the side (lengthwise) rack rails. I don't want to risk damage to the antenna when muscling a 40lb+ raft onto the rack.
 

steve s

Active Member
My Toyota Tacoma has a small shark fin type antenna. I don't believe that I had an option to choose, so I think that it is fixed.
 

Mark Moore

Just a Member
Brian, I’m in the auto glass business and we specialize in body shop and dealer work. I’m very familiar with these as the shark fin covers are simply that, a cover that is attached to the roof with the same adhesive we use to install glass so virtually all of our shops ask us to remove and install them when they have to paint the roof. The actual antenna is a very small module that is inserted under the headliner. The shark fin covers are very strong, I’ve seen many vehicles that were driven under a garage door where the door hit the antenna cover and damaged the roof to the point of needing replacement all the while doing nothing but cosmetic damage to the cover. Your Watermaster poses no risk to the antenna at all. Even the short whip antennas are very durable. They are much more flexible that you might think and again your Watermaster is no risk.

Hope this helps.
 

majpreal

Active Member
Our older CRV has a whip style antenna and it unscrews easily if I needed to remove it for long lumber or a ladder on the roof rack. We also have a Thule cargo box and I do not need to remove it in order for the cargo box to fit.
 

the_grube

Active Member
Do you like a fast action antenna with a strong butt section or something more traditional? What type of electro magnetic waves will you be trying to catch?

I'd recommend finding a reputable shop that will let you lawn cast a few before you buy
( bidda-boom)
 

Brian Miller

Be vewy vewy qwiet, I'm hunting Cutthwoat Twout
Do you like a fast action antenna with a strong butt section or something more traditional? What type of electro magnetic waves will you be trying to catch?
Wouldn't a traditional fired hex cane mast look great?
Winston would be OK if I wanted to go with a graphite mast.
Now a Tenkara mast just might be the best choice because of its astonishing flexibility with its ability to bring in longer MF AM and especially the somewhat shorter VHF FM broadcast waves around 88 MHz & 98 MHz. A telescopic zoom mast would make optimized reception tuning for most wavelengths easy! And they're shorter than western masts when collapsed for muscling my Watermaster on/off the roof rack or when driving brushy roads with low branches!
 
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jamma

Active Member
This may sound like a dumb question but I haven't bought a new car in a very long time (and haven't had a car payment since 1982). The SUV I use for fishing is getting up there in mileage and we will also probably want something newer to go on some road trips with so we're casually looking. Anyhow I see most modern mid-sized and compact SUVs have either a short whip antenna or a "shark fin" on the roof. I want to be able to secure my (mostly) inflated Watermaster onto the roof rack and don't want to risk damaging the antenna. Do dealerships give you a choice of antenna types or is that pretty much fixed by the mfg, model, or trim packages?
I have transported my pram and pontoon-style float tube on my Forester for years with no issues. Mine featured the rubber coated whip which you can fold down. I don't think the shark fin would be an issue unless you managed to hit it somehow.
 

Brian Miller

Be vewy vewy qwiet, I'm hunting Cutthwoat Twout
Mine featured the rubber coated whip which you can fold down. I don't think the shark fin would be an issue unless you managed to hit it somehow.
Thanks to @Mark Moore, @majpreal, and @jamma for the responses!

The shark fins I've seen appear to be lower than roof rack rails so I don't think that would be an issue. A folding whip would be great. Even though it has a spring near the base, I fold my VHF/UHF mobile amateur radio antenna down now when loading/unloading the Watermaster from the roof rack on my current SUV.
 

Brian Miller

Be vewy vewy qwiet, I'm hunting Cutthwoat Twout
That shark fin antenna is for the Sirius radio reception. If it wasn't there you couldn't get it.
So I dug a little further into that. The shark fin is a cover for small antenna(s) used for short range & shorter wavelengths in the upper end of the UHF and in the SHF bands for cellular, and satellite (OnStar, Sirius-XM, GPS), signals. Since I can't recall seeing both whips and shark fins on one car those vehicles probably have wire AM/FM antennas embedded in the windshield or rear window. Thanks @Old Man. This has been helpful.
 

Buzzy

Active Member
Thanks a good thing!! IF it is not there!!!

It only took a letter from the Consumer Fraud Division of the State of Washington Attorney Generals Office to cancel my Sirius radio subscription.
Sorry to go off the OP thread but Vlad’s comment is interesting. I have and love the satellite radio in my truck but find it very unreliable (signal loss) in canyons, tree cover, and next to Confluence Health in Moses Lake (the first two I understand).....

Vlad, I’m told XM/Serious will offer discounts if the consumer wishes to cancel their subscription.
 

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