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Old Sep 29, 2008, 02:25 AM
Defrost the chicken!
talbot's Avatar
Duluth, GA
Joined Sep 2008
83 Posts
Toolbox ground station: plastic or metal?

I am building a "toolbox ground station", very similar to what rob10000 uses.

It seems that most FPV'ers that use 900 MHz downlinks set their patch antennas close to the ground at ~30-45 degrees angle. Someone even mentioned that the distance to the ground matters too, it should be close to 1 wavelength. So, I should set my antenna at ~30-45 degree angle ~33 cm above the ground, right? Measured from the bottom, top, or from center of the patch? No clue, please help me out.

Now, some people are adding an artificial ground plane to their patch antennas. What if I mount my patch on a lid of the metal toolbox? Would it serve as a ground plane?..

Another question is how to mount a secondary receiver antenna. I am going to use a 3 dBi rubber duck from Hyperlink (tried their 5 dBi, didn't like it). Should I mount it up high, probably on a telescopic pole (along with the receiver), or top of the same toolbox would be fine?
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Last edited by talbot; Sep 29, 2008 at 07:35 PM.
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Old Sep 29, 2008, 10:37 PM
Defrost the chicken!
talbot's Avatar
Duluth, GA
Joined Sep 2008
83 Posts
what, no hams here?

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Old Sep 29, 2008, 11:11 PM
my karma ranover my dogma
galaxiex's Avatar
Edmonton,Canada Eh
Joined Jun 2007
7,573 Posts
Yeah, I am also waiting to see what the experts say about this. ^

I finally got to flight test my Oracle and two 900mhz patch antennas on sunday.
I just mounted everything on a regular tripod, but did not extend the tripod legs, so it was all close to the ground.

Not 1 single video glitch, and I even accidentally flew a bit directly overhead and behind where I was setup.
(flying at a new unfamiliar field)

Mind, I did not go very far out, but I was very pleased with the lack of glitches.

Unfortunately my recorder did not function so no vid to show.

Vid Tx is 500mw 900mhz Range Video with homemade 1/2 wave antenna.
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Old Sep 30, 2008, 12:32 AM
Cameras are EVERYWHERE...
tvdude310's Avatar
Los Angeles
Joined Jan 2008
1,879 Posts
Originally Posted by galaxiex
Yeah, I am also waiting to see what the experts say about this. ^
Me too!
I've been checking this thread waiting to see what the consensus is...
I guess I'll keep waiting.
In theory, the metal box idea sounds good. But there must also be some consideration for the box reflecting, right?
Hard to say.
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Old Oct 13, 2008, 09:37 AM
My other heli is a Vapor
eander315's Avatar
Houston, TX
Joined Dec 2007
983 Posts
I don't know about the ground question, but I'm interested to hear the best location for the Hyperlink 3 dBi rubber duck. I get horrible interference at only about 20 meters if the antenna and receiver are on the ground, but it clears up significantly if I hold it in the air. I'm wondering what height is best.
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