26 Oct 2011

Sandpiper MV5+3 Compact vertical

mv5 3_ant (5)
A second multiband (type) antenna was needed to mainly use for “Low Power” operations using the FT450D, and more likely used for Wspr operations and as Paul PC4T had been getting some impressive results with his new MV5+3 from Sandpiper, I decided to go for it since it was well priced I thought for a compact multibander.
Originally I wanted to set it up near, or on my garage but thinking about it we will be having renovations going on next year so decided to ground mount it elswhere but it meant removing my 60m dipole – which was not actually getting much use anyway.
This antenna covers 40m up to 6m with a choice for either 10 or 12m (I chose 10m).
Construction is ok, and the quality of tubing is comparable to other antennas I’ve used such as HyGain, but looking at it I had doubts about the way the inductively loaded radials attach to a collar that slips over the tube and they tighten in opposition to each other.
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This is probably THE weak point of this antenna although this is the MK V I feel this might be improved on and would have doubts about its ability to withstand the elements especially the strong south westerly winds we get here on the coast – but I decided to mount it on the ground and it’s in a sheltered position, also less likely to get our feathered friends  perching on those radial attachments.
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This is the arrangement for the radial attachment – they screw in against the main  tube and you have to make sure they all line up centrally – in my view this is not ideal, perhaps they could have expanded on this idea to include a much beefier tight fitting collar to allow the studs to screw in fully, as it is they only screw in partially and the tendency is to over tighten .
The instruction sheet supplied is vague but adequate, and the basic measurements given are for the lower ends of all the bands, I later discovered during set-up these were a mile out and in two instances had to cut the radials shorter

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Straight forward connection  by PL259

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Having removed my 60m dipole I used the same mount (one of those beefy clothes pole stakes from B&Q) banged into the ground and a stub pole around 2 feet long to which the antenna is attached, also I put in a 4 foot length of copper pipe as a ground to which I will attach extra radials – I set it in position and went into the set-up using an antenna analyser – having previously read that this antenna was fiddly to set up I was wondering how some people had managed to unbox/assemble/and have it running in 10 mins ? on all bands ?  Your having a laugh…!  good hour I reckon ! checking through all the bands I did get reasonable matches, but would still have to use an antenna tuner.
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Ground mounting – no radials yet
40m – it’s lowest operating band (I was not expecting much on here) SWR was 1.2:1 and was very surprised, as was 30m at 1.1, best I could manage on 20m was 1.4,  17m was 1.7, 15m was 2.1,  10/6m were both around 1.9 -  all bands were set in the CW sections – so clearly I need to have another look to see if I can lower these figures but it’s a starting point. –  I have added extra ground radials for 20/30m and have made CW contacts into PA,  DL. the big test for me was 40m – comparing it to my 40m dipole there was no discernable difference on Rx at all with perhaps a slight drop in noise levels but signals about the same – there was a difference on 30m though – signals up over a dipole and less noise – all the other bands seem fine and as you would expect the higher bands especially 15/10m work well  - this is not a “DX” antenna, it’s physically  small  at 2.7m but at the price it’s a decent compact antenna - ideal if your  garden is on the small side  -  I will be using it over the next month or so on CW with my FT450D   (As used by T32C)    I’ll also add some more radials which I’m sure will help things along – I’m sure I’ll have more to say on it’s performance in due course – best part about my installation is you can’t see it. (Hidden behind shrubs)
mv5 3_ant (2)


  1. I will be following your exploits with interest. I have often thought of getting a Sandpiper aerial at some stage. I don't have much space, my back garden is only 36ft by 16ft. Currently all my aerials are home made from bits of wire and fishing poles, and look untidy.

  2. I know what you mean about untidy fishing poles - my xyl complains ! the mv5+3 works - it's small 2.7m high and the radials protrude just under 1m I have it hidden behind shrubs - it IS low profile and would recommend it for a small plot - if all you want to do is work stations - you will ! Dx ?? who knows - though a spell on Wspr will prove interesting though - I have yet to really put it to the test. The SWR's I had are workable but I need to tweak it again - they are there or thereabouts.
    Will use this with the 450 - Wspr and low power cw.

    Rgds Peter

  3. Very nice antenna for low profile and small lots. Also with it being in and around shrubs and still having a decent SWR is great. Do keep us posted as to how it works. As you said Paul does like the antenna but his is out in the open I believe. So it will be interesting to compare the results.

  4. Hi Mike - well like everything else here it's an experiment - I do want to use it on Wspr - I am sure it will be just fine but I need to get some more radials down - it could tie in with something else I have planned - but if its not working as expected I can move it if needed, but on cw I'm working stations.

    73 Peter

  5. I have Sandpiper MV-5 + 3 9 months. I am very happy and I do not radial. I put a 4m above the ground. And he works! I worked Brazil, Japan, Australia, New Zealand, Greenland and many other countries. In nine months I worked with her over 100 countries. I use a Kenwood TS-480SAT and power of 100W! On this page you can see all


    73, S55RD, Renato

  6. I want to mount the antenna on the roof of the building is covered with galvanized sheet .
    Radials Still Need ?Balun is needed ?

  7. I want to mount the antenna on the roof of the building is covered with galvanized sheet .
    Radials Still Need ?Balun is needed ?


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