VHF Marine Antenna

The VHF antenna is used to allow the marine VHF to receive and propagate radio waves.

Types and characteristics of marine VHF antenna

Antenna VHF testa d'albero
VHF antenna masthead
Antenna VHF per imbarcazioni a motore
VHF antenna for motor boats

The marine VHF antenna is installed on the highest deck of the vessel or on masthead sailboats to allow the marine VHF or DSC to receive and transmit radio signals. It is therefore an important element in optimising the quality of the signals transmitted and received by the on-board VHF.

It is commonly presented as a fiberglass stylus where the dipoles (electric wire) or the active elements of the antenna flow inside.
While the base differs depending on the type of installation, one for installation in the masthead where the antenna is distinguished by a mounting flange on its base that facilitates tightening on the shaft, the other for installations on motor boats where the antenna is equipped with a fitting with 1 x 14 threads, suitable for being screwed on many marine bases on the market.

An important prerogative for a marine VHF antenna is the gain expressed in decibels, normally the longer the antenna the more gain we will have thanks to the greater directionality that the antenna acquires for VHF signals coming from the horizontal plane.
While for professional antennas the antenna should be possibly of a collinear type, which consists of a particular internal arrangement of several elements, to increase directionality and consequently also the gain.

Tips for purchase and installation

The VHF marine antenna is a very important component and can influence the performance of the VHF system. We therefore give some tips for the purchase and especially for the installation:

  • Install the antenna as high as possible.
  • Choose an antenna with good gain, but avoid those composed of two distinct parts because they are normally more fragile.
  • Use a good quality cable. Normally a low-loss RG-58 cable is more than enough.
  • Avoid joints as far as possible and in any case make them with a PL259 or N-type connector.
  • Route the cable away from sources of interference caused by other cables, equipment or metal masses.

Unless you have particular experience in the field of radiamation, we do not recommend "do-it-yourself" for installation. It is therefore advisable to contact an expert installer who will ensure that the antenna is installed as correctly as possible, so that you can count on a reliable and high-performance VHF system.