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 ProComm PT-99 PROTON – Fibreglass Base Station Antenna Review

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Call Sign : 108-CT-1529 2M0AIV
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QTH or Location : Castle Douglas, Scotland
Equipment Used : SS9900
Age : 63

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PostSubject: ProComm PT-99 PROTON – Fibreglass Base Station Antenna Review   ProComm PT-99 PROTON – Fibreglass Base Station Antenna Review Icon_minitimeMon Jan 31, 2022 2:16 pm

ProComm PT-99 PROTON – Fibreglass Base Station Antenna


I have recently purchased a PT99 - seen this new Base Station Antenna which is very obviously a USA manufactured copy of the Antron A99.  Unlike the Antron A99 it comes in 4 sections instead of 3 and is stated as tested in 90mph winds. The company states : "The ProComm PT-99 is a fibreglass, 1/2 wave station antenna for DX use - tuneable from 26-30 MHz. The antenna can be used for the 11-meter CB band and 10-meter amateur band.


Features / Specifications:
  • Frequency Range: 26-30 MHz tuneable

  • 1/2 wave Omni-directional

  • Gain: 9.9 dBi

  • Power: 2000 Watt PEP

  • Materials: Fiberglass, Chromed-plated parts

  • Antenna Connector: UHF-female

  • Mounting: side-mount on masts with a diameter of Ø 40 mm

  • Height: 565cm"




Having had several Antron A99's in the past I was inclined to stick with what I know, but as it can get quite windy here in the Galloway Forest in Scotland and I have lose several A99's to wild weather and wind, I decided to give the P99 a try, as the 4 section P99 I thought would provide greater stability in high winds (less strain on each section).


The result of which I was more than pleasantly surprised.  I mounted it 15ft from Ground level and my QTH is 411ft above sea level.  My first contact was into Germany on FM  miles  13EK013 Op Jorgan, RS5/9+10dB location North of Frankfurt followed by 13Fox001 in Nuremburg about the same distance again on FM  RS5/9 (using 2/3 power on my CRT SS9900) on a FM Lift.  I was very pleased with the way this P99 Antenna was performing.  I have since worked into Puerto Rico RS5/9 on USB to 11SD30Y (4114 miles).  I have had many other contacts since then, but have quoted these as examples of the Procom P99 Proton in Action. The antenna has since survived two storms with high winds to hit Scotland over the last couple of weeks, and I look forward to a long relationship with this Antenna, highly recommended.  My punt away from the Antron A99 has paid off in my opinion.
108CT1529 Andrew 

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Victor
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Call Sign : 26-CT-3228 / M7VIC
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PostSubject: Re: ProComm PT-99 PROTON – Fibreglass Base Station Antenna Review   ProComm PT-99 PROTON – Fibreglass Base Station Antenna Review Icon_minitimeMon Jan 31, 2022 5:25 pm

Hi Andy,

Thanks for sharing details of this antenna you've purchased and your own personal opinions on it. This can often help fellow members who are looking at the same product maybe ready to click that 'buy it now' button. Wink

From all accounts the old A99 had a mixed bag of reviews whether it was the original Antron or later Solarcon usually performing suitably when they first get it then later 'upgrading' to a 5/8ths antenna often after their original has failed.

Hopefully as you've suggested this P99 version lasts longer and I'm sure time will tell. Perhaps you can report back on it in the future to see how it has faired but I'm sure that if it's survived the recent Scottish storm blasts it should do well.


I see unfortunately that the manufacturers still stick to their wild gain claims and anyone in the know will read straight through the 9.9dBi apparent gain(!) It's still essentially a basic half wave antenna that can perform well even when mounted low so will cover local copies and does surprisingly well when some Sporadic E 'skip' action comes in. When some 'upgrade' to 5/8ths type of antennas they see that there local copy range improves but unless mounted high enough doesn't fare as well on the skip as a low mounted half wave.


Anyway, all interesting stuff and I'm sure that there'll be others that'll give their personal view on it too.


Thanks again for your input to the Charlie Tango forum, it's members input that really makes it all the grand place it is. 

All the best,
Victor

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Tristar
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Call Sign : 26-CT-3771
Posts : 118
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Join date : 2020-08-10
QTH or Location : Weston-super-Mare
Equipment Used : CRT Millennium 3v hand sets, President Barry2
Age : 58

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PostSubject: Re: ProComm PT-99 PROTON – Fibreglass Base Station Antenna Review   ProComm PT-99 PROTON – Fibreglass Base Station Antenna Review Icon_minitimeSun Feb 20, 2022 6:07 pm

Hi 👋🏻 
I’m still using a A99 Solarcom which I switched back to FROM a 5/8ths as the 1/2 wave n my local was working better than the 5/8. 

Antennas can be a mystery that work great in one person’s local and situation and poor in someone else’s. 🤷‍�😆

Gotta love the try it for yourself and see 👍🏴????????????????????????

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Bloodhound
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Call Sign : 108-CT-1529 2M0AIV
Posts : 22
Times Thanked : 0
Join date : 2021-11-17
QTH or Location : Castle Douglas, Scotland
Equipment Used : SS9900
Age : 63

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PostSubject: Re: ProComm PT-99 PROTON – Fibreglass Base Station Antenna Review   ProComm PT-99 PROTON – Fibreglass Base Station Antenna Review Icon_minitimeSun Feb 20, 2022 6:14 pm

I am really happy with The procomm P99 I have had many Antron A99 over the years, but personally glad that I took the punt on the procomm. We are currently experiencing storms and high winds for the third time in tow weeks, I am happy that no damage has occurred and it does what it says on the box, stand up to 90mph gusts of wind, which we have our fair share of in Scotland lol. Cheers Andrew 108CT1529

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43CT016
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PostSubject: Re: ProComm PT-99 PROTON – Fibreglass Base Station Antenna Review   ProComm PT-99 PROTON – Fibreglass Base Station Antenna Review Icon_minitimeMon Feb 21, 2022 8:26 am

I'd love to see the modelling of how they get 9.9dBi gain from a half-wave omni directional vertical over a half-wave dipole!

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Wireless
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PostSubject: Re: ProComm PT-99 PROTON – Fibreglass Base Station Antenna Review   ProComm PT-99 PROTON – Fibreglass Base Station Antenna Review Icon_minitimeMon Feb 21, 2022 11:03 am

Victor wrote:
I see unfortunately that the manufacturers still stick to their wild gain claims and anyone in the know will read straight through the 9.9dBi apparent gain(!) It's still essentially a basic half wave antenna that can perform well even when mounted low so will cover local copies and does surprisingly well when some Sporadic E 'skip' action comes in. When some 'upgrade' to 5/8ths type of antennas they see that there local copy range improves but unless mounted high enough doesn't fare as well on the skip as a low mounted half wave.

43CT016
I'd love to see the modelling of how they get 9.9dBi gain from a half-wave omni directional vertical over a half-wave dipole!

Yup, 2.2dBi gain for any half-wave dipole, even if dB and dBi figures were interchangeable (they are not), more than 35 metres of RG-58 on its own would cause a negative gain overall, not even considering connector losses in PL-259 SO-239 above 7MHz

I suggest a large pinch of salt is required when looking at specifications provided to sell anything.

Next they will be selling cans of SWR Spray...

ProComm PT-99 PROTON – Fibreglass Base Station Antenna Review 462_610

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Alan Pilot
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Call Sign : 163-CT-220...MW7TTA
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QTH or Location : Anglesey North Wales
Equipment Used : Yaesu FT-991A,,Yaesu FTDX-10,,Icom ic-7300,,Anytone AT-D878UV PLUS",,LINCOLN II+.
Age : 149

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PostSubject: Re: ProComm PT-99 PROTON – Fibreglass Base Station Antenna Review   ProComm PT-99 PROTON – Fibreglass Base Station Antenna Review Icon_minitimeMon Feb 21, 2022 11:44 am

This is the boy for the job.
ProComm PT-99 PROTON – Fibreglass Base Station Antenna Review Swr10

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Equipment Used : Yeasu 450d

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PostSubject: Re: ProComm PT-99 PROTON – Fibreglass Base Station Antenna Review   ProComm PT-99 PROTON – Fibreglass Base Station Antenna Review Icon_minitimeWed Jul 13, 2022 3:43 pm

Just got a proton 99 not happy with band with but let’s see how it works
I sure my old Antron 99 30 years did 26 to 28 1.1 but will see
The starduster 27 probably been my best antenna from years ago

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PostSubject: Re: ProComm PT-99 PROTON – Fibreglass Base Station Antenna Review   ProComm PT-99 PROTON – Fibreglass Base Station Antenna Review Icon_minitimeWed Jul 13, 2022 4:27 pm

Hi All.
I have a Homebase A99 which works well here.
I’m only 11ft above sea level but when there’s no lift the antenna does well on only a 20 ft pole. The pole is made of aluminium 5ft sections and if these a bit of skip works even better dropping the height to only a 10ft pole. Just my experience at my QTH. 👍

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PostSubject: Re: ProComm PT-99 PROTON – Fibreglass Base Station Antenna Review   ProComm PT-99 PROTON – Fibreglass Base Station Antenna Review Icon_minitimeWed Jul 13, 2022 5:55 pm

Be nice to see the difference but will just keep this for now
Might get a gainmaster next not sure 1/2 or 5/8

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Marc
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Call Sign : 2-CT-224
Posts : 12
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Join date : 2022-08-18
QTH or Location : Mound, MN
Equipment Used : Galaxy 959, President McKinley 2, Procomm PT99
Age : 60

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PostSubject: Re: ProComm PT-99 PROTON – Fibreglass Base Station Antenna Review   ProComm PT-99 PROTON – Fibreglass Base Station Antenna Review Icon_minitimeThu Aug 18, 2022 11:06 pm

I've owned a Procomm PT-99 with the ground plane kit the past year and have it up on a mast 25' at the base.  The first issue I had with it during initial assembly was the coax connection at the base was loose and spun when I tightened the coax, so I contacted Procomm and they sent me a new lower section free of charge.  Their crimping of the coax connector is not the greatest, in addition the antenna sections are a bit janky and it's not the straightest antenna in the world.  After installation with the new lower section I was getting good SWR readings which were always under 1.5:1 across the 11 meter cb band.  SWR always went up a bit when it was either raining or wet.  As of late the SWR suddenly jumped and the best I can tune it to is about 1.6:1 on channel 20, and on channel 1 and 40 it is now at 1.7:1.  This is verified with both an antenna analyzer and an SWR meter which both agree with each other.  I tested my RG213 coax and all seems good there, so I suspect I may need to take it down and take the sections apart, clean the threads up and reassemble it as the threads have likely corroded some at sections where they screw together.  Otherwise it's taken a beating in some 75+ MPH winds during thunder storms and has come out unscathed so far.  I can't say it's the best antenna I've owned, but I've talked as far away as FL and CA from MN and elsewhere on it with 12 watts / SSB.  I'm currently looking at a Maco V58 as my next option.

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chazwozza
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PostSubject: Re: ProComm PT-99 PROTON – Fibreglass Base Station Antenna Review   ProComm PT-99 PROTON – Fibreglass Base Station Antenna Review Icon_minitimeFri Sep 02, 2022 10:40 pm

If its got 9.9 gain im ghandi
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Marc
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Call Sign : 2-CT-224
Posts : 12
Times Thanked : 3
Join date : 2022-08-18
QTH or Location : Mound, MN
Equipment Used : Galaxy 959, President McKinley 2, Procomm PT99
Age : 60

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PostSubject: Re: ProComm PT-99 PROTON – Fibreglass Base Station Antenna Review   ProComm PT-99 PROTON – Fibreglass Base Station Antenna Review Icon_minitimeSat Sep 03, 2022 3:18 am

Trust me, the PT99 has nowhere near 9.9 gain. Impossible.
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Alan Pilot
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Call Sign : 163-CT-220...MW7TTA
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Equipment Used : Yaesu FT-991A,,Yaesu FTDX-10,,Icom ic-7300,,Anytone AT-D878UV PLUS",,LINCOLN II+.
Age : 149

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PostSubject: Re: ProComm PT-99 PROTON – Fibreglass Base Station Antenna Review   ProComm PT-99 PROTON – Fibreglass Base Station Antenna Review Icon_minitimeSat Sep 03, 2022 7:25 am

It could well have 9.9 gain over a length of spaghetti.
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Mavic2Pro
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Call Sign : 26-CT-4634
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Join date : 2022-07-27
QTH or Location : Clacton
Equipment Used : Super Star 3900 (2023), Uniden Uniace 200, Audioline PT-341, CRT SS6900 V V7, Astatic 575-M6 Teardrop, Uniden 125xlt, Baofeng UV-5rIII, Malachite SDR, Realistic Pro 2006. Sirio half wave silver rod, PT-99
Age : 61

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PostSubject: Re: ProComm PT-99 PROTON – Fibreglass Base Station Antenna Review   ProComm PT-99 PROTON – Fibreglass Base Station Antenna Review Icon_minitimeSun May 21, 2023 3:46 pm

I bought a PT-99 because my half wave sirio silver rod did not like living by the sea.

The pluses:
it's low noise compared to my silver rod. It flexes so much more than the silver rod and I've seen it bend to eye opening angles in strong wind and recover while doing its job. It's only 4 sections so could be used as a portable.

The negatives:
No matter how much I tried, I could not get the SWR below 1.5 on 27/81 ch19, with it hitting 2.0 at CH1 and 40. It's also very fussy about its surroundings, I can tune the SWR on my half wave silver rod at ground level - it'll be the same when I raise it up 30ft. The PT-99 is the work of the devil to correctly SWR for its intended location using the bizarre tuning rings, literally hours of tweaking to guess what it will be at 30 ft up.
I purely keep the PT-99 tuned to 27/81 and use the silver rod for wider, albeit a slightly noiser fuller bandwidth coverage.

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skyrider
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Call Sign : 26-CT-4654
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Join date : 2022-09-25
QTH or Location : Preston, Lancs.
Equipment Used : UNIDEN 100, PRESIDENT MC KINLEY + mag mount , silver rod
Age : 63

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PostSubject: Re: ProComm PT-99 PROTON – Fibreglass Base Station Antenna Review   ProComm PT-99 PROTON – Fibreglass Base Station Antenna Review Icon_minitimeSun May 21, 2023 5:42 pm

what do you do with the can of stuff Alan just spray and leave for good swr  Laughing Laughing Laughing

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Marc
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Call Sign : 2-CT-224
Posts : 12
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Join date : 2022-08-18
QTH or Location : Mound, MN
Equipment Used : Galaxy 959, President McKinley 2, Procomm PT99
Age : 60

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PostSubject: Re: ProComm PT-99 PROTON – Fibreglass Base Station Antenna Review   ProComm PT-99 PROTON – Fibreglass Base Station Antenna Review Icon_minitimeMon May 22, 2023 4:25 pm

As Mavic2Pro reports, yes getting the PT99 to tune up and offer decent SWR can be a challenge.  When I first got mine up in the air SWR was always under 1.3:1 or better pretty much everywhere on 11 meters, it suddenly shot up to around 1.7:1 for no known reason and no matter how much tinkering I did the results remained the same, so down it came last year and it's still sitting in the corner in my shop.  I found taking the sections apart, cleaning the threads and reassembling does help some but it's not long before the SWR goes back up again, so it's a pretty finicky antenna.  Interestingly I found the antenna to be fairly noisy in my application.  I built a 2 element beam (horizontally polarized) for 10/11 meters which is 100% more quieter and works much better overall.  Yes, you do then need a rotator, and yes it depends on whom you're talking to and how far away they are and if they're vertically or horizontally polarized, but I haven't been too concerned with talking to people 30 miles away as of late and instead of 11 meters I've been on 10 meters taking advantage of the propagation and have had some very nice chats from MN across the Pond to you folks over there in the UK and beyond.  At that distance I've talked to stations both vertical and horizontally polarized and it doesn't make a difference then.  I'd just say it is what it is with the PT99, overall a decent but low priced antenna, it works, but you kind of get what you pay for. 

73
Marc

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