Re: Tecsun PL-360 Commercial 200mm Plug-in Upgrade Antenna
I remember seeing this Ebay seller from Greece with a similar posting in July, and it's what gave me the idea to try it out with the Countycomm GP-5/SSB (not an official Ultralight :^)
I don't know if this Ebayer winds a new Litz wire coil, but I used some larger Litz left over from a PL-380/Amidon rod project and matched the inductance with an LCR meter. The assembly barely fit underneath the Tecsun antenna's plastic housing; I had to do some gentle X-acto knife carving here and there. Fortunately the clever screw-on caps help hold things together, after drilling out the caps' centers for the longer rod of course.
It did give a major boost to the signal levels, but as you correctly suspected it was unwieldy due to the small 3.5mm headphones jack supporting all the weight. The lack of any "brake" or lock for the antenna's position was the reason I eventually stopped using this modification and went onto other things (like my current digital readout ICF-EX5MK2 project :^)
I think someone could optimize this larger rod antenna with some sort of friction clutch or "brake", perhaps using your own idea of the stiff, rubber tubing section to provide the friction. It may be best though to fix the antenna's position firmly in place, as it's easy enough to rotate the body of the entire, skinny PL-360 by hand.
Ah... I just remembered what my final step in this adventure was. I flipped the included belt clip for the radio upside-down, so it pointed above the radio. Then I extended the loopstick's wiring with a different 3.5mm audio jack and a couple more inches of wire so it would reach the radio's antenna input. The 200mm loopstick was then tie-wrapped to the inverted belt clip after drilling four small holes into the clip. That combo resulted in a sturdy, but removable support for the larger antenna.
I'd upload a photo, but I no longer own this radio... I think my description of the mounting method is clear enough though.
---In ultralightdx@..., <D1028Gary@...> wrote :
While checking the latest eBay listings I came across this 200mm plug-in upgrade loopstick for the Tecsun PL-360 model, sold for $35.00 (+ $9 shipping) from a company in Greece:
A demonstration video of the 200mm plug-in loopstick's MW performance is posted at
Since this type of antenna is very similar to the 7.5" upgrade MW and LW loopsticks that I designed for the PL-360 model four years ago (the article posted at http://www.mediafire.com/view/2cqwsqj0bvajf6k/7.5_inch-LS.doc )
I thought that I would offer a couple of comments. The $35.00 price seems very reasonable, although no details are given of the loopstick's coil design or inductance. The design lacks any type of locking system like the rubber hose clamp on the 7.5" plug-in loopsticks, which means that the antenna will rotate around freely in the plug-in socket (similar to a ham radio antenna on a tower, with no brake). Finally, whoever shot the video apparently wasn't aware that whenever you change plug-in loopsticks on a PL-360 you must shift the frequency off slightly and then back on, in order for the Si4734 DSP chip to readjust to the different loopstick inductance, and provide maximum sensitivity. In any case, it will be interesting to see how many sales this company will end up with, and the ultimate performance of their 200mm loopstick design.
73, Gary DeBock (in Puyallup, WA, USA)