Antenna mounts are used to hold and support antennas of all sizes and shapes. The antenna collects the electromagnetic signal and sends it to the receiver. There are many types of antennas and mounts including for radio, television, global positioning systems (GPS), telecommunications, automobiles, mobile phones, and more.
There are a variety of antenna mount styles to choose from, depending on the application. Common types include mag mounts, ball mounts, bed mounts, clamps, clip and lip mounts, glass mounts, brackets, quick disconnects, pocket mounts, post mounts, springs and guys, trailer hitch mounts, whips and mast mounts, and other unlisted mounts that may vary by manufacturer.
Mag mounts for antennas are stuck to thick metal using magnets. These antennas rely on force to stay attached. On applications like moving vehicles, the force may be less and can allow the antenna to detach. Antenna ball mounts feature teeth on the bottom to prevent the antenna from rotating.
Bed mounted antennas should typically be mounted at the end of a bar in a bed, not in the middle; this increases stability and makes for lower ground losses.
Clamps and clip and lip antenna mounts are also common options. Clamp-style antenna mounts are made of a U-bolt and a rubber or plastic piece that wraps around a mast. These mounts may be coated with high-voltage lacquer to avoid overarching. Clip and lip antenna mounts rely on set screw to provide a connection for the coax shield return to the ground plane.
Antennas mounts may also be made from glass or bracket styles. Glass antenna mounts block most ultraviolet (UV) rays, which may protect against fading of the interior trim pieces while reducing heat load. They also use less air conditioning and allow for better gas mileage. Bracket-style mounts may be angled, clamped, or bolted to hold an antenna in place.
Pocket, post, and quick-disconnect antenna mounts are also available. Pocket antenna mounts are often used with antennas that do not have built-in assembly. They typically use a rubber block that is squeezed to hold an antenna in place, relying on friction. Post antenna mounts may be installed on top of extended posts in attempts to increase efficiency by undershadowing the mast and coil. Quick-disconnect antenna mounts may be screw-on on bayoneted and are easy to remove.
Other options for antenna mounts include springs and guys, trailer hitch mounts, and whips and masts. Spring and guy antenna mounts are often used inconjunction with ball mounts and offer a lighter spring. Trailer hitch antenna mounts are used with trailer hitches and often feature a hitch ball welded on the left end of the hitch. A short piece of square tubing may be used as the mount, making for easy removal. Whip and mast antenna mounts may also be called stingers; they are flexible antenna pieces for mobile applications. Other, unlisted types of antenna mounts may also be commonly available.