A GPS City customer, Adam, recently submitted a great post to our Customer Gallery. In his post, Adam provides insight on how he installed a GPS antenna on an aircraft. Read below for Adam's helpful tips.
"I was looking for a solution to place a GPS antenna in an aircraft. One of the requirement was portability and quick installation without any interference into the aircraft design, i.e. without a Supplemental Type Certificate (STC). Many pilots doesn’t pay enough attention to GPS signal reliability and they only use factory built-in antenna. If you want to make a safer navigation backup from your GPS, an active external antenna is vital. When the clear view of the sky is assured, your GPS receiver will not be losing the signal in steep turns, banking or any other aircraft configuration that may obstruct the signal reception. You will be amazed by increased performance of your GPS at minuscule cost." Adam's installation set included four RAM Mount parts: Satellite Radio Antenna Plate, Diamond Plate with 1 inch Ball, Short Arm B-Socket and Suction Mount Base B-Ball Cone.
During installation, Adam notes, "GILSSON GPS Antenna has two magnets on the bottom side that are intended to set it on RAM-344U plate without using screws. A better solution is to drill two additional 4mm holes, spacing 50mm on the base plate (see photo) and use M3 screws delivered with the antenna set. This will prevent the antenna displacement on the base plate when carrying in a pilot bag."
Adam also warns, "Do not place your GPS antenna on the front windshield until you remove magnets. This will almost for sure interfere with the aircraft compass. I have only made in-flight tests in Cessna 152 mounting my antenna on the rear windshield. It will not affect the compass readings. It is worth to mention that plexiglass, polycarbonate and thin polymers are not significant obstacle for GPS receiving frequency while aircraft fuselage, aluminum, steel and concrete are."
In parting, Adam shares a few key points for a successful installation.
- Installation increases your GPS signal reception and accuracy.
- Quick and flexible installation engineered by RAM MOUNT.
- Fits all aircrafts with the rear windshield (installation on the front windshield not recommended for the possible compass reading error – magnets in the antenna).
- External amplified GPS antenna averages about 28 dB signal gain.
- Best accuracy achieved during my experimental flight test: 5ft (Garmin 96C - EGNOS enabled).
For the Adam's original post and pictures, check out our GPS City Gallery.
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