I own an United Star AN/PRC-148 MBITR – the two included antennas are not enough to outfit all my rigs with an antenna that does the job on each. My solution? Buy a new antenna.
The Toy Soldier “Delta” Antenna is a VHF antenna and hence will attach to Z-Tactical dummy radio boxes, Toy Soldier AN/PRC-148 and United Star AN/PRC-148 (being that it is a VHF antenna, it will not work with the Toy Soldier and obviously will not work with the Z-Tactical dummy), according to Toy Soldier’s product page. I am very doubtful about whether or not these antennas are cross compatible with the more recent AN/PRC-152 repro by TRI after hearing from James (the same James from WE) whom is selling the TRI radios from Taiwan. His response to my inquiry on this message was as follows: “The United Star ant. not sure work on TRI. Since TRI able receive FM and 350mhz-400mhz, 480-520mhz. The ant. connector are same TNC, but frequency coverage are different.”
Length of this antenna is similar to the Thales-style broadband antenna. Diameter of the antenna is noticeably thinner.
The “Delta” antenna is fitted with a quick-detach connector – I’m unsure of what exactly this connector is called as I’m not overly familiar with comms and related accessories. This connector is the same as you can find on both the Emerson and Toy Soldier antenna extension kits. Note that Toy Soldier covers this up with a small rubber tube.
However, the main reason for my purchase of the Toy Soldier “Delta” Antenna is the flexibility it offers (literally). Being able to wear my United Star AN/PRC-148 where I can easily reach it, with an antenna that doesn’t poke me is a definite plus. The flexible length means that I can easily route it through MOLLE or even tie it into place if no webbing is available in that spot, while remaining comfortable.
Included in the United Star radio package are the broadband antenna (far left in the top picture) and the blade/whip antenna (centre left in the top picture). The standard antenna is stiff and is not terribly comfortable when the radio is riding on my front as the antenna is just at the right length to poke me in the chin or nose. The blade/whip antenna is nice as it can bend near the bottom, as well as the blade can be routed through MOLLE or whatever… however, finding additional ones is difficult.
The attention to details by United Star is even noticeable in the markings on the antennas themselves:
The first aftermarket antenna I purchased (far right in the top picture) is the Toy Soldier Functional Folding Antenna (a modified Z-Tactical). Though cheap, it is not as practical as the full length of the blade does not appear to be utilized as an antenna. The base of the antenna doesn’t bend (see inset photo from the Toy Soldier site below).