Manager - NA4M
Manager Notes

Reviews For: Hy-Gain DB-218SAT Oscar Satellite Antenna Kit

Category: Antennas: VHF/UHF+ Directional (Yagi, quad, etc.)

eMail Subscription

Registered users are allowed to subscribe to specific review topics and receive eMail notifications when new reviews are posted.
Review Summary For : Hy-Gain DB-218SAT Oscar Satellite Antenna Kit
Reviews: 6MSRP: 559.95
Oscar Link Antenna System
30-Element , 70 cm. Crossed Yagi Beam
16-Element , 2 meter Crossed Yagi beam
LHCP/RHCP Switches
5 Foot Fiberglass Boom
All Stainless Steel Harware
Product is in production
More Info:
# last 180 days Avg. Rating last 180 days Total reviews Avg. overall rating
N6GEO Rating: 2020-10-19
Good used find Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
Someone popped up on QRZ advertising the pair of Hy-gain yagis (2m/70cm) a few hours away. After dragging them home and some cleanup, they function fine. The insulation on the wire for the polarization relax had disintegrated, but I was able to cut the housing open, solder new leads, and glued it back together. Now both relays work fine. The teflon-coated coax in the matching harness still looks good and the SWR is less than 1.3:1. I'm making solid contacts across a number of satellites.
WA7OCZ Rating: 2019-10-22
Quality Control Lacking (more like nonexistent) Continued Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
Something that I looked forward to and should have been fun to do has become an exercise in irritation. I found more problems from the October 7 review. After receiving the correct aft boom for the VHF antenna, I finally got the VHF side together and noticed that director 3 is badly misaligned and off plane. Someone mentioned a monkey with a drill could to better. I wonder if it's the same monkey? Contacted seller and they are having Hy-gain ship a replacement center boom. Had to take some screws from the UHF side to finish the VHF as some hardware is missing (one bolt and four lock washers). Still waiting for the rear boom for the UHF to arrive. Discovered when unwrapping the balun and polarity switch assembly, that it's not like the picture or description in the assembly instructions. Manual says you connect a encapsulated pair of lugs with one labeled (or colored) "or red". I'm assuming this is "orange red". What came is a completely different polarity switch along with different attach points. Instead of the lugs, it's a tiny circuit board labeled 1 and 2. I'm guessing 1 is the orange red but there is not in an addendum describing this redesign and what is what. Aggravation level rising.

Earlier 1-star review posted by WA7OCZ on 2019-10-07

I'm just starting to try and assemble this kit. On the 440MHz side, one of the splice holes on the aft part of the boom was off 1/8". I ended redrilling it so I could at least put the bolt in. On the same aft section of the boom, the hole for director 3 is missing. I repeat...missing. Contacted where I bought the kit from and MFJ is now shipping me a replacement. So I started to assemble the 144MHz side while I'm waiting. On that antenna the three piece boom has the wrong part altogether for the aft section of it. Don't know what it goes to, but it's not made for this antenna. It looks like it supposed to go to a quad or something.
Again, contacted seller and MFJ is sending a replacement (I hope. I haven't heard back yet). This is terrible. Where is the quality control on this? I am so tempted to box it all back up and return it. I'll do a follow up if there's more problems. Right now I'm stopped until the parts arrive.
WA9AFM Rating: 2019-10-08
Surprised Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I began using the HyGain (when it was still HyGain) DB-218SAT antenna kit back in 1990. There were several folks in the AMSAT community in OKC using the package with great success. I sold the package to another 'bird chaser' who is still using it without problems.

I have to presume MFJ's buy out of HyGain not end well for the 218SAT. I've heard and experienced substandard QC of HyGain products over the past few years.
VE6ND Rating: 2016-11-24
Okay after mods Time Owned: more than 12 months.
Here I am again, note; the phasing harness lengths are INCORRECT as the antenna comes from the factory. Both harnesses are 1/2 wave, this does not produce a 90 degree phase shift! If, If you want to change the antenna get rid of that dipole mishmash adjusting bars and put in proper folded dipoles or a T match with baluns. Remember, to get the proper phase shift you have to have one phasing cable at 1/4 wavelength and the other at 3/4 wavelength. Ditch the L/R relay and get a decent one.

Glenn, VE6ND

Earlier 4-star review posted by VE6ND on 2015-09-30

Not sure why MFJ changed the balun assembly however it is still the same, sort of.
My SWR is 1.4:1 at 435.900 which is pretty good.
What I found from some people (complaining the swr is crap) is that there is a very thin film of plastic on the beta arms and if you don't remove this or look for it the SWR will be horrible.
My antenna went together in a few hours, I took my time.
The balun design looks like it was made in your basement and my yellow set of uhf elements were not there. Instead another set of brown elements, I had the rod and cut two for the antenna.
I was not really pissed but come on, quality control! This was a new purchase from old stock cerca 2009.
So far I have put 100 watts through the antenna and the swr stayed the same, the RF out was the same.
It is a nice looking antenna when finished.
Why MFJ changed the balun design is beyond me but they should have stayed with Hy-Gain.
NM5SD Rating: 2012-10-15
Don't even THINK about it! Time Owned: more than 12 months.
Let me echo VA3OT's recommendation to avoid this antenna system. I put them together a year ago and about 8 months ago I broke the 2 M matching section. The solder lugs pulled out of the potting compound. I called Hy-Gain and ordered a new one. The representative said "I don't have any in stock and it'll take me a couple of months to make one." Sure enough, it took two months to get the part. When I mounted it the solder lugs pulled out! Aarggh! I called Hy-Gain and told the guy what happened. He said "Send it back to me with a note about what's wrong. It'll take me a couple of months to make one for you." Aarggh! Two months later the thing came. THIS time I epoxied the heck out of the solder lugs...LOTS of epoxy. About an hour ago I went out and mounted it. The cables were too short to mount it. Am I going to call Hy-Gain again? Not only no, but hell no!! I'm now going to Google "How to make a lamp out of a Hy-Gain DB-218SAT"

Steve, NM5SD
VA3OT Rating: 2010-04-27
Best advise I can give is to avoid this product , Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
Poorly made antenna package , of which not all the metal parts are Stainless Steel as advertized. Parts fit, and hole placement on the booms is a joke , a blind monkey with a drill gun could do better.
The SWR match is no better then 2.1:1 .
Don`t expect much help from Hy-Gain / MFJ .
You`ll windup with a useless pile of aluminum.
Searching for help revealed this link..