Telescopic poles - what do you use?

I use one of these, the 7.2 m version:

I toss the top section as its to light and then glue a piece of cord to the top using the traditional fishing rod method. I can get the centre of a dipole up 5m which is almost always enough. It collapses to a short enough length to fit in a pack.

I buy them 2 at a time. Have just put the second one into service as the first one is U/S after 4 years. They are cheap enough to not worry if you bust one to badly. Did I mention they are cheap???

I do have a heavier 10m pole but rarely use it.

Only have one 10m pole which weighs about 900g and goes down to 1.2m. it lets me use a 10m in length half wave antenna as a vertical (almost) for 20m band.

I use a Sotabeams travel mast and a Chinese fishing pole I bought on Amazon. The fishing pole is so much lighter. It’s about 18ft. Tried to buy the same fishing pole from amazon again but it’s out of stock. So I bought 2 of these on ebay

I bought 2 of the 7.2 meter ones. Haven’t had a chance to use it yet. Listing says carbon fiber but seems more like fiberglass to me.

I’ve found the SOTABeams 10m travel mast to be quite delicate even though it is substantially heavier. I’d second most advice - use the 7m or 8m rather than the 10m unless you specifically need the height (I’m currently thinking about building a static car delta loop for 20m which may require 10m masts for example).

Regards, Mark. M0NOM

Has anybody tried to use carbon-fibre poles?

Textbook advice says that they could work for inverted vees but not for verticals due to the conductivity of the material. Now, I would be interested to know how much of an effect you would expect, since

  • I assume that the carbon fishing poles will still be of a rather high-resistance material; I mean they are not pure copper or steel, so the practical effect might be limited.

  • They are a lot lighter and smaller than fiberglass ones, for instance, there is one 5m that collapses to 38 cm and weighs a mere 197g:

  • The better quality manufacturers of fishing gear tend to produce carbon ones only.

Any ideas / experiences? 200 g for a 5m mast sounds pretty promising, but I would want to use it with my loaded vertical described here.


Martin, I think the carbon pole will work fine with your loaded vertical, but the resonant length is likely to change. A few years back I did many activations with a 7m carbon pole supporting a vertical wire into an antenna tuner and it seemed to work fine.

Barry N1EU

Thanks, Barry! As my future vertical will include my T1 auto-tuner, I guess I can live with changing resonance. I plan to design a new version of my 40-30-20m loaded vertical, but this time

  • the coil will be closer to the center, i.e. in 1,6 - 2 m height, and
  • I will generally use my Elecraft T1 tuner as a fixed component in the setup, because for my activations, I need to be QRV as quickly as possible, and differences in deployment and soil need to be balanced out.

The 197g 5m pole from DAM is a promising component for this :wink:


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Decathlon pole 6 meters, collapsible 57 cms 570 grs.

Sotabeams 4.1 meters, ultracompact

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Mine arrived where the ends were cracked and they slide right out with no friction to keep them in place. It seems each one is off a bit. So what a waste of money NO MORE CHINESE stuff for me after waiting 60 days for it to arrive.

However, I did find a local sports store selling a 16 foot rod that works as it should for $20

The carrying case from the ebay rod will be used for my surf rod.

Sadly, the ebay rod is Rubbish as they say but I prefer Garbage
john ve3ips

I’ve noticed alot of the travel poles are light “Tenkara” trout rods. Most don’t seem to have an eyelets. How are most holding verticals or dipoles up?

I soldered a large solder tag to the end of my vertical, it slips over the end of the pole and lodges a few inches down.

I cut the (very thin, whippy) top section off to give a stub that protrudes about 2" from the top joint, which I glue in place. This is short enough not to interfere with fitting the bung when collapsed. Then I use a small cable tie, adjusted to the right size, to slip over the stub and hold the fishing swivel that I use at the attachment point of all my aerials - it ledges nicely on the joint.

I use about a 3-inch length of 300-ohm window line (twinlead) that I weave the pole tip through. I can then pass wires through the holes in the window line or attach the end of the vertical wire to it.

Hi Jon,
This appears to be the same pole that is available from Lambdahalbe in Germany, which I have had two of them for a few years now, I can highly recommend.


Any chance you can take a picture of this? That sounds like what I’m looking for.

how I do mine is shown (in pictures) here:

Loop made from single core 1.2mm copper wire. Soldered and then filed inside with a ratstail file so nothing rough. Another loop with top of vertical radiating wire attached. Inside diameter of loop that slips over telescopic pole is 4.5mm. Slides about 1/2 way down top section of 5 section 5m pole.


When I’m out for several days and in a tent I use a Hengsheng 5.4 m carbon pole from Amazon:

Hengsheng 5,4 / 17.72ft Carbon tragbaren Teleskop Angelrute Ultralight Mini Pole Reisezielfischprogramme

I used epoxy to glue the two top sections together making it a bit stiffer. The poles come with a bit of cord glued to the end. I use that to tie the antenna holder to the top of the pole:

It’s just a bit of plastic folder threaded onto the small ring connector from a usb stick; weight = 0 grams! When I’m out for the day I use a 10m grp travel mast. For the antenna holder I use the rubber grip section from a ball point pen fed onto a mini carabiner:

I put a bit of heatshrink onto one of the top sections of the mast to get a good grip.

   de OE6FEG / M0FEU

It was a bit painful getting there… but here it is! Cable tie is just above the joint it ledges on.

73 de Paul G4MD

…trying to get my kit together this was all that I found here in Canada, but I am impressed! They are now $30/each, I bought 2…tried to order poles from the UK and Europe but they won’t ship here (you gotta fix that, folks!), and even the Wonderpoles had to be picked up or it would have cost 1.5x the cost of the pole in shipping alone!

I find this whole pole-thing amusing. Years ago I picked up a couple of DVD’s at a Dollar Store…Pole Fishing with Brits Bob Nudd and Billy Makins…WHAT’S THIS? I thought…never seen grown men using POLES? But entertaining. Well all these years later and now I bought two 20’ Wonderpoles and lo and behold I come across this gal out of Ontario showing me how to FISH with them…and she’s now my favourite fishing channel!!!

The strangeness of this life cannot be measured.

(Can’t wait to put them on the air, though…)

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