How To Make Your Own Stubby Antenna

Courtesy of guest jeeper, Holly in AZ.

Have all of those Jeep mods got your pockets running on empty? Tired of that 75 foot OEM whip antenna getting stuck in the trees when you’re wheeling? Well, if you have some time and leftover supplies from your vent painting mod, this one can be done for $0.00. That’s not a typo…this one is a FREEBIE!!! *You’re welcome!*

Tools Needed:
Pliers (wrapped in cloth on re-installation)
Flathead/standard screwdriver
Grinder with cutting wheel or Hacksaw with metal cutting blade
Metal file
Alcohol wipes or soap
Spray Primer
Spray Paint (I used the remnants of my Mopar Tank spray paint so it would match the exterior – you can use any color you like)
Spray Clearcoat
Painter’s tape
Adult beverage of your choice

Time: a couple of hours spread over a few days (the coats of primer, paint, and clear coat need drying time)

Step 1 – Using a pair of pliers, unscrew the OEM whip antenna
Step 2 – Ask your dad if he has a tool to cut the antenna and watch as he takes it away from you so he can cut it at work***

Cutting steps are per Bob (aka Dad):
Step 3 – Lock the antenna into a vice
Step 4 – Tap the ball off of the end of the antenna using the screwdriver and hammer (hold the screwdriver up to the ball and lay it against the antenna…tap the screwdriver with the hammer and the ball will come off)
Step 5 – Using the grinder with the cutting wheel, cut the antenna to desired length (per Bob, you could also use a hacksaw with a metal cutting blade on it)
Step 6 – File the end of the antenna into an almost cone shape with the metal file (you need to get the tip to be small enough to fit the ball back onto it without making it so small that the ball falls off – trial and error on this – if you file it too small, try putting some glue in the ball to hold it on (not sure if this will work, Dad filed it to the right size) or you could re-cut the antenna and try it again
Step 7 – Go over to your parents house to retrieve new stubby antenna***

Painting steps per me:
Step 8 – Clean the antenna with alcohol wipes or soap
Step 9 – Using the painter’s tape, tape off the threads (if you get paint on the threads it will be difficult to screw it back onto the Jeep)
Step 10 – Lay the antenna down on paper or cardboard to paint
Step 11 – Apply 2 VERY LIGHT coats of primer (you don’t want any runs) letting them dry between coats
Step 12 – Turn the antenna over and repeat (every time you turn over the antenna, move it to a fresh area of the paper or cardboard – you don’t want the paint/antenna to stick to the paper/cardboard)
Step 13 – Repeat steps 11 and 12 with the paint and clear coat
Step 14 – Remove the painter’s tape
Step 15 – Using the pliers wrapped in cloth (to protect the finish), re-install the antenna on the Jeep
Step 16 – Kick back with the adult beverage of your choice and admire your handiwork

***Note – these steps may not apply in all cases