According to Richard (GAP President) I was one of the very first GAP Challenger owners. That was the fall of 1988. 24 years ago. All that has been said about GAP
service is accurate. I have needed very little service in my 24 years, but it was always immediate. Once when a eucalyptus tree fell on my GAP and bent it at a
90 degree angle half way up. And just at the start of the 1991 CQWW CW. I still managed over 100 individual countries with the vert/horz Challenger. The new top
section arrived the next Monday via FedX. Another time when I moved and managed to loose my CW capacitor for 80 meters. A new one arrived within days…
My main thing is performance. I operate low power, 100 watts or less. Rigs have been IC-761, IC-756PRO, IC756PROII and Elecraft K1-4 (QRP). No amps. I have been on a small lot and the GAP has been my only antenna.
Here are the statistics:
100,000+ QSO’s.. No DX or WAS nets. All individual. 303 countries confirmed Low Power. 212 Confirmed QRP (Elecraft K1-4) ARRL 5BDXCC, DXCC Mixed, Phone, CW, Digital, 80,40,30,20,15,17,15,12 and 10. (Yes the GAP works fine on 30 and 17 with my Drake tuner). ARRL WAS 80 Mixed, 40 Mixed/Phone/CW/RTTY, 20Mixed/Phone/CW/RTTY, 15 Phone/CW.Digital, and 10 Phone/CW/Digital. ARRL Triple Play Award – LOTW confirmed all 50 states Phone, CW and Digital. ARRL Challenge – LOTW confirmed 1000+ countries. CQ Magazine – WAZ, WPX
A 3 ring notebook full of contest awards. Most recent 1st Place 2011 ARRL Sweepstakes San Diego Low Power Unlimited. San Diego is ‘Contest Country’ but I love to
get in there and play.
All in all, I think the Challenger is the best all band vertical out there. There are no Coils and capacitors to heat up and waste RF. My GAP has always been ground mounted And I never have worms crawling out of the ground to escape the misplaced RF. The GAP puts the maximum amount of RF in the atmosphere where it should be. Receive is also very quiet. Two weeks from now I will listen to the big guys here on 160 with their phased 200 ft towers calling CQ right into their pile-up. I can hear on my Challenger what they can’t on their towers. They will be listening to lightening strikes in the Midwest. I also have 9 countries on 160 including EA8, KH4, KH6, KL7, TI, VP9, VE, XE and K.