GAM/McKim Split Lead

The GAM/McKim split lead single side band antenna is a favorite amongst sail boaters because it eliminates the need for backstay insulators forever. The split lead antenna simply press fits onto your existing backstay wire with no special tools or equipment required. The GAM/McKim is secured at the base by a hard grade plastic T clamp and requires a back stay length of at least 34 feet.

Click here to see our magazine advertisement and review from communications expert Gordon West in Sail Magazine.


The split lead antenna installation requires no alteration of the backstay thus preserving full mechanical integrity of the backstay wire. All RF elements of the antenna are fully insulated eliminating the possibility of the shock hazard posed by the bare wire connection in conventional backstay antennas.

Ease of Installation

No cutting, no swaging, no measuring, no special tools, no special skills required. Simply press fit the GAM/McKim over the existing backstay wire, clamp at bottom and secure in place with included Zip-Ties.  Click here for installation instructions.



Active elements are designed for RF, meaning they are more conductive than the stainless steel backstay wire. Lead wire connections are waterproof and electrically sound. The antenna’s insulated housing reduces precipitation static, often associated with heavy squalls and thunderstorms.

Stowage and Portability

The Split Lead antenna can be coiled up to a diameter of approximately 26” for ease of storage. It can be easily removed when the mast or backstay require work and can readily be transferred from one vessel to another.


The outer housing is very durable, resistant to weathering and, since it is under no mechanical stress, should last for many years in the marine environment.


The GAM / McKim Split Lead Antenna is priced to compete with conventional backstay insulators (including swaging costs) and less expensive than many insulators utilizing reusable terminals.


Click here to purchase GAM/McKim Split Lead Antenna


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