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The Setup (almost complete)

Need some help or advice on how to set up a mobile. This is the place to ask.

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Aughtry
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The Setup (almost complete)

Post by Aughtry » Sunday, 12 February 2017, 18:39 PM

I know there's folks out there that have mobile setups that outperform just about anything. Check this out and let me know of any tips for improvement. Any helpful info would be appreciated.

The mobile setup:

Galaxy DX959 from G.I.Joe's with peak and tune, and modulation mod.
Astatic 636L microphone
Radio Shack SWR meter with 20,200,2000 watt ranges.
Palomar elite 250
Small RoadPro external speaker
Predator 10K antenna
Custom antenna mount

The Truck - 2010 Ford F150 Supercrew

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In the cab:

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The SWR meter is not hard mounted. It sits inside the lower open slot in the bottom of the console with a piece of rubber wedged underneath it to create a friction fit.

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The Gray power wire is actually home power wiring. It handles 30amps, so anything I would put there is good to go. The bare copper wire in the center is attached to the mount on one end, and the fender on the other, in an attempt to reduce engine noise.

The bracket that holds the radio is a simple piece of bar with holes that I got from Home Depot, bent to fit, and used self tapping screws to put it to the floor.

The peppermint tin in the radio holds 2 SPST switches for the upper and lower channel mod.

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I'm simi-anal about things, so wires are tie-wrapped and such.

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The external speaker is mounted using a ProClip cell phone mount. While they are made to mount your cell phone to your dash or console without drilling holes, it can be modified for something like this. It has small edges that slip in between parts of the dash, in this case, the change pocket on the passenger side of the dash.

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The Antenna:

I had an antenna mount custom made for my previous truck, mounted to the tool box. I tried using it here, but the 8 inches of antenna that was below the roof of the cab caused a multitude of issues. Lessons learned. I took it back to the fab shop that made it for me and had them add 8 inches of height to it. Now it is at cab height for this truck and setup.

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This shot shows it a little better. It is mounted directly to the bed wall, but it's not just washers on the back side of the thin metal. There is another piece of steel (same as the mount) on the back side from top to bottom of the bed wall, giving it much more stability. The wire below the coax is the ground wire going to my ground block on the frame.

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I did a little bit of inexpensive work to create a decent ground plane. I ground a spot on the frame down to bare metal and used a couple self-tapping screws to mount a small ground bar like you would find in your home's breaker pannel. I then ran wire from bare metal points on the hood, cab, bed, and the antenna mount to bond and ground all at the same point. Larger gauge wire would probably be better, but #10 is what I already have in abundance. The green, however, is 8 gauge braided to the cab. It's the largest item to ground and receives a great deal of vibration, so I went with a braided wire that's less succeptable to breakage due to vibration.

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After lessons learned, I now have a SWR of 1.1 on 1 and 1.2 on 40.

The spring on the antenna will soon go away. A 17" shaft for the Predator is in the mail. I will replace the current stud and spring with a Breedl0ve stud and the 17" shaft. I'm hoping that will improve the system even further.


P.S. I'll be getting my license while saving for the RCI2970N4 that I'm drooling over.
Aughtry 7 double-deuce waivin' atcha from Prisontown, TX
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Re: The Setup (almost complete)

Post by 295 antenna » Sunday, 12 February 2017, 19:17 PM

The only thing i see is the amp being directly under the radio .Call me paranoid but i would think the heat (if you talk alot)will go up to the radio .That being said the set up looks good
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Re: The Setup (almost complete)

Post by army1975 » Sunday, 12 February 2017, 21:43 PM

lookin good. :cheers:
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Re: The Setup (almost complete)

Post by Mtn Lynx » Sunday, 12 February 2017, 22:51 PM

Like the setup. Nicely done! :cheers:

I been drooling for the rci DX 2950. Lol
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Re: The Setup (almost complete)

Post by dgbacb4148 » Sunday, 12 February 2017, 23:52 PM

:bounce: Ryan, I don't think your anal @ all, just know what you want up front. Anything worth doing is worth doing it right. The whole installation is really nice, JMHO and good luck. Almost forgot, welcome to the forum from Georgia Dawg country.
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Re: The Setup (almost complete)

Post by Aughtry » Monday, 13 February 2017, 23:27 PM

Upgrades made.

Received the 17" shaft today. Replacing the stud, spring, and 9" shaft didn't improve the SWR, at 1.2 across the board, but there is a noticeable increase in my receive.

The Breedl0ve stud.

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and the antenna with the 17" lower shaft. Had to shorten the whip a couple more inches to tune it.

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Re: The Setup (almost complete)

Post by sonoma » Tuesday, 14 February 2017, 3:26 AM

looks good. a lot of thought and work went into this set up. I have my antenna behind my cab and need to boild me a mount like this. I have wanted to do this for years now after seeing the one JJD posted a pic of his mobile set up that is about like yours. my swr is about 1.7 to 1.8 so have not took the time to build one. looks like the strap metal you used is nice and heavy. I was going to use a piece of square tubbing for my mount but yours looks nice and should not flex any with what you made it out of.

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Re: The Setup (almost complete)

Post by RodinKy » Tuesday, 14 February 2017, 8:37 AM

Nice looking setup, should serve you well.

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Re: The Setup (almost complete)

Post by Aughtry » Tuesday, 14 February 2017, 8:37 AM

sonoma wrote:looks good. a lot of thought and work went into this set up. I have my antenna behind my cab and need to boild me a mount like this. I have wanted to do this for years now after seeing the one JJD posted a pic of his mobile set up that is about like yours. my swr is about 1.7 to 1.8 so have not took the time to build one. looks like the strap metal you used is nice and heavy. I was going to use a piece of square tubbing for my mount but yours looks nice and should not flex any with what you made it out of.
I had a local fab shop make it for me from a simple drawing. 1/4 in steel. Walked in with the drawing to ask about it, and when he said $25 I replied SOLD!

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Re: The Setup (almost complete)

Post by sonoma » Tuesday, 14 February 2017, 8:45 AM

that was cheap to have it made for that price. if there was a place like that here I would have already had it made for mine. the material will cost about that much.

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Re: The Setup (almost complete)

Post by 543FtWorth » Tuesday, 14 February 2017, 9:36 AM

The only thing I would add is a few ferrite cores around the coax at the antenna for a common mode choke. If you have any rfi it will help. I ran a mount like this before I installed a puck on the roof.

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Re: The Setup (almost complete)

Post by Aughtry » Wednesday, 03 May 2017, 19:31 PM

I think I've gotten the radio hobby bug! An update to the setup.

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Re: The Setup (almost complete)

Post by jessejamesdallas » Thursday, 04 May 2017, 3:23 AM

Like your antenna mount...Just wondering tho how you managed to get those screws and nuts on between the cab and bed?

I have a similar antenna set-u on my Tacoma, only I have the mount bolted down to the floor of the bed, because there's no way to get between the bed and cab for bolts...unless I removed the bed I guess.
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Re: The Setup (almost complete)

Post by Aughtry » Thursday, 04 May 2017, 6:54 AM

jessejamesdallas wrote:
Thursday, 04 May 2017, 3:23 AM
Like your antenna mount...Just wondering tho how you managed to get those screws and nuts on between the cab and bed?

I have a similar antenna set-u on my Tacoma, only I have the mount bolted down to the floor of the bed, because there's no way to get between the bed and cab for bolts...unless I removed the bed I guess.
Image
I used a piece of PVC pipe and duct tape, with a great deal of patience (curse words and slamming tools) to prop up the nut from underneath just well enough to put the bolt through and snug it up. Used impact to tighten without holding nut. The vibrating seems to help. I also have another piece of steel on the cab side of the bed for rigidity. Don't want the thin bed wall tearing.

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Re: The Setup (almost complete)

Post by jessejamesdallas » Thursday, 04 May 2017, 7:05 AM

Never thought about that! I need to secure mine better...now I got another weekend project! Thanks!

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Re: The Setup (almost complete)

Post by MDYoungblood » Thursday, 04 May 2017, 10:31 AM

Aughtry wrote:
Thursday, 04 May 2017, 6:54 AM
jessejamesdallas wrote:
Thursday, 04 May 2017, 3:23 AM
Like your antenna mount...Just wondering tho how you managed to get those screws and nuts on between the cab and bed?

I have a similar antenna set-u on my Tacoma, only I have the mount bolted down to the floor of the bed, because there's no way to get between the bed and cab for bolts...unless I removed the bed I guess.
Image
I used a piece of PVC pipe and duct tape, with a great deal of patience (curse words and slamming tools) to prop up the nut from underneath just well enough to put the bolt through and snug it up. Used impact to tighten without holding nut. The vibrating seems to help. I also have another piece of steel on the cab side of the bed for rigidity. Don't want the thin bed wall tearing.

[ Post made via Android ] Image
I've used this to install a fastener in tight places, "Flexible Claw Type Pickup Tool", Image

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Re: The Setup (almost complete)

Post by jessejamesdallas » Thursday, 04 May 2017, 11:18 AM

MDYoungblood wrote:
Thursday, 04 May 2017, 10:31 AM
Aughtry wrote:
Thursday, 04 May 2017, 6:54 AM
jessejamesdallas wrote:
Thursday, 04 May 2017, 3:23 AM
Like your antenna mount...Just wondering tho how you managed to get those screws and nuts on between the cab and bed?

I have a similar antenna set-u on my Tacoma, only I have the mount bolted down to the floor of the bed, because there's no way to get between the bed and cab for bolts...unless I removed the bed I guess.
Image
I used a piece of PVC pipe and duct tape, with a great deal of patience (curse words and slamming tools) to prop up the nut from underneath just well enough to put the bolt through and snug it up. Used impact to tighten without holding nut. The vibrating seems to help. I also have another piece of steel on the cab side of the bed for rigidity. Don't want the thin bed wall tearing.

[ Post made via Android ] Image
I've used this to install a fastener in tight places, "Flexible Claw Type Pickup Tool", Image

3's

Greg
Heck. I need that to search for my missing tools under the hood!

[ Post made via Samsung Galaxy S5 Active ] Image
Image
Image
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Re: The Setup (almost complete)

Post by MDYoungblood » Thursday, 04 May 2017, 11:32 AM

jessejamesdallas wrote:
Thursday, 04 May 2017, 11:18 AM
MDYoungblood wrote:
Thursday, 04 May 2017, 10:31 AM
Aughtry wrote:
Thursday, 04 May 2017, 6:54 AM
jessejamesdallas wrote:
Thursday, 04 May 2017, 3:23 AM
Like your antenna mount...Just wondering tho how you managed to get those screws and nuts on between the cab and bed?

I have a similar antenna set-u on my Tacoma, only I have the mount bolted down to the floor of the bed, because there's no way to get between the bed and cab for bolts...unless I removed the bed I guess.
Image
I used a piece of PVC pipe and duct tape, with a great deal of patience (curse words and slamming tools) to prop up the nut from underneath just well enough to put the bolt through and snug it up. Used impact to tighten without holding nut. The vibrating seems to help. I also have another piece of steel on the cab side of the bed for rigidity. Don't want the thin bed wall tearing.

[ Post made via Android ] Image
I've used this to install a fastener in tight places, "Flexible Claw Type Pickup Tool", Image

3's

Greg
Heck. I need that to search for my missing tools under the hood!

[ Post made via Samsung Galaxy S5 Active ] Image
The night before doing the install I would use a dab of silicone on the flat washer, lock washer, and nut to each other, use a high speed impact to cinch them up, saves some of the profanity for other thing. :icon_e_smile:

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Re: The Setup (almost complete)

Post by Bobcat » Friday, 05 May 2017, 6:18 AM

Nothing short of "fine".

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