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Thread: CB #1 Mistake

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  1. #1
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    CB #1 Mistake

    During a recent CB Clinic I inspected CB antenna installs by over 30 off-roaders and over 50% of them had the same error.

    Please look at these diagrams...




    Please see the diagrams above... See that nylon spacer? It looks like this...



    See the bevelled edge? That's important, because it locates the nylon bushing, so that it does not move. It holds the HOT pin on the stud so it does not touch the mount.

    The COAX fitting itself has a HOT and GROUND, the ground is on the outside, the hot is inside (the pin).

    Everything ABOVE the nylon spacer is HOT. For that reason the stud, should not touch the mount. If you flip the nylon bushing and put it on the bottom, you are causing a DIRECT DC Short between the HOT and GROUND (because the stud is now contacting the metal of the mount and will quickly fry your CB radio.

    If in doubt - do this simple test with a multimeter.

    The following should NOT have continuity
    - Antenna cable centre pin and ground, radio body, tub, antenna mount
    - Antenna cable centre pin and antenna cable ground (round spinning part)

    The following SHOULD HAVE continuity
    - Antenna cable centre pin and antenna and upper stud
    - The Mount, ground, tub and radio body.


    Important information about GROUNDS...

    A DC Ground is not an RF Ground.... A DC ground means you have electrical connectivity between 2 things. An RF ground is different, it means there is a specific relationship between the antenna and surrounding reflecting metal. So simply running a ground wire will not cut it - the mount must be METAL, connected to METAL. No Plastic. (it's more complicated than that, but you get the point). However, a DC Ground is a good indication that you are at least close.

    MORE important information....

    See this wire...



    That wire is used for antenna matching. DO NOT GROUND IT! Under no circumstances should it be grounded unless a qualified person who has a meter connected to your equipment tells you to ground it. That lead is for fixing REALLY bad SWR. I've installed dozens of Wilson and Firestik antenna's and I have never used this wire.

    That's all, hope this is helpful.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails antmntdi.gif   K-4A_StudInst_200pm.jpg   AntennaWire.JPG  
    Last edited by grinthock; 03-07-2008 at 12:29 PM.
    ----------------------
    Justin
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    this should be a sticky
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    done
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    deja vu all over again
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    Thanks

    Thanks for tips

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    grinthock

    Just a question?? What if I mount my antenna inside my CJ on the fenderwell ,could I do that, i only need about 1 mile of communication to others..Is that a problem, I have a 2ft antenna with a 80.00 radio. only time i use it is on the trail.. Cheers Terry

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    Quote Originally Posted by mothers mistake View Post
    Just a question?? What if I mount my antenna inside my CJ on the fenderwell ,could I do that, i only need about 1 mile of communication to others..Is that a problem, I have a 2ft antenna with a 80.00 radio. only time i use it is on the trail.. Cheers Terry

    That's fine. as long as there isn't any serious metal near by, such as a roll bar... If there is then your SWR will be sky high.

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    Thanks for the info..just read this and Ooops..on me!

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    Just an FYI for those who want a discreet setup that works pretty damn good...

    Some people don't want an antenna ON the Jeep, as it doesn't look good, or attracts attention.

    My suggestion would be to use a properly tuned and setup magnet mount - RIGHT dead centre on your hood... Look weird? Sure -- but it will work GREAT. Magnet mounts require a VERY good ground plane (and when we say plane, we mean, flat sheet) so the hood works well for that. When finished -- pop it off and toss it in the back.

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    Good little technical radio stuff.
    Nice to see information shared.

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    What kind of coaxial cable do I use? RG3? I have a CJ7 with a Uniden pro510 xl40 CB kit with firestick antenna. I have no idea how to install it. How much cable length do I need and are there any other wires and lengths I should know about? (to battery, red on cig lighter, or fuse box, etc) I want the antenna mounted high, but will it break when going in and out of the garage? It came with a fixed mount bracket.

    Thanks anyone

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    Dre907;

    You need to use coaxial cable that is 50ohm's, So that means don't use cable TV or Satellite cable, as it's 75...

    I have never even heard of RG3 before...

    Your options realistically are RG58 or RG8X both are good, RG8X is better is not much more expensive. Whatever you do purchase, ensure it has factory installed connectors and do not cut them. (unless you have the skills to properly purchase new ends and put them on properly)

    Quality coax can make or break your CB install. I would suggest contacting either RadioWorld or Queensway CB and having them install it for you if you are unsure.

    As for the antenna, bigger is always better, however those fibreglass antenna's from firestick WILL snap if they his an immobile object, even with a spring on them. If you want a huge whip but want to whack it all the time, get an 8 foot Steel whip, that's your best bet.

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    Quote Originally Posted by grinthock View Post
    however those fibreglass antenna's from firestick WILL snap if they his an immobile object, even with a spring on them. .
    Yup. My fiberglass whip is starting to show some damage.
    Once I build me a tire carrier I plan to move the antenna to that with a new mount.
    I want a Grand Wagoneer!!

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    Thanks for the great info. So, now I have a brand new whip antenna still in the box and need a long steel antenna. How much does an 8' steel one cost? Can I trade mine for a steel antenna, or should I just sell my whip and start over?
    82' CJ 7 with a few upgrades

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    You don't have to start over, fibreglass works fine, it's what most people run, considering 99% of the time you are within 10 meters of the person you are talking to it doesn't much matter. Just mount it low enough it won't bang on stuff.

    However, if you still want to go the 8'route (Do it!!!) they are like $25 at any CB shop

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    I might have to. My jeep has about 2" of clearance in my garage. I though that 2/3rds of the antenna had to be above the jeep. If that's the case... how much should I ask for the firestick still unpackaged?

    Thanks for your help, Justin.

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    Depends on the antenna but you should be able to get $25 for it, because they are unusually about 40, so you shouldn't end up out any $$ on the deal... 2/3 doesn't have to be above the Jeep.. If that's the case you would be bolting it to your hard top to make it get 2/3 above (and the hard top isn't steel which causes ground issues)

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    If you have a front Bush bar consider mounting it there.
    It will not be as suseptible to damage.
    There are lots of different lip mounts availible to day also.
    These sometimes are a better way to go.
    But look at the bush bar first..

    Richard
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    While I agree with Richard 100% that it's the best place to put it, for me, I cannot get past the aesthetics...

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    A few on the ZJ guys I know like to mount there antennas on the front fender. Seen it on a few FJs too.
    Personally not a fan of it but I'm sure it works just fine.

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