Today I got around to installing my CB. Here's the deal:
From Walcott CB
Firestik - MU8R18 - 2-Piece 18ft "EZ-Install" Single Coax (MU8R18) = $18.95How To:
Firestik Firefly 3 Foot Flexable Antenna (FL3B) = $17.95
Cobra 75WXST Remote CB & Weather Radio (75WXST) = $109.95
Firestik - SS3M - Stainless Steel Spring (SS3M) = $9.95
Firestik K4R FireRing Stud Mount (K4R) = $3.49
Firestik - K1A - Internal Locking Quick Disconnect (K1A) = $15.95
The next two are for tuning your antenna. They don't stay in the truck:
Paradynamics - PDC1 - 100 Watt Power & SWR Meter (PDC1) = $14.95
3ft RG58 Coax Cable with PL-259 Connectors (HS803PL) = $4.95
First, you need to install the Bandi Mount per Bandi's instructions
. As I was using the Firestik 'Firering' cable, I had to make sure I was setting it up right. Here is the general order of washers and such (note the 'lips' that go into the Bandi Mount hole):
Here it is "in the flesh":
Note in that image I have the cable coming out of the Firering pushed to the wrong side. More on that in a second. Second note: The biggest issue most people are going to have with this install is grounding. Make sure the Firering is grounded to the Bandi mount. Might have to really tighten things down.
To make sure you have a good ground, you have to scrape some paint on the mount and on the hinge (all covered in Bandi's instructions). Here's the hinge scrape:
Here is the Bandi mount completely installed. Note the orientation of the Firering and how the cable is routed. To do this, you must have the "EZ-Install" coax or be making your own terminations, as a full size connector will not fit through the hinge.
For running the cable, I went right straight down and behind the bumper:
Underneath, I ran the coax over the rear suspension, and then between the gas tank and frame. At the front of the gas tank, I went up and over it and to the access port between the two E-brake lines (Note: It appears that this access port is for MTs only. In ATs, there is a cable routed there. See this post
). In this access port, I cut a hole so I could pass the cable:
As I already ran power
out to the center console, I only had to pop of the top cover:
Here you can see the open access port:
For power, I just used some taps into the lines I ran for the 12V outlet
. Then before sticking everything in place, I hooked it up and dialed in the antenna with a SWR meter:
Note: Be sure if you are using a Firestik tunable tip antenna that you place the plastic tip all the way back on each time you test SWR. I have no clue why a bit of plastic would, but it influenced my readings significantly... For more info on tuning for SWR (including a video), see this link...
Here's when I am doing the tuning. You can see (from bottom up) the Bandi Mount, Stud, Quick Release, Spring, and Firefly antenna:
Here you can see the interior detail. The power taps, the access port, now sealed with RTV silicone, the Cobra connector box (mounted with 3M mounting tape[UPDATE: Regular 3M "Heavy Duty" mounting tape won't hold it. Try the automotive trim variety they have at auto supply stores]) and the pigtail:
Shot showing the installed Cobra Quick Connector installed:
I only had a few extra feet of coax. I wish I could have used a longer snake (24" or so would have been better), but this seems to work and I still get a nice, low SWR reading:
The end product:
And one more:
Anybody in the Portland area is more than welcome to use my SWR meter...