CB Radio and Ham Radio

Prime

Shut up Baby, I know it!
Admin
Location
Denver Adjacent
Drilled another hole in the roof.

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Reception is ufcking terrible. Rubber ducky does a better job. I blame the coax splice first. The PL259 in the truck 2nd. And the cheap antenna 3rd. Going to order another mount with longer coax so that I can just replace the entire cable and eliminate the splice. Also going to get it with pre-installed BNC so that I can easily connect HTs.

After lunch I'm going to a high spot and see if I can hit some repeaters. Just to check.

But. Reception on the NOAA weather bands is perfect in my driveway with the rubber ducky. And almost inaudible on this antenna.
 

CHUG

Sliders
Supporting Member
That stubby Roof Mount. I would suspect it sucked!. Wonder if your antenna had a bad short? Or something funky..

When you get your Correct Cable and antenna.. Take a Pizza Pie Plate, ( If magnetic antenna base? ) Place the set up, in back yard, Or front yard.. Either on the Ground, or Top of BBQ.. plug in HT and Ping your Repeater.. should be Easy Plus, your reception should be really good.

Antenna makes the radio!. Its all Witchcraft Magic
 

Prime

Shut up Baby, I know it!
Admin
Location
Denver Adjacent
So I hit these repeaters with both the rubber ducky and the roof antenna using the Radioddity GM30 GMRS HT.

Confirmation was that the rubber ducky had better sound quality. But was intelligible on both antennas.

Google shows total distance. So short line is about 8 miles which means long line is about 27 miles. Tried to reach out to one that was technically closer (18 miles) but couldn't get a response. That one is just west of where it says "Golden" on the map.

Was in elevated position with clear line of sight to each of the repeaters.

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Definitely replacing entire NMO and coax to eliminate fittings and shiat. Then will try again.

Also, might buy and SWR for UHF just to see Not that I can tune a shorty antenna. Tried the CB SWR meter. It doesn't work on this new shiat. Too much power? Wrong freq ranges? Something. Just garbage.
 

Prime

Shut up Baby, I know it!
Admin
Location
Denver Adjacent
That stubby Roof Mount. I would suspect it sucked!. Wonder if your antenna had a bad short? Or something funky..

When you get your Correct Cable and antenna.. Take a Pizza Pie Plate, ( If magnetic antenna base? ) Place the set up, in back yard, Or front yard.. Either on the Ground, or Top of BBQ.. plug in HT and Ping your Repeater.. should be Easy Plus, your reception should be really good.

Antenna makes the radio!. Its all Witchcraft Magic
But I want a stubby. And I want it to work.

I already have a hole in my truck for a 3/8 NMO. haha. So no magnet mounts here.
 

outback97

First Fill-Up (of many)
Supporting Member
@Prime how are you connecting the radio to the antenna? I have not had much luck with that part of the system. For the UV-5R I got a cheap SMA Female to UHF Female SO-239 adapter, and it seemed to work for a while, but then I think the coax wire pulled out so I was getting nothing.

I just found a company that makes these in the US, and they're cheap, but the shipping is 4X the product cost:

I am using the same 1/4 wave antenna that @TerryD mentioned, and it has worked well when my adapter was working.

If I were worried about it getting caught in leaves I think a length of heat shrink tubing over the coil section would help with that. Most of our travels are in the desert though so I haven't had too many things snag it.

It's mounted to the corner of the hood with this

I got my ham ticket about four years ago and have never moved beyond the handheld radio stage. I think about a vehicle mounted one, then look at what a good one costs, and scratch my head thinking about where I'd mount it, and then never really have gone beyond that. But I do need to sort out a good external antenna solution, because as @CHUG pointed out, the antenna really makes a difference.
 

Muadeeb

Bastard Admin from Hell
Admin
Location
Dallas
Also, might buy and SWR for UHF just to see Not that I can tune a shorty antenna. Tried the CB SWR meter. It doesn't work on this new shiat. Too much power? Wrong freq ranges? Something. Just garbage.
Wrong range. CB is ~26 MHz. You're much higher now.
 

Prime

Shut up Baby, I know it!
Admin
Location
Denver Adjacent
@Prime how are you connecting the radio to the antenna? I have not had much luck with that part of the system. For the UV-5R I got a cheap SMA Female to UHF Female SO-239 adapter, and it seemed to work for a while, but then I think the coax wire pulled out so I was getting nothing.

I just found a company that makes these in the US, and they're cheap, but the shipping is 4X the product cost:

I am using the same 1/4 wave antenna that @TerryD mentioned, and it has worked well when my adapter was working.

If I were worried about it getting caught in leaves I think a length of heat shrink tubing over the coil section would help with that. Most of our travels are in the desert though so I haven't had too many things snag it.

It's mounted to the corner of the hood with this

I got my ham ticket about four years ago and have never moved beyond the handheld radio stage. I think about a vehicle mounted one, then look at what a good one costs, and scratch my head thinking about where I'd mount it, and then never really have gone beyond that. But I do need to sort out a good external antenna solution, because as @CHUG pointed out, the antenna really makes a difference.
Currently it is SO239/PL259 to SMA adapter from Amazon.

However.

Ordered new NMO with pre-terminated BNC. And got some SMA to BNC adapters. So when I wheel, I remove the rubber ducky, attach BNC adapter, and connect coax. Minimal fittings. Remember that each fitting is traditionally a 1dB loss. So the fewer the better.
 

Springfield

Test Drive
Location
Sunny Florida
I've been running this one for a long time. I'm on my 2nd one. Cheap enough that when they get broke on the trail I'm not heart broken.

Tram 140MHz-170MHz + 430MHz-470MHz Dual Band NMO Antenna (1181) https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00IDTJ2KE/ref=cm_sw_r_apan_glt_fabc_NRC199Y1NKW1043V4Y47
I have a similar Tram antenna with a mag base (model 1185) https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0045EQUBK
It seems to work fine but have not mapped the SWVR. I just run the antenna down to driver's rear door, and diagonally across the door's weatherstrip to under drivers seat to radio. This soft mount allows it to move to another car or even into the house (with a ground plane).
 

Prime

Shut up Baby, I know it!
Admin
Location
Denver Adjacent
Found this on Amazon. It's branded as Rugged Radios. But I couldn't find it on their website.

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The finish pretty much perfectly matches the silver of the center stack. Belt clip on the radio locks it in place. Perfect.
 

TerryD

Total Tease
Supporting Member
Location
Covington, Va
My radio is mounted on a plate under the passenger seat.
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Then the control head is mounted on a Ram X-Grip on the dash.

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My mic hangs below the flasher button on the opposite side.
 

CHUG

Sliders
Supporting Member
Nice Go Toss Kit.. Radio is living the good life all protected like that!

One of mine antenna is removed and tossed under back seat near the Jack. about every three to 4 months will take it out for a Charging check..
 
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