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Ham Radio Install Questions

Discussion in 'Audio & Video' started by Randy Morton, May 26, 2016.

  1. May 26, 2016 at 7:44 PM
    #1
    Randy Morton

    Randy Morton [OP] New Member

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    I plan on installing some Ham Radio gear in my 2012 Tundra double cab. It'll probably be an under the seat install (driver's seat, but I haven't ruled out the storage bins under the rear seat) with the remote head on the console. Does anyone have any experience running coax (probably RG-8x) through the floorboard to the bed? Any thoughts on getting power from the battery to the underside of the drivers seat (or rear seat) will also be appreciated.
     
  2. May 26, 2016 at 8:08 PM
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    Mike

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    There will be drain plugs under the carpet or look under the cab you will see it.(rubber grommets)you can poke a hole for the power and rg8.

    What size gauge power wire I guess 8 or 6? If so keep it away from exhaust and moving parts.. zip ties help.

    What meter are you running for TX?


    Edit keep power on one side of the truck and your fg8 on the other keep rf noise down.
     
  3. May 26, 2016 at 8:33 PM
    #3
    MotoTundra

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    I don't mean to derail your thread, but I am curious and I don't know anyone that has a ham radio... I'm looking to learn a bit about it. What are the different uses or main reason for ham radio in your truck?

    Thanks!
     
  4. May 26, 2016 at 8:38 PM
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    Mike

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    Emergency is a big one. Disaster areas need ham radio where cell towers are offline.Ham plays a big role today.
     
  5. May 26, 2016 at 8:41 PM
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    MotoTundra

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    Well that makes perfect sense. Thanks!
     
  6. May 26, 2016 at 8:41 PM
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    Randy Morton

    Randy Morton [OP] New Member

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    I'll be using 2 meter and 70cm for storm spotting to start with, but I may install the Hi-Q 4/80 I had on my previous pickup. I'll also be installing an APRS setup. It'll take a while to get everything grounded and bonded, but the extra work eliminated all problem in the old truck. If possible, the power wires will be 6 gauge in case I get the chance to run HF and an amp some time in the future.
     
  7. May 26, 2016 at 8:50 PM
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    Mike

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    To fix the ground problem use a ground buss bar. Located all ground to that one spot. I have seen that done a few times and works perfect,but every set up is different.

    I don't think the tundra is that bad on grounds so you might get away with it.
     
  8. May 27, 2016 at 6:34 AM
    #8
    Randy Morton

    Randy Morton [OP] New Member

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    I have multiple reasons. One is emergency communications. I'm a member of the Radio Amateur Civil Emergency Service, Amateur Radio Emergency Service, and the Medical Reserve Corp. If there's an emergency that requires non-land line communication, we're trained and ready. It's also a great way to chat with friends during a commute. If you're interested in getting your license, go to http://www.arrl.org/ and find a club near you.
     
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  9. May 27, 2016 at 6:48 AM
    #9
    Randy Morton

    Randy Morton [OP] New Member

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    Grounding and bonding is a way to prevent interference from various RF generating parts of the truck. Things like ignition, fuel pump, and injectors. It also protects the truck from the RF generated by the radio. It involves connecting the cab, bed, and frame with both a copper strap and a copper braid. It's also best to connect the exhaust to the frame with a braid at the beginning, middle, and end.
     
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  10. May 27, 2016 at 8:13 AM
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    Mike

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    When you get done post some pics on how your set up is..
     
  11. May 27, 2016 at 11:25 AM
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    MotoTundra

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  12. May 27, 2016 at 1:43 PM
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    Tracker

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    Dont you need a permit to run a Ham?
     
  13. May 27, 2016 at 5:29 PM
    #13
    Randy Morton

    Randy Morton [OP] New Member

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    Yes, but local clubs will help you with the licensing requirements. It's a written test based on rules, regulations, and knowledge of electronics. I was first licensed in 1979.
     
  14. May 28, 2016 at 4:23 AM
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    MT Madman

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    I've got an old Kenwood TM-V708 under the drivers seat, pain in the butt to program with no PC but I love the radio. I scan public service on one side and have my favorite repeater on the other, it's nice because I can go both VHF and UHF on both sides at the same time.Radio Antenna (NMO).jpg Radio Control Head on Center Console.jpg Radio Microphone.jpg Radio Under Drivers Seat.jpg
    I went with a NMO through the roof, dropping the light to do the drilling/punching and running the RG-8 in the back of the air bag curtain. I keep a short dual band antenna and a longer one in the truck at all times but generally use the short one. My DC is ran to the battery and switched via a relay powered by the power port. I've got a couple Kenwood TM-D700s at my shop that I've been playing with but still haven't or not sure if I will make the jump to APRS.
     
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  15. May 28, 2016 at 4:30 AM
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    MT Madman

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    Oh BTW Yaesu has a cheap APRS dual bander, the FTM-100 and it can be had for around $320 and was on sale for under $300 that a friend of mine just got. I don't know much about it but...
     
  16. May 28, 2016 at 8:37 AM
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    Mike

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    Is ICOM still king in ham?
     
  17. May 28, 2016 at 2:33 PM
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    Randy Morton

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    That's a nice setup. Here are a couple of shots of the installation in my old truck. The first is the antenna mount I created for the 2m/440 antenna. There's one on the other side just like it for the APRS antenna. The second is a shot of the install behind the seat. There's a cover over it, but it's out for the picture. The third is the HI-Q attached to the toolbox. If I don't install a toolbox and reuse the old mounts, I'll probably bend up some weld steel for the 2m/440 antenna mounts on the Tundra and use the bed rail mounting holes to attach them. I don't commute to work and back these days, so I'm not planning on installing the HI-Q.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]
     
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  18. May 28, 2016 at 2:35 PM
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    Randy Morton

    Randy Morton [OP] New Member

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    It depends on who you ask. Everyone has their favorite and no matter which brand you mention, some will swear by them, and some will swear at them.
     
  19. May 29, 2016 at 9:09 AM
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    Mike

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    I use to be in ham years years ago. To do work and everything else happened it got and went on the back burner and my ham licenses expired..
     
  20. May 30, 2016 at 3:07 AM
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    MT Madman

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    How long ago did you're license expire, I've 'heard' they give you a 2 year grace period. If it did expire take the test again, we need more good hams out here to save the hobby and the bandwidth.
     
  21. May 30, 2016 at 3:54 AM
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    Mike

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    I'm passed the grace period by about a year. I will get back into it probably next year. Where i live the local club doesn't hold too many testing times.
     
  22. Jun 11, 2016 at 12:19 PM
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    Bulhas

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    i mounted my remote head with the Geosat 6 on my speaker grill on the top dash, easy part to replace in the future, i than mounted my radio under the shifter with a couple small holes to give me some ziptie access

    when I get home I post up a couple pictures, running a Kenwood Tm-D710 with aprs tied into my geosat, love my little setup
    i went with a comet sbb5 antenna just mounted on a stainless mount off the front fender, utlized the passenger side gromet to run wires in through the factory antenna hole that was never used!
     
  23. Jun 12, 2016 at 7:52 AM
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    matluth

    matluth Fish On!

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    Studying for the ham test now. Most of my ham buddies are using 2M here along the front range in CO. I have a CB now, but ham is clearly the way to go. I ran my CB coax thru the fire wall and routed it underneath the center console. CB is mounted inside the center console. I'll definitely be bugging you guys when it comes time to purchase a ham set and the ideal setup.
     
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  24. Jun 12, 2016 at 8:20 AM
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    Bulhas

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    its going to depend on what your needs are, I personally love crossband repeating from 70cm to 2m as it gives a huge advantage to those using single band radios, but not everyone needs or wants that capability

    lots of good introductory radios out there now too like yaesu ftm-100 or the kenwood tm-v71a ( i prefer this radio for starters as you can throw the 710 head unit and get all the same options later on :D) or an Icom IC-2300H would also be another great start!

    Icoms do have the options to get 75w output so thats always nice, but a good setup with 50w even on simplex gets you a LONG LONG LONG way
     
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  25. Jun 12, 2016 at 8:36 AM
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    matluth

    matluth Fish On!

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    There is a decent ham radio shop near me that a coworker goes to a lot. He is really big into Hams. Has a big ass antenna taking up his backyard. I think 30ft tall. His club charges $10 to take the test. Test is offered every month. I'll probably take the test in August after I get back from vacation. I'm getting the ham bug already. I've seen that Yaesu and it doesn't break the budget either. I'll check out that Kenwood too.
     
  26. Jun 12, 2016 at 8:45 AM
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    Bulhas

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    yah I personally prefer my yaesu product myself, but I recently got into the kenwoods and its equally as good!

    hes probably running a HF setup in the backyard! I want to get an HF setup going but Ill work on my mobile repeater trailer for future events :D
     
  27. Jun 12, 2016 at 9:58 AM
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    matluth

    matluth Fish On!

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    My friend John talks to folks all over. He's got $1000 of $ invested in equipment over the years. My goal is to end up eventually with the amateur extra certification. I have a strong background electronics/RF microwave theory. Don't know why I didn't do this sooner.
     
  28. Jun 12, 2016 at 12:09 PM
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    chunk

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    Just get your tech and general class ticket to start, that will be an easy job, and that will give you almost as much spectrum as having the extra class privileges. Then at your leasure you can study for the extra class, all the while enjoying any band and aspect of the hobby you like. Since there are so many general class licensees, there's lots of action, at least on HF. Cheers, and get that license!
     
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  29. Jun 12, 2016 at 5:35 PM
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    matluth

    matluth Fish On!

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    Thanks for that. I have nine days off here pretty soon. I plan to study at my property, but it's easy to get distracted with "a billion stars all around". I get that peaceful easy feeling. :thumbsup::thumbsup::thumbsup:
     
  30. Jun 13, 2016 at 5:58 AM
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    chunk

    chunk New Member

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    The biggest benfit ham radio has, as far as emergency comms are concerned is that it requires no infrastructure. No gps, satellite, or Internet connections. Just power, almost any 12 volt source, a transceiver of course, and a random length of wire or similar for a radiator (antenna ). Older rigs, ie vacuum tube rigs without transistors will continue to work after an emp event, either naturally occurring or man made. one myth I'd like expel is that it's prohibitively expensive, it can be, but it doesn't have to be. Sorry for the thread hijack, cheers.
     
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