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Tundra Ham Radio!?

Discussion in '3rd Gen Tundras (2014+)' started by fours, Nov 30, 2019.

  1. Dec 1, 2019 at 11:54 AM
    #31
    theraven

    theraven Speed is expensive, how fast do you want to go?

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    @Porschetech29 nice install! I did something similar with the mic on mine.

    @Zero One Actual make sure to keep in mind that you’ll need a no ground plane required antenna if doing a bed mount, my pref is Larsen brand antennas, you’ve got a great radio in your sights, just make sure the rest of the install compliments it.
    -Direct wired power, not ran near any other power or antenna wire, (especially avoid LED associated devices).
    -Proper length antenna cable, cut it to fit, coiling excess creates a antenna coil in the wrong place (this is the most common install error I see). If you want to get really nerdy you can tune the cable to the freq you’ll most commonly operate on. Google it or PM me for the math on that.
    -Proper antenna length getting a big antenna doesn’t equal better comms. A properly tuned antenna cut to you freq. you plan on running the most will blow a big whip out of the water. (see manufacturer’s specs usually included with any decent antenna for length/freq cut) if you’ll be running a vhf/uhf dual, make sure you buy one tuned for your intended use. Either commercial 150/450mhz or HAM 140/440.

    Lastly. If at all possible avoid the bed mount. Your antenna depending on model is transmitting from the center point of the vertical and then reflecting off of what’s around it to propagate the signal, if it’s hidden behind the cab you’ll be fighting the true potential of that nice radio you just installed. Drill a hole in that roof and have some awesome comms. It makes a big difference, trust me.
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2019
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  2. Dec 1, 2019 at 12:08 PM
    #32
    831Tun

    831Tun crazy Bastrd

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    Ok, I have the antenna coil, dohhh. I went to buy connectors to shorten it but didn't know if it was rg5 or rg 6.
    For me, the roof top is not an option, won't be long it gets ripped off by an angry bush off road.
    Guessing it's rg6 though
     
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  3. Dec 1, 2019 at 12:32 PM
    #33
    theraven

    theraven Speed is expensive, how fast do you want to go?

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    Haha, I bet that sucker is zip tied together nice and tight too?, oh well, easy fix. The cable type might be printed on the cable, look close. Do you remember where you purchased it from? It’s most likely RG56 or 58.

    I understand the concern on the roof. I have 2 up there and the roof is the most pin stripped panel on my truck, I’ve had to replace a few antennas, but those are cheap. There’s been I few times I expected to see the roof skin ripped back, but so far so good.
     
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  4. Dec 1, 2019 at 2:43 PM
    #34
    831Tun

    831Tun crazy Bastrd

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    No zip ties at least, loosely coiled away from everything. the cable was already connected to the antenna. I'll go research that and see if I can figure it out, thanks.
     
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  5. Dec 4, 2019 at 10:43 AM
    #35
    abomb60

    abomb60 New Member

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    Sorry for they delay ... the snowpocalypse has finally ended in New England!

    Not sure what happened with the photo here but you can kinda see the radio face in the top left of the windshield.
    IMG_1609.jpg

    The main radio unit sits below the drivers seat along with a 4 port + USB RigRunner. They are mounted to a piece of 3mm birch plywood I had laying around from the laser cutter. The screws that hold the radio bracket to the wood poke through and grab the carpet to keep it from sliding all around. The input of the RigRunner is 10 gauge straight to the battery with a 40amp relay that is triggered by ignition on. Nice part is I have 3 more powerpole connections I can use (my Yeti 400 that powers my Dometic will use one of these). Since the head is so far away I did have to use an extensions for it as well the speaker and microphone. I just bought these off Amazon instead of hacking away and making my own.
    IMG_1608.jpg

    Microphone extension is routed under the dash and under the drivers side knee panel and then stuck to my Victory 4x4 MOLLE panel with some 3m adhesive disk thingy. Works well and hasn't fallen off on me yet. I do like the idea of mounting it into a blank slot but I don't have any blanks to use so I may have to be creative but it's fine for now.
    IMG_1610.jpg

    Speaker is a Yaesu/Vertex MLS-100 that is mounted to my ICS Fabrication dash mount. I did have to cut the connector off and resplice it so I could drill a smaller hole in the dash. Wasn't too worried about it since if I have to return this to factory the rubber mat will cover the hole.
    IMG_1611.jpg

    And finally the antenna ... I believe it's either a Comet or Arrow and is 2m & 70cm. I've had it for a few years now so I don't really remember. The mount is a stake hole NMO mount I picked up from somewhere on the interwebs. Needed a little cutting to the rubber part that squished out into the stake hole when tightened down but works just fine.
    IMG_1612.jpg
     
  6. Dec 4, 2019 at 5:46 PM
    #36
    fundra_goes_west

    fundra_goes_west I’m just a guy with a girl

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    Just starting my venture into ham. This thread makes my head spin. Thanks for all the info!
     
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  7. Dec 5, 2019 at 4:22 AM
    #37
    abomb60

    abomb60 New Member

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    Here’s a better image of the control head mounted to the windshield.
    F63DF81C-97C7-419E-BC84-A60CF41B9521.jpg
     
    Mountun Goat, Petrone, bensky and 3 others like this.
  8. Dec 5, 2019 at 4:27 AM
    #38
    abomb60

    abomb60 New Member

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    Its a fun hobby and there is tons of stuff to learn. I’d start off with a SDR for a couple bucks on Amazon and start learning the bands and different radio signal types (CW, digital modes, repeaters, etc). Then once you get your ham license you can start transmitting and doing stuff like APRS and talking to people if that’s your thing.
     
    fundra_goes_west likes this.
  9. Dec 5, 2019 at 4:33 AM
    #39
    prerunnerseth

    prerunnerseth New Member

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    This is how I've always mounted mine. Been on the fence about putting a rig in my Tundra. I used my ham radio a lot when I lived in the Sacramento area and was wheeling my FJ a lot. Now that I live in Raleigh I'm just not sure how much I would use it. I have a couple HTs still.

    AG6I
     
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  10. Dec 5, 2019 at 4:36 AM
    #40
    abomb60

    abomb60 New Member

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    A HT with a mag mount is always good in a pinch :)
     
  11. Dec 5, 2019 at 8:48 AM
    #41
    Sunnier

    Sunnier President of the Revived Marty McFly FanClub

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    If I get a winch on my 2WD, can I overland with the BASTRDs and SGU?!
    Thanks for following up with pictures!

    If you get another few spare minutes, please will you screen shot the extensions you tried to link us to? Unfortunately links on this forum to Amazon almost never go to the actual products.
     
  12. Dec 5, 2019 at 9:16 AM
    #42
    abomb60

    abomb60 New Member

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    I didn't link them before so lets see if this works first.

    Mic extension: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07C1SJRDP/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&psc=1
    Control separation cable: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07C1S8DXM/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o05_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1
     
  13. Dec 5, 2019 at 9:17 AM
    #43
    Sunnier

    Sunnier President of the Revived Marty McFly FanClub

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    If I get a winch on my 2WD, can I overland with the BASTRDs and SGU?!
  14. Dec 5, 2019 at 9:41 AM
    #44
    JDL17CM4x4

    JDL17CM4x4 Adventure Mobile

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    More to Come ...

    Such a clean install.
     
  15. Dec 5, 2019 at 9:41 PM
    #45
    TransNone13

    TransNone13 New Member

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    I took the plunge today after awhile of cold feet. I'm not familiar with 2m or 70cm very much, been using mobile/fixed 160m-20m bands previously. See how long it takes for HRO to deliver. I intend to install this using a very semi-permanent installation so that I can avoid chopping up my truck and allow me to remove the rig quickly.

    Got the Yaesu FTM-400XDR and the Diamond NR-770HBNMO. So I guess I sacked up finally, the transceiver was $140 off and that sold me. Also went with the SPM-NMO (says it's good for up to 45", perfect) mount to put on the roof. I've got a 6' roll of 3M vinyl wrap to put down to protect the roof or other mount points. Other than that, grabbed the external speaker, suction mount, and an assortment of other minor things. My main concern at this point is the clearance in my place's carport even with the fold over antenna, just something stupid to deal with. Also ordered hood/fender bracket if needed and a Diamond lip mount for more mounting options. Going to gamble with running via a DC outlet (while I understand that is not ideal), according to the fuse specs it should be ok. We'll see, I may just wire it in directly after all.

    Hopefully you can help me out with my new Yaesu, this mobile stuff is all new to me.
     
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2019
    Zero One Actual likes this.
  16. Dec 8, 2019 at 4:01 PM
    #46
    smslavin

    smslavin On a plane...

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    wee bit late on the reply but since i was out tearing into the truck, i remembered...

    48148705-4CDB-40C9-9952-6C6A0F06901C.jpg
     
  17. Dec 8, 2019 at 8:18 PM
    #47
    TransNone13

    TransNone13 New Member

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    I just ordered the bracketeer fire extinguisher mount to use as a radio mount bracket under the seat. Will follow up for those interested. I didn't want to do something ghetto and this seemed to fit the bill for two birds with one stone.

    I also wanted to share this, if you have a GMRS license you can do the MARS mod on the FTM-400XDR and be set for both (most notably increases transmit range frequency on 70cm from 460 to 470Mhz). Will test this when everything arrives. Just be aware this removes some handrails and requires extra caution for use.

    Screenshot_20191208-203129_Adobe Acrobat.jpg

    First part of my order showed up!

    IMG-20191209-WA0013.jpg
     
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2019
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  18. Dec 9, 2019 at 6:09 PM
    #48
    fours

    fours [OP] New Member

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    That's pretty sweet!
     
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  19. Dec 9, 2019 at 6:11 PM
    #49
    fours

    fours [OP] New Member

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    Wow!
     
  20. Dec 10, 2019 at 7:13 PM
    #50
    npeters7

    npeters7 New Member

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    Been interested for awhile. Now this really has me looking deeper. What steps did y’all take to get your tech license? Study guide, testing, etc?

    not trying to high jack thread. Can PM me if that would be better ... thanks
     
    theraven likes this.
  21. Dec 10, 2019 at 7:31 PM
    #51
    theraven

    theraven Speed is expensive, how fast do you want to go?

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    Icon 2.5 cdc front and rear. MCM UCA's, RXT rear leafs , wheelers bump stops, Icon hydrolic Bump stops, Icon six speed 17x8.5 w/ 285/75R17 Nitto Ridge grapplers, A.R.E. CX, Decked drawers, Smittybilt Gen2 12k synthetic on SDHQ hidden mount, factor 55 fair lead, factor 55 flat link-E, Baja Designs squadron pro fogs, Baja designs 40" Onx6 behind the grill on SDHQ mount, Baja designs XL80's on SDHQ a pillar/ hood mounts. Switch pros 9100, SDHQ panel mount and SDHQ under hood mount. Pro Grill, SDHQ ABS guards, P&P Sliders, Full RCI skids Waiting patiently in the garage, Full body 3m clear bra.
    Get your license! it not hard and if you spend a lot of time outdoors you'll be surprised how abundant the repeater coverage is.
    There's some apps that are study guides you can download to your phone or tablet. I looked through one of them every night for about an hour before bed for a week, took the test that weekend. Not too hard. Find a local ham club to find out when and where the tests are, most hams in a club you reach out to are pretty friendly and will guide you through the steps.
     
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  22. Dec 10, 2019 at 7:43 PM
    #52
    TransNone13

    TransNone13 New Member

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    I recommend the Gordon West books and the Hamstudy app. I had all three of the licenses within a month. I read the books front to back, then took practice tests with Hamstudy until I took the exams at the local club's monthly meeting.


    2018-2022 Technician Class https://www.amazon.com/dp/0945053908/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_apa_i_4xg8DbQSH3ZJG

    Hamstudy
    https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=org.hamstudy.mobile

    And here's an example of my semi-mobile HF NVIS work also with a Toyota!

    20181212_144105.jpg
     
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2019
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  23. Dec 10, 2019 at 7:46 PM
    #53
    831Tun

    831Tun crazy Bastrd

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    As mentioned, Gordon West Tech license book. Check ARRL for exams near you
     
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  24. Dec 11, 2019 at 1:35 AM
    #54
    Zero One Actual

    Zero One Actual Member among Members

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    I did the same. I downloaded a study app and would go through each section nightly until I felt comfortable enough to take the test.
     
  25. Dec 11, 2019 at 4:55 AM
    #55
    prerunnerseth

    prerunnerseth New Member

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    I got my first license in 1992. let it lapse. then got my license again a few years ago. used Hamtestonline.com for study. its a paid thing, but its a great technique. I took my tech and general at the same time and a couple weeks later i was bored on a friday afternoon. studied for 6 hours straight on hamtestonline and aced the Extra exam.
     
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  26. Dec 11, 2019 at 5:31 AM
    #56
    NH2BV

    NH2BV New Member

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    While you are waiting for your Gordo books, you can visit the following site: https://www.qrz.com/index.html. Once on that page, under the resources tab, you can select Practice Amateur Radio Exams. Select the 2018 Technicians Exam Practice Tests. That will give you an opportunity to see just how well you do with what you already know. You may surprise yourself. The test questions are a pool of questions that are randomized so you will eventually see the same question if you take the tests multiple times. Knowing that, you can eventually pass the test just by repeatedly taking the practice exams. Also, google local amateur radio clubs and contact them to find out when the next VE session is.
     
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  27. Dec 11, 2019 at 6:28 AM
    #57
    smslavin

    smslavin On a plane...

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    the arrl study guides are really good as well. the qrz practice tests are great. those are what i had used.
     
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  28. Dec 11, 2019 at 7:56 AM
    #58
    abomb60

    abomb60 New Member

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    Sometimes there are also "Ham in a day" classes offered by the local club. You spend the day studying the test questions and have people there to ask questions. At the end you can then take the tests.
     
  29. Dec 11, 2019 at 8:01 AM
    #59
    TransNone13

    TransNone13 New Member

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    Side Note: Are any of you in the Central Coast area in CA? I'm getting some confusing information on local clubs as I just moved here and all their websites seem to not longer be maintained.
     
  30. Dec 11, 2019 at 3:09 PM
    #60
    NH2BV

    NH2BV New Member

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    This seems to be a problem. Even the local club here (93555) has 2 web sites. One not maintained and the other kinda....

    Best 73
    NH2BV
     
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