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Old 12-06-2017, 6:23 PM
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Default Wanting a mobile setup for vehicle

I'm new to some of the amateur radio side of things. I'm trying to find what's best for my setup. I want to add a dual band VHF/UHF setup to my Jeep Grand Cherokee. I currently have CB like the picture below. I want to similarly match the antenna placement and length, if it makes sense to do so. Not that worried about the appearance of the antenna.

I have seen the Icom IC-2730A for sale in the classifieds and think that's more or less what I am looking for. I want a detachable face for placing where I want in my vehicle. I like to keep things as clean as possible in there. Other opinions on radios is greatly appreciated.

What do I want it for? I want to be able to communicate at the small level with people I know or meet on trails or otherwise. I also want to be able to contact anyone in case of an emergency. (Thanks for having the freqs listed on here) I understand that I need to get licensed as well. I'm not worried about that part of it. I'll probably have the testing done in a couple of weeks.

Care to help me out?
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Old 12-07-2017, 7:44 AM
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Icom mobiles work fine and the detachable remote head makes mounting in the Jeep MUCH simpler. HOWEVER.... get your antenna mount up high on the body of the vehicle so that part of your antenna is not obstructed by the metal of the car body. All sorts of undesirable things happen when you mount an antenna next to a huge chunk of metal. Fortunately, a dual-band antenna for VHF / UHF is much shorter than the CB antenna you have now. One option would be to move the antenna mount up to the upper lip of the rear hatch and use a 1/4 wave whip for VHF/UHF. Or mount to the front hood lip. Or use a glass mount. I'd say you could put a permanent mount in the center of the roof, but looks like you have a rack on the roof already, and may have a sunroof... so roof mounting not such a good idea.
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Old 12-07-2017, 8:57 AM
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As mentioned, drilling a hole in the center of the roof and mounting the antenna there is the best method..

They make fender mount antenna brackets. They aren't as good, but should serve your purpose: Mounts/Brackets only | Comet Antenna

On my Wrangler, I use a magnet mount to hold my Larsen dual band. (Note that a lot here cringe at the thought of mag mounts, ) It was supposed to be temporary, but it's performed so well, I decided to leave it like that. It's been there for 10 months now.
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Old 12-07-2017, 3:13 PM
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I appreciate the assistance.

I can definitely do higher on the rear hatch. The hood lip wouldn't be much different than how my CB antenna is placed, the body rolls forward a bit right at that point. That's why I was very comfortable putting that antenna there, even though it's more forgiving. What are the different dual band antennas and length possibilities?
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Old 12-07-2017, 6:18 PM
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A 1/4 wave simple whip is going to be 19 inches long and will work on both 2M and 70cm (146 & 440 mHz) ham bands. HOWEVER, ensure you get a 1/4 wave whip that is meant for amateur radio use. There are many out there (eBay, Amazon, etc.) that are 18" long for use with 150 mHz.... and are a tad too short to work well for the 2M band. Another option is the Comet SBB-1. That's a 16 inch long flexible whip antenna for 2M / 70cm. I use one on my Jeep Liberty and it just flexes whenever I garage the car (low clearance). It works as well as the 1/4 wave whip, but is supposed to provide gain on both bands vs. 1/4 wave which is unity gain. Or.... you could get an SBB-2 which is MUCH longer if height is what you're looking for.
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Old 12-07-2017, 9:12 PM
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Another good option is the Larsen NMO-2/70 or NMO-2/70SH.
Larsen is a big name in the commercial antenna market, and they've been doing it for a long time. They've got a really good reputation. I've been running several different Larsen brand antennas for 30 years.

Stick with the NMO mounts if you can. They are the industry standard for mobile antenna mounts. Once you have an NMO mount, the options you have are wide open. Swapping out antennas, based on your needs, is as easy as unscrewing and putting on a different NMO base antenna.

The Larsen NMO-2/70 are dual band antennas designed for the amateur radio bands. They'll work great with that radio, and likely (if maintained) outlast your vehicle.
The NMO-2/70 is about 35 inches tall https://www.theantennafarm.com/catal...63112853204efe
The NMO-2/70SH is a short model, about 19 inches tall A bit harder to find, but can be a good option since it's less likely to bang around on tree branches, and in some cases, the lower gain (shorter) antenna can work better.

Between the CB and the dual band amateur radio, you should be well covered for your needs.

And, i agree, mounting the antenna on the back of the body like the CB antenna in the photo is less than ideal. Getting the antenna up high and in the clear will improve performance. Top of the vehicle roof, dead center is best.
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Old 12-07-2017, 9:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jwt873 View Post
As mentioned, drilling a hole in the center of the roof and mounting the antenna there is the best method..

They make fender mount antenna brackets. They aren't as good, but should serve your purpose: Mounts/Brackets only | Comet Antenna

On my Wrangler, I use a magnet mount to hold my Larsen dual band. (Note that a lot here cringe at the thought of mag mounts, ) It was supposed to be temporary, but it's performed so well, I decided to leave it like that. It's been there for 10 months now.

Nothing like getting a blast of RF to the brain. Sorry but that is too close for me, especially to the passenger. I mount as far back as possible and if i have passengers, I try to limit RF to 5W on VHF/UHF.
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Old 12-07-2017, 10:45 PM
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You have shot yourself in the foot with the roof rack you have mounted on the roof of your vehicle.

I mounted a 1/4 wave whip on the roof of the wife's Grand Cherokee. Brought the antenna cable down the rear side of the back seat door on the drivers side.

Made a mount for the Motorola XTL O5 head that mounted just in front of the center arm rest that is also a storage compartment. Made it out of a piece of aluminum that I bent to fit the center console and painted it black. Used 2 sheet metal screws on each side to attach it to the console.

Not sure if you know it, but the normal battery is mounted under the passenger front seat. There is like a trap door on the floor that you pop off and get to the battery connections. Under the drivers seat is another pit where the second battery goes if you have a diesel. That is where I mounted the 50 watt Motorola mobile box.
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Old 12-08-2017, 10:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jim202 View Post
You have shot yourself in the foot with the roof rack you have mounted on the roof of your vehicle.

I mounted a 1/4 wave whip on the roof of the wife's Grand Cherokee. Brought the antenna cable down the rear side of the back seat door on the drivers side.

Made a mount for the Motorola XTL O5 head that mounted just in front of the center arm rest that is also a storage compartment. Made it out of a piece of aluminum that I bent to fit the center console and painted it black. Used 2 sheet metal screws on each side to attach it to the console.

Not sure if you know it, but the normal battery is mounted under the passenger front seat. There is like a trap door on the floor that you pop off and get to the battery connections. Under the drivers seat is another pit where the second battery goes if you have a diesel. That is where I mounted the 50 watt Motorola mobile box.
Definitely didn't "shoot myself in the foot"; I use my roof rack a lot. What are you talking about with batteries? My diesel has one battery and it's most definitely in the engine bay, driver's side. I will be adding an aux battery as soon as I figure out where I want it.
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Old 12-09-2017, 6:14 PM
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Welcome to radio lots of info on this site.
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Old 12-10-2017, 8:59 PM
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Welcome to radio lots of info on this site.
I appreciate it. I know that a bracket on the rear of the vehicle is less than ideal, but I also know that VHF is a lot easier than people think. I want it to be usable and functional, but also be as low and out of the way as possible.
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