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Coming Soon: New Honda Odyssey

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N9JIG

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I just put a deposit down on a 2012 Honda Odyssey Touring Edition that should be here in a couple weeks. The main reason I chose this over others is (besides that I am a 5 time Honda buyer now...) that the center console between the driver and passenger Captain's seats pops out, leaving a walk-thru space.

I have a friend from work who is a master cabinet maker and makes custom command center cabinets for our Ford Expedition Watch Commander's and ET vehicles. I am thinking of having him make a custom laminated wood console for me, colored to match the interior, with mounting rails for the Troy Command Console faceplates. (Consoles - Products).


The power will be 3 wires, 2 hots (battery and switched) and ground, using the larger PowerPole connectors. I am planning on using an antenna patch panel at the bottom rear, indented into the console frame so that the antenna cables will come out of the loom out of sight.


Current plans are for 6 radios, probably 3 996XT's, 2 CDM1250's and a dual band ham rig, either my existing D700 or DR635 or perhaps some other unit.

I will likely have 4 or 5 NMO mounts on the roof. One would be forward of the moon roof, centered for the scanners (going to a Stridsberg multicoupler). Three mounts in the rear will be for the dualbander and CDM's and possibly a fourth in the rear part of the roof for the GPS. This will help keep the scanner antenna far away from the transmitters.

I haven't decided yet what to do with the GPS. I am currently using an old Garmin GPS-III connected to three scanners and the D700 and it works well. If I find a spot to hide it that allows a decent place for the little matchbox antenna I might reuse that, otherwise I will consider some other solution. I need to split the data to 4 radios, which is no problem for the Garmin, but it is old and could pass out and die any time.

Since I have converted to PowerPoles for all my stuff at home I will likely do the same in this install. I am looking at a way to have the fuse panel easily accessible, I might have the rear panel hinged or removable and mount it behind that panel.

As for speakers, I will need 4 or 5. The CDM's have top firing speakers, so I will only need them for the scanners and dual bander. I am thinking of having the cabinet maker incorporate my existing Motorola 3x3 speakers into the case on the front, I think there will be room for 3 on the front, so I will put one on each side for the dual bander.

I think I can get 18 to 22 inches of faceplate space, depending on how far back I want to go. (Each radio takes 3 inches.) I have to watch the forward clearance since the cupholders and coolbox open from the dashboard to the rear, and anything past 15 inches on the console back from the front is not really going to be easily visible while driving. This puts the CDM's at the rear, the dual bander forward of these and the scanners at the far front. If I go 22 inches I can put in a dual cup holder panel on the far back for the back seat passenger.

I have 2 weeks before delivery and can't get too far with the work until I have an opportunity to spend some quality time in the vehicle to scope out the job. I do believe however that the seats are such that I can use a tall enough radio console not to need to use control heads, and still have space inside the console for the multicoupler etc. On my current Pilot (Pilot Radio) I have the radios in the rear cargo area connected to control heads.
 

W9WSS

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How 'bout some quick before/after pics, Rich? A refresher on the current install, and possibly some shots of the new vehicle prior / post install. I can't wait to see the finished product! Hard to believe it's been three years since you got the present Honda Pilot! I remember viewing it at Banaby's parking lot right after the install!
 

WatnNY

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This sounds like it's going to be a big project and going to be excellent when it's done. I hope you keep us up to date with photos of the install and the completed project!

Mike
 

N9JIG

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Yes, I will be taking copious notes and photos along the way! The description in my original post are my current thoughts, but since I won't have the vehicle for a couple weeks yet and have had only a limited time to check it out things can certainly change! My cabinet maker wants to get inside the van before he cuts wood of course.

I considered using a regular Troy box on a custom mount but I don't know if the black coloring is going to work on a grey interior. I think the wide unit would fit there without too much difficulty, so maybe...

I am always open for suggestions!
 

GSPD

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Do you have any pictures of your Honda Pilot install? What year is the Pilot?
 

GSPD

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Thanks for the link Rich! I currently own a '04 Pilot that will be replaced shortly with possibly a new Pilot. The new ones currently have a slider cover instead of the flip top lid for the console. I've been looking for ideas for radio mounting since sitting in one awhile ago.

One last question....was the power lead run from the battery under the vehicle to the rear or through the firewall and at what point?
 

N9JIG

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One last question....was the power lead run from the battery under the vehicle to the rear or through the firewall and at what point?
Sorry I must have missed this question...

The 2 power leads (Battery and accessory) come thru the firewall and then to the rear thru the cable tray. I don't know where on the firewall they came thru, they were put in by the installer. (He did the power leads to the rear and the antennas)
 

N9JIG

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OK, the new Odyssey is in!

For grins and giggles I grabbed a couple RH96's and the head for my Kenwood dual bander and left them in the van the last couple days as the virgin vehicle (as in no radios...) was driven around. I placed them here and there just to see how they would line up visually and found that my original plan of a center console would not be practical. The sight lines just aren't there.

I did come up with a solution however, but it restricts the radios installed. I think I will stick to 2 BCD-996XT's and my Alinco DR-635 dual bander. There is a slide-out drink and snack tray above the cool box (yes, it has a built-in cooler!) and below the stereo/Nav/HVAC controls. Pulled out, I can drop in two RH-96's flat or with a couple little metal mending bars they can be propped up to angle better for viewing. The remote head for the DR-635 is mounted to the bottom of the lower RH-96 with a couple short little screws.

The 3 radios will go behind the passenger seat on the floor. I would put them under the driver's seat but the motors for the power seat get in the way. The driver's seat goes up and down, the passenger only back and forth, so there is more room there. In addition there is a fuse box just forward of the front passenger door that keeps my power lead down to under 2 meters. There are half a dozen unused fuse locations there, some connected to power all the time and others on the ignition. This allows me to run a switched power lead for the dualbander and one for the scanners and a third unswitched lead for the GPS (stays on all the time).

I have the radio heads mounted, control cables run and sheathed, and the power leads in the fuse panel so far but the rain started so I had to put a halt to the work for now.

Over the next few days I will run the power leads and pop on a couple mag-mount antennas. I am thinking I will have 3 NMO's installed, one for each scanner and the third for the dually. The GPS antenna can be velcroed to the door pillar out of the way, it worked great there on my last Odyssey.

I hate the erector set approach to the radio mounts, so I will keep my eye out for a nicer looking bracket. I might also sheath the mending plates with shrink wrap to match the black plastic on the RH-96's and the tray if no other solution presents itself.

I also need to find a nice, out of the way place for some speakers, perhaps under the front side of the passenger seat will work.

Photos soon!
 

N9JIG

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I might forgo the CDM's this time around. The DR-635 receives very well on both VHF and UHF, including T-Band and I can keep an HT handy if needed on a work channel.
 

N9JIG

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Got the van and temporarily installed a couple 996XT's and the Alinco DR-635 with mag mounts. I am still waiting on my installer to drill the antennas and the cabinet maker to size up the console unit.
 
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