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Multi - Antenna placement Help on a 2017 F250

KF7LJP

Member
Joined
Apr 18, 2013
Messages
7
Need some help guys/gals and others... I will try and provide enough background info on build and avaliable equipment on- hand for the fix.

Vehicle: 2017 Ford F250 XLT Crewcab. (No Sunroof),
: has a Bullet Proof Diesel Dual NMO Antenna Mount 3rd Brake Light.
: has Headach Rack (Aluminum) that has 2 Beacon lights, and holds a (steel) bracket on lumber post mounts for "Oversize Load" sign.
: Front Left Fender in use for my Diamand Antenna to My Yaesue FT8900. (KF7LJP)
: WeBoost OTR 4G Cell Signal Booster (mounted Left High on Headache Rack).

Radios are in a newly custom built (wood) cabinet that took the place of the center seat.
Power Runs to a Fuse Block mounted Behind Front Passenger Seat where my Feniex 4200 warning lights brain box is.

Radios are :
President Ronald (11 meter) <brand new from Walcott Radio>
President Ronald (11 Meter) <brand new from Walcott Radio>
QYT 980 Plus ( has my 75 programed Commercial channels for Oversize Movement, going to a NMO dual band Antenna <unknown wave/brand>)
Midland MXT400 (going to a Midland MXTA26 6db <5/8 wave> NMO Antenna) GRMS

Antenna avaliable for use.
2 (used) Stryker SR-A10 (both previously tuned to other radios)
2 (New) Tram-Browning NMO BR-140 (1/4 wave, steel Whip)
2 (New) 3ft Firestik on heavy Duty Springs.

I previously had a Uniden 520pro to both a Stryker SR-A10 and Firestick on the right fender. (SWR was between 2.0 & 2-5)
A Uniden 980 SSB to a Stryker SR-A10 on a Tram NMO adapter on the Bullet Proof Diesel NMO right Side mount. (SWR was between 1.5 & 2.1)
The Midland GRMS went to NMO left side mount.

Since mounting the Radios I can not get a SWR below 3 with any ot the Antenna.
After reading a lot of the forum posts (and finding the 2017 Ford Radio Placemnt post really helpful).. Decided to reach out for clarification of info and best placement suggestions.

1) Center of Roof w NMO is the Absolute best location to put a Antenna.
2) 2 Antenna of the same type/wave length SHOULD NOT be on the same plane both horizontal & vertically.
3) Aluminum is a good enough ground but Mag Mounts ARE NOT possible. (Previously had a Acari Roof Mount with 1/2 steel plate bolted to it for a SR-A10 Mag mount (swr 1.0 to 1.2) and the GRMS Mag mount. but Roof Mount was not reinstalled correctly and broke at 45 mph after truck came out of body shop from getting repairs... great but I digest).
4) yes having all these radios is for a reason before asked. I run as a Pilot/Escort usually as the HiPole or Front Car (the industry wants me 3/4 to 1 1/2 miles in front of the loads) and I usually have 1 radio on the Load and 1 radio on 19 or 17 depending on where we are.
5) UHF/VHF is used rarely, (Mostly when running with Candian Drivers) but have found the handheld don't have the range at movement speed. GRMS is pretty standard for use with folks doing Traffic Control on worksites (Plus I do (did a lot ... 12yrs worth) of TCS work with Flaggers on jobs sites).

So what Antenna should go where?
Thanks for the input, Lee
 

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Last edited:

slowmover

Active Member
Joined
Aug 4, 2020
Messages
537
Location
Fort Worth
“Best” performance is always a 108” whip. On the roof of my pickup it’s a near 15-foot clearance.

On the Kenworth I run antennas to the 14’ mark without issue.

A 27” lower-shaft original-configuration PREDATOR would otherwise be my reference (preference). Materials and build quality are second to none. (Cowtown Antennas of Fort Worth).

It might not out-perform a Signal Engineering Golden Rod 45 by much, but it’ll likely last longer (built in replaceable modules).

Something more low key would be the SIRIO 5000 base load comparable (but better) than the A10 Stryker

And the piece of gear I find mandatory to UP performance is a WEST MOUNTAIN RADIO CLEARSPEECH DSP Speaker. (One has a second-rate 11-Meter radio rig until he adds Digital Signal Processing to the audio chain)

While best performance is a great need for big trucks, pilot car is an increase in responsibility. (FWIW, the Ronald would be my 3rd or 4th choice in the PRESIDENT radio line-up. The Lincoln is an awesome piece of gear).

40-140W is a requirement as I see it. That (plus DSP) means maximum range. A fair balance of hearing as far as I can transmit. Distant Early Warning.

An example is that last evening the IH440 bypass in Little Rock was jammed for five miles back from IH40. Just before dusk. Had you and your convoy been hoping to make the Petro or closest truck parking area on 40 coming out of Texas, you wouldn’t have made it.

DSP + 40W means you’d have heard about it more than twenty-miles back as driver’s “usually” drop off reporting more than ten miles past. You’d have heard it ten miles PAST that last report (on just entering the Little Rock Metro Area where it opens up to three lanes).

Granted that we’d have piped up on seeing an Oversized convoy back at Malvern, AR, I believe you see the point.

Knowing ahead of time to divert to IH430 thence to IH40 thru town (if allowed) is the game-changer advantage of some juice + DSP.

Research “best” and know where your choices lay. Overcoming the deficiencies of other men’s typical big truck CB systems to get best info is PART of a proper radio rig.

In the meantime it’s QUIET 12V power and QUIET coax as the priority.

Below is the link to a long series of articles to use as a checklist. A performance standard for SYSTEMS.


Mobile Amateur Radio Install Bible

.
 
Last edited:

KEWB-N1EXA

Acushnet Heights Radio 740
Joined
Jan 1, 2020
Messages
387
Location
Acushnet Heights - New Bedford MA 02740
Here in MASS they still use Low Band So they Ball mount the Whip to the side.
I did this years ago and it worked great on 10-11(CB) Meters.

Pete N1EXA
Here is a pretty cool install for 2 cb antenna's by Right Channel Radios
 

Attachments

KF7LJP

Member
Joined
Apr 18, 2013
Messages
7
Here is a pretty cool install for 2 cb antenna's by Right Channel Radios
I tried that location on the Headache Rack and was never to able to get a real good ground (full alum Protech Rack on alum oem sprayed on bed liner).
Even with a braided ground wire to frame.
 
Last edited:

KF7LJP

Member
Joined
Apr 18, 2013
Messages
7
“Best” performance is always a 108” whip. On the roof of my pickup it’s a near 15-foot clearance.

On the Kenworth I run antennas to the 14’ mark without issue.

A 27” lower-shaft original-configuration PREDATOR would otherwise be my reference (preference). Materials and build quality are second to none. (Cowtown Antennas of Fort Worth).

It might not out-perform a Signal Engineering Golden Rod 45 by much, but it’ll li⁹kely last longer (built in replaceable modules).

Something more low key would be the SIRIO 5000 base load comparable (but better) than the A10 Stryker

And the piece of gear I find mandatory to UP performance is a WEST MOUNTAIN RADIO CLEARSPEECH DSP Speaker. (One has a second-rate 11-Meter radio rig until he adds Digital Signal Processing to the audio chain)

While best performance is a great need for big trucks, pilot car is an increase in responsibility. (FWIW, the Ronald would be my 3rd or 4th choice in the PRESIDENT radio line-up. The Lincoln is an awesome piece of gear).

40-140W is a requirement as I see it. That (plus DSP) means maximum range. A fair balance of hearing as far as I can transmit. Distant Early Warning.

An example is that last evening the IH440 bypass in Little Rock was jammed for five miles back from IH40. Just before dusk. Had you and your convoy been hoping to make the Petro or closest truck parking area on 40 coming out of Texas, you wouldn’t have made it.

DSP + 40W means you’d have heard about it more than twenty-miles back as driver’s “usually” drop off reporting more than ten miles past. You’d have heard it ten miles PAST that last report (on just entering the Little Rock Metro Area where it opens up to three lanes).

Granted that we’d have piped up on seeing an Oversized convoy back at Malvern, AR, I believe you see the point.

Knowing ahead of time to divert to IH430 thence to IH40 thru town (if allowed) is the game-changer advantage of some juice + DSP.

Research “best” and know where your choices lay. Overcoming the deficiencies of other men’s typical big truck CB systems to get best info is PART of a proper radio rig.

In the meantime it’s QUIET 12V power and QUIET coax as the priority.

Below is the link to a long series of articles to use as a checklist. A performance standard for SYSTEMS.


Mobile Amateur Radio Install Bible

.
Appreciate the recommendation. The Ronald won out based on size. And definatly after alot of conversation with others who have it.

As far as antenna the ones listed are the ones on hand and avalible for immediate use.
Ive run Predators and Wilsons in the past and like the A-10s on this Aluminum Truck the best.

I DO have speakers connected but for the purposes of this post they are irrelevant..

My question pertained to the antennas I have and can install now (been looking for whips for last yrs and last 4 i bought and were sent to me were all folded like paper clips crammed into a Poster tube).

I AM TRYING TO FIND OUT WHICH IS THE BEST LOCATION FOR THE 4 ANTENNAS TO GO.

(Also as a Properly Insured and certified Pilot/Escort the Max Height I can have on my Truck when sitting still is 13-6. Unless the High Pole is Up and Lights are on. And the HiPole is the ONLY thing allowed above that Height).
 
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slowmover

Active Member
Joined
Aug 4, 2020
Messages
537
Location
Fort Worth
13’5’ is allowable height for tractor-trailer rigs for those following along. Unless by permit & escort (per this mans services).

I get mine ABOVE trailer even slightly and performance goes up noticeably.

Well, friend, “best” is the conceptual start. 6’ “works” (better than what 97% of truckers realize as to total height), but 7’ is king (can’t go taller). 7’ on my pickup roof is 13’.

Misunderstanding about DSP is no small matter for CB Radio, IMO. Will reveal what one didn’t realize was missing. Thus, is central to analyzing CB performance. (Taller + DSP is similar to a power boost).

Can you place them all on mag mounts?
Move around to check performance?

CB might be the oddball of the bunch. Maybe mount it on bedrail instead. (See BREEDLOVE MOUNTS).

.
 
Last edited:

KF7LJP

Member
Joined
Apr 18, 2013
Messages
7
13’5’ is allowable height for tractor-trailer rigs for those following along. Unless by permit & escort (per this mans services).

I get mine ABOVE trailer even slightly and performance goes up noticeably.

Well, friend, “best” is the conceptual start. 6’ “works” (better than what 97% of truckers realize as to total height), but 7’ is king (can’t go taller). 7’ on my pickup roof is 13’.

Misunderstanding about DSP is no small matter for CB Radio, IMO. Will reveal what one didn’t realize was missing. Thus, is central to analyzing CB performance. (Taller + DSP is similar to a power boost).

Can you place them all on mag mounts?
Move around to check performance?

CB might be the oddball of the bunch. Maybe mount it on bedrail instead. (See BREEDLOVE MOUNTS).

.
After reading some of Mcennras other posted advise, I had thought about using a Mag mount to test locate spots on the roof. Had not realized that Mag mount and permanent mounts were so close I still have my Nmo Mag mount at the house. I need a good Antenna analyzer.

Ya the DSP are a little out of current budget. I use the MFJ-281. And the difference over the unit speaker is 1000% I my opinion.
 

mmckenna

I really ♥ Ø
Joined
Jul 27, 2005
Messages
17,363
Location
Pt. Nemo
OK, I've done a bunch of installs on these Fords. I have a personal 2018 F350 crew cab and my work truck is a 2017 F350 regular cab. I'll answer some of your questions below, and add some more suggestions:


1) Center of Roof w NMO is the Absolute best location to put a Antenna.
Yes, this is about providing a proper ground plane for the antenna. Most antennas are going to want a good ground plane under them. An RF ground plane is different than a DC electrical ground, but they can be the same thing.

Ground planes want to be 1/4 wavelength is all directions under the antenna. That's easy to do on VHF, UHF and higher frequencies, but on CB, you won't achieve it on a road legal vehicle. So, you do the best you can with what you have.

2) 2 Antenna of the same type/wave length SHOULD NOT be on the same plane both horizontal & vertically.
Not necessarily. You do need separation between them, and how much you need depends on a number of variables, like RF transmit power, antennas, etc. For CB use, you are only running 4 watts, so you don't need a huge amount of spacing between the antennas.

3) Aluminum is a good enough ground but Mag Mounts ARE NOT possible. (Previously had a Acari Roof Mount with 1/2 steel plate bolted to it for a SR-A10 Mag mount (swr 1.0 to 1.2) and the GRMS Mag mount. but Roof Mount was not reinstalled correctly and broke at 45 mph after truck came out of body shop from getting repairs... great but I digest).
Aluminum is a better conductor than steel, so the aluminum body on these trucks isn't an issue. Yeah, doesn't work for magnetic mounts, but my belief is that any professional user shouldn't be relying on a magnetic mount antenna for any radio where safety relies on it. Mag mounts are perfectly fine for hobby, CB, scanner and ham radio use, but you won't see them used in any public safety/professional application. There's a lot of good reasons for that, but it's outside the scope of what you are asking, so I won't go there.

4) yes having all these radios is for a reason before asked. I run as a Pilot/Escort usually as the HiPole or Front Car (the industry wants me 3/4 to 1 1/2 miles in front of the loads) and I usually have 1 radio on the Load and 1 radio on 19 or 17 depending on where we are.
OK, and since there is some level of safety involved, you should have good gear with properly installed antennas. Makes complete sense to me, and I'd want that if I was driving along the same roads as you...

5) UHF/VHF is used rarely, (Mostly when running with Candian Drivers) but have found the handheld don't have the range at movement speed. GRMS is pretty standard for use with folks doing Traffic Control on worksites (Plus I do (did a lot ... 12yrs worth) of TCS work with Flaggers on jobs sites).
OK, so one of the questions you need to answer is "which radios are more important to you?" The installation of the antennas should be based off that.

I'm going to go out on a limb and say that you probably rely on the CB's #1 and maybe the VHF/UHF commercial radio #2. Ham is a fun toy to pass the time. Cellular is easy to tackle as it requires a smaller ground plane and is more forgiving...

Also, the headache racks might provide a good DC ground, but they'll never provide a good RF ground plane. I run a Magnum headache rack on my personal F350 and I don't mount antennas on it. It'll never work correctly. You'll see a lot of people using them as antenna mounts, but that is simply because it's an easy install, not because it works.
And same for those mounts that go on the center high mount brake light. They are easy to install, but put the antenna all the way at the back edge of the ground plane. Not a good solution….

So, here's what I've done on pervious trucks, you decide if this is going to work for you….

CB, since that is likely your primary radio, should go dead center on the cab roof. Do a proper NMO permanent install. It'll take more time, but it'll work better in the long run. Use something like a Larsen NMO-27 or a Laird C27 antenna. With a good commercial grade antenna and a proper ground plane, you'll have no issues tuning it for very low SWR.
Since it looks like you need 2 CB antennas, keep about 3 feet of separation between the antennas, but mount them down the center line of the cab roof. Keep them away from the front/rear edge of the cab to retain some ground plane.
—Other option is the 102" whip off a ball mount on the side of the bed, or off the bed rail. Less than ideal as it will have a lopsided ground plane and make it slightly directional. For what you are doing, it may work just fine, so keep that as an option, the NMO install on the roof will probably work and look better.

The VHF/UHF commercial radio. That needs 1/4 wavelength at the lowest frequency. On the bottom of the VHF commercial band, that's about 18". On UHF, it's about 6". So do a permanent NMO mount at the rear of the cab, 18" in from the side and back edge of the roof. That should also give you plenty of spacing from the CB antennas. I'd recommend an antenna like the Larsen NMO-150/450/800. Yeah, it's a tri band antenna, but it works well on VHF and UHF, and better than the ham/hobby stuff on commercial frequencies.

For the VHF/UHF ham radio, an NMO mount on the opposite corner of the VHF/UHF commercial antenna should give you enough separation, and still give you a good ground plane. I'd recommend the Larsen NMO-2/70sh. That's a good solid antenna and I used one for years.

For your cellular booster, you don't need much of a ground plane. 3-4" will be more than enough at 700MHz LTE frequencies. Again, an NMO mount on the roof will outperform just about anything else, even those ungodly antennas that Wilson sells at the truck stops. Something like this mounted on the roof ground plane will work well. Just keep it inboard of the roof edges as if it can "see" the internal antenna, they amplifier can self oscillate and shut itself down.


Your radios are only as good as the antennas. Your antennas are only as good as the installation. Antennas should not be an afterthought.

Avoid the hobby/ham/consumer grade products for what you are doing. They may look good, they may be cheaper and they may make some amazing claims about performance, but if you keep your eyes open on the road and see what the highway patrol, EMS and Fire agencies are using, you'll see pattern. That pattern is: Install suitable antennas properly and you'll have a working system when lives depend on it.
Steer clear of ham grade antennas.
Steer clear of the Chinese stuff (Tram/Browning/Diamond/MFJ, any name you cannot pronounce)

If you install these antennas properly, you'll have an easier time tuning them. A lot of the issues with high SWR is due to insufficient or lack of a ground plane. An easy fix, but takes a bit of labor.

You want your antennas up high and in the clear. Mounting antennas down on the front fender is going to result in some level of shielding/shadowing from the cab. It'll also make them slightly directional. In some cases, it also puts the antenna/coax close to RF noisy stuff under the hood. Getting the antennas up high and in the clear lets them "see" more than down low.

I have 30+ year old Larsen antennas that have outlasted the vehicles they were originally installed on. Early on I went through the ham/hobby grade antennas, and every single one of them ended up in the trash, or given to someone else. I pretty much run Larsen and EM Wave antennas on all my own vehicles and all the stuff at work (about 100 vehicles). I've never had one fail.
 

slowmover

Active Member
Joined
Aug 4, 2020
Messages
537
Location
Fort Worth
After reading some of Mcennras other posted advise, I had thought about using a Mag mount to test locate spots on the roof. Had not realized that Mag mount and permanent mounts were so close I still have my Nmo Mag mount at the house. I need a good Antenna analyzer.

Ya the DSP are a little out of current budget. I use the MFJ-281. And the difference over the unit speaker is 1000% I my opinion.

DSP will reveal vocal details that’ll tell you just how the other person intended their words to be heard. Until it’s possible to have such, it’s not noticed. Once you have it — understanding the change — there’s no going back.

There’s stress and there’s stress behind the wheel. Your client driver may have a very pleasing radio rig (makes up for the deficiencies of yours), but picking out the Amazon Prime driver losing his #%^ doesn’t have a price when you’ve got 3-4 guys hollering about his behavior and you need to sort what road, what direction, and at what mark.

.
 
Last edited:

KF7LJP

Member
Joined
Apr 18, 2013
Messages
7
OK, I've done a bunch of installs on these Fords. I have a personal 2018 F350 crew cab and my work truck is a 2017 F350 regular cab. I'll answer some of your questions below, and add some more suggestions:




Yes, this is about providing a proper ground plane for the antenna. Most antennas are going to want a good ground plane under them. An RF ground plane is different than a DC electrical ground, but they can be the same thing.

Ground planes want to be 1/4 wavelength is all directions under the antenna. That's easy to do on VHF, UHF and higher frequencies, but on CB, you won't achieve it on a road legal vehicle. So, you do the best you can with what you have.



Not necessarily. You do need separation between them, and how much you need depends on a number of variables, like RF transmit power, antennas, etc. For CB use, you are only running 4 watts, so you don't need a huge amount of spacing between the antennas.



Aluminum is a better conductor than steel, so the aluminum body on these trucks isn't an issue. Yeah, doesn't work for magnetic mounts, but my belief is that any professional user shouldn't be relying on a magnetic mount antenna for any radio where safety relies on it. Mag mounts are perfectly fine for hobby, CB, scanner and ham radio use, but you won't see them used in any public safety/professional application. There's a lot of good reasons for that, but it's outside the scope of what you are asking, so I won't go there.



OK, and since there is some level of safety involved, you should have good gear with properly installed antennas. Makes complete sense to me, and I'd want that if I was driving along the same roads as you...



OK, so one of the questions you need to answer is "which radios are more important to you?" The installation of the antennas should be based off that.

I'm going to go out on a limb and say that you probably rely on the CB's #1 and maybe the VHF/UHF commercial radio #2. Ham is a fun toy to pass the time. Cellular is easy to tackle as it requires a smaller ground plane and is more forgiving...

Also, the headache racks might provide a good DC ground, but they'll never provide a good RF ground plane. I run a Magnum headache rack on my personal F350 and I don't mount antennas on it. It'll never work correctly. You'll see a lot of people using them as antenna mounts, but that is simply because it's an easy install, not because it works.
And same for those mounts that go on the center high mount brake light. They are easy to install, but put the antenna all the way at the back edge of the ground plane. Not a good solution….

So, here's what I've done on pervious trucks, you decide if this is going to work for you….
P
CB, since that is likely your primary radio, should go dead center on the cab roof. Do a proper NMO permanent install. It'll take more time, but it'll work better in the long run. Use something like a Larsen NMO-27 or a Laird C27 antenna. With a good commercial grade antenna and a proper ground plane, you'll have no issues tuning it for very low SWR.
Since it looks like you need 2 CB antennas, keep about 3 feet of separation between the antennas, but mount them down the center line of the cab roof. Keep them away from the front/rear edge of the cab to retain some ground plane.
—Other option is the 102" whip off a ball mount on the side of the bed, or off the bed rail. Less than ideal as it will have a lopsided ground plane and make it slightly directional. For what you are doing, it may work just fine, so keep that as an option, the NMO install on the roof will probably work and look better.

The VHF/UHF commercial radio. That needs 1/4 wavelength at the lowest frequency. On the bottom of the VHF commercial band, that's about 18". On UHF, it's about 6". So do a permanent NMO mount at the rear of the cab, 18" in from the side and back edge of the roof. That should also give you plenty of spacing from the CB antennas. I'd recommend an antenna like the Larsen NMO-150/450/800. Yeah, it's a tri band antenna, but it works well on VHF and UHF, and better than the ham/hobby stuff on commercial frequencies.

For the VHF/UHF ham radio, an NMO mount on the opposite corner of the VHF/UHF commercial antenna should give you enough separation, and still give you a good ground plane. I'd recommend the Larsen NMO-2/70sh. That's a good solid antenna and I used one for years.

For your cellular booster, you don't need much of a ground plane. 3-4" will be more than enough at 700MHz LTE frequencies. Again, an NMO mount on the roof will outperform just about anything else, even those ungodly antennas that Wilson sells at the truck stops. Something like this mounted on the roof ground plane will work well. Just keep it inboard of the roof edges as if it can "see" the internal antenna, they amplifier can self oscillate and shut itself down.


Your radios are only as good as the antennas. Your antennas are only as good as the installation. Antennas should not be an afterthought.

Avoid the hobby/ham/consumer grade products for what you are doing. They may look good, they may be cheaper and they may make some amazing claims about performance, but if you keep your eyes open on the road and see what the highway patrol, EMS and Fire agencies are using, you'll see pattern. That pattern is: Install suitable antennas properly and you'll have a working system when lives depend on it.
Steer clear of ham grade antennas.
Steer clear of the Chinese stuff (Tram/Browning/Diamond/MFJ, any name you cannot pronounce)

If you install these antennas properly, you'll have an easier time tuning them. A lot of the issues with high SWR is due to insufficient or lack of a ground plane. An easy fix, but takes a bit of labor.

You want your antennas up high and in the clear. Mounting antennas down on the front fender is going to result in some level of shielding/shadowing from the cab. It'll also make them slightly directional. In some cases, it also puts the antenna/coax close to RF noisy stuff under the hood. Getting the antennas up high and in the clear lets them "see" more than down low.

I have 30+ year old Larsen antennas that have outlasted the vehicles they were originally installed on. Early on I went through the ham/hobby grade antennas, and every single one of them ended up in the trash, or given to someone else. I pretty much run Larsen and EM Wave antennas on all my own vehicles and all the stuff at work (about 100 vehicles). I've never had one fail.
1st) sorry for auto correct slaughtering your name in my response to Slowmover earlier.. lol.
2nd) Thank You Thank You Thank You, for responding directly to the question asked and providing clarification to my 'understanding points'.

Ok...
1) so mount the PRIMARY CB center of cab permanent mount NMO. Will need to consider more where to put the second one. May mean putting one over front seats and one over rear seats. And they are a little over 4 being Pres. Ronalds...

2) the Midland MXT400/MXTA26 6DB Radio/Antenna combination (GRMS) and QST 980pro/NMO Antenna (came with freq preloaded radio pkg) for the amount of use planned for them SHOULD they BE OK as they are on the Bullet Proof Diesel 3rd Brake Light NMO mount? they really are used rarely. (Will definitely not be getting the mount for the Next Truck).

3) definitely surprised to hear this about the Tram/Browning and Diamond Antenna but as that the recommendations came from the Hamm Radio store guys not surprised to hear it. (The guys literally lost all future business after my last trip there with the attitudes about CB's).

Before going Pilot/Escort I always just had a Uniden 520pro with a firestick, and my 8900 Hamm with the quad band Diamond on the fenders. And only ever used them on a recreational basis.

Permanent Mounting antennas was never considered. Learning this Antenna issue has been expensive. (Man I think I NEED a garage sell...get things off the shelf at home).
So glad the next Truck is not going to be a piece meal add to it everytime I make it home project.


Again THANK YOU for Providing Clear answers to the question asked.
 

KF7LJP

Member
Joined
Apr 18, 2013
Messages
7
DSP will reveal vocal details that’ll tell you just how the other person intended their words to be heard. Until it’s possible to have such, it’s not noticed. Once you have it — understanding the change — there’s no going back.

There’s stress and there’s stress behind the wheel. Your client driver may have a very pleasing radio rig (makes up for the deficiencies of yours), but picking out the Amazon Prime driver losing his #%^ doesn’t have a price when you’ve got 3-4 guys hollering about his behavior and you need to sort what road, what direction, and at what mark.

.
Will have too add one or two as the extra budget allows, Thank You for the recommendation.
 

mmckenna

I really ♥ Ø
Joined
Jul 27, 2005
Messages
17,363
Location
Pt. Nemo
1) so mount the PRIMARY CB center of cab permanent mount NMO. Will need to consider more where to put the second one. May mean putting one over front seats and one over rear seats. And they are a little over 4 being Pres. Ronalds...
I've had places where I've installed one towards the back edge of the cab and it'll tune well, but it'll be slightly directional towards the front of the vehicle. Might be fine if you take that into consideration. You'll get better performance the closer you can mount to the center of the roof.

2) the Midland MXT400/MXTA26 6DB Radio/Antenna combination (GRMS) and QST 980pro/NMO Antenna (came with freq preloaded radio pkg) for the amount of use planned for them SHOULD they BE OK as they are on the Bullet Proof Diesel 3rd Brake Light NMO mount? they really are used rarely. (Will definitely not be getting the mount for the Next Truck).
That mount doesn't supply a sufficient ground plane for it to work to it's full performance. On UHF frequencies, you want at least 6" of ground plane in all directions directly under the antenna base. These mounts don't supply that. Even with a "No Ground Plane" antenna, it's making it directional towards the front, and probably making it difficult to get a low SWR.

Those are nice looking mounts, but they are a compromise from a performance standpoint. They were designed for the off road crowd that wanted the antenna, but didn't want to do a proper installation. Might work just fine for what you are doing, but you are not getting the most out of the setup. If you only need short range, then you could stick with it and be fine. But, you'll get better performance with a proper mount.

3) definitely surprised to hear this about the Tram/Browning and Diamond Antenna but as that the recommendations came from the Hamm Radio store guys not surprised to hear it. (The guys literally lost all future business after my last trip there with the attitudes about CB's).
Cheap antennas mean higher profit margins for them. They are not a professional grade antenna. They are usually Chinese knock off's of the pro grade stuff. You can usually find the name brand antennas (Larsen, Laird, EMWave) for close to the same price, and you'll end up with a better/longer lasting product.


Permanent Mounting antennas was never considered. Learning this Antenna issue has been expensive. (Man I think I NEED a garage sell...get things off the shelf at home).
So glad the next Truck is not going to be a piece meal add to it everytime I make it home project.
It really does make a difference on the performance, and why you'll see public safety vehicles set up that way. Once you do the permanent installation with name brand quality parts, you'll realize what you've been missing. Not only will it work better, but it'll look 1000 times better.

Again THANK YOU for Providing Clear answers to the question asked.
Really happy to help with this stuff. Let me know if you need anything else.
 

KF7LJP

Member
Joined
Apr 18, 2013
Messages
7
Here is a Update on the Radios and Antennas mounted to the roof with NMO mounts.
After running for a week and a half decided I did not like them faced below the desk.
Ran out of Daylight today so will do SWR tests tomorrow. Went with the Larsen with Springs.
Put the Commercial Band Radio and the GRMS back on the 3rd brake light for now. (Still waiting on new NMO mounts to mount them to the roof).
Will update with all the SWRs readings soon.
Again Thank You again to those who share the Advice.
Lee
 

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