CB Antenna Mounts

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Mike_H

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Oct 3, 2019
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Grand Rapids, MI
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The PO of my rig installed an antenna on the driver's mirror somewhere along the line. Pretty good location, IMHO. It's nearly invisible while driving, and it's location should be able to pull in a good signal.

I'll take a better picture this weekend for you.

IMG_20190924_180414674.jpg
 

Matt Colie

Active member
Oct 25, 2019
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I had mounted a full 1/4 on the rear bumper bracket and it loaded up real well.
Mounting to the mirrors may have an issue with SWR as the SMC body will provide no counterpoise there. If you want to try this, check the SWR before you make it permanent.
 

Mike_H

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Oct 3, 2019
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Grand Rapids, MI
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Mr. Colie makes a good point about the Ground plane. I didn't install mine and haven't done any testing to see if it is a good spot. The mirrors are mounted on the Aluminum skin vs the SMC, no? I see in my picture that the mirror is just behind the body line of the front clip.
 

Matt Colie

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Oct 25, 2019
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Mike_H,
In the standard TZE, the mirrors are on the SMC with a small plate behind. Ask anybody that has hit a mirror on anything.
That whole panel is SMC. The nearest aluminum is the lower panels below the belt line and the parallel section of the roof.
Matt Colie
 

johnny

New member
Oct 28, 2019
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Matt's cure will radiate the best since it's a true quarter wave. I'd like to walk around it with a field meter and see what sort of pattern it produces with all the aluminum in sides and roof. I use an 18" center loaded whip set in the aluminum roof a ways back to get non-directionality (this will to a degree enlongate along the axis of the coach). If you go this route you can run the coax down the windshield center or over to the driver's side and follow the light wires down. If you do, be sure to get an antenna with a spring base so you can go baqck in the shed if it's as low as mine. Mat, a fun exercise with the 109" whip: get a good direction Wattmeter (Bird 43 is Your Friend). Load the set properly for best match, record forward and reflected. Now, get two tees and two EXACT length pieces of coax, tee them parallel,and hook it back up. Read the Wattmeter each way (the tuning will be different) and report back. Old CB trick from back when the FCC used to pay attention.

--johnny 24Q1819
 

JSanford

Member
Oct 4, 2019
104
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Sacramento, CA
Firestick http://firestik.com/index.htm makes a “no ground plane” antenna series specifically for RVs. I like the look of the antenna on the mirrors just curious to see the different ways people do it, specifically the Curtis mount. I have tried searching the gmcmhphotos.com site but had no luck.
 

RF_Burns

Member
Oct 3, 2019
60
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Ontario Canada
Even though I was in the mobile communications business for 40 years and had access to all the equipment... for a CB I didn't care about maximum range. I just want to hear about traffic ahead, so 2-3 miles is fine with me.

I put a glass mount CB antenna on the top rear of the driver's side window. Works for my purpose and you can hardly see its there.



JWID
 

Mike Perez

Administrator
Staff member
Oct 2, 2019
447
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I have a few questions related to this topic.

I've never used a CB Radio before. Do you find them really useful or does it end up being a ton of background noise?

I have a very long antenna in the middle of the roof near the front. It is for the AM/FM. Has anyone tried to use a multiplexor unit to use the original AM/FM antenna to also be used with the CB?
 

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Mike_H

Member
Oct 3, 2019
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Grand Rapids, MI
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I have CB radio in my jeep for group rides and whatnot. I have found that its nice to monitor while on the highway. The trucker chatter can be informative. You can find out about accidents and other stoppages, speed traps, etc. It can also get old...Lot lizard chatter and whatnot.
 

Mike Perez

Administrator
Staff member
Oct 2, 2019
447
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I have CB radio in my jeep for group rides and whatnot. I have found that its nice to monitor while on the highway. The trucker chatter can be informative. You can find out about accidents and other stoppages, speed traps, etc. It can also get old...Lot lizard chatter and whatnot.
As cellular data continues to be more and more prevalent, I'm wondering if there is any need. Waze and Google Maps gives good info. Also, some build in Navigation receivers give accident and traffic warnings. I'll have to think about this.
 

JSanford

Member
Oct 4, 2019
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Sacramento, CA
The antenna on the roof is for the car radio and is not the right kind of antenna to work with CB. There are combo am/fm with CB antennas, but I don’t know that they are very good.

I actually don’t care too much about the usefulness of CB in 2019, I am just trying to get everything as close to 1977 as possible and CB was HUGE back then.
 

Matt Colie

Active member
Oct 25, 2019
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Over years of low intensity radio work, I have run into several versions of shared antenna for AM/FM/CB. I have never seen any that were what I would allow as successful. Far the worst was a cheap little "match box" (type not size) thing that was supposed to make any car radio antenna work as a CB antenna. Well, maybe for receiving, but the match was so bad that the transmitter refused to work.
 

JSanford

Member
Oct 4, 2019
104
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Sacramento, CA
I think I am going to go with the 3' Firestik II with stainless steel mirror mount. Now I just need to decide between white or black.
FG3648-B_LR.jpg
 
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tmsnyder

Active member
Oct 7, 2019
262
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28
Buffalo NY
As cellular data continues to be more and more prevalent, I'm wondering if there is any need. Waze and Google Maps gives good info. Also, some build in Navigation receivers give accident and traffic warnings. I'll have to think about this.

This is from last November, Mike, but I just read it. It's true about Waze giving info on upcoming hazards. But we found on our trip from NY to Yellowstone, down to Vegas and back two years ago that there is no cellphone service across vast swaths of the country in between cities. And we were on major roads like I90 with (supposedly) a good network, Verizon. Just something to consider if you're going to rely on cell data.

I left my dedicated circa 2010 GPS at home and really missed it a few times on the trip. All its data is internal. Not so with the cell phone, it downloads data as needed so when we pulled off the highway for fuel or something, it tried to recalculate and didn't have a connection, and was totally useless. Just what you want in the middle of nowhere.

I pulled the factory CB antenna off our GMC. When it comes to the exterior of the rv, less is more imo.
 

Matt Colie

Active member
Oct 25, 2019
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When we are not in "Travel for maximum effect" mode, we avoid the "Blue Roads" and as such are often out of cell coverage even with the repeater and good outside antenna. Even when on interstates, we have had cases where cell coverage was not effective, but those have been rare.

We do always travel with a stand-alone GPS loaded with the days plan. But plans can get changed but so many things.

We carried a CB for a long time and as noted above it was with a 109" on the rear bumper. It did a lot for us but with decreasing value as years went by. So, when the coax got crushed (I do not recall how), I just took it out and have not ordered new RG8special to reinstall it.

It has been my experience that the "no ground plane" antennas may produce a survivable SWR, they do not radiate very well. So, if you are there to be listening, it may serve you well.

Matt
 

Christo

Administrator
Staff member
Oct 4, 2019
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Weymouth, MA
This is from last November, Mike, but I just read it. It's true about Waze giving info on upcoming hazards. But we found on our trip from NY to Yellowstone, down to Vegas and back two years ago that there is no cellphone service across vast swaths of the country in between cities. And we were on major roads like I90 with (supposedly) a good network, Verizon. Just something to consider if you're going to rely on cell data.

I left my dedicated circa 2010 GPS at home and really missed it a few times on the trip. All its data is internal. Not so with the cell phone, it downloads data as needed so when we pulled off the highway for fuel or something, it tried to recalculate and didn't have a connection, and was totally useless. Just what you want in the middle of nowhere.

I pulled the factory CB antenna off our GMC. When it comes to the exterior of the rv, less is more imo.
FYI Google Maps, and no doubt others, allow you to preload your choice of "offline maps" so that cellular service is not needed.
 

Matt Colie

Active member
Oct 25, 2019
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Yes, Google maps does allow that, but unless you have a better than average open memory, you can get hung up and it is easy to not have enough map downloaded to cover the area of a day's travel. (Do I need to add BTDT??) I really miss Street Atlas and a GPS puck.
Matt
 

Agoogol

Member
Mar 3, 2020
67
10
8
Centennial CO
Speaking of antennas....I have the original OEM. Can't tell how well it works cuz radio is shot. Is it good enough for use it has antenna technology improved enough it is worth replacing?

I like having the radio when traveling, talk radio and tuning in to local stations etc. Don't listen to it much but I like the option. While I have headliner out and soon the front cap I have to think about this, maybe putting speakers in, front and rear, etc.

Oh yeah have to buy a stereo too. $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$