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FATKAT
11-04-2015, 07:42 AM
Yep, that’s right another new guy……. North West AtlantaMetro Area……..
I bought a Midland 75-822 hand held unit for a road trip I just got back from. Bought a mag-mount K30 antenna to go with it and had a shop check and set the SWR just to be sure. Had to dig for the old SWR meter ofmine, it’s been a while…. Unit worked well for what I wanted it to do and the weather bands were a plus.

I had a CB years ago in the late 70’s and it was a good one for the time until someone else decided they wanted it and broke into the car and stole it. I know it was someone I knew but I could not prove it so…

This road trip got me thinking maybe I would get my feet wet again and I have bought a 29LTD Classic. It is supposed to be “Peaked and Tuned”whatever that really means. I think he turned a pot of some kind on the back left corner of the board and it appeared he may have cut a wire or something over on the right side just short of the center of the board.

I do find it discouraging that I can’t seem to find any channel where there is any chit chat from locals in my area and finding a shop where someone will talk to a noob is impossible. It would seem they want me to purchase a 10 meter radio tuned to CB frequencies and I don’t really mind that, but what for? If no one is talking then it doesn’t seem it would be worth the trouble.

And now I am here after lurking a bit and looking for any and all information I can find on today’s radios. I will be checking for information and what people are saying about different radios and antennas and ideas for mounting both in my little work truck (03 Ranger). I drive 106 mile round trip for work mostly I-75 and listen mostly to the trash talk from truckers going up and down the road.

Well, for now I guess that’s it. Until next time…

FATKAT

clubguy
11-04-2015, 09:06 AM
Why is your entire post blacked out?

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FATKAT
11-04-2015, 09:58 AM
Blacked Out?

clubguy
11-04-2015, 10:01 AM
Your text in your first post is black in a black background....hard to read on Tapatalk on my phone.

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222DBFL
11-04-2015, 10:44 AM
SSB or single side band is where there seems to be more action on these days vs AM. The am crowd usually are guys with large antennas or big amps or a combo of both. On SSB 12 watts and a good antenna setup you can talk a long way. Not dissing AM one bit, there are still a lot of AM'ers out there. But not near as many as 10-15 years ago and certainly not from the 70's. Maybe get yourself a uniden 980 CB/SSB radio and tune to channels 36-40 LSB. Use the clarifier to adjust people in. Most of of the time if you sit long enough you will find someone that is on freq, tune to him and leave it. Those radios are locked on the transmit side and are normally dead on frequency out of the box. Not a big power house radio, but best bang for the buck for a new radio that doesn't need much to make contacts other than a good antenna setup and some decent conditions. You might get lucky and make some dx contacts on AM with the radio you have now, but sounds like you got a truck stop golden screwdriver special. He most likely clipped the AMC which controls the modulation. This can cause distortion and depending on what else he turned, the radio could be transmitting onto other freqs as well. This is not good. If possible and you can see the clipped wire, resolder it back together. You may lose a bit of power on a watt meter but at least you won't be over modulating. JMHO. As far as radios go and what you want to accomplish, there are several variables. Get the radio back to stock, JMO, and get the best antenna setup you can afford. Again, JMHO. Good day.

FATKAT
11-04-2015, 11:49 AM
Your text in your first post is black in a black background....hard to read on Tapatalk on my phone.

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I don't know why that is. All responses show in a grey field on my computer. I did not pick a background color or a text color. Not sure at all. Maybe the admin will know an answer.

clubguy
11-04-2015, 12:05 PM
This text looks good.

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SiCk_DiAbLo
11-04-2015, 12:06 PM
White & gray on my end...But welcome FATKAT..

FATKAT
11-04-2015, 01:35 PM
SSB or single side band is where there seems to be more action on these days vs AM. The am crowd usually are guys with large antennas or big amps or a combo of both. On SSB 12 watts and a good antenna setup you can talk a long way. Not dissing AM one bit, there are still a lot of AM'ers out there. But not near as many as 10-15 years ago and certainly not from the 70's. Maybe get yourself a uniden 980 CB/SSB radio and tune to channels 36-40 LSB. Use the clarifier to adjust people in. Most of of the time if you sit long enough you will find someone that is on freq, tune to him and leave it. Those radios are locked on the transmit side and are normally dead on frequency out of the box. Not a big power house radio, but best bang for the buck for a new radio that doesn't need much to make contacts other than a good antenna setup and some decent conditions. You might get lucky and make some dx contacts on AM with the radio you have now, but sounds like you got a truck stop golden screwdriver special. He most likely clipped the AMC which controls the modulation. This can cause distortion and depending on what else he turned, the radio could be transmitting onto other freqs as well. This is not good. If possible and you can see the clipped wire, resolder it back together. You may lose a bit of power on a watt meter but at least you won't be over modulating. JMHO. As far as radios go and what you want to accomplish, there are several variables. Get the radio back to stock, JMO, and get the best antenna setup you can afford. Again, JMHO. Good day.


White & gray on my end...But welcome FATKAT..

Thanks for the replies. Yea, I may need to work on a better antenna. I don't mind poking holes in this truck as it is well.... a work truck, but at times I have to go in parking garages / decks and head room might become an issue even with this K30. I am told that the Wilson Little will is a better antenna for a mag-mount? opinions welcome on that.

I have been looking for shops in my area and they are few and the response seems to be cold to the new guy that don't know much. Just sell him something, he don't know any better! I will have to pull the radio out of the truck and open it up and see what I can see for re-soldering any cut wire. That is why I really would like to find a shop and or group that can and is willing to answer the stupid questions that they know are common knowledge among them and the group. Stupid New Guy!

I don't really have any idea where this (Hobby I will call it) will go. For now I need knowledge and solid reasons why I would go one direction or the other. This could wined up like my RC Car hobby and I will have one of everything!

Is that the way to DO IT......?

clubguy
11-04-2015, 02:00 PM
I don't think soldering the wire back together will help with your output or clarity. From my research, I would say the cut wire opens up the 10 meter band which includes the "free band" in the 28 mhz range. The "free band" is not really free, it is a no-no to broadcast on it until the FCC approves it for use. The cut wire will also give you access to the ham band. Don't talk on that without a license.

As for clarity and power, don't over modulate your voice and you should be able to be heard just fine. I'm sure the tech increased your power output from 2.5 watts to 5 watts.

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FATKAT
11-04-2015, 05:05 PM
I don't think soldering the wire back together will help with your output or clarity. From my research, I would say the cut wire opens up the 10 meter band which includes the "free band" in the 28 mhz range. The "free band" is not really free, it is a no-no to broadcast on it until the FCC approves it for use. The cut wire will also give you access to the ham band. Don't talk on that without a license.

As for clarity and power, don't over modulate your voice and you should be able to be heard just fine. I'm sure the tech increased your power output from 2.5 watts to 5 watts.

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And this is why I need education. I have watched a few You Tube Videos on this radio but have seen none so far cutting a wire.

I did however go by my Mom and Dads this afternoon on the way home from work and dug out some of pop's old radios. I brought home a Johnson Messenger 23 channel radio and a couple of old antennas. I found the Johnson White Face Base Station he has but did not bring it home.......... Yet. :)

222DBFL
11-05-2015, 05:33 AM
There are no freeband channels on a cobra 29LTD. Or am I totally missing something?? Read the entire fire post. He says the guy turned a pot and clipped a wire. Now does this sound like a qualified tech or a truck stop special?? We are speaking about a Cobra 29LTD, not an export radio here. No need to clip any wires on a cobra 29ltd. All that is needed is an alignment and get 100% modulation without having negative peaks on an oscilloscope. Now with that said. What type of equipment for tuning and aligning radios did the tech that did the work on the posters Cobra 29LTD?? Bet it was a DOSY meter and a screwdriver and pair of dykes. He probably cut D11 which controls the AMC. Now you have to adjust the mic gain to get the proper modulation without knowing if it's at 100% or more/less and if he sounds like total shit or not. The other thing he did was to turn the modulation up, and who knows what else to get some more watts out of it. But hey, I am just a dumb CB'er, what the hell do I know. I don't run a CB radio for 11m. And I don't often AM too much anymore. But I do know "clean in equals clean out". Clipped limiters don't make clean audio!!! JMHO. Good day.

222DBFL
11-05-2015, 05:41 AM
And for antennas I would look at the sirio 5000 performer and a Breedlove 3" hard mount. This is a good combo and works well. Antenna can be folded down. And yes they are better than the K30, lil wil, Wilson 5000, and so on. The only other antennas I would recommend would be a predator 10k or a 102" whip with a riser, but that would be too tall for your truck. Like I said look into the antenna and mount I suggested and you'll see what I mean. Breedlove mounts are top notch quality mounts. Now if you don't want a hard mount, the sirio PL145 magnet with the performer 5000 is another setup to think about. A hard mount is the better option but if a mag mount is needed, the PL145 and performer 5000 by sirio work well. Or get a tri or quad mag mount. But like I said, hard mount is the best. And don't forget good coax. Times microwave LMR240 is some good coax, as well as Belden, Huber suhner, Andrew, Commscope, Davis, and a few more. You can use stock coax and be fine, but if you're going to hard mount, might as well get good coax as well. These are all JMO. Good luck with your setup and enjoy. Good day.

FATKAT
11-05-2015, 07:15 AM
222DBFL

Thanks for the suggestions on the radio and antenna. I did look at the Uniden 980 and watched a few videos on it. I don't know if I like the push button / menu controls so much. I think I would like switches and knobs better.

The price point is good on the 980 and I may get one and see how it goes.

That Sirio antenna looks like the way to go but I may hold off on that for a while until I see where this (again Hobby) goes or until I understand better what I want / need for a radio. The hard mount will not be an issue on this POS truck.
On my daily driver I will not be putting holes in it! When I had a sub woofer and amp installed in it (2000 S-10) the stereo shop was just going to run screws through the back cab panel to mount the amp. I said no way I would except that and they would need to find a way to mount it without putting holes in the body and ripping out the jack mounting bracket. I had to manufacture my speaker box for them.

Mounting a radio in the Ranger is a challenge and I put the 29LTD between the sun visors on the roof. I just mounted it to the headliner for now. I may go back later and put in a plate attached to the roof inner structure that I can mount the radio to. I used plastic bottle caps as washers / bolt holders and 1/4 inch bolts to mount it. It seems to work ok but the square tires on this thing bounce at some speeds. I need to get new tires. Mounting one in the S-10 will be a bigger challenge, I can't have buggered up holes everywhere.

Thanks again for the suggestions.

clubguy
11-05-2015, 07:18 AM
I researched the Cobra 29 LTD and could not find any reason to clip a wire inside it like you would for an export radio. I'm not sure what they did or why they did it. Maybe you should call and ask?

FATKAT
11-05-2015, 07:44 AM
clubguy

I may go back and ask. At this point their doesn't seen to be anyone to talk to around here so..... The only time I have transmitted has been for a radio check and I got a response so I know it puts out.

I got a $100 tied up in this thing so its not to big a deal. I was just surprised that its quiet around here most of the time. I can't even get a radio check response from the house.

I did pick up some guy that said he was on the West Coast the other day and it sounded like he was in the truck with me. I could not hear who he was talking to but had no trouble hearing him, he was clear as a bell. Responding to people all over the south east and Puerto Rico. Channel 23 I think it was.

222DBFL
11-05-2015, 09:21 AM
Yep. Dx is picking up a bit. And clubguy, the reason for the clipped wire is normally someone that doesn't know anything correct about radios other than seeing watts on a meter. It's clipping audio limiter. That is the wire he most likely clipped and probably turned some screws to see more watts. He may have spread coils, turned slugs or the 54mhz trap. Who knows. But it sure sounds as though D11 was clipped. AMC circuit is disabled most likely. JMHO.

FATKAT
11-05-2015, 10:25 AM
1924

The area marked with YELLOW is where he turned on a pot. This is where several videos show to turn up something.

The area marked in WHITE is in the neighborhood of where he had the wire cutters if I remember correctly.

I will remove the radio this weekend and open it up and see what I can see.

SiCk_DiAbLo
11-05-2015, 10:55 AM
Ya see that alot, clipping here, clipping that, I have a few that were butchered...They lay on the shelf like dead soldiers..I have a 29 that I bought over 30 years ago..Nothing done to it, just replaced the burned out meter..Still kicking...Best luck I had with moble antenna's were the Wilson mag mounts, anyone from the Lil Wil, 500, 1000, 5000, they all were up in keying down in minutes...

222DBFL
11-05-2015, 11:22 AM
The new Wilson antennas have had some QC issues and I've had 2 myself that wouldn't tune at all. Replaced with a sirio performer 5000. And yes, he most likely clipped D11, the AMC control. Also he may have turned the 54mhz trap or L14. Neither which is needed. The D11 limiter that is cut should be re-soldered IMO. Another Golden Screwdriver special is what you got. Or what some call a truck stop special. Clipped limiters, spread coils, 54mhz trap turned out to get a few more watts that aren't even on freq. Shame to waste a radio like this!! Put it back to stock and leave it!! JMHO.

FATKAT
11-05-2015, 01:33 PM
222DBFL

What other radio beside the Uniden 980 would you recommend. I have looked at Galaxy 959, 979, 33HP2. The guy who worked on the radio recommended a Connex 4400 I think it was that he had tuned? I understand that this particular radio and the 33HP2 would need to be tuned to CB frequencies but am unsure about the SSB stuff at this point. I have also seen where a Texas Ranger radio was recommended but again tuning and mod's I don't know who I can trust around here to do it RIGHT, and at reasonable cost. I have seen some web sites with mod's alone totaling 200 to 300 dollars. Again I don't know what they are doing so I can't comment on cost other than I see where some say "recommended" mod's should not be to expensive.

I suppose I'm asking for a good "Starter" radio and if the Uniden is it then so be it. Just asking questions like a stupid new guy. :)

I'll throw 30 / 40 dollars at a Lil Wil and see and I can always upgrade from there.


I do not mind spending a little money on the right radio with the right mod's etc... and the internet has really been little help

clubguy
11-05-2015, 02:21 PM
If I were buying today, I'd buy an export radio. I would get the President Lincoln II v3.

222DBFL
11-05-2015, 08:02 PM
For a good SSB/AM radio the Stryker 955hp is a nice radio. So is the Lincoln 2 ver.3. SSB radios, the Yeticom optima mk3 is about the best I've used as of late. It's the only export radio with a 2nd filter for SSB. Takes a lot of noise out. You can get these off eBay or drom Yeticom out of New Zealand where the radios are sold by an authorized dealer of the Yeticom optima mk3. Cost about 300 for one shipped. Not the best am radio, but for SSB you won't find much better without jumping into an HF radio like a kenwood ts480hx or similar. But those are a totally different Animal all together. And yes for a simple SSB/CB starter radio the uniden 980 is best bang for the buck. You won't find another SSB radio at this price that is worth a shit. Galaxy radios drift on SSB. JMO. The uniden 980 doesn't suffer from drifting as its CPU controlled. The Galaxy radios have some components that make them prone to drifting or moving around freq. while talking on SSB, which is not good. There are several radios that I could recommend, but honestly for ease of use and price, the 980 is a great starter radio. JMHO. Or if you really want a radio with a bunch of bells and whistles, the strkyer 955hp will do a great job with almost 100 watts of power. 70-80 watts. And believe me, skip the lil wil antenna. Total waste of money. Might as well use a clothes hanger! No where near long enough to be worth anything at 3ft. Remember a 1/4 wave antenna for 11m is about 108" total. Which is about 9ft. Any antenna close to this will work well, like the sirio performer 5000, being about 7ft tall, they aren't too far behind a 108" whip in performance. Well built antennas. Don't skimp on the antenna. I would rather have a $10 radio and a good antenna setup then a $1k radio with a cheap 3ft antenna. It's a waste of time and you won't be able to transmit and receive very far. At least with the lil wil. If anything get a Wilson 1000 or 5000. Something with a longer whip. The taller the better. The sirio antennas are almost a foot taller than the Wilson 5000 antennas. And the new Wilson antennas seem to suffer from bad bad QC issues. Do some research and you'll see the new ones have had some issues especially as of late. The pre Barjan ones are good, but these newer ones I've heard reports of new ones with water in the coil, antennas that just won't tune. Like
I said, have 2 new ones sitting in a closet as neither would tune below 1.6-1.7:1 vswr. Put up an old Wilson 5000 that was an old one and it worked fine. Both the new ones had issues. Not sure what, but they just didn't work. Haven't ran across a sirio antenna that doesn't work or tune like they're supposed to. JMHO and experiences. Good luck with whatever you choose, but like I said, stay away from the lil wil it's a total waste of money and you'll Be disappointed you bought it. Save your money and spend it on a good antenna setup and then get a good radio. That is what I would do anyway. Again, good luck and have a good one.

clubguy
11-05-2015, 11:23 PM
For a good SSB/AM radio the Stryker 955hp is a nice radio. So is the Lincoln 2 ver.3. SSB radios, the Yeticom optima mk3 is about the best I've used as of late. It's the only export radio with a 2nd filter for SSB. Takes a lot of noise out. You can get these off eBay or drom Yeticom out of New Zealand where the radios are sold by an authorized dealer of the Yeticom optima mk3. Cost about 300 for one shipped. Not the best am radio, but for SSB you won't find much better without jumping into an HF radio like a kenwood ts480hx or similar. But those are a totally different Animal all together. And yes for a simple SSB/CB starter radio the uniden 980 is best bang for the buck. You won't find another SSB radio at this price that is worth a shit. Galaxy radios drift on SSB. JMO. The uniden 980 doesn't suffer from drifting as its CPU controlled. The Galaxy radios have some components that make them prone to drifting or moving around freq. while talking on SSB, which is not good. There are several radios that I could recommend, but honestly for ease of use and price, the 980 is a great starter radio. JMHO. Or if you really want a radio with a bunch of bells and whistles, the strkyer 955hp will do a great job with almost 100 watts of power. 70-80 watts. And believe me, skip the lil wil antenna. Total waste of money. Might as well use a clothes hanger! No where near long enough to be worth anything at 3ft. Remember a 1/4 wave antenna for 11m is about 108" total. Which is about 9ft. Any antenna close to this will work well, like the sirio performer 5000, being about 7ft tall, they aren't too far behind a 108" whip in performance. Well built antennas. Don't skimp on the antenna. I would rather have a $10 radio and a good antenna setup then a $1k radio with a cheap 3ft antenna. It's a waste of time and you won't be able to transmit and receive very far. At least with the lil wil. If anything get a Wilson 1000 or 5000. Something with a longer whip. The taller the better. The sirio antennas are almost a foot taller than the Wilson 5000 antennas. And the new Wilson antennas seem to suffer from bad bad QC issues. Do some research and you'll see the new ones have had some issues especially as of late. The pre Barjan ones are good, but these newer ones I've heard reports of new ones with water in the coil, antennas that just won't tune. Like
I said, have 2 new ones sitting in a closet as neither would tune below 1.6-1.7:1 vswr. Put up an old Wilson 5000 that was an old one and it worked fine. Both the new ones had issues. Not sure what, but they just didn't work. Haven't ran across a sirio antenna that doesn't work or tune like they're supposed to. JMHO and experiences. Good luck with whatever you choose, but like I said, stay away from the lil wil it's a total waste of money and you'll Be disappointed you bought it. Save your money and spend it on a good antenna setup and then get a good radio. That is what I would do anyway. Again, good luck and have a good one.
Do you like the Yeticom Optima MK3 better than the President Lincoln II v3?

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222DBFL
11-06-2015, 04:32 AM
Yes I do. It's a better SSB radio hands down. If you order one directly from Yeticom you'll get the upgraded mic, only place you'll get it from like that. If you order one of eBay, you'll most kiley get the small mic that is tiny. About as big as shoulder mic. For curing this issue, but an Icom hm36 mic, the real ones made in Japan are the best. The new ones are made in China, and the clones of the HM36 are junk!!! Do not buy the clone mics unless you have some modding skills. JMO. The optima mk3 is the only export radio that has a 2nd IF filter for SSB. It kills a lot of unwanted noise without killing the entire receive. They aren't big AM radio's per say but will drive an amp just fine. They just don't show good numbers on a bird meter on AM. Pep they do about 50-60 watts on both AM and SSB. They don't drift at all, and they have great audio with the addition of the Icom mic. You can get other Icom mics that work well with this radio, it's 8 pin jack is Icom compatible. If it were me and I'd order one from survival-systems.com, this is the home of the optima mk3 and Mike does an awsome job with them. I've not used the Stryker 955hp personally, or the Lincoln 2, but I have a local with a Lincoln 2 ver.3 and its a good sounding radio. I've also heard the 955hp on air and it has some nice audio as well. Any of the 3 radios listed are going to be pretty good. The optima mk3 is just one well built radio that is simple to use and works very well. For about $300 you can get one direct from the site I listed above, or for about $265 off eBay when they are available. I believe the name of the people that sell on eBay is Cold Front Sales. Want to say they are out of Michigan. JMO, but like I said, I would order one from Yeticom. It will come with warranty and all. Also, I've used the 2018 extreme mic with this radio and it sounds good too. Use an 8 to 4 pin adapter. But for someone looking for a top notch and IMO one of the best SSB radios as far as exports go, the optima is the ticket. It's already opened up from the factory if you do get one off eBay and coverage is 24.500-29.999. Goes in 1,.5,10k steps or mhz as well. Only 2ns number of mhz anyway. Check out the web site that I listed. They have all the specs and such. And also look at some pics of the inside of one. Built very well. I've had 3 magnum 257hp's and all but one now works. They break. I wish that magnum would have built the radio like the optima mk3. It would have rocked then! But anyway. Hope I have enough info and that it might help someone. Now if you really want to get serious and have a bad ass radio that will blow the doors off any CB or export radio, have a look at the kenwood ts480hx. A real radio! My top choices for starter radios would be.
1. Uniden 980, simply because of the price point.
2. Optima mk3.
3. Stryker 955hp
4. Lincoln 2 ver. 3
5. Uniden grant 2
These would be the radios I would look at. If you have the money and as serious about the hobby, the kenwood is worth it. You can get a nice used one for about $700-$900 or less if you look around. This is a 200 watt radio. And it's an HF or ham radio, and yes it can transmit on 11m. But for a person just wanting to get their feet wet, the uniden 980 is a great starter radio. JMHO. Good day.

clubguy
11-06-2015, 09:43 AM
The President Grant II is nice looking and similar to the 980 SSB.

I like the Lincoln II a bit more than the Yeticom because it shows both channel and frequency.

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FATKAT
11-06-2015, 05:06 PM
Had to work today..... Damit, its Friday, ain't supposed to have to work on Friday. :)

Wow, lots to look at and think about. Some of those radios have a lot of bells and whistles that I would be totally lost on. None listed are out of the question price wise but I suppose I should get my feet wet with the Uniden. Once I understand a little more about what I'm doing then I can step up. One local truck stop has a 980 but I can save a ton from Amazon.

I have been told by several people that the Lil Wil antennas were great plug and play units. I did purchase one and you are correct 222DBFL. Can't get the SWR's down at all. Best I can get is 1.7 on ch1, 1.7 on ch40 but its 1.1 on ch20. It started at 1.1 on ch1 and 3.0 on ch40. I will play with the K30 over the weekend, if it will stop raining.

There is a Ham Fest going on in a town about an hour away this weekend. I thought I might ride out and see whats going on and maybe find someone that wants to talk CB's or at least get an idea of any shops around.
I did find a CB shop about 45 mins away maybe I will call them and feel them out on stuff to see if its worth the ride.

I don't really know what else to ask and I thank you for your advise and input but I really need to find someone close to get all this stuff figured out. I will let you guys know when I have the Uniden and Sirio antenna installed and give you a report.

Thanks again.

222DBFL
11-06-2015, 05:59 PM
The lil wil antennas are very narrow banded. Your readings are about right for that antenna. Order a sirio performer 5000 and the pl145 mag mount or a hard mount. Sirio sells them as well that match up with the performer 5000. You need a tall antenna. And the sirio performer is about as tall as you can get as far as base loaded antennas are concerned. And they work well. I could talk 50-100 miles depending on the conditions with my optima mk3. Normally about 40-50 miles. This is in FL where most of the land is flat as well. With the 980 and a good antenna, you can make contacts on SSB around the world much easier than on AM. Just what I have found. Read up on single sideband and how it works and you will understand a bit better. And I agree the 980 is a good radio to start with. You can get them from about $100 or so shipped if you look around. Anyway. Get a better antenna setup and you'll be much happier. I would stay away from Wilson antennas as it seems as of late they have had some bad QC issues. Google and see for yourself. I've 2 new 5000's that won't tune below 1.7:1, this is with an antenna analyzer. And the antennas were both brand new. Tried several diff. Whips as well. But the lil will at 3ft is about as good as a clothes hanger IMO. Way too narrow banded and too short physically. Can only make up for so much height loss then you have other compromises to have to make. JMHO.

222DBFL
11-06-2015, 06:02 PM
Take your time with the sirio antenna and it will tune flat or darn close. Cut 1/8" pieces off the whip if needed which usually is. If your swr is higher on 40 then on 1, the antenna is too long and needs to be shortened. Opposite for an antenna that is higher on 1 then 40, it's too short. Normally the antennas are a bit long but you may find by just sticking the whip all the way down it tunes fine. Good luck and keep us posted.

FATKAT
11-06-2015, 06:25 PM
I did think of another question!

Coax length- Can I custom cut and install what I need or do I have to have 10 / 12 feet of cable laying all around?

FATKAT
11-06-2015, 09:03 PM
Order placed. Radio should be here Sunday. Antenna by the end of next week. It is coming from DNJ Radio. I think you mentioned them. Bought the mag mount for now for ease of installation. Paid more of the antenna than the radio, go figure. If its as good as you say I should never need another.

222DBFL
11-06-2015, 09:30 PM
Shouldn't. I've still mine after 3+yrs of some rough use. Only thing I did to my mount is I used some better coax than the stock stuff. I had it laying around so I used it. Lmr240. With that said. Make sure you use an external swr/watt meter for tuning. The radio shack swr/watt meters work very well for mobile use or even a base station. For $40 or less if you look around on the eBay. That or a diawa swr/watt meter. They cost a bit more but seem to be of good quality. I personally use a radio shack meter. Not too often, just to check things, my radio has a built in meter that shows me the swr always. Anyway, when you get it, place magnet back of center of roof and try there first. Antenna may tune better forward or back or center. Some do, some like center. One found that forward or rear of center is normally where you find the "sweet spot". Again, take your time cutting no more than 1/8" pieces at a time. The book says 1/4", I go half that as to not cut too short by accident. Doesn't take much and the antenna will be off. Not that it can't be resolved with tuning but I'd rather have the whip cut correctly. JMHO. Keep us posted and post pics of the install when it's done!! You should be very happy with the sirio antenna and mount.

FATKAT
11-06-2015, 10:06 PM
I have a Recoton CB170C, SWR / Field Strength meter. I have had it for years (late 70's or so). Could be something better out today. Lost the paperwork for it long ago and don't know how to use it other than SWR readings. It has a very small antenna with it and a lug on the box to screw it in to.

Really looking forward to pulling the head liner out of that truck again...... NOT. :)

If the weather is good I may have the radio installed Sunday afternoon.

222DBFL
11-07-2015, 03:22 AM
That will work just fine. Don't worry about power readings unless there are none. The radio has an swr meter built in, but I trust an external meter over an internal one myself. Use the one you have and tune your vswr. Should be just fine for what you need. You don't need an expensive meter to read vswr. Now an antenna analyzer would be a different deal. Those are worth every penny if you get into the hobby. They make antenna tuning a breeze. I use an MFJ 269. It may be the C model. I can't remember right off hand. But it takes about 1/4 of the time to tune an antenna with one vs. not having one. For now what you have will work just fine to get you going. Those antennas if set right will tune pretty well. And you will notice the difference between it and the lil wil antenna I promise that!! Anyway. Be safe, have fun with the headliner[emoji12]. I know those are always fun.

FATKAT
11-07-2015, 06:52 AM
Maybe I should try moving the antenna around on the roof of the truck. I have it placed about center front to back and side to side. It is a standard cab so I don't have a lot of room to move it. I can try moving it back a little and see how that changes the reading.

222DBFL
11-07-2015, 08:03 AM
Yep. Move it back of center of cab. Keep it center side to side, but place it about 6" or so from the rear of the cab and try it there. Moving it around forward and back you will find the "sweet spot" that the antenna will tune best at. This is what I have found majority of the time with mag mount installs. It also gives you a good idea as to where to place a hard mount in the future. Some vehicles it may be a bit forward of center or rear. Some may be dead center. All installs are different and should be taken as so. What might work on one truck won't work on another. And it can be the same type truck LOL! Just take your time. Start with the whip all the way down and check readings on 1, 20, & 40. If the vswr rises going up in freq from 1 to 40 the antenna is too long and needs to to be cut, which it most likely will. Like I said. 1/8" cuts. It may take a few cuts, but at 1/8" you can't mess up very much if at all. You'll see what I mean when you go to tune the antenna. And like I said also, if the radio bug bites you and you become interested again, find an antenna analyzer. JMHO. Have fun with the new setup when you get it!!!

FATKAT
11-07-2015, 09:57 AM
So I guess the plan world be to place the antenna and see where the SWR's are at then move it to another position and check again so on and so on.

When I find the spot with the best initial reading then place the antenna there and start cutting to get the best SWR's.

This sound about right?

I'm taking a wild guess here on the SSB part of this. I understand you have Upper and Lower side band and my guess is that this radio you have say Channel 30 and then you have an upper and lower sideband on this channel by using the button / switch on the radio face. None of the videos I have watched on the radio go into this. This is just a stab at how I think this is going to work with this radio.

FATKAT
11-07-2015, 12:20 PM
So he did in fact cut D11, but it isn't a wire! (as such) I don't know what you call it!

Although I have soldering equipment, I don't think I can solder that back so I suppose that means I will need to go back to him or find someone else to repair the "MOD" if it is detrimental to the radio or its function. Yes ? No?

Explain the D11 function again please.

1927

The other MOD was the brown (pot) thing I marked in the photo the other day.

222DBFL
11-07-2015, 01:23 PM
Just push it back down and hit it with a touch of solder. That will fix it. D11 is the AMC, audio limiter. It controls how much modulation your radio makes. Which should be no more than 100% pos. Peaks and about the same or less on the neg. peaks. On an oscilloscope. Basically it makes you sound over modulated, which is no good.
And SSB is just that. Single side band mode with upper (usb) and lower (lsb) modes. With SSB there is no carrier like on am. So when you let the radio you won't see any watts or power until you speak into the mic. On the CB band channels 36-40 are the SSB channels and all are normally LSB (lower side band). The clarifier is how you tune people's voices in. Listen for a bit and find a couple people that sound the same. Then tune their voice until it sounds normal. Your radio is locked on the transmit side so you can't mess up. There are a lot of radios that the transmit and receive track together. Your radio should be dead on frequency. Mine was and I haven't heard of anybody getting one that was off freq out of the box. They don't need to be tuned. If you plan to use an amp just turn the dead key back to whatever the needed input is. The pep of the radio won't be an issue. They aren't powerhouse radios but sound clean and clear on air. A good mic for them is the uniden Bluetooth mic. Mod the mic hole to be a bit larger and it works well. It's a noise cancelling mic as well. And they are not very expensive now. Under $50. Great deal for them. They work well and have no wires from mic to radio. Just a harness that plugs into the mic jack and the mic has its own battery pack and speaker as well as mic. For the money it is a good addition other than the stock mic. Another good mic is the RF limited 2018 extreme. Turn the echo al the way off and the noise cancelling on and it's one nice power mic. Add a bit of reverb and they sound good. Just some food for thought.

FATKAT
11-07-2015, 03:02 PM
I am eager for the radio to arrive and see what difference I find with people actually talking. It's just dead from the house as far as I can see. Maybe SSB will be where they are at.

I think I made the repair to D11 or I got it so hot it stuck to the board :) I have no way to test any of this and no one to talk to for a before / after opinion.

The new radio will be here tomorrow and the Cobra will not matter so much then, at least for a while.

SiCk_DiAbLo
11-07-2015, 03:54 PM
I used to hear that all the time, cut the D11, those radios never really lasted after that!!!

FATKAT
11-07-2015, 05:42 PM
Well the radio still works :) I made a contact to a guy a few miles away. He gave me a good report. I think he is on top of a big hill not far from here. I gave a call out from the driveway when I got back home and he could still hear me so good to know....

222DBFL
11-07-2015, 06:17 PM
Good deal. You should be okay for now. With the new radio you'd be surprised at the contacts you'll make with just a stock radio. Like I said, read up on how SSB works. It will explain a lot and help you understand.

FATKAT
11-07-2015, 06:31 PM
Yea, I looked at a couple of things today about SSB. So I have to make up a number / call sign. I will just listen in on what I can hear for a few days. The Sirio Antenna will be a few days getting here. The rain is supposed to clear out tomorrow so I can play with the antennas I have and come up with the best set up for now.

222DBFL
11-07-2015, 07:28 PM
Any number will work. A 3 number call is what most use. I use 222, my friend uses his addy. 923. Something easy for you to remember is all. Not really a call sign per say. Just a set of numbers to distinguish you by. Hope that makes sense. You'll get the SSB thing. It didn't take me long. I was an AM'er as well many years ago as well and when I got back into it SSB seemed more active and even with a stock radio you can get on the main call channel 38lsb and make contacts with 10-12 watts of power. Just listen for a while and see what others do when calling out for dx. Then when you get a good signal coming in call back and see what happens! One of my first contacts was across the pond to Ireland. Made my day!!

FATKAT
11-08-2015, 02:49 PM
Radio arrived this morning and it is in the truck. I have not been able to get a radio check today so far.

This stuff with the antennas is getting me riled up. Can't get decent numbers with the Lil Wil or K30 no matter where on the roof they are placed. Would the aluminum bed cap cause a problem? The SWR checking on the radio seems to be worthless and I suppose all the other DIAGNOSTIC functions will be as well. The radio itself is not mounted in metal at this time, could this cause issues?

Oh well, here is a pic.......

1929

SiCk_DiAbLo
11-08-2015, 03:54 PM
Radio arrived this morning and it is in the truck. I have not been able to get a radio check today so far.

This stuff with the antennas is getting me riled up. Can't get decent numbers with the Lil Wil or K30 no matter where on the roof they are placed. Would the aluminum bed cap cause a problem? The SWR checking on the radio seems to be worthless and I suppose all the other DIAGNOSTIC functions will be as well. The radio itself is not mounted in metal at this time, could this cause issues?

Oh well, here is a pic.......

1929

Did ya adjust the whip on the antenna's...Lossen the whip up and adjust it up or down for the lowest swr's...Cheerz!

222FL
11-08-2015, 05:44 PM
The K30 or the lil wil aren't going to tune very good. Like I said they are very narrow banded and are basically the bare min. for an antenna. It's just to talk a mile to 2 with those antennas. You'll be a lot happier when you slap a tall antenna up there and it tunes. Just get the vswr down the best you can and leave it for now. Wait for your sirio antenna before getting too hung up on those small antennas. Been there and done that. They just done tune worth a darn. 1.4-1.7:1 is the best I could ever get out of either the K30 or the k40 or the lil will antenna. I placed the sirio performer at the same spot and first readings were 1.1:1 on channel 1 and 1.3:1 on channel 40. Cut the whip and it tuned pretty well flat across CB band. And again have a look at the uniden Bluetooth mic. Where you have your radio mounted one of these mics might be a good deal for you. Check them out at least. Good deal for what they are at under $45 shipped I believe. I use one with my 980 and it works very well. Clean, clear audio are the reports I get. Just some food for thought. Looks good mounted there. Keep at it and again don't let those damn small antennas mess with you. If you can get one to about 1.5:1 or so, it will work but like I said those antennas are more for getting a close traffic check than anything. JMHO.

FATKAT
11-08-2015, 06:17 PM
DiAbLo

Yea I've done all that just can get good numbers with them. It didn't stop raining today so that made it worse.

I will check out the wireless mic's. I am about as pleased with the "Button's" on this thing as I thought I would be. I don't like it at all but I'll run with it for now. I should be able to get a report back on the thing in the morning on the way to work. Trucks and Trucks everywhere on the highway.

The radio is shorter front to back than the Cobra so I can move it a small amount forward. When I get things working I will work on the mounting more. Its shorter and may mount in a better location. Truck cab is small and compact.

FATKAT
11-10-2015, 08:27 AM
I finally got a response from a radio check yesterday at lunch. I got home yesterday and played with the antennas some more and put the Lil Wil back on as it seemed to be quieter with it that the K30 and the SWR reading were better.

I haven't heard much on the side bands but this could be due to the antenna I suppose. Still waiting impatiently for the Sirio Antenna to arrive to see how much that changes things.

clubguy
11-10-2015, 12:09 PM
Thanks for keeping us updated.

Sent from my SM-P900 using Tapatalk

FATKAT
11-10-2015, 05:08 PM
I would love to see more activity here. Things seem to move kind of slow. I guess that's not all bad. I haven't has yet been able to find any local clubs or groups to interact with so you guys have the pleasure of being my source of information. Do you feel special? :)

I looked at an article yesterday about a guy who built a base antenna with PVC pipe and 12 or 14 gauge copper wire. That got me thinking, Hey I got this extra radio here and a old Johnson White Face sitting around collecting dust. I could do this!! :)

But that's getting a little ahead of myself at this time so I had to stop thinking that...............


Although I do have access to some 2 1/2 inch conduit that may make a good mast..........


Wait.... Wait...... Stop thinking that way.

;)

clubguy
11-10-2015, 05:12 PM
Most of us become students of our hobbies and want to go go go when we think of new things. It is normal in my opinion. I'd like to think CB's are making a comeback but not as crazy as the 70's.

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G925A using Tapatalk

FATKAT
11-10-2015, 05:22 PM
I have lots of hobbies that I can no longer afford. SO I got to keep this in check to some degree....

222FL
11-11-2015, 03:55 AM
On SSB turn to channel 38, or 27.3850. One is the channel and the other the frequency. 38LSB is the normal call channels and then some move away to another channel to talk as 38 can be busy at times. set your clarifier, to the 12 o'clock position and listen. See what people sound like, then adjust your clarifier until they sound normal. There are quite a few people that are off frequency, you'll see what I mean when you hear them. It will either sound like Donald Duck or some one is on some really good slow me down meds and will sound almost as if they are slurring. Your clarifier may not be dead on 12 o'clock for people to sound right. Mine sits at 10 o'clock. This will not affect your transmitted signal either as your transmit is locked on this radio. Only the receive side slides below and above 27.38500. Just enough to clarify people in due to them being off freq of you being off freq on your receive side. And don't let the first person you talk to tell you you're off frequency. If a bunch of people say something then okay, but these radios seem to come from the factory dead on frequency. Mine was and it is an older one. About the 3yrs old. If they haven't fixed the beep crap yet, it's loud!!, you can disable it by removing a resistor. You'll still hear a very very faint beep, but it does make a world of difference. They supposedly fixed this issue and now you can turn beep off I think. Don't quote me on this though. Again if this is the case, then the mod to disable the beep is simple. Just google 980 beep mod and the first video you see pop up, watch it. Also they show you how to unlock the clarifier. IMO, DONT TOUCH THIS!!! Leave it be as the radio should be tx'ing on freq. If it's off freq bad then you may want to perform the mod which is cutting a wire or 2. Easy as pie as well as the beep mod. But like I said don't do it unless your radio is off frequency real bad!!! Better to let someone clarify you in if its just a tiny amount off IMO or send radio to a good tech and have it tuned and aligned. Which from what I have read and seen as far as posts and forums and such go, these radios are on frequency out of the box and are a great little radio. Not big on power, but audio is clean and clear and that is what counts!! You can add a small amp amp and get some power very easily.
And as far as building an antenna for your base. Google 11 meter 1/2 wave dipole. If you have a couple tall trees or even a way to fasten the ends up as high as possible, you can have a base station for both dx and local communications. You can make a simple 1/2 wave vertical dipole or horizontal for dx or and inverted v. All 1/2 wave dipoles that are about 18ft long. You need just a few parts and can even use a piece of coax to make one. Have a look and just some more food for thought. Have a good day and sorry for the brick wall this AM, too much coffee already[emoji16][emoji3][emoji12][emoji12][emoji12]

FATKAT
11-11-2015, 04:06 AM
I see someone else is an early riser. At least I know I'm not the only one.

FATKAT
11-11-2015, 05:44 AM
I have been going to 38 and listening but I don't hear much or anything at this time. Maybe the new antenna will help with that.
I see online that you are supposed to be able to turn off the BEEP but it must be for newer radios because I can't turn mine off. Its not to big a deal at this time. My biggest problem with this radio is the button and menu system for making adjustments. Just seems to be trouble while driving. In my view that was not very well thought out.

The shop that did the mod on the 29LTD talked about a CONNEX radio and another customer in the shop said he had a GALAXY DX33HP2 and put a little BLUE amp with it and was happy with the results. The shop had the little amp, I don't know what they wanted for it or any other information. He did say the CONNEX radio was 100 Watt out of the box so......

I have two Oak Trees, one on each side of the house. They are massive but I ain't climbing them. House has a southern exposure and the trees are on the east and west sides on the house. The insurance company is real unhappy about the one on the west side. It's like a big shrub and the limbs overhang that side of the house. These may be a problem with a base antenna that isn't very high but I also have a large pasture behind the house and get strong winds when storms come in from the north west. I have pretty good line of site to the north and south. I got a couple of decent size hills to the south east between me and the interstate to the east.

I may be good if I get the base of any antenna above the roof ridge line and not be too high. That is maybe 15 feet. I have an old TV antenna outside but its not very high. The mast may be 12 feet or so of maybe 1 1/2 inch fence post. It may be ok to use.

Right now its just food for thought.

FATKAT
11-11-2015, 06:18 AM
Wait a second....... How does this work? How do you mount it?

1930

This is $30 on e-bay. Maybe this isn't out of the question at all......

clubguy
11-11-2015, 06:56 AM
Doesn't the lenght of the base antenna have more to do with the frequency height in meters than it does with how high off the ground it is? In other words, I live on the highest elevation in my county, but that doesn't mean I can use a shorter antenna because I'm on a higher ground than everyone else, right?

.

FATKAT
11-11-2015, 07:13 AM
I think as a rule the higher the better. A bigger problem will be obstacles in the path of the radio wave (Trees, Hills etc...) So if you can get above the obstacles you are better off. Local rules may apply to how high you can go.

Now that I think about it. The antenna using the PVC pipe was a vertical version of this antenna. Center connection and a wire running up and a wire running down. Again the higher the better.

222FL
11-11-2015, 09:46 AM
Use a fishing pole and some weight. Get the line up tree on a good limb on both sides about the same height. A now and arrow or even a sling shot will work for getting line up a tree. Get some 550 paracord and mount each end to the rope and pull it up. The higher the better. 20-30ft is good. Higher is better to a certain extent. This is with using the dipole you posted FATKAT.

222FL
11-11-2015, 09:48 AM
Or you can mount it to a pole in the center and hang the ends down for an inverted V.

clubguy
11-11-2015, 09:59 AM
Can you get both local and Dx from the same antenna?

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G925A using Tapatalk

FATKAT
11-11-2015, 05:32 PM
Any idea how long the wires are on ether side of center on one of these antennas?

How wide apart should the ends be in the inverted V?

Tying it from the trees doesn't seen a goo idea. One is like a bush and the other is kind od spindly.

clubguy
11-11-2015, 07:31 PM
According to my ham radio manual, Dipoles are determined by the following equation: Length (in feet) = 468 / Frequency (in MHz). So, if you are talking on approximatley 27 MHz, then you would use this equation: 468/27=17.3. I would say that it is 18 feet long.

clubguy
11-11-2015, 07:38 PM
Can you tell me what about the buttons on the 980 that you don't like?

FATKAT
11-11-2015, 07:48 PM
I don't like that you have to push a button then turn the knob and find the item you want to adjust and then push the button make the adjustment and then find EXIT and push the button. That kind of thing.

Take adjusting the RF Gain or Mic Gain. You have to push the button, key the mic, turn the knob. If you are riding down the road that's a lot of fiddling! On a stationary unit like a base it would not be a big deal.

Maybe I am making a bigger deal of it than I should but just give me a knob to turn or switch to flip!

Link to Manual
http://www.manualslib.com/manual/405558/Uniden-Bearcat-980.html

FATKAT
11-11-2015, 07:55 PM
According to my ham radio manual, Dipoles are determined by the following equation: Length (in feet) = 468 / Frequency (in MHz). So, if you are talking on approximatley 27 MHz, then you would use this equation: 468/27=17.3. I would say that it is 18 feet long.

Thanks, I live in a single level bread box house. Its not very wide. I was thinking how much mast I may need and invert the "V" back down to the eves of the house. Sounds like I would need 25 to 30 foot of mast.

clubguy
11-11-2015, 08:03 PM
I think the 18 feet is total length so each side of the Dipole would be 9 feet, but the recommended feed line is 25-30 feet. The antenna setup you are describing is called the Inverted-V.

222FL
11-12-2015, 12:14 AM
You can go inverted V or horz. The antenna you posted is more for dxing, and not so much local. For local talk get a vertical antenna up as high as possible. The dipoles will have a little bit of local distance but it's not much, 2-4 miles tops. But for dxing they are a great antenna. Here are measurements for s dipole cut for 27.205 channel 20 CB band. 1931
The length I've posted is cut for center freq. if you talk more on the upper channels for SSB, then cut a but shorter. One for 27.405 as well. You'll see it's shorter.1932
The opposite goes for the lower channels. The wires will be longer. But the 2 photos I posted give lengths for both the inverted v abs horizontal dipoles which will have a bit different length. Read up about the differences in both before making your choice as how to place it. Horz.is easy with 2 large trees and some paracord and a fishing pole with some heavy weight attached to it. Enough to get up high as you want but not break your line. Then tie the paracord to the fishing line and pull it up over a tree branch on both sides. It doesn't have to be super high to work. If 10ft is all you can get it up to it will work, just not as well as it would at 18ft or even 30-40ft. The 30-40ft range seems to be a good area for them height wise if you can go that high. Anything from 10ft up will work. You can go less than 10dt but your pattern may suffer some being so low to ground. Anyway. The photos below should help. If you are going to buy one, look at the Dr. Dipole Unadilla 11m dipole with 1:1 balun. You want one with a matching balun. A 1:1 balun. The dr dipole one I've seen personally and they work well and are ugly well too. JMO. Or build one yourself and just buy a 1:1 balun for impedance matching to present a 50 ohm load at the radio. And it will keep the neighbors happy! And yes they are sold on the auction site. The Unadilla. Made by Dr. Dipole.
For local talk a simple antenna is the vertical dipole that's just hung vertically. There are ways to make one out of coax that works well. Or get a good vertical antenna and you can have both local and dx. Depending on how serious you are, the antenna is going to be the most important thing besides the radio itself. That and good coax and connectors. Don't skimp out on and antenna. JMO. This is one area that some good research will go a long way. I just purchased and put up a sirio vector 4000 and it is one rocking antenna for both local and dx use. But it is a tall antenna!! As I sit and type this the DX is just dying from here in FL to up north area. Late night dx!! It's 1am and I am still hearing faint dx in my receive. Anyway. Hope some of this helps. Have fun and enjoy. Also here is a photo of the sirio vector 4000 I have up. 1933.

222FL
11-12-2015, 04:42 AM
And yes an early riser I am sir. Have to be for work!! It's what pays for my bills/hobbies. This hobby can be expensive as well!! And as far as the radios you have listed above, the Connex is an AM only radio with extra freqs. No good for anything other than AM though. And stay away from the Galaxy radios, again good AM radio but they drift around freq and that is no good for sideband. You want a rock solid stable radio for SSB and want to upgrade radios, look at the Yeticom Optima MK3. Best SSB export radio I've used. And they have and extra filter for SSB which no other export radio on the market has. I have one and have used it for 3 or 4 years now and it had a rough life the first 3yrs anyway. It was a work van radio that saw many bad dirt roads and pot holes and such. The radio is well built and took the licking and kept on ticking. Kind of like simple timex watch. They do about 50-60 watts on SSB and about 50 watts pep on AM, 12 watt AVG. They aren't as good on am as they are on SSB. On SSB they rock! If you were to order direct from the dealer which is in New Zealand, you'd get the better mic with the radio and it would be aligned and tuned properly. And it will have a warranty. About $300 shipped they cost. You can also get them off eBay for like $265-270 when you can find them. They have a freq range of 24.500 to 29.999. No banks of channels. Radio tunes from one end to the other in 5K steps, so you get all the zero freqs as well. Nice for SSB dxing as you can get away from a lot of bs. Anyway just some more food for thought.

222FL
11-12-2015, 04:54 AM
Connex does make an SSB radio I believe, but idk how they perform. And like I said, the Galaxy radios drift until they warm up or they drift even after warmup at times like when they get too warm. Again, not good for SSB. Some may disagree with me on this, but I've heard too many drifting Galaxy radios on air to know what they do!! That and I have an old Galaxy 55 sitting in the closet. Great AM radio, but it's doesn't have SSB. I use an HF radio or what some call a ham radio. An Icom 746. If you are serious about getting back into the hobby and have the coin, the kenwood ts480hx is a nice radio and can be had for a good price. Find a good used one or get a new one, either way if the you'll have a sweet radio. Now they work great on both AM and SSB, unlike a lot of other HF radios, they will do 200 watts on both AM and SSB. And talk about stability and real options that will make your radio experience much more enjoyable at times. You did right by getting the 980 and not spending 3-400 for an export. If you are willing to spend that much, spend a couple more hundred and have a real HF radio that will knock the socks off any export made. JMO.

222FL
11-12-2015, 05:09 AM
And also the dipole antennas like the one you posted, again they can be made to talk some locally, but are more of a dx antenna unless you set it up as a vertical. But like I said if you're going to do all that then just get a simple antenna like a sirio GPK27. They are a lightweight inexpensive aluminum antenna that works pretty good. That or there are orbs base antennas made by Sirio and many other companies. Again, not fully sure of your intentions but a good antenna is the first thing I would buy. Even before the radio!!! Without a good antenna setup idk if you have a $10k radio, it will only be as good as the antenna that is being used with it!! A good antenna and your 980 and you can make contacts across the world. I did it with a home brewed dipole, 1st one I ever made, placed it about 15ft off the ground. Radio was a Uniden pc122xl, stock 12 watt SSB radio. I made contact to Australia with this setup. When Mother Nature opens the doors for DX'ing, you can get real lucky if you keep at it. I met a gent off the forum and we ended up linking up "on air". He was down under. This pretty well half way around the world from me. Just goes to show what a simple but we'll put together antenna setup can do even when not able to get it up high!! Verticals can be the same way at times for dx anyway. For local talking, height is might. The higher the antenna, the further it will talk, general rule of thumb anyway. This may not always be true, but for the most part it holds fast. Anyway. Sorry for the brick walls so early. Gotta get up early to get things done!! Have a good one and if you have any more questions you can PM me and I'll help as much as possible. I'm not an expert by any means, can only go by my own experience and what I have learned since getting back into radio about 4yrs ago or so.

FATKAT
11-12-2015, 06:32 AM
Yea I just saw the article and instructions on the guy building an antenna using PVC and electrical wire and thought if it’s that simple I could do that. 10 feet of 12 or 14 /3 wire is easy enough to come by and the PVC pipe, connectors and antenna connectors isn’t expensive so what the heck. I have power supplies from the RC car battery charging equipment. The only real cost would be coax and the trouble of getting it in the house.

I could set up that 29LTD and see what kind of traffic I could hear in the evening when I’m home and not in the truck. On CB though but it isn’t too much a stretch to see buying another SSB capable radio. Maybe watch Craig’s List for a used one on the cheap just for fun. I can see even going the route to getting a Ham license. They say it’s not hard for the lower levels.

I just can’t get crazy with it for now and if I do find higher interest in it I can make better purchases. I have maybe 30 RC cars here and parts and equipment from racing them for many years. I got so much money tied up in that stuff its nuts. I also have some 20 Guitars here and amps and effects processers and speaker cabs etc…. and all I can do is make noise, I can’t play but I got some cool stuff J A guitar players wet dream!

But I need to stay focused on some other things right now and have already spent more than I should have and that’s why I am here and again I want to say thank you for the responses and sharing your knowledge on the subject. Look we have an 8 page thread in the NOOB part of this forum and it seems the most activity here in a long time. My guess is others are at least reading this even as guest and getting questions answered that they have.

I got a text earlier this morning that my Sirio Antenna isat the local Post Office so that means it should arrive today or tomorrow and then we can have more to talk about and maybe then I will find others on the radio to reach out and touch.

Here is another question at the end of this long post- What are your thoughts on the RM Italy KL 203-P amp. Do you know this unit? Again way ahead of where I should be but knowledge is everything right! I believe ClubGuy brought this one up.

clubguy
11-12-2015, 06:44 AM
Don't PM...keep this thing public!!! It's a good read.

222FL
11-12-2015, 08:02 AM
The KL203 is a good little amp to pair with the 980. You will however need to lower the dead key (carrier) on AM to 2 watts or less. The radios internal functions don't work right below 2 watts but the amp like a low dead key. Pep wattage is fine with the 980. Put a fan on the amp as well. It will get you a good little bump in power. JMHO. Good day.

FATKAT
11-12-2015, 10:34 AM
I have picked up that the radio needs to be set up for any amp. It would appear that this type of adjustments can be completed by the user with little trouble (after watching some u-tube videos). But I have no test equipment to monitor what I am doing. It would also appear that some of the equipment at least the equipment I could afford to buy is not very accurate. It may be that it is accurate enough for what little I know about all of this and would suffice for my needs. I will have to defer this to some of you for a conclusion.

clubguy
11-12-2015, 12:56 PM
Sell a few guitars and build an awesome test bench.

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FATKAT
11-12-2015, 01:04 PM
Sell a few guitars and build an awesome test bench.

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Got to wait for the market to turn around on the Guitars. Tried to sell a few some months back and no one wanted to play so I said they can collect dust and I can pass them on to my son when that day comes (He plays a little thanks to me) or the market get right and I will let a few go.

But for now........ The Eagle has Landed....... The Eagle has Landed

I think I ate something bad for lunch and need to go home early. I don't feel good. It has stopped raining and the sun is out. YES...... :)

222FL
11-12-2015, 05:10 PM
It's very easy actually and can be done with a decent watt meter and 10-25 watt 50ohm dummy load A RadioShack watt meter will work and a small 50ohm dummy load and a couple of short coax jumpers are what you need. Good things to have when messing with radios IMO anyway. All you are going to do is to lower the AM dead key by turning a small pot. Turn radio to channel 20 and complete this. Should be the same on all channels. It's only got one control for the am power. The other is modulation and I wouldn't worry about that. The radio won't over modulate. Those 980's are lucky to see 95% modulation I'd venture to say. Just lower dead let for AM, SSB power is fine at stock levels. And as far as AM, those radios aren't big swingers. You'll most likely see 6-8 watts pep with a 2 watt dead key and the modulation turned up. Again, you don't have to mess with the modulation. Leave it stock. Use a power mic if you need more audio. But the radio only needs to have dead key lowered for AM for input to the KL203. They will tolerate a 2 watt dead key from what most say, but I believe they like less dead key than that. Make sure your VSWR is good before ever adding the amp in line. Hope some of this helps. The pots are marked in the radio. It will say AM power. This is the one you wan to turn down. Use a ceramic tip screwdriver or something nonmetallic to move it. You will see on the meter which way the power goes as you turn the pot, but I think you need to turn it counter clockwise. If not then the other way. Key up your mic with mic gain all the way down.

222FL
11-12-2015, 05:11 PM
And then make the adjustment. Watch your watt meter for it to show a 2 watt dead key and close the lid.

FATKAT
11-12-2015, 05:43 PM
And then make the adjustment. Watch your watt meter for it to show a 2 watt dead key and close the lid.

It appears that Radio Shack no longer sells SWR/Watt Meters although you can find old units on E-Bay fairly cheap.


The Sirio Antenna is installed. Daaaaaaaang its a long antenna.................

Its too dark to get a photo so I will get that tomorrow. SWR's were less than 1.1 on Channel 1 and just under 1.2 on 40, out of the package so I just left it alone. Still unable to get a radio check from the house. I don't know what's up with that. It did seem I was hearing the truck drivers on the interstate and that is 10 miles away. Some more clear than others so maybe those were running amps.

222FL, if you don't mind when you get a chance post links or make and model of a dummy load set up you would recommend for budget minded equipment. Also that base Sirio antenna you mentioned, I looked and found a GPE 27 but the listings got confusing. can you post a link to said antenna? Please. This base and amp stuff is still way ahead of where I am at the moment but I can look and think about it.

222FL
11-12-2015, 09:48 PM
Yes sir. The dummy load is something like this. Doesn't have to be this exact one but something like this for a dummy load.19341935
And another swr meter is this one.
The radio shack ones you might be able to find on eBay, if not the workman HP201s will work. I like the diawa CN101. Both are pictures below. The workman meter will work fine, but the diawa meter is of better quality and is a cross reading needle which shows forward and reflected power which is good. Also cut about 1/4" off your whip. It's too long. Not by much, but if you cut in 1/8" pieces, and cut 1/4"-1/2" off, the antennas I'll most likely tune pretty flat. The way it's setup tells the antenna is too long if vswr is lower on ch1 than 40. You're close, might as well get it as best you can. And it can be better than it is. Not by much, but you want it to be as best as possible before adding any amps. Okay now for the swr meters. First is the workman then the diawa. 19361937
If you can find a radio shack meter for cheap. Like under $40 shipped new those will work as well. Just makes sure it's the swr/power meter. Or either of the 2 I posted will work as well as the dummy load I posted. If you look Around you can find good deals on the dummy loads and the watt meters. Buy new if possible. JMO. But if you find a good deal and the equipment looks to be in good working order and condition, grab it. Bird makes a great dummy load, but normally they cost the most. And most will require the use of an n-male to SO239 connector. This will be on the bird dummy loads more and you'll see more dummy loads with n-male Connectors. You want one with an SO239 connector. And you'll need a couple of coax jumpers. Coax jumpers like these. They don't have to be these exact ones. Just something like this. Can be mini 8, lmr240, lmr400. A mini 8 one would work fine. 1938
With 2 coax jumpers, the dummy load and an swr/watt meter lime what I posted will be what you need for basic radio stuff. Enough for you to lower the dead key and get a reading of swr and power. We don't need military precision here. Like I said, but about 1/4-1/2" off that whip in 1/8" cuts and it will tune pretty well flat across the entire CB band. Don't settle for just okay. Make it the best it can be and when you add an amp, you'll most likely have less issues. Again JMO. You will make contact on SSB. Try SSB early am like 8am or so and listen throughout day as well. Dx comes and goes. You gotta catch it. 38lsb. You hang out there long enough you'll hear some dx. Anyway. Any more questions fell free to ask. I've given you the list of things needed to tune your radio, add to that a plastic electronic screwdriver. And if you already have an swr/power meter that works, just get a dummy load and a couple of coax jumpers. And then it's just a matter of hooking it all up and adjusting your dead key. Once done, it's done. The dummy load is also good for checking output on radios as well. Just don't stay keyed up long if you are using a small dummy load as they will get a warm. The larger 100 watt ones depending on who makes it can take some power. Here is my bird dummy load. I've put 400 watts into it and it just barely got warm. But this is not an el cheapo dummy load. 193919401941
The last 3 photos of are a bird dummy load. If you can find a good used one of these grab it!!! Anyway, again hope all this helps and any more questions just ask. If I can help I will. Good day.

222FL
11-12-2015, 09:54 PM
And here is the sirio antenna i spoke of. It's the sirio GPE 27. Here is a photo and the site you want is DNJ Radio. 19421943
Check out the whole line of sirio antennas they will have something you can use. The GPE 27 is thier least expensive antenna but they do work and tune well.

FATKAT
11-13-2015, 05:05 AM
And here is the sirio antenna i spoke of. It's the sirio GPE 27. Here is a photo and the site you want is DNJ Radio. 19421943
Check out the whole line of sirio antennas they will have something you can use. The GPE 27 is thier least expensive antenna but they do work and tune well.

Yep, that's the one I was looking at although their seemed to be several listing with GPE 27. I also checked out another Sirio antenna they had listed due back in stock this month that had more of the "Radials", looked like the same antenna other than that. The only other question I had about it was the "Tuning" part. Do you have to figure out how long to make it? I am looking for an On Line manual and see how difficult this may be.

The P5000 came from DNJ through Amazon.

I have seen some photos of a smaller version of that Diawa meter I think mounted in line permanently in some mobile set up's. I thought Diawa made fishing rod's:)

I will keep looking and see how I can get a mast sturdy enough set up without breaking the bank. I think if I keep it low enough say just above the roof high point ridge I shouldn't have to worry about the wind too much so we will see.

Got to go to work now.........

222FL
11-13-2015, 07:05 AM
The sirio antennas all come with the exact numbers. They are always in MM, and not inches as the antennas are made in Italy. Where you looking at the tornado maybe? Had one of those up for about 1.5yrs and did very well. Just follow the tuning guide in the manual and you will be just fine. If you get serious about this hobby and 11m and end up finding some locals and such, the 2016, 827 or the vector 4000 are great antennas as well but will need a good mast pipe setup or tower to be used. I am currently using the vector 4000, and man it rocks!! It tuned flat and is the best antenna I've ever used as far as verticals are concerned. They are very quiet on the RX side and man they will put a signal out too! Mike is set to 26ft to the base. I posted a thread about it. It isn't an easy antenna to put together though. The tornado or the GPE 27 are good ones. Here is a photo of one that my local friend has up, notice how small the mast pipe is. It's fence rail top post. 194419451946
This is the one I posted the photo of from DNJ Radio. Great place to buy from. Anyway. Have a good one. Off to work.

FATKAT
11-13-2015, 12:32 PM
I can hear lots of people this afternoon! So much so they are talking all over each other. Can only hear one side of any conversation and that is a loose term for what I am hearing. I guess what ever the weather conditions are they are good for somebody. It is mostly clear and sunny here today in downtown Atlanta.

clubguy
11-13-2015, 03:02 PM
So, better than the old antenna?

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FATKAT
11-13-2015, 05:16 PM
So, better than the old antenna?

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Well I'm going to say yea......... Up until today I thought they were all just pulling my leg :) I haven't heard anything like today so far. I just came in from getting the wiring completed running direct off the battery and can still hear some. Its all one sided and seems to come and go and a lot is difficult to understand. But today I'm hearing it.

FATKAT
11-13-2015, 05:21 PM
I did contact someone this afternoon on AM. We were only maybe a couple miles apart. He is actually only about 4 miles or so from my house. He said to turn up the modulation on the radio. I take it he is on a base.

A Power Mic will accomplish the same thing, will it not?

222FL
11-13-2015, 05:40 PM
Yes it will. Look at the RF limited 2018 extreme mic. It's a great mic and you can set it without any echo and it sounds very good. Even just a slight touch of reverb isn't too bad on SSB. But echo and roger beeps don't go over well with the SSB crowd. I have one of the mics I listed above and it makes the 980 wake up a lot. Leave the internal modulation alone. Make sure the mic gain is set to 4 with the stock mic before giving up too. It may already be. But yes a good power mic will help!!

222FL
11-13-2015, 05:45 PM
SSB you have to tune or clarify people to where they sound normal. That is most likely your issue on SSB is that you don't have the clarifier set correctly. Listen to a loud station and use your clarifier to tune him in until his voice sounds normal. It's different from AM. It takes some time to get used to but you'll make contacts on SSB if you keep at it. And what you were hearing is dx. And normally depending on where you are, you are going to hear one side of the conversation majority of the time. Do some research on SSB operation and you'll get what I mean.

FATKAT
11-13-2015, 06:49 PM
Yea I got the clarifier thing. I followed your instruction to work in and around the 10 o'clock position. I could hear some very well so I assume they were running amps of some kind but couldn't here who they were speaking to. There were so many this afternoon and then someone with a stronger signal would come over another.

I could not hear a lot of call numbers and a lot sounded like CB talk but mostly they were just confirming they were hearing XXX000 and it would be on to the next. I did not try to make a call out to anyone on SSB today. I still don't know what to call myself. I had hoped to hear others and then I would have an idea how to proceed.

I want to know how you "CUT" the base of that whip! I will have to take a Die Grinder to it to make cuts. That thing is thick at the base. My side cutters will not cut it like the Lil Wil or K30:)

222FL
11-14-2015, 12:05 AM
Just pick a 3 digit number that is east for you to remember. I use 222. Those are my lucky numbers so it's what I use and have for 15-20yrs now. Some of the stations may say Alpha Kilo (AK) and this is normally a club call sign. Just a different mode of the CB band that at times has better etiquette than CB band. But it has gotten bad!! Anyway pick a set of numbers and call out CQ DX "your numbers" standing by for possible contact. Wait for about 10 seconds and if no one responds do it again. It's all about timing!! You can make contacts with that radio and 12 watts I promise. Give it a try and you'll see. When you hear the loudest station come in, call back for him. That is when you will call his numbers like on AM. How about it 444, this is 222 Daytona Bch., FL waving a hand, trying to make contact, or whatever you feel comfortable with saying. There is some etiquette on SSB, so listen for what others are saying and you will catch on to what they are asking. Some may say QSY to another channel. Means just that, lets move to a diff freq. It isn't hard to learn the "lingo" per say. Just keep at it. Once you make s good dx contact you will be hooked!!! It's just now that conditions are picking up. There are quite a few SSB guys in Atlanta I would think. Listen early am like 5am or so from 36-40lsb. You may find a group of locals.

FATKAT
11-14-2015, 02:42 PM
Lots of DXing going on today as well. I have read an article that I guess is fairly old on CB Radio Magazine's web site in the How To Section about SSB. Link below

http://cbradiomagazine.com/Articles/How%20to%20Shoot%20Skip.htm

So I paid more attention to the antenna mast for that TV antenna here at the house. It turns out that it is 1 1/4 or 1 1/2 inch galvanized steel water pipe so its sturdy! It is maybe 15 feet tall and that is maybe the high point of the roof ridge of my house. If I purchase that Sirio base antenna the radials will be about level with that roof ridge is this BAD or will it still function properly? I don't know what they do so...... I take it that SWR's can be adjusted on these on the ground before they are installed.

Also the pipe is not buried in the ground. Its in maybe a couple inches. I can't lift it without loosening the stand off about 9 feet up. What else would I need to know or do to install a base antenna.

By the way I have purchased a Radio Shack 21-534 Watt/SWR meter. Found one that said and showed to be "New in Box". I also have that Dummy Load coming. So now I will be able to bench test power output on a radio is that correct?

222FL
11-14-2015, 06:10 PM
Yes you can bench test power now. Don't forget the couple of coax jumpers you will need to go from radio to swr meter then to dummy load from swr meter. Also you need to get the pipe up to at least 20ft for it to work correctly. And yes the radials need to be away from any obstructions. Look up some pics of the sirio tornado through Google and you'll see how they are mounted. You might be able to get a couple more pipes and make yourself a push up mast yourself. Find some more pipe either larger or smaller to slide in or out of the current pipe. You need to bury the pipe a few feet down as well as to not have the bottom swing out due to a bad storm or something. Take your time and look around your house for a good mounting area, then plan around that area. Safety is the main thing. Stay away from power lines and from neighbors houses!! JMHO. Especially on the power lines. Stay away at all costs!!!

FATKAT
11-15-2015, 07:25 PM
I been doing lots of yard work the past two days. I don't know what I will do on the antenna, for now likely nothing. Maybe I will just buy some coax and when I don't have a lot going on I can just connect to the antenna on the truck and listen in on what may be going on local on the CB in the evenings. I didn't hear much today on the radio. It was cloudy and overcast unlike the last two days. Other than that nothing going on here but leaf raking and burning.

How was everybody else's weekend?

clubguy
11-15-2015, 08:16 PM
About the same as yours. ..beautiful weather in Minnesota...lawn mowing, picking up leaves, cigar smoking. Attended my daughter's 2 hockey games.

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FATKAT
11-15-2015, 08:27 PM
My son lives in North Carolina, I spoke to him on the phone yesterday before he went to work. He loves Hockey! I don't get it but then I am not much of a sports guy. Some Alabama Football maybe :) Now Drag Racing that's where I can't get enough. I love fast cars..........

222FL
11-15-2015, 09:18 PM
Same here. Went to the fair yesterday with the little one. And today mowed the lawn!!

222FL
11-15-2015, 09:25 PM
I use bolt cutters or even a grinder or disc grinder with a metal cut off wheel. Bolt cutters work well and then I take the grinder and make it nice and flat. Remember to mark each cut and only cut 1/8" at at time. It might take a couple more cuts, but you won't risk going to short!! You'll get some conditions soon. It will come. Take your time. I just listened for a few weeks and then made my first contact to 696 needle bender out west. I was hooked after that!! You'll see what I mean when Mother Nature opens the dx door for your area. It will come!!

FATKAT
11-18-2015, 10:30 AM
Optima mk3.
Stryker 955hp
Lincoln 2 ver. 3
Uniden grant 2

So I have been looking at reviews on these radios and maybe they are all above my level at this time. As I have stated I am not a fan of the Push Button / Menu interface with some of these radios.

1st the Optima seems to be way above my understanding a this time and has many options that I would not possibly be able to grasp the use of any time soon.

2nd the Stryker seems to be much more up my alley with the knobs and switches controls. Yes it has some menu items but it is flip the switch, set the control and you’re done. It also has some ability with a computer program that over time I may be able to get an idea as to how to use in a couple of aspects but overall seems to be what I would want in a radio.

3rd & 4th the Lincoln 2 v3 and Uniden Grant also more push button and menu driven.

In a vehicle / mobile setting the knob and switch radio seems to be the way to go at least for me. My question is-

Are the Galaxy Radios really all that bad? The reviews are good on them. The 959 / 979 are the ones made for CB and SSB use while the likes of the DX33HP2 are a different animal and much like the Stryker 955hp.

Not that I am going to do anything right now. I just think the 980SSB is better suited as a base unit where fiddling with buttons and menus is not an issue. But the Galaxy 2547 looks interesting so who knows, just thinking right now.

clubguy
11-18-2015, 07:37 PM
Did you read the review of the Stryker on cbradiomagazine.com?

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Steve_Buckeye
11-18-2015, 07:38 PM
:300 (212): Welcome!

222FL
11-18-2015, 07:55 PM
Get the optima mk3. Best out of all the radios you listed IMO. I've had one for about 3yrs and it is still running strong as the day I got it. If you buy one, get it directly from Yeticom or survival systems.com. Yes they are in New Zealand, but the radio is coming from the only authorized dealer of the optima mk3. They perform some extra work and also add a Better mic than the small phantom stock mic. Worth every penny of the $300 for this radio. Ask around and read the reviews of all of them and you'll see the optima mk3 rise to the top.
Stay away from the Galaxy radios if you plan on using SSB a lot. They drift on SSB. They always have and idk what others say, I've heard way too many off freq Galaxy 959's and such. They just aren't that good on SSB. JMO. The optima mk3 is made for SSB and is probably the best SSB export radio made. They do okay on AM, but they really shine on SSB!! Stable as a rock and they are actually very easy to use once you understand them a bit. Been reading about some QC issues with the strkyer 955hp's and the Lincoln 2 or grant don't hold a candle to the optima mk3. People time after time have admitted that the optima is just a better radio. Read around and really research the radios you have listed and you'll see the optima mk3 is the easiest radio to use out of all of the ones listed above. But hey don't beleive me, do some good research and you'll see for yourself. Good day.

clubguy
11-18-2015, 08:04 PM
Does the Optimo show channel numbers on the AM band or does it show frequencies? If not, are the frequencies easy to remember once you've been using for a while?

FATKAT
11-19-2015, 05:38 AM
:300 (212): Welcome!

Hi, Buckeye

Welcome

FATKAT
11-19-2015, 05:49 AM
Does the Optimo show channel numbers on the AM band or does it show frequencies? If not, are the frequencies easy to remember once you've been using for a while?

I noted this also and I am sure once you learn the different frequencies by number it's a snap. I am also sure I can find a list to print out but I am looking at mobile use and that is a drawback for quick easy changes while on the move. Switches and Knobs, I can get a feel for what switch is where and muscle memory will kick in sooner or later.

Although I do agree buying the most advanced radio would put an end to what radio to buy. I think placement would be a bigger issue in my personal mobile situation. The button and menu aspect does not appeal to me.

clubguy
11-20-2015, 03:50 AM
Check out the General Lee or General Longstreet radios on cbradiomagazine.com if you are intersted in the more traditional/functional radios.



http://www.cbradiomagazine.com/Radio%20Reviews/General%20Lee/General%20Lee%2010%20meter%20radio.html



http://cbradiomagazine.com/Radio%20Reviews/General%20Longstreet/General%20Longstreet.html

FATKAT
11-20-2015, 09:38 AM
Yea, I have looked at the General radios. I guess to the best of my understanding is that all of the radios listed and the General radios are really Ham radios that have to be modified to work on CB Channels.

This may or may not be true of the Galaxy 959 / 979 radio or at least it seems they come out of the box ready for CB Channels.
I think I would like to have a mobile SSB radio and the Uniden 980SSB has the features but not the control interface of my liking. It seems that they used to make them but are moving away from the Knobs and Switches to push button / menu processor controlled interface. The Galaxy 959B is pretty much exactly what I would want. I may decide to take another route but for now I am going to concentrate on getting a base antenna set up and move the 980 in the house. I may pick up a Uniden 787 CB (if they would make it SSB capable it would be prefect) to put in my work truck while I work on a way to install a radio in my other truck without putting holes everywhere, I have a plan. :)

FATKAT
11-20-2015, 06:52 PM
Well I don't know where everybody went. I know I have no life so....... I had one once :)

You won't believe what I did today.......

I went to Radio Shack and bought a 50ft roll of coax and a connector to connect the coax to the antenna on my truck. I parked the truck in the front yard and brought the other end of the coax inside the back door then drug out a power supply and connected the 29LTD up. Checked the SWR's and got 1.1 on channel 1 and 40 and I now have a base station. Made a contact not too far away but now I am in the recliner watching TV with the radio on the coffee table waiting to get something started. :)

222FL
11-21-2015, 12:32 PM
The optima mk3 reads in frequency on all modes. Continuous coverage from 24.500 to 29.999. Stock setting is 5k steps. I just have saved the 5 most used freqs I use and if I need to go somewhere it's not that hard to get there with dialing the knob a bit. And yes, it's very simple to remember the freqs after going to them enough. I like the radio. I am biased by this, but it was through research like this that I came to find the optima mk3. With that said I also own a few other radios including an Icom 746, kenwood ts140s, a few am radios and a few SSB radios well. If I were in the market for a radio and had the money to spend, I would look at the kenwood ts480hx or and Icom 718, 7200 or Alinco sr8t. And add an external antenna tuner for other bands if wanted. Or find a good used HF radio like a kenwood TS50s or similar for mobile and you can find good deals if you look around on CL locally as well as EBay from time to time. Best if you buy used to get one locally if possible and be able to test it before you buy. I got lucky with my ts140s and spent less then $300 shipped for it I think or right at that. It is bit smaller than a full size base station radio I guess you could say. It works great and is dead on frequency. Anyway, JMHO about all of it. Good day.

clubguy
11-22-2015, 09:08 AM
It's the decision about what's best for communication while you are driving : CB/SSB or Ham.

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clubguy
11-22-2015, 09:08 AM
Well I don't know where everybody went. I know I have no life so....... I had one once :)

You won't believe what I did today.......

I went to Radio Shack and bought a 50ft roll of coax and a connector to connect the coax to the antenna on my truck. I parked the truck in the front yard and brought the other end of the coax inside the back door then drug out a power supply and connected the 29LTD up. Checked the SWR's and got 1.1 on channel 1 and 40 and I now have a base station. Made a contact not too far away but now I am in the recliner watching TV with the radio on the coffee table waiting to get something started. :)
Now that is funny. Was there some duct tape involved?

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FATKAT
11-22-2015, 10:34 AM
Now that is funny. Was there some duct tape involved?

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Not yet,,,, but if duct tape can make a ground plane......... well :)

222FL
11-23-2015, 04:58 AM
If it works and you are making contacts, good deal!! As far as the Radio Shack coax, it is not the best there is and is quite lossy for a 100ft run. This may be why you are seeing a good VSWR reading as well. If you can afford it at some point, get some good LMR240 or LMR400. A 100ft run from a good company like times microwave or Davis cable, Andrew, Commscope, Belden, and so on. Don't buy the knock off stuff its crap. And also either have them install or purchase good connectors as well. Amphenol makes good connectors that will fit both of the coax's listed above. Just need reducers for the lmr240. Get 100ft., and don't cut it. Coil up what you don't use and when/if you ever get a base antenna you will have good coax already. JMHO and some food for thought. Have a good one and happy dxing!!

FATKAT
11-23-2015, 05:27 AM
Yea, I know it likely wasn't the best coax but I thought for a quick easy try $20 for 50ft was worth a shot. The guy I spoke to was surprised when I told him what I had set up "String Bean" was his handle. We were a couple miles apart or so as the crow flies but he said it sounded good. I didn't hear much else happing all weekend on AM or SSB at least local.

For now it was just a way to get a radio set up in the house. I did move the 980 inside yesterday. Just messin around I got to pay property taxes this week and time to start getting ready for Christmas. My parents are easy to buy for cause what do you get someone that has everything they want? A good steak dinner! For my son it will be CASH and maybe some weird, Strange, Off the Wall T-Shirt. He has a warped since of humor, much like his Dad!

222FL
11-23-2015, 02:32 PM
Where abouts in GA are you FATKAT?? Just curious as sometimes I hear some GA stations when conditions are right. At any rate have fun, and keep at it on SSB, you'll make a contact. Don't worry you'll make them eventually. Don't get discouraged.

FATKAT
11-23-2015, 04:40 PM
I'm in NW Ga. about 50 miles outside Atlanta, Near Rome Ga.

222FL
11-23-2015, 04:56 PM
Okay. I've talked to that area a couple times when the conditions were right. Had some family in Marietta at one time as well. Nice place.

FATKAT
11-23-2015, 05:09 PM
Yes Sir, I like it here. Born in Kennestone Hospital and lived here all my life. Lived in the Marietta / Smyrna area until about 20 years ago and bought this house up here. My parents still live in Marietta.
I work up here when I bought this house and the same year I lost that job and haven't worked here since :( Drive to down town Atlanta every day and back. I get to go in early and get out early so that helps a little.

All of my family is from Alabama my mom and dad moved here and dad went to work for Lockheed. He retired about 15 years ago mom soon after.

222FL
11-24-2015, 07:02 AM
Been around that area and its beautiful!! There is large lake somewhere near you I believe that a lot of people go camping and boating, jet skiing, and so on. Can't remember where exactly it was, I think north of Marietta maybe?? Anyway, spent the weekend there with my now X wife and kids and I do recall having a grand time!!! At any rate maybe one day I'll hear you on air!! 222 Daytona Bch., FL, operator name is Sean. 73 and God Bless.

FATKAT
11-24-2015, 06:53 PM
Yea, that would be Lake Allatoona. It a Corps of Engineers Reservoir. That about 20 miles south of me give or take.

222FL
11-25-2015, 06:57 AM
That is the one!! Had a great time there. My son got to ride the jet ski and we stayed in the X's Uncle's camper. Nice place. At any rate. I know your approx location. Beautiful country outside of Atlanta!!

222FL
11-25-2015, 07:00 AM
Or correctly put, beautiful up there, the state, shoot anywhere outside of Atlanta LOL!! I feel for you having to work there!! At any rate, maybe when conditions allow I can speak with you on air on SSB. It happens from time to time. I've a couple logged contacts from the Atlanta area, as well as south of there and North as well.
73 and God Bless.

FATKAT
11-25-2015, 07:24 AM
I can't say that I have heard anyone from Fla. yet. I hear people from out west a bunch and a couple from Canada.

I still have to learn what to look for in conditions that would be good for getting out. The past couple of days have been quiet. I moved the 980 indoors and have been connecting it to the Lil Wil antenna and putting it on top of the truck in the evenings. I have been reaching out local and have made a couple of contacts on channel 33. It seems as I was told to be where locals hang out. When the weekend gets here I will hook back up to the Sirio.

I need to get a base antenna, I don't know how high I will be able to mount it by myself. I think I can set the SWR's with it on the ground before I have to get it up and mounted to a pole. Question- with the radials on some of these antennas do you set SWR's with or without them. It seems it will be difficult to do with them on and on the ground without damage. Remember I have to do this all by my lonesome so maybe the antenna without radials would be the way to go.

222FL
11-25-2015, 11:17 AM
Get an IMAX2000. For a starter antenna they work well. Just screw the 3 sections together and get it up to 20ft to the base. A 1.5" to 1.25" galvanized steel pipe will work well. Drill the top pipe and lower one section about 18" down into the other. This will give you about 18ft if you put it in the ground a couple feet then attach it to the side of your house if possible. For tuning the antenna, just use 1 pipe and dig a hole and place pipe in it. It helps if you have some extra pipe or conduit you could pound a piece down in the ground and then slide the 10ft mast pipe with the antenna mounted to it already. Slide your new pipe either into or over the one that you pounded into the ground. Before you place the mast pipe up mount the antenna to the mast pipe and level it. Having a few sets of sawhorses work well. Safety is key so take your time and plan it out well in advance. I like aluminum antennas myself and use a sirio vector 4000. Not an easy antenna to setup by yourself. The sirio tornado is another antenna that is simple to install and even with the radials isn't hard to mess with. If you use the tuning guide that comes with the antenna and use the exact measurements the antenna will work correctly and tune correctly. Or should anyway. If you are going to keep installing or messing with antennas and setups and so forth, get yourself an antenna analyzer. You can find them used sometimes or there are some newer ones out that don't break the bank. The MFJ269 I use is a tool more than a luxury. It makes tuning of antennas a breeze!! Worth every penny. JMHO.

FATKAT
11-25-2015, 12:18 PM
Thanks, that one uses rings at the bottom for SWR adjustment I take it and it will work without the radials?

I was looking at the Sirio GPE 27 or the Tornado 27 as they are both sub-100 dollar antennas. DNJ has the tornado for 71 dollars right now. I just can't find anything on how to adjust SWR's on ether of these. I think it is with the very TIP but once its up no way to reach it.

If I understand what you're saying that you measure the Sirio antenna length but I still don't know about setting SWR's unless that's part of it.

222FL
11-25-2015, 07:14 PM
On the IMAX2000 they make a GPK that some say works, some say it doesn't. Either way the IMAX2000 is an easy antenna to install but they are heavy. Also with the aluminum antennas That is part of setting it up with the lengths provided by Sirio. It will have the length for the tip which is the adjustment point on both the tornado and GPE27. If you read and go by the instructions you won't have to bring antenna down for any tuning, is a one shot deal and if done right does work. Sirio has their measurements just right!! Both antenna have a matching network so all that is needed is for the tip to be set on them, and with the tornado the radials need to be a specific length as well. Again, all lengths are provided by Sirio and are quite accurate. I achieved a flat vswr and good R and X readings as well with my tornado, and I just measured twice before putting it up. If done right antenna will tune correctly and for that matter any of the 2 antennas I mentioned or you did will work well. I've a local that has one of the inexpensive GPE27's and it gets out just fine, same with the tornado, it worked well for me. The GPE 27 is much shorter than the tornado. By about 3ft. Not much difference. And the rx/tx is basically the same with the same with both antennas 20-30ft off the ground. There are other antennas you can get, it just depends on what you want to do the most. Local and dx or just DX for the most part. If the answer is DX for the most part might want to look into a 1/2 wave dipole. They can be had for about $40 or so for a good one with a 1:1 balun. These placed at anywhere from 15ft up work well for dx placed horizontally. The higher you can get one the better, but not always necessary with DX. For both local and DX use, one of the 3 antennas first listed will work fine for a starter antenna. Like I said if you take your time and put it together correctly it will tune just fine. This has been my experience anyhow.

FATKAT
11-25-2015, 08:16 PM
The I-MAX 2000 may be the easy one to get up. I could put it together on the ground and then walk it up. It would still be tricky.

I just haven't been able to find instructions on the web and that's frustrating! I would like to know what I'm buying.

222FL
11-25-2015, 10:15 PM
The IMAX 2000 tunes with the rings just like an A99. They look almost the same except the IMAX 2000 is 24ft long vs the A99 at 18ft long. And they come pre tuned from factory for 27mhz I believe. Not much tuning required with these antennas. If you leave the rings alone and don't move them at all, not to check them out or anything, as I said they should be pre tuned. Now after you mount it and get it up on a short pole if possible and then check vswr and see if rings need any adjustments. The IMAX should be a plug and play antenna. Use some electrical tape around the rings to keep them from moving and paint antenna black. The painting isn't necessary, but with Fiberglass it's going to splinter eventually. Painting it or even using some plasti dip you can coat the antenna and this will help keep the splintering down as well as help conceal the antenna as well. Black is a good color it seems. My A99 is spray painted flat black and it blended in very well with surroundings, now the antenna I use now is a bit more noticeable LOL. Here are some pics of my antenna setup. http://images.tapatalk-cdn.com/15/11/25/9b74d9cb63de35a7b0f126109434f3bb.jpghttp://images.tapatalk-cdn.com/15/11/25/14953d718eb1656f44fd30b9c9a50229.jpghttp://images.tapatalk-cdn.com/15/11/25/158df5519651013f8453271117f0e348.jpg

FATKAT
11-26-2015, 06:04 PM
OK, so I ordered a Sirio Tornado tonight from DNJ Radio. That LMR Coax is some high dollar stuff! I don't know how long it will be until I get it installed. If I understand the adjustment is in the final tip install of the antenna. The question I have is on the instructions which do I choose for the CB frequencies. They are 26.965 to 27.405 so where on this chart will that fall?

Freq. (MHz) L (mm)
27.0 1120
27.185 1060
27.5 955
28.0 780
(10m band) 28.5 610
29.0 460
29.5 300
30.0 165

Well that did not work- The BOLD / Underline is the length in MM for the Freq. next to it.

222FL
11-26-2015, 11:58 PM
You want the one for 27.0MHz. Shorten it by 10mm and you're good to go. About 1040mm should be about right for approx. 27.205 which is the center of the CB band. If you look at the difference from 27.0 to 27.5 I just split the difference and go with it. Or close to it. If memory serves me right I tuned mine at this tip height. 1040mm should be about perfect. The radials are all the same and they give you the length to place the radials at. I just use a converter app for making MM into Inches. So 1040mm would be 40.944 inches. The radials don the same and use a sharpie to mark your lengths. Also use some blue loctite in the Allen screws that hold the radials and top whip. Tnis will keep them from backing out over time. Also if possible get yourself some no-ox special "a" for all connections minus the coax connector. Place some on all the self tapping screws and at every section where they screw together. You can get the no-ox off eBay for pretty cheap. Under $10. Here is what I am speaking of. See pic below for no-ox.
http://images.tapatalk-cdn.com/15/11/26/7d040cececd16b7e73d4aa4036fc9642.jpg
Use just a very light coat on all screws and such. Don't use on the Allen heads as they are stainless and you will be using blue locktite on these screws which should be 9-10 of them total. You'll see when you get the antenna where to use it. Any Allen screw that can back out over time with being moved around and such. Don't use the red locktite it's too much and you won't be able to get it loose!! Been there and done that!! Take your time, measure twice and double check all your measurements!! The antenna is light but will be a bit awkward to mess with. I suggest a 2nd set of hands to help lift the antenna up into place as to not bend it as the antenna is pretty long. Again you will understand more when you get the antenna. They are simple to put together and if you use the measurements I gave you for the tip you should be about good for tuning of the antenna. If the vswr is good on 1,20, & 40, leave it. Like a 1.1:1 or lower. The antenna should tune pretty flat across the 40 channels of the CB band. And as far as the coax goes, at least get a 100ft run of some rg8x or whatever you need to reach your radio room that is under 100ft. This is where the coax I mentioned comes into play. And if you look around you can get the coax for under $100 for 100ft. Try looking at Jefa Tech coax. The rg8x/LL240flex is $.43 a ft. That would be $43.00 for 100ft. Good coax and a good price!! Shipping shouldn't be too much. Add about $10 for shipping. Maybe a bit more. So for $60 you can have some quality coax that will last you a while and will work well. See photo below for Jefa tech coax as well. http://images.tapatalk-cdn.com/15/11/26/ef9c333d32ed7eed736f4d12aa2c27cb.jpg
Can you swing $50-$60 dollars for 100ft of some quality coax?? I'm sure you can dig up that much. Whatever you do, don't use the Radio Shack coax for your base station, it's not very good coax and I promise you will have issues, if not now then later, with the RG58 from Radio Shack!!
Don't skimp out on the coax and you can also have the connectors added as well or buy a 10pk of amphenol connectors like the ones listed below. Again, see pics. http://images.tapatalk-cdn.com/15/11/26/e7018029bc8461e2ba313378e9b1fc8d.jpg
You don't have to get as many connectors as shown but these are the ones you want for the coax I listed. And make sure the have the reducers. I use these connectors and have never had an issue with them!! The coax I've not used the Jefa Tech coax myself, but have been told by many it's quality stuff and well worth every penny!! Again, do it right once or have to take it down to mess with it a year from now or less is the question you need to ask yourself. I promise that the radio shack coax will in the end become an issue. Just not made for long term use outdoors like you want. JMHO. This is what I would do. Spend once and be done!! It is worth the extra few extra dollars to get quality parts and know they will last!! Again, JMHO. And your antenna "system" is the most important thing next to having a radio. Good luck and hope to catch you on air sometime.

FATKAT
11-27-2015, 03:09 PM
1952

So the top of this pipe is approximately 16 feet. It is not sunk in the ground. The very bottom has a short section of maybe a foot that is of reduced size. I may be able to raise it by adding a section at the bottom.

222FL
11-27-2015, 04:15 PM
That will work with the tornado. Get it to 18-20ft and start there. If you feel like you can go up to 27-30ft then go for it. Check the antenna out first though so you have an idea of the load factor at the top of the mast. They aren't very heavy, but you still want a good mast pipe setup. If you can find a pipe to slide inside that one and then you'll be up to about 24ft if you go down into the other pipe a couple feet and add a couple bolts. Add a Cinder block at the bottom and drill the pipe to it using a couple of good large tap con screws and a 2 hole conduit holder for the very bottom. This will keep it planted and keep it from swinging out on you. Just some food for thought. And you will need to ground the mast as well. Get a 5/8" x 8ft ground rod at Home Depot. Very back of the electrical section. Add this and a short piece of #2awg THHN to ground rod using the proper parts. You will need a clamp for the mast pipe and one for the ground rod. Place the ground rod close to the mast pipe and pound it all the way down until only a couple of inches are showing. Then add the clamp to the mast pipe like the one pictures below. Also you will need one for the ground rod. You can find them right with the clamp for the mast pipe. Same area. I call them acorn ground nuts. They look kind of like an acorn with a hole in it and a bolt to tighten it down to the ground rod. http://images.tapatalk-cdn.com/15/11/27/b0fc38c3e7900dac27bbecbc2e7bb07c.jpg
Here is a pic of the ground rod wire holder as well. http://images.tapatalk-cdn.com/15/11/27/988575515f690a714f745db6b49fce0f.jpg
I use solid #2awg for my grounding system and have a total of 7-8 ground rods around the back of my house and around the sides. All linked together to form a single point ground system. My radios and all equipment get grounded to these rods as well as a surge arrester. Can't be too safe when it comes to grounding around here as its the Lightning Capitol of the world!! I take this very seriously as well and can go on about it for a while as well. For now get yourself at least one ground rod and ground your mast pipe. JMHO.

FATKAT
11-27-2015, 04:57 PM
I thought I might get that pipe on the ground and dig out a foot or so to re-set it. I also thought I may buy a pipe to pipe clamp and extend the mast from the top with a 10 foot fence top rail pipe clamped to the side of this pipe. I could add 5 or 6 feet to the height without needing guy wires. That would put the base of the antenna at 20 feet or so.

1953

222FL
11-27-2015, 06:36 PM
20ft is a good start if that is high as you can get antenna for now. Take your time putting it together and be safe.

FATKAT
11-30-2015, 05:02 PM
Hope everyone had a Great Thanksgiving.

I think if I bury the existing pipe in the ground about a foot and add a 10 ft pipe at the top with about say 16 inches for the clamps then I should have the base of the antenna at about 23 feet.
I plan to assemble all of this on the ground and then stand it back up as an assembly, that being the tricky part.
J

I don’t think I can get it any higher without getting real serious with a mast. I hope it's enough.

222FL
11-30-2015, 06:19 PM
Try to get a set of extra hands to help you lift the antenna back up. Reason I say this and you'll understand once you build the antenna is to keep it from gerund bent when you put it up due the length of the antenna itself. It helps to have a least 2 people to place a mast up, one at the antenna to help walk it up as far as possible, this will help keep the antenna from getting bent or damaged should you loose control while trying to get it up. It's not hard but it can be tricky at times! Be safe and take your time. Sounds like you have a good plan in place and just need to implement it!! And enjoy the new toys[emoji106].

FATKAT
12-01-2015, 01:38 PM
Alright I just came back from Home Depot and I noticed something. The 1 3/8 inch fence top rail is 16 gauge galvanized and 10ft 6in long. The 1 1/4 inch EMT Conduit is larger outer diameter or so it seems. I suppose its inside diameter v outside diameter. Suppose which one would be stronger, The price is not greatly different. The schedule 40 Ridged conduit I am betting is what I have outside the house now but 10ft of that is 30$. I am unsure of how strong a section joint would be in the middle of two pieces standing upright although it being threaded on each end I could cut one piece in half and connect to each end of a full piece that would likely be pretty strong but costly.

222FL
12-02-2015, 01:27 AM
I used an 1 1/4" conduit then the 1 3/8" fence rail inside it. Worked perfect for the tornado. Just brace it well and you will be okay. The tornado is a light antenna. You may want to wait til antenna is in hand before you buy any conduit though just in case.

FATKAT
12-04-2015, 06:31 AM
I was just at the Depot and looked at options. Antenna should arrive by Monday but my computer's hard drive decided to take a dump yesterday so now I'm on a search for a new computer and someone that can recover files from that hard drive. Dang,........ Christmas is looking bad right now for everyone but me :)...................

I may just put it up on the pole I have and see how it goes. Its not very high but it's a start. I will have to buy some cheap coax cable for now as well, that LMR400 is just to expensive at the moment. Maybe with a good Christmas bonus I will be able to swing something later.

I still have to get in a weeks vacation between now and the end of the year and I'm already scheduled off the first week in January and that's carry over from this years vacation time. I have never had a job with this much paid time off before. I don't know what to do with all of it. Nice problem to have a suppose. I can't complain anyway but even when I'm off I still have the dang company phone and it never stops ringing and letting me know I have an email. I'm never too far away from work.

222FL
12-05-2015, 05:02 AM
Hey FATKAT check your PM inbox. Sent a PM your way. Read the PM before you proceed any further!!!!!

222FL
12-05-2015, 05:03 AM
You'll understand once you read the PM. Good day and be in touch hopefully.

FATKAT
12-05-2015, 03:12 PM
You'll understand once you read the PM. Good day and be in touch hopefully.

PM replied

Wow, the skip rolled in here last night late. The thing I thought was strange is their was very little back ground noise. I had the RF Gain turned all the way up and the Squelch turned all the way down and you could actually sit in the same room with the radio! It was quite pleasant.

I still don't think I get SSB. Everybody talking over everybody else. I still did not reach out.

I forgot- Here's a pick of my puny setup

~

222FL
12-05-2015, 04:33 PM
Hey those 980's are great radios man. Own one myself. As far as conditions. Yea last night was awesome. I just said "hello radio" and had about 20 people coming back to me. Talked all up the east coast. 667 VA, Maryland, NY, and Canada were all booming in as well as west coast stuff. I made contact with S. America today. Brazil. 3OD002. Had a good talk on freq 27.570 USB. At any rate, today I talked to 620 west TX and a few others as well.

FATKAT
12-05-2015, 05:57 PM
OK, so I just made my first contact on SSB with 133 State of Main. He said I sounded good from here in NW Georgia.

mjd420nova
12-05-2015, 06:57 PM
You could cut one larger diameter pieces into two foot pieces to slide over the joint of two smaller diameter pieces.

FATKAT
12-05-2015, 07:02 PM
Roll Tide !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

FATKAT
12-05-2015, 07:05 PM
You could cut one larger diameter pieces into two foot pieces to slide over the joint of two smaller diameter pieces.

Yea, I'll come up with something. It may take me a little while.

FATKAT
12-07-2015, 05:58 PM
Well gentleman my antenna has arrived. I still need my pipe to pipe clamps and the NO OX and some coax and an extra hand and I can get her up!!!!!!!!!!!

Oh and some ground wire and a ground rod and........................................................................ :)

222FL
12-09-2015, 04:31 AM
Take your time and get it all done at once. Don't leave the antenna ungrounded!! Add the ground rod and wire as soon as you add the mast pipe. Just saying this as static or a surge or nearby lightning strike can take out all of your equipment if it's not grounded. All of it!! Radio included. If you add more than one ground rod, which I suggest you do, place them as close to the equipment and mast as possible and then you need to terminate both together with a piece of wire to make it a single ground point system. Do not separate radio and antenna ground rods, they have to be tied together to work correctly! And use the 5/8" ones if you can. Having more than 1 ground rods is a good idea as long as you install them correctly. JMHO about that. Keep us updated and hope all goes smooth with the install. If you do it right it will work like a champ!!

mjd420nova
12-09-2015, 11:25 AM
There's a whole lot that can be done when manipulating the "ground" wire length. It would be possible to create a counterpoise that would make the antenna appear much higher off the ground than it really is. Besides proper grounding at the antenna mast and lightning arresters, proper grounding is essential at the power source too.

FATKAT
12-09-2015, 08:43 PM
There's a whole lot that can be done when manipulating the "ground" wire length. It would be possible to create a counterpoise that would make the antenna appear much higher off the ground than it really is. Besides proper grounding at the antenna mast and lightning arresters, proper grounding is essential at the power source too.

Interesting, care to elaborate? or maybe point me in the direction for further information.

mjd420nova
12-09-2015, 09:42 PM
If you look at a dipole antenna, the simplest, the top vertical mast is the active radiator of the electromagnetic wave. Radials, are meant to be a ground potential but if the antenna is isolated from ground, a heavy copper braid wire can provide a ground but the length can be manipulated to create ant antenna that would appear to be any length above ground as you select. This can also become helpful in mobile uses where there are no ground points at the antenna base and the coax length becomes critical. Campers, motorhomes, trailers have fiberglass roofs and as a result, a poor performing antenna and horrible SWR matches. I've used single elements of copper screen glasses into the top and a connection point to create a ground, again the connecting wire length can be adjusted. Single narrow sheets can be arrayed in a circle with connections to each to create a directional elements. Each installation is unique and often takes much trial and error but the end results can be dramatic.

222FL
12-10-2015, 05:12 AM
We are talking about a base station install here correct?? If so and a vertical antenna is being used, ground all equipment, radio, antenna mast, power supply if needed. All of tie grounds need to be tied together and form a single point ground system. Tnis means if you have 2 or more grounding rods they need to be connected to each other and then all your equipment needs to be connected as well. Radio, power supply (if applicable), surge arresters, radios, amps, and antenna mast all need to be grounded. Some use a ground buss bar like this one to tie all their grounds tied together. http://images.tapatalk-cdn.com/15/12/10/28d33f3fd95b2fd5754da73400f80882.jpg
2-3 ground rods 8ft in length and 5/8" ones seem to work well. You can also get a small ground buss bar as well like the one pictured that will have way less holes and obviously be much smaller. But you get the idea. Read up on commercial tower grounding and how they do it. You'll have a good understanding of what is truly needed then!! JMHO.

FATKAT
12-10-2015, 05:34 AM
I will take some photos of some of the things I am planning to use for this "BASE" set up and post them up in the next few days.
My house was built in 1960 and it is only a small 2 bed room one bath house. All of the wiring in the house is also from 1960 and I mean cloth wrapped 2 wire, wire. Not like wire today with 2 wires with a non-insulated ground wire. "YEAP I KNOW"...................
I can't rewire the house so I understand I will need to come up with something!

Challenges, Don't you just love um?..............

mjd420nova
12-10-2015, 09:50 AM
There's a whole raft of things that can be done to create artificial grounds. This can be a big help with SWR. Older homes need to have that ground from outside , inside to the rest of the equipment. Three wire outlets provide the ground, two wire, you need to provide one or a surge/spike/strike can wipe out everything and even start a fire. Once any protection device has received an event, must be checked and often replaced as they are sacrificial elements that destroy themselves to protect the circuit and will not work properly anymore. The buss bar is what will be found in todays homes, inside the power panel. Incoming lines to the home need protection too, cable, phone, outside antennas of any type(sat, CB, ham, TV, GMRS, etc). Many power strip/surge protection boxes come with phone and cable ports to protect them but if that box isn't grounded properly, serious damage will occur. Creating a serious ground that is much higher than surround terrain or structures is an invitation to a strike. Serious strikes have been shown to have initiated from a ground strike, preparing a path for the bolt from above.

FATKAT
12-12-2015, 07:45 PM
1975

So in the drawing the red circle is where the antenna will be and the yellow square is a window where I plan to run the antenna cable in.This is on the carport and also the area in the house where the radio will be.There is a door and another window on that wall going to the back of the house.

The coax will come from the antenna and come under the eve of the house and run along the wall above the windows and door and drop down to come in the window to the radio.
The distance along that wall will be approx. 20 feet then add in the drop at the window. It will be 12 or 15 feet from the antenna to the roof eve. So I guess approx. 35 feet to get in the window with the coax.

I have a 19-inch computer rack that I thought I may use to mount radio equipment in or on and I have a rack mount power strip / power conditioner that I thought I could use to power everything with. 1 switch will turn everything on / off.

I could possibly place a ground wire on the outlet the power will come from and run it out the window and along the wall and to the ground rod at the antenna. Again we are talking about 25/30 feet to get to a ground rod at the antenna.
Will the antenna and the mast both need ground wires? Would there be any need for additional grounding?

1976

mjd420nova
12-12-2015, 11:58 PM
The ground I use enters the house by the shortest route from the nearest stake, I have two. It is flat nickel plated copper braid, substation spec, braised to each rod. A lightning arrestor is between the two, they merge at the station, as the stake at the tower base is my artificial. The artificial is a fake laydown on a wooden panel to allow tap points along an 18 foot section. The ground direct first goes to two TVI filters, one is adjustable. From there onto the station ground buss. It also serves a computer work bench area and the home cable modem and router for the computer gear. The house ground is a double stake affair in a center access space in a closet floor. It goes direct to the power panel and house outlets from there. I keep the artificial ground isolated from the station ground thus the need for the lightning arrestor, it only manipulates the "apparent ground" for the transmission coax that feeds the antenna. The separation point is keeping the RF being generated and its associated ground from the transmitter and the ground from the artificial antenna ground. This does require isolating the clamp down area at the top of the mast for the antenna and providing a secure connection to the ground wire ( it doesn't have to be braid, solid core will do as well).
The ground provided at the transmitter, the outside conductor of the coax will suffice at the mast, just the physical ground of the antenna itself at the mast. The addition of a lightning arrestor between the two helps the isolation but will arc over and provide a path to ground in the case of a strike. It is also sacrificial in most cases, like surge protectors, they will destroy themselves to provide the protection but it is only a one shot deal. Some power conditioners can be costly and should only be needed under severe conditions. They are also a bit power hunger, adding around an extra hundred watts to a 700 watt load. Coax should be as short as possible with drip loops where needed.

222FL
12-14-2015, 06:07 AM
All great info there mjd420nova!! Read it twice and understand what is being said!! Good grounding practice is a must where I live here around central FL, the Lightning Capitol of the world!! So it goes without saying I've setup one heck of a ground system like you. Takes time and proper knowledge. To others, have a look at the way a commercial tower for cell phone or radio/tv use is grounded and how it all grounds to to the shelter and such. Very intricate and made to take a strike and keep working!! Again, good stuff mjd420nova!!

FATKAT
12-14-2015, 06:24 AM
I can say without a doubt that I am lost in all of what has been said. I have a friend that is an electrician and I will talk to him about how to set all of this up. Like I said Old House with no Ground system at all!

We do get storms here and lightning. I am not part of a subdivision but have one next to me. A house in that subdivision was struck a couple of years ago. I was standing at my back door watching it rain and such then BAM and a couple of moments later smoke started coming from the house. The trees on ether side of the house will be taller than the antenna but that isn't much comfort.

222FL
12-15-2015, 06:38 AM
Have your electrician add a ground for your house and also if you can afford it a surge protector for incoming AC power. They aren't cheap!
Also make sure you ground all your equipment and if you use more than 1 ground rod, make sure to tie both together. Again I highly recommend reading up on commercial tower grounding systems and how they are installed and work. It may help you understand more what if being talked about. Just some food for thought.

mjd420nova
12-16-2015, 10:54 AM
The home I moved into in 1985 was built in 1960 and had no grounds in the outlets and aluminum wiring. My original intention was to take the roof off and add a second floor. The rewiring just happened to be easier with the roof off. Complete yank out of the old stull and in with new copper, power center (440 volt, three phase), and each outlet became controlled by a power center monitor. Each outlet was under current limiting with parameters set by and old IBM PC AT. I have worked on a lot of gear in older homes with no ground and it is really dangerous. Non-polarized outlets can allow for some equipment chassis to be at full AC potential, some report little tingles in their fingers, but no real shock, UNTIL you get between two items that are reversed and you just got 110 volts. Deadly for some, usually not for the shock but the fall afterwards. Any electrician should check EVERY outlet for correct wiring and grounds.

FATKAT
12-16-2015, 06:57 PM
I work with 277 almost daily and I can say that is a lot of fun standing on a ladder:) Its the "FRENCH" that comes after I have to watch out for. Live circuits are fun!

FATKAT
12-17-2015, 04:54 PM
My pipe to pipe clamps should be here tomorrow. I should get the mast assembled this weekend.

222FL
12-18-2015, 02:31 PM
Take your time FAT KAT and the tornado will tune well! Just follow the directions from sirio. Also make side that all your grounding is in place before you go to playing too much with things as a good ground is actually beneficial to your antenna system if done correctly. And be safe!! Hope to catch you on air before the DX dies!!

FATKAT
12-18-2015, 04:33 PM
Last night I was receiving a guy from BOCA like he was in the room, for a while. It got noisy not long after.

222FL
12-19-2015, 07:33 PM
Was it 138 by chance?? He is almost 200 miles S of me.

FATKAT
12-19-2015, 07:50 PM
Yea think that's right. He was coming in clean and clear.

222FL
12-20-2015, 04:34 AM
Yep. Most likely so. Where you are is a about 200 more miles away than me. I'm north of him about 200 miles south of me. I'm sure if you heard him you would have heard me as well as we normally speak with the same people and I do know him as well, 138 that is, and have spoken to him while working down that way many times as well as once or twice from the house when the conditions are right. There was some good DX last night until almost 1-2am this morning. I got on the radio at like 7-8 and talked to a whole group of fellas in NJ, they one by one made contact with me. Also spoke with a bunch of others as well. Used my dipole mostly and about 20-50 watts max last night and had a blast!! I must have talked to 20-30 people man!! That dipole at 35-40ft up was working well last night per the signal reports and call backs I was getting LOL! At any rate, get that antenna up and you'll be a happy camper!!

222FL
12-20-2015, 05:18 AM
Sent you a PM as well.

222FL
12-20-2015, 05:42 AM
I'll say this, if you have the room and have a couple trees that are 20ft high or more, place a dipole in the horz. position and man you'd be surprised at how they work!! Shoot when I first had mine up it was maybe 12-15ft off the ground and I worked Australia with it using a barefoot Uniden PC122XL @ 12 watts pep!! This was with my very first home brewed dipole antenna as well made from scrap stuff!! It obviously worked okay!! At any rate just some food for thought. Can't have too many antennas LOL!! Again, be safe installing the new antenna and take your time installing it. I would personally weather proof the joints of the antenna and make sure to use NO-OX on all the joints, screws and such. Don't use it on your coax connector!! Just on metal to metal surfaces. A light coat will work plenty fine. Also make sure you use BLUE locktite and not the RED stuff or you'll never get the Allen head screws back out. Believe me I know. And again, be safe!!

FATKAT
12-26-2015, 08:10 PM
1983

I hope everyone had a Wonderful Christmas and Wishing All a very Happy New Year.

I have been working on my radio set up with my time off the last few days. With Christmas Cash burning a hole in my pocket I am looking to add to my station as soon as I complete my antenna install. 50ft of LMR400 should be here before New Years and if it will stop raining maybe over the holiday I can complete that.

222FL
12-28-2015, 03:41 AM
Looking good FATKAT. How is the antenna install coming along or has it not started??? I know it's been busy as all get out lately first hand!!! Hope you get it up soon as the DX won't be here for much longer then it will be all local talk!!

FATKAT
12-28-2015, 05:18 AM
Looking good FATKAT. How is the antenna install coming along or has it not started??? I know it's been busy as all get out lately first hand!!! Hope you get it up soon as the DX won't be here for much longer then it will be all local talk!!

I hope to have the antenna up in the next week or so. Coax should be here Wednesday and when/if the rain lets up I will attempt to get it installed.

222FL
12-28-2015, 07:03 AM
Good deal!! Hope you are able to get it done. Write down everything you do and take measurements and record them. Also mark antenna with a good sharpie. It helps!! And as always, be safe!!

FATKAT
12-30-2015, 05:32 AM
HOLY CRAP!!!!!! Batman................................. My coax arrived yesterday and dang that is some large cable! The little standoffs I bought are going to have a hard time with this stuff!

After today the rain is supposed to be gone for the most part so maybe over new years I can get this thing assembled.

222FL
12-30-2015, 07:40 AM
Yep. It will last you a long time as well!! Well worth the investment! Hope you are able to get it up soon. DX has been good at night here. Talked to a guy outside of Atlanta the other night as a matter of fact.

FATKAT
12-30-2015, 10:35 AM
I need some help understanding the Breedlove Puck Mounts. How much clearance at the headliner am I going to need to use one of these. The web site has little information on this and I can't find any "YouTube" videos to help!

Anyone have pic's / video links to show the install?

222FL
12-30-2015, 01:42 PM
I can get one tomorrow from my buddies van. He has a 3" one hole so239 to so239 puck mount. A 5/8" hole is required and not much space on the bottom if you get the one with the ring terminals instead of the so239 connector.

FATKAT
12-30-2015, 04:54 PM
I can get one tomorrow from my buddies van. He has a 3" one hole so239 to so239 puck mount. A 5/8" hole is required and not much space on the bottom if you get the one with the ring terminals instead of the so239 connector.

That is what I was trying to figure out! Which one to buy. I don't know how much room I have and if I have clearance for the so239. Mounted on the truck I would need less that 3ft of coax to run from antenna and radio.

Do you know which one (model) it is? How much will he want for it?

FATKAT
12-30-2015, 06:24 PM
So the middle of the CB band is 27.205 (Ch. 20), so I want the tip at 955mm (37.5") to 1060mm (41.7") adjust for SWR reading? Can I assemble and just prop it antenna up and check SWR reading and make adjustments or just set the tip in that range and call it good? My tape measure don't read in MM so I will need to convert.

222FL
12-31-2015, 05:42 AM
You will have to order one from Breedlove mounts FATKAT. The one I speak of isn't for sale. You want this one here. Use the terminal ring style and you can then route your coax however you like as you don't have to a long connector and coax coming straight down. Terminal lugs can be fitted and not much room needed. Here is the one you want. Or from breedlovemounts.com
http://images.tapatalk-cdn.com/15/12/31/3373c55d141f535b4648d3f24d25b145.jpghttp://images.tapatalk-cdn.com/15/12/31/00fa5730b58d698250cbe49a626a2748.jpghttp://images.tapatalk-cdn.com/15/12/31/199021a98c3ab1921ff047ba41e0197b.jpg
This should show and give you an idea of what you'll need if you go this route. Also here is the other mount with so239 to so239. This is the bottom of the so239 one and it is actually a bit different from the photo shown as a brass so239 long barrel is what is used on the mounts and not what you see pictured. That is the way my buddy's is made. It has a solid brass bulkhead barrel connector that runs through the mount making it an so239 to so239 and it is about 1"-2" long coming down into the vehicle. It even states in the add that a solid brass so239 is used as well as that it's made for large base coil antennas like the Wilson 5000 and Sirio performer 5000 and so on.
Here is the photo of it and also the description. If you order one from them it will only take a couple days to get to you. http://images.tapatalk-cdn.com/15/12/31/ed65da877c8a80e1bdfdf2906886ceca.jpg
Like I said, If it were me, I would go with the ring terminal mount. I tried to tell my local pal to do this but he wanted the so239 to so239, and due to the length needed for the connector and coax to flow down before bending it's about 4-6" of space needed IMO. Less could be used if a right angle PL259 was installed or even an PL259 to SO239 right angle adapter needs to be used in order to keep the coax from being right in your face in the back seat. Look at the photos I posted and you will understand exactly what I mean. I would get the 3" mount and I beleive with shipping which it flat rate $10, a mount would be $55. Well worth every penny IMO. Great mounts that I've never heard anyone speak bad about. The one on my buddies van is very nice and well constructed. Hasn't leaked a drop. I just don't like the so239 to so239 myself. The so239 to ring terminal one is the one I would get. Model #179 is the one. When you go to the Breedlove mount homepage click onto "more options", and scroll down to the one that says "SO-239 MOUNTS". Here are photos of the pages you want as well.

Hope this helps. Again I know the mounts aren't cheap, but I do promise they are worth every penny!! They work and look very nice with a sirio performer 5000 on top. Again hope this helps and have a good one!!

222FL
12-31-2015, 05:43 AM
http://images.tapatalk-cdn.com/15/12/31/2e376f9c2fcc4e701dba2baf3befb0b6.jpghttp://images.tapatalk-cdn.com/15/12/31/0520ad355c5ce1660cfb189646ac1852.jpghttp://images.tapatalk-cdn.com/15/12/31/d16ea46a7b0deeed23b7f11301a221ff.jpghttp://images.tapatalk-cdn.com/15/12/31/0dc36e6982e7023f83ab8159b5400f25.jpg

222FL
12-31-2015, 05:46 AM
http://images.tapatalk-cdn.com/15/12/31/d4e7d511b0ef6f15400f0ad1cf428df2.jpghttp://images.tapatalk-cdn.com/15/12/31/880bf2c7c4ffa22428f23eb62f91dc38.jpghttp://images.tapatalk-cdn.com/15/12/31/027eb00b833d808332271cbab8827fd6.jpg
And just in case you want to add a different mounting type antenna, these are available.
Not trying to push one of these LOL! I am not a spokesman for them either!! Just know they are good mounts and that the one I have and the others I've seen are made quite well. Anyway. Again, hope it helps and have a good one

FATKAT
12-31-2015, 06:15 AM
Ok, I was just having trouble picturing how the "Ring Terminal" connects to the mount. I thought maybe one of the 90 degree 239 connectors may work but did not know how far the mount dropped below the roof.


Although I can solder some things I am unsure about soldering a 239 connector and getting it right. Until I get
a little practice in and a few attempts under my belt it would be easier for me to solder ring terminal ends. I would be more confident in that anyway.

222FL
12-31-2015, 06:30 AM
Here are pics of one of the 3" mounts with the so239 to so239 connector. No antenna is connected at top, under the red cap is an so239. http://images.tapatalk-cdn.com/15/12/31/87e7ac5d80895c94341fc46fa6d8b457.jpghttp://images.tapatalk-cdn.com/15/12/31/ae0fe8439cbf3f5c98fdacd573c45146.jpghttp://images.tapatalk-cdn.com/15/12/31/f3f142c1bec6f30e565408ed4fdd7d6e.jpghttp://images.tapatalk-cdn.com/15/12/31/3cb7ae5416b1eacc4a51aa7c30587278.jpg
Here you go. Take into account the connector and such and you'll see why I say get the one with the ring terminal connections.

FATKAT
12-31-2015, 03:50 PM
Here it is gentlemen. I'm tired, that was a job by myself but she's done. 50ft of coax was just long enough! If it had been a foot shorter I would have been in a mess.

19881989

I don't know why they are posting sideways and I'm too tired to fight it.

222FL
12-31-2015, 05:42 PM
Looks good man. What are vswr readings?? Looks like you got it up high enough. Good deal!!

FATKAT
12-31-2015, 05:53 PM
Looks good man. What are vswr readings?? Looks like you got it up high enough. Good deal!!

Under 1.1 on 1 and 40

222FL
12-31-2015, 07:19 PM
Killer. So it tuned well. Good deal. You will like that antenna!

FATKAT
12-31-2015, 07:30 PM
Yea I took a shot and split the difference in the two and it worked well. Made a side bans contact in Southern Cali for a second this afternoon before it got too busy. Listening for Fla. to roll in.

222FL
12-31-2015, 09:56 PM
It will. DX has been weird the last few days here. Been getting some good stuff at night like now. Not much on currently but there has been. Talked to someone near you the other day. Let me look their numbers up to see who it was. And you did good on the tuning if it's low like that. Good job man!! Told you it wouldn't be that hard to tune at least! Glad you got it up and running. Now you need a good little amp!!

222FL
12-31-2015, 09:58 PM
Hopefully I'll catch you on air soon now! Have a good one and Happy New Year!!

FATKAT
12-31-2015, 10:20 PM
HAPPY NEW YEAR !!!!! Roll Tide !!!!!!!!!!!

FATKAT
12-31-2015, 10:26 PM
I'm working on something here local..... Can you say Cobra 2000? Maybe?

222FL
12-31-2015, 11:20 PM
Good deal!! I'm partial to my Icom 746. I also have a kenwood ts140s that I am in the process of rewiring a new mic for. But the Icom 746 is my main radio. It does the job for me on both am and SSB. I am on SSB 99.9% of the time anyhow. At any rate hope you get a good deal on it if you get it. And have it sent out and tuned and aligned by a good tech!! Again, this is JMHO. Good radios those cobra 2k's. They rock on SSB when setup right.

222FL
12-31-2015, 11:21 PM
And HAPPY NEW YEAR as well!!!

FATKAT
02-11-2016, 08:18 AM
Sorry, I have been absent for a bit. I still got somethings going on with my parents right now and don't have much time to play the last few weeks.

I did notice that my SWR's have gone up a bit since I installed the antenna or maybe I did something different when checking them the other day. Still under 1.5. I have also had my radio worked on and added a little blue box to the mix. Still no time to play right now but hope to catch some of you on the air soon.

222FL
02-12-2016, 08:21 AM
Has it been raining a lot lately? Or was it real windy the day you checked the VSWR. These things will affect the VSWR. And also the connector at the feedpoint of the antenna can be a trouble area for water getting in. Might want to check your connectors if it's been raining a lot. JMHO.

FATKAT
02-19-2016, 09:09 PM
I can't make it not post the photo sideways! I don't get it?

Everything seems to be good, maybe I did something wrong. I had the 980 tuned and everything seems to be working well.

2001

I have added to the equipment. Now to figure out how to use it!? :)

222FL
02-22-2016, 06:05 AM
If that is a KL203p, you may want to add a fan to it and also lower the DK on AM to 2w or less and use an external swr/watt meter as the internal one gets funny below 2 watts of dead key on AM. Also on SSB you can turn the power back a bit to about 8-10w pep. This will help ensure that your equipment lasts a lot longer. Don't worry about losing a few watts on the meter as no one on the other end can tell the difference between 70 or 90 watts!! JMHO. You will also find that the radio won't get hot either by cutting back on the SSB output power. JMHO. Keep it clean and mean!!

FATKAT
03-14-2016, 11:52 AM
Yep a 203P, the radio has been set up to run with it. I don't talk a lot so to this point it hasn't gotten even a little warm. Yes I also purchased a meter also seen in the photo but I have to try and understand how to work with it. I been looking for instruction's for a Cobra 29 for which items to tweak for adjusting the dead key so I can see how to use the meter. Its all still a little above my head at this time.