View Full Version : Mobile setup suggestions and wisdom requested.

03-31-2020, 07:19 PM
Here's what I got. Uniden 980 and a RM Italy KL 203. Would like to get a Serio Performer 5000.
Question about the Performer is it can be adjusted down to horizontal to avoid obstructions etc. Can you drive around with it in this position? Or can you have a tie down holding the other end of antenna and then drive? I have a 2004 Toyota Tundra Crew Cab. Other question is wiring the CB and kl203. Can they both be on the same circuit because the 203 only draws 10 amps from the specs. Also can I in the meantime just power it all [cb and 203] from the lighter socket?? What gauge wire and fuse? Bla Bla Bla,,, thanks guys.

04-01-2020, 08:25 AM
I also don't plan on using it while driving. Want to park on a hill and see what I get. Also as far as lighter sockets my truck has a standard socket and a different circuit for power outlets. Both use 15 amp fuses. The KL 203 specs say it draws 10 amps. Maybe ok?
Hope all of you are safe and well.

04-01-2020, 04:21 PM
I would never try and run any amp off a cigarette lighter outlet...I know the KL203 is small and does not pull allot of amps, but IMO your asking for trouble running it off the outlet...

Second, you can use those outlets to power the radio, lots of guys do...then again, lots of guys start posting questions about unwanted noise in their radios too...Good way to pick-up whining type noise using power outlets and hooking up power wires to the fuse box...

Always best to go directly to the battery when possible...Even doing so tho won't guarantee you won't have some type of noise problem tho...

As for having the Sirio Performer mounted horizontally...Yes you can do that, but don't expect to get much range out of your radio...As for tying down the stinger when driving, Yes you can do that too! Mater-a-fact back in the old days when cars and trucks still had rain gutters along the edge of the roof, they made a whip hold-down clip that you could use to bend a 102" whip over so it wouldn't be sticking straight up in the air...However when the whip is bent over and clipped down, you DO NOT want to talk on the radio like that! SWR will be skyhigh with the antenna bent over...good way to burn up the radio...folding a antenna over should only be done when your either driving under something low or parking in a garage.

IMO on having both the radio and amp on the same circuit (I'm assuming you're talking about doing something like connecting the hot and ground wires of the two together) another bad idea...Yes you can do it, but what happens if there's a short in either the radios wiring or the amps wiring? Best for each hot wire to run to battery, then have the ground wires ground to frame or a good grounding bolt somewhere close by.

04-01-2020, 08:55 PM
Thank you Mr James for the detailed reply, as I do really appreciate your time. Yeah I thought I would ask about the KL203 on a cig lighter. The fuse on the cig lighter is 15 amps but I catch your drift. And good info on not ganging on one circuit . What gauge wire to the battery of the car for my little amp?
You like the Sireo Performer 5000? I wanted to lay it down cause my truck is tall and that antenna is tall. Basically want to go to a hill ,,prop it up and hit the airwaves. When done lay it down and drive home. I remember those 102" whips bent around and held in place you you spoke of . Any other recommendations for antennas instead?

Thanks again and stay safe!

04-02-2020, 04:25 AM
I've never used the Sirio Performer, but I know several that do, and they all seam to like them...If I was going to use a base loaded antenna tho, it would probably be a Sirio...(I prefer the Predator 10K open-coil antennas...been using them since around 2001)

As for the wire, it would depend on how long a run you need to get to the battery...I would go at least one size larger than whats on the back of the amp...maybe a couple sizes bigger.

04-02-2020, 06:08 PM
Gotcha! Thanks man.

04-20-2020, 12:30 PM
Hello all and hope everyone and your families are safe. Got my Uniden 980 /KL 203/ Sirio Performer 5000 mag mount installed in my truck. Went to adjust my antenna without the KL203 in line. Wired up from my 980 to a external swr meter to the Sirio. 1.2 to 1 on 40 and 1. On my 980 meter it read 1.0 on ch 1 and 40. Have 2 external SWR meters and they are all but the same on readings,,,Nice! Plumb in my Italy KL 203 after the 980 then to my SWR meter and now I get 1.5 SWR. Do i leave it alone or tune further? Again both external meters are in agreement. The 980 now reads about the same of 1.5 swr in it's meter with the KL 203 in line. This is with the KL 203 on and operating on AM.
With the KL203 in line and not operating then the SWR is back to 1.2 or lower again. Any thoughts would be great.

04-20-2020, 04:21 PM
Wouldn't worry about it...That's pretty common when adding a amp...Some amps are not as bad as others, but usually once you add a amp in-line, you will see a slightly higher SWR...Sometimes you can fool the SWR Meter into reading lower just by using a longer coax jumper cable between the amp and meter...(If you just want to see a lower SWR reading)

Best way to get the SWR lower with the amp in-line, is to do some more fine tuning on the antenna, with the amp in-line, but turned off....Get that 1.2 SWR down to where channels 1 and 40 are closer to reading the same, and then when you turn on the box, you should see a improvement.

04-20-2020, 05:11 PM
Thanks Mr Dallas I do appreciate your time.

04-20-2020, 08:04 PM
One more thing....Once you get channel 1 and 40 reading almost the same....If you drive down the road a bit, then re-check...you might find the reading to be off again! :300 (97):

This is due to the changing surroundings...Even the ground or pavement can cause the SWR to read different...

Which is why I said "If it were me...your close enough!"

04-21-2020, 08:36 AM
Thanks again.

04-21-2020, 11:47 AM
I am finally getting to use this CB setup. Around my house reception is very poor and as a last resort pulled the stops to get a serious mobile antenna. I figured it was the last chance to enjoy this thing. I go to a high spot pointing east west and talk with a nice bunch of guys in Albany NY area. I had tried them a month ago with a short cheap mag mount and no kl 203. They heard me but couldn't make out what I was saying. Now it is loud and clear and I am very happy I didnt give up. With my mobile antenna does it radiate more front to back or side to side on it's just perfectly omnidirectional? Anyways it's fun to get.out of the house in my truck ,go to a high point and chat a bit. Thanks to all for the help so far. Now to figure out my base antenna problem.

04-21-2020, 03:50 PM
It would depend on where you have the antenna mounted, as to how the signal pattern is radiating..."Center of the roof", your going to be fairly omnidirectional...If the antenna is on back of the vehicle then the signal is going to be more directional to the front of the truck...Where-ever the most metal is, is the direction the signal is going to get pulled to.

04-21-2020, 05:01 PM
Thanks so basically the roof of my truck is the ground plane . If the antenna is in the back of the roof it will radiate more twards the front because of more ground plane in that direction and vice versa. Thanks

04-21-2020, 05:18 PM
Actually, the whole truck is the ground plane...(all the metal parts anyway) which is why it's important to do "Bonding"...Bonding is running ground straps off the doors, hood, fenders, tail pipes, all to the frame or door jams...Improving grounding of parts helps create a better ground plane and can also help reduce unwanted noise in the receive and help lower SWR reading....

It's time consuming as all get-out, but works...Just be sure to use "flat Ground braid" and not round electrical wire...You can buy ground braid on ebay for not that much, or can also use old coax...

If you use old coax, all you do is strip off the outer-plastic coating, then pull the center conductor wire out, which leaves you with the ground braid...flatten that out, and use short strips with self tapping screws to ground doors, hood, etc.....

You can get 15' of this stuff off ebay for under $10. https://www.ebay.com/itm/15-Ft-Flat-Braided-Tinned-Copper-Wire-1-8-Wide-Ground-Strap-USA/291902726912?hash=item43f6c22300:g:NmQAAOSwImRYWqCA

What I do is stick some solder on the ends, then use self tapping screws threw the solder to the door jams and whatever...the solder will keep the screw from unraveling the ground braid.

last note...keep ground straps as short as possible and avoid long runs.

04-21-2020, 05:31 PM
Very interesting! Less noise and better SWR . Sounds good but a lot of work. Wow even tail pipes too,,amazing.

04-21-2020, 06:42 PM
Very interesting! Less noise and better SWR . Sounds good but a lot of work. Wow even tail pipes too,,amazing.
Tail pipes are notorious for acting like antennas running the length of the vehicle...They are hung using rubber grommets and about the only place that has any ground at all would be where they bolt to the exhaust manifold which also has some sort of gasket separating the pipes from the manifold... With wires running all around the tail pipes they can pick up RF and cause some of the whining and popping sounds you hear in the radio...

Now don't go screwing into the pipes or mufflers themselfs, but try and figure a way to attach grounds to the brackets that hold the pipes up, then to the frame...You don't want to cause a exhaust leak by drilling into the pipes or mufflers...