Advice on Installation

Share your communications gear installations here.
ki6kui
OAUSA Board Member
Posts: 230
Joined: Wed Mar 19, 2008 11:37 am
Call Sign: KI6KUI
Location: Orange County, CA
Contact:

Advice on Installation

#1

Post by ki6kui » Wed Aug 06, 2008 7:30 pm

I don't have a 4x4 vehicle and have never messed with the interior of a vehicle, but I've seen some of your rigs and know there is someone here that can help me with this.

I will be installing my radio in my van, and I want it to be a fairly clean installation. So how do I hide all the wires underneath the carpet and the headliner?

Especially the headliner. How to I run the cable for the antenna, make a hole in the roof, and make it look like it came from the factory that way?
Ken_____________________________________________
KI6KUI
GMRS: WQVE723
You can't plow a field by turning it over in your mind.

User avatar
NotAMog
Global Moderator
Posts: 483
Joined: Fri Apr 18, 2008 6:40 pm
Call Sign: KD6GCO

Re: Advice on Installation

#2

Post by NotAMog » Wed Aug 06, 2008 8:12 pm

I've installed a couple of NMO mounts in car roofs. Both cars I've done had single piece molded headliners which were fairly easy to drop after looking at a good shop manual for the instructions. Measure carefully to center the hole and use a good quality hole saw of the appropriate size in a drill. It helps to use a little light oil to lubricate the hole saw as it cuts. To prevent oil and metal shavings from getting on the headliner I loosely tape plastic under the area where I'm cutting. It's also a good idea to put masking tape over the area being drilled. It helps to avoid scratching the paint and makes cleaning up the metal shavings easier.

You can usually run the antenna cable down through the "A" pillar so it will be entirely hidden behind the headliner. If the "A" pillar does not work another good location is behind the trim on the "B" pillar. That is a common location for manufacturers to run wires.

The NMO mounts look very clean when installed and you can get small plastic weather covers to protect them them if you take the antenna off. Most mobile antennas are available in an NMO mount version.
Bruce Berger
KD6GCO
'72 Pinzgauer 710M 2.6i
'91 Honda ST1100 197,000miles and counting :shock: (I hope to make it to at least half the places this bike has been)
'04 Tacoma / AT FlipPac Camper
'07 Moto Guzzi Norge - Corsa Red - The faster color :mrgreen:

ki6kui
OAUSA Board Member
Posts: 230
Joined: Wed Mar 19, 2008 11:37 am
Call Sign: KI6KUI
Location: Orange County, CA
Contact:

Re: Advice on Installation

#3

Post by ki6kui » Wed Aug 06, 2008 8:37 pm

Thanks, that's a pretty good description of what I need to do.

Do you know where I would get a good shop manual for a 2001 GMC Safari? (OK, don't laugh. It's been a great tow vehicle for our trailer.)
Ken_____________________________________________
KI6KUI
GMRS: WQVE723
You can't plow a field by turning it over in your mind.

User avatar
NotAMog
Global Moderator
Posts: 483
Joined: Fri Apr 18, 2008 6:40 pm
Call Sign: KD6GCO

Re: Advice on Installation

#4

Post by NotAMog » Wed Aug 06, 2008 9:19 pm

Ken,

You might try your local library if you don't want to buy one. A Chilton's manual should have the instructions to drop the headliner.

Don't apologize about your van. Between business road trips and car pools I drove about every minivan that was on the market at that time and preferred the Chevy Astro or GMC Safari over any of the other front or rear drive competition even though I'm generally not a big GM fan. They were by far the best mini van choice if you wanted to tow. I really liked the Dutch Door tailgate. It seemed gimicky at first but it worked really well.
Bruce Berger
KD6GCO
'72 Pinzgauer 710M 2.6i
'91 Honda ST1100 197,000miles and counting :shock: (I hope to make it to at least half the places this bike has been)
'04 Tacoma / AT FlipPac Camper
'07 Moto Guzzi Norge - Corsa Red - The faster color :mrgreen:

ki6kui
OAUSA Board Member
Posts: 230
Joined: Wed Mar 19, 2008 11:37 am
Call Sign: KI6KUI
Location: Orange County, CA
Contact:

Re: Advice on Installation

#5

Post by ki6kui » Wed Aug 06, 2008 9:46 pm

I have Chilton's, but I can't find anything about that. Is there more than one verson?
Ken_____________________________________________
KI6KUI
GMRS: WQVE723
You can't plow a field by turning it over in your mind.

sdnative

Re: Advice on Installation

#6

Post by sdnative » Wed Aug 06, 2008 10:27 pm

ki6kui wrote:I don't have a 4x4 vehicle
Image


Seriously, I would be very afraid of cutting a hole in the roof. There are many solutions for NMO mounts that work very well and aren't permanent. You didn't mention what kind of vehicle it is, but cutting your roof should be a last resort, IMHO.

Oops, just saw you said it was a van.

ki6kui
OAUSA Board Member
Posts: 230
Joined: Wed Mar 19, 2008 11:37 am
Call Sign: KI6KUI
Location: Orange County, CA
Contact:

Re: Advice on Installation

#7

Post by ki6kui » Thu Aug 07, 2008 4:45 am

sdnative wrote:There are many solutions for NMO mounts that work very well and aren't permanent.
I'm currently using an HT with a mag mount, but the kids keep opening the window and some of the insulation has worn off. The van is 7 years old, so I'm not opposed to puttng a permanent mount on. I figure whoever has it next might be able to use it, too, or wouldn't be offended by it because it would be a clean installation (if I'm successful at this). ;)
Ken_____________________________________________
KI6KUI
GMRS: WQVE723
You can't plow a field by turning it over in your mind.

User avatar
cruiserlarry
OAUSA Board Member
Posts: 2782
Joined: Sun Mar 30, 2008 10:23 pm
Call Sign: W6LPB
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Contact:

Re: Advice on Installation

#8

Post by cruiserlarry » Thu Aug 07, 2008 6:32 pm

ki6kui wrote:Thanks, that's a pretty good description of what I need to do.

Do you know where I would get a good shop manual for a 2001 GMC Safari? (OK, don't laugh. It's been a great tow vehicle for our trailer.)
Most aftermarket repair manuals don't cover body parts or their disassembly. Your best bet is to aquire a copy of the factory GM service manual, or talk a dealer / ody shopinto copying the pages you need to drop the headliner / A/B pillars....
Light travels faster than sound. This is why some people appear really bright, until they start talking

W6LPB / WPOK492

Become a DIRTY PARTS FACEBOOK fan !!!

User avatar
cruiserlarry
OAUSA Board Member
Posts: 2782
Joined: Sun Mar 30, 2008 10:23 pm
Call Sign: W6LPB
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Contact:

Re: Advice on Installation

#9

Post by cruiserlarry » Thu Aug 07, 2008 6:38 pm

sdnative wrote: Seriously, I would be very afraid of cutting a hole in the roof. There are many solutions for NMO mounts that work very well and aren't permanent. Cutting your roof should be a last resort, IMHO.
Cutting holes in the roof is FUN !!! :mrgreen:

I can't remember the last vehicle I owned that didn't have several holes in the roof for wiring of one sort or another... the trick is doing it correctly and neatly, and checking for clearances and wire run paths BEFORE you start drilling the holes - prep, prep, PREP !!! :D

One thing to motivate you is the awesome transmission / reception advantage you'll have with the flat steel roof as a huge ground plane. :o
Light travels faster than sound. This is why some people appear really bright, until they start talking

W6LPB / WPOK492

Become a DIRTY PARTS FACEBOOK fan !!!

ki6kui
OAUSA Board Member
Posts: 230
Joined: Wed Mar 19, 2008 11:37 am
Call Sign: KI6KUI
Location: Orange County, CA
Contact:

Re: Advice on Installation

#10

Post by ki6kui » Thu Aug 07, 2008 6:45 pm

ki6kui wrote:Your best bet is to aquire a copy of the factory GM service manual
Thanks for the lead, Larry. I have a friend who is the service manager at a GMC dealer. I'll ask him.
cruiserlarry wrote:I can't remember the last vehicle I owned that didn't have several holes in the roof for wiring of one sort or another...
Hmm...That's getting me to thinkng...about what else I can do to my van. :)
Ken_____________________________________________
KI6KUI
GMRS: WQVE723
You can't plow a field by turning it over in your mind.

Post Reply

Return to “COMMUNICATION EQUIPMENT INSTALLATION”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests