My Ford Truck Project

Texas82GP

Texas82GP

Geezer
Supporting Member
Apr 3, 2015
5,375
113
Spring, Texas
Boy what a day it's been with this thing. I have some vacation days to use up so I took off today and the rest of the week. A friend ended up hooking me up with a peaked and tuned Cobra 25 Classic he had that is nearly new. I bought the coax yesterday from a CB shop and the antennas and mounts came in the mail today.

Mounting and wiring the radio were the easy parts. Running the coax was a task. I knew from the beginning I'd have to remove all the seats to lift up the carpet so that the coax could run underneath.

I mounted the radio and mic hook first, snaked the wires behind the dash to the fuse box and tapped into the radio with an add-a-circuit. Easy.

View attachment 113683 View attachment 113684 View attachment 113685

So to run the coax, I took up the seats and under the carpet on the driver's side, I found a small amount of water and the padding under the carpet was damp. So I had to handle that first. I believe I found the source, a hole left from a zip screw on the bottom of the A pillar by the parking break. I put a screw in it with some strip caulk on it and its dried up. I used a heat gun on low to dry up the padding on the carpet. There was some very orange rust in a few small spots but it was pretty fresh and mostly wiped off. Ill continue to check on it to see if any leaks return.

With that handled, I lifted the rest of the carpet and plugged the cable into the back of the radio. I zipped tied the two cables (two cables for two antennas) together until they got to the back of the cab, then ran them through separate body plugs to the outside, one on the driver's side, one on the passenger. Once underneath the cab, zip tied them together and ran them up to channel along the back of the bed and into the stake pockets, using zip ties and clips and grommets the whole way to keep things neat.

View attachment 113681 View attachment 113682

Now I had to mount the antennas. I went to attach the stake pocket mounts, and they were a b*tch. After fiddling with the one for about 5 minutes, I looked at the instruction sheet that was in the package. It had a disclaimer on it that basically said "these probably won't fit great! Good luck." So with that awesome news, I continued and eventually got them in, and yeah the fit isn't great. My stake pockets were not in great shape to begin with. This replacement bed had a ladder rack on it at some point that smashed in the pockets. When I did the body and paint, I did straighten them with a hammer and dolly and put a couple welds on them, but I didn't go nuts since I was going to be putting the rail caps on anyways.

Anyways there are 4 screws that tighten to clamp them to the stake holes, and the screws strippef and cross threaded very easily. I got 3/4 tight on one side and 4/4 tight on the other side. Then got the springs and antennas threaded on, but they looked a little crooked. So I fiddled with them a bit to get them straighter and eventually called it good 'nuff.

Then after all that, I had to replace the carpet, all the trim, the seats, etc. Did all that and then vacuumed it out and put the tools away, and called it a day. I still want to go back and put some wire loom on a couple spots, and zip tie a few things and possibly get tweak those pocket mounts a bit. I still have to tune the antennas with an SWR meter to get it fully functional.

It ended up taking pretty much all day with some breaks here and there, but I'm thrilled with how it came out. The radio looks gorgeous under the dash and the dual whips look badass. Feel free to start calling me the Rubber Duck :mrgreen:

View attachment 113678

View attachment 113679
SmokeyBandit_050Pyxurz.jpg
 
1evilregal

1evilregal

Comic Book Super Hero
Apr 23, 2009
2,771
113
Greensboro, NC
nice clean install! those trucks seem to lend themselves to that era of look.
 
  • Like
Reactions: joesregalproject
1evilregal

1evilregal

Comic Book Super Hero
Apr 23, 2009
2,771
113
Greensboro, NC
joesregalproject

joesregalproject

Comic Book Super Hero
Nov 4, 2012
3,924
113
Pittsburgh, PA
Well I took it out to the biggest open parking lot I could find to tune the antennas. After a lot of fiddling, I got the SWR on channel 1 to about 1.9 and the SWR on channel 40 at about 2.2.
Channel 20 is at about 1.3. It started pouring rain so that was where I left it.

Ideal is <1.5, 1.6-1.9 is okay, 2.0-2.4 is not good but won't damage anything, and >2.5 is really awful.

I couldn't get channel 40 any lower without putting channel 1 over 2.0, so that's where I left it for now. I adjusted both antennas equal amounts each time. I did get a couple replies to a radio check on 19, but not sure how far out I got. I did hear some pretty clear transmissions on a few channels, but mostly static. Not surprising since I'm basically in the suburbs, and Pittsburgh is all hills, there isnt a flat plot of land anywhere close. Eventually I'll get it out on the interstate and see what I can pick up.

IMG_20190517_174206224-2672x2004.jpg
 
joesregalproject

joesregalproject

Comic Book Super Hero
Nov 4, 2012
3,924
113
Pittsburgh, PA
Well after driving the truck around for a few days with the antennas, I'm just not really happy with the fitment of the stake pocket mounts. The mounts don't fit into the pockets very well, and the antennas sit crooked unless they are shimmed. I tried playing with them and doing some adjustments and shimming, but they still don't fit very well. So I think what I'm going to do is get a tool box and mount them on the tool box. That way I can bypass the stake pockets entirely and still won't have to drill anywhere. I have an SWR meter so having to retune them isn't a big deal. Putting them on a tool box may actually lower the SWR a bit since it will raise the antennas up a couple of inches. Plus I could use the tool box regardless, the back of the cab is always filled with junk anyways.

In good news, I think I have that leak fixed. I checked on it a couple times after a several hard rainstorms, and I haven't seen any water inside. I'm going to get a couple cans of Fluid Film and spray a little under the carpet in the door jambs just to be safe.

If anyone has a truck tool box they want to get rid of, let me know.
 
DRIVEN

DRIVEN

Geezer
Apr 25, 2009
6,453
113
Owyhee County
I'm actually kind of surprised you don't already have one.
 
8

81cutlass

Royal Smart Person
Feb 16, 2009
2,063
113
Western MN
Its still a sweet pickup-

But I maintain it's begging for a set of aluminum alcoa's!! :)

1558360613233.png
 

Please support GBodyForum Sponsors

Classic Truck ConsolesDixie Restoration DepotMike's MontesP-S-TSouthside Machine PerformanceUMI Performance

contact[email protected]for info on becoming a sponsor