School me on CB radios - Page 3 - Ranger-Forums - The Ultimate Ford Ranger Resource


New Ideas Have a new idea for your Ford Ranger? General discussion of new ideas for the Ford Ranger.

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Search this Thread
  #51  
Old 03-08-2012
basketcase's Avatar
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: US lower 48
Posts: 29
At the bottom line setting the SWR is a simple matter of adjusting the antenna length by itty bitty increments.

So personally, I'd spend the $40 bucks on a Radio Shack SWR Meter and do it myself. That way you know it was done right, and you have the equipment to reset it in the future if you need to.

Just MHO
Reply With Quote
  #52  
Old 03-08-2012
Scrambler82's Avatar
Old Guy User… ltr
iTrader: (12)
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: SoCal
Posts: 6,773
Quote:
Originally Posted by basketcase View Post
At the bottom line setting the SWR is a simple matter of adjusting the antenna length by itty bitty increments.
So personally, I'd spend the $40 bucks on a Radio Shack SWR Meter and do it myself. That way you know it was done right, and you have the equipment to reset it in the future if you need to.
Just MHO
X2… it always sounds like it is more of a task than something you want to do but it isn’t hard just more time consuming but not always.

When you buy your meter get a 3 ft jumper too, you will need it to attach the meter to the CB and then the coax to the meter.

Read the instructions, first chk the SWR as is, you might be one of the lucky ones and not have to adjust the antenna tip.
Adjust the tip in small steps and see where the meter is going, if more to the left or a higher number, then as stated earlier turn the tip the other way, you want low numbers.

Since the FireStik Antenna has a tunable tip you will not have a problem there is nothing but time to lose, the antenna will still be as purchased.
If you have one of the Loaded Antennas with a S/S Whip at the top then it is a littl difference but always take little steps.

If you are totally confused and no one to help you out then consider taking it to a local Radio Shop for assistance, some shops will do it for you for free; ask around.

Another idea, are there any Amateur Radio Clubs or Groups in your area, contact them and see if there is anyone there that will help you out. Mention the Chicken Band up front, some HAMs do not want to help out CBers but they is only a few screwball HAMs not all of us.
Getting someone started in Communications and helping with it is what Amateur Radio is mostly about.

luck to you all on your installs, take your time and do it right the first time.
Reply With Quote
  #53  
Old 03-12-2012
warlocke's Avatar
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Lees Summit, MO
Posts: 189
I got it installed Sat, My dumbass didnt mount the antenna right the first time, so when trying to get my swr adjusted, it was peaked all the way to the right without any change, I went and bought a 4' Firestik with adjustable tip (dads wasnt adjustable without cutting, I didnt want to cut his), and realized my screw up as I was putting new antenna on. but as soon as I got that fixed, my swr was adjusted to 1 on channel 1, about 1.5 on 20, and its about 2 on 40.

The instructions that came with the radio shack swr meter sucked and I didnt understand them, but a little youtube search and I figured out how to work it.

I will try to get some pics tomorrow
Reply With Quote
  #54  
Old 03-13-2012
Scrambler82's Avatar
Old Guy User… ltr
iTrader: (12)
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: SoCal
Posts: 6,773
Rat Shaq, to me, $ucks period, I guess even their instruction sheets do too.

The sir sounds ok.

What channel do you work mostly ?
Reply With Quote
  #55  
Old 03-13-2012
warlocke's Avatar
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Lees Summit, MO
Posts: 189
well right now I'm running channel 19 & 17 once dad gets his back in we will figure out our channel then
Reply With Quote
  #56  
Old 03-13-2012
Scrambler82's Avatar
Old Guy User… ltr
iTrader: (12)
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: SoCal
Posts: 6,773
Quote:
Originally Posted by warlocke View Post
well right now I'm running channel 19 & 17 once dad gets his back in we will figure out our channel then
OK on the SWR, good to go if you work channel one.

If you want the most out of the CB on the channel you work the most, consider tuning the antenna on that channel.

it is always the little things that make the best setups.

Luck with it, it appears you have it together.

ltr
Reply With Quote
  #57  
Old 03-13-2012
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Michigan
Posts: 347
Having to buy a meter... glad I won't have to.

Old 70's Realistic TRC-52 has one built in...



Inside of one... lots of Uniden components. I think these can't be all that bad. (newer ones from the 90's on probably are when quality dropped)





Plus, look at how much it cost back then. Not a cheap CB by any means.

Now about coax, yeah, I'm going to use Belden RG8X. Still have to decide what I'm going to do for an antenna. Already picked up a 102" whip, but not exactly sure if I want to use it on the truck or not. I know I'll use one for a base station if I ever set one up.

I hear they pretty much read 1:1 SWR usually pops up on the meter if the 102" is mounted right. Some say they get no more than 1.5:1 on each end of the channel range if it was set up for the middle channel.

And I know of a CB shop about 30 minutes from me. He is still open (I hope) since the most recent mentioning of him was in some posts on another forum in Dec 2011. So, I should be able to get this old TRC tuned properly according to factory specs (which I printed off an original service manual for this CB... complete with tuning instructions, circuit diagrams, and component lists)
Attached Thumbnails
School me on CB radios-cb_mag_apl_1975_pg43.gif   School me on CB radios-realistictrc-52inside.jpg   School me on CB radios-realistictrc-52insidecloseup.jpg  
Reply With Quote
  #58  
Old 03-13-2012
Scrambler82's Avatar
Old Guy User… ltr
iTrader: (12)
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: SoCal
Posts: 6,773
Quote:
Originally Posted by 1996DangerRanger View Post
Having to buy a meter... glad I won't have to.

Old 70's Realistic TRC-52 has one built in...
The SWR meter that is built in is not for tuning the antenna, it is a reference as the meters are in a Ranger Dash, not good for much more than looking at. you can buy a decent SWR Meter for around $30, get one they are worth having.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 1996DangerRanger View Post


Inside of one... lots of Uniden components. I think these can't be all that bad. (newer ones from the 90's on probably are when quality dropped)





Plus, look at how much it cost back then. Not a cheap CB by any means.
Yes most CB back in the 70s and 80-s had Uniden Mother Boards and other components, yes they were good then but hard to compare to today’s digital stuff.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 1996DangerRanger View Post
Now about coax, yeah, I'm going to use Belden RG8X. Still have to decide what I'm going to do for an antenna. Already picked up a 102" whip, but not exactly sure if I want to use it on the truck or not. I know I'll use one for a base station if I ever set one up.
Coax is good, one of the best on the market today, get enough to make the run from the CB to the antenna without any sharp turns.

IMHO… the 102” is not the end all of antennas, first it is too short to be a ¼ Wave antenna, it needs a 6” spring to bring to a ¼ wave antenna, the reason they were considered an OK antenna is because they were easy to setup, almost never needed tuning (but that doesn’t mean they are 1 to 1 from the get go) and you could run almost any amount of power through them without burning it up.
Compared to a High-Q Rated Fiberglass antenna like the newer FireStiks and the Wilson Flex-i-whips they fall short on performance.
Also, most Off-Road Parks and some Clubs will not allow you to use then because they whip around too much and can hit someone.

And just for grins… ½ wave antenna is the way to go in a mobile setup, most are ⅝ wave but all can be tuned.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 1996DangerRanger View Post
I hear they pretty much read 1:1 SWR usually pops up on the meter if the 102" is mounted right. Some say they get no more than 1.5:1 on each end of the channel range if it was set up for the middle channel.
Not always, everything is based on the vehicle, the coax and the antenna tuning.
Anything above 1.5 to 1 for an SWR will rob too much of the power from a stock CB and leave you a little short on talk power.
The best method, IMHO…, tune the antenna for the channel you are talking on the most and get the best performance on that channel.
A 1.5 SWR is good but a 1.1 or 1.2 is even better.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 1996DangerRanger View Post
And I know of a CB shop about 30 minutes from me. He is still open (I hope) since the most recent mentioning of him was in some posts on another forum in Dec 2011. So, I should be able to get this old TRC tuned properly according to factory specs (which I printed off an original service manual for this CB... complete with tuning instructions, circuit diagrams, and component lists)
You might want to try out the CB on your setup first to see what you are doing.
The older CB had a tendency for the Mother Boards to get brittle and crack, along with a lot of the components dry out… test it in your rig first.
AND, tuning is almost a waste of time in an everyday type CB, unless there are mods made inside of the radio the Stock stuff can’t do much better than what it is doing. if the CB is only putting out 2 or 3 watts then there may be another reason for the low output.

OK, I will get off the soap box, sorry but this is my opinion and every setup is different, one CB/coax/antenna will work great in one vehicle and move it to another and nadda, $hit for performance.

One more thing, if you want to b hear, consider a Powered Microphone, Astatic makes a good line of Powered Mics, from the Red Devil to the 656, all great sounding mics. A pwrd mic run off a small battery inside of the mic and usually can over power the CB’s circuitry and cause garbled output so use them on low pwr then move up slowly.
Reply With Quote
  #59  
Old 03-13-2012
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Michigan
Posts: 347
Thing is I don't really want digital, lol.

As for circuit board cracking and stuff like that, I did read that the old Realistic are one of a few brands (including some Uniden from back then) that had problems with solder joints cracking where components meet the board, not really the board itself cracking. Some say silver soldering everything will fix it, as it was originally manufactured with a leaded solder.

(EDIT: I plan to mount it on rubber isolators anyhow, just a little preventative thing)

Today is pretty nice and clear... I should go test the two TRC-52's that I have sitting around here... I've already soldered up the battery connection wires, and twisted them to help cancel out interference. (read about that in a cb/ham forum)

(EDIT:

Just got back in from testing it (engine off, key off, direct connected to the battery) and it works... pretty good too, for being connected to an old Midland center loaded two-footer. Heard some babble from what sounded like truckers on the highway about 5 miles from here. Was hard to understand them since 1. it's really windy over here 2. this magnetic roof antenna is old and the coax has some damage from a car door shutting onto it. (taped that up to prevent shorts 3. they were kinda mumbling

However, I did hear what sounded like someone saying "Yoohoo!" a couple times. To which, someone else responded. RF gain had to be turned all the way up, and volume was set at about 3/4 the way to max, so yeah, I think this old Midland two-footer is for testing only now, lol. I can only imagine how much better a properly set up whip or Wilson would be. It'd probably result in better reception and easier to understand speech.

I did not try talking through it, but did hit the key three times to see if anything registered on the meter and if the speaker reacted to me keying the mic. It did. It seems to do everything I think a CB is supposed to...

Onto the next step... ordering good coax and a SWR meter. (you were right, Grev... I could've swore this thing had a SWR meter built in though... Guess not.)

Then a bracket with a 6" threaded rod extension might be in order for the 102" if I decide to go that route. I would mount it in between the cab and box, leaving about 4.5 feet of the whip above the cab. I might call that guy up at the CB shop though and see if he has anything... maybe he has a used Wilson 1000, 2000, or 5000 laying around that he'll let go for fairly cheap. Which any of those would be good with me.

Last edited by 1996DangerRanger; 03-13-2012 at 05:12 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #60  
Old 03-13-2012
Scrambler82's Avatar
Old Guy User… ltr
iTrader: (12)
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: SoCal
Posts: 6,773
The older radios had great modulation.

I was not trying to talk you into a newer digital, just a comparison.

I am using a RCI, hi-ouput unit, so none of the older or newer ones mean anything.
Once you apply more power your SWR is going off anyway, just need to start with a good low SWR.

Good Luck to everyone on their respective installs.
Reply With Quote
  #61  
Old 03-21-2012
warlocke's Avatar
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Lees Summit, MO
Posts: 189
With the storms in the area the last few days I have had alot of skipping being picked up lol. So far I have talked to someone in Chicago, and Tulsa, While I was in Kansas City. And have been picking up Texas and Jamacia all day. as well as a few mexicans talking (not sure if they were local to my area or what but they were real faint)

Really glad I did this, Will have a good run with it this weekend though.
Reply With Quote
  #62  
Old 03-21-2012
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Michigan
Posts: 347
Caution, have food and beer ready before reading...

Quick update... going with the 102" whip, mounting it in the center of the toolbox, on the side facing the rear of the truck.

Old 23 channel will still be going into the truck as well.

I thought about mounting a newer 70's 40 channel TRC 467 in the center armrest (yes... it will fit with a little work.) But scrapped that. Too much work, and it negates the storage capability of the armrest.

Yeah, that would be one slick install if it were in the armrest. Hopefully someone else will roll with that idea. I wanna see what it looks like...

Already have another idea of how I'm going to mount it... I'll show ya when I get done with the install.

On the TRC 467, I opened it up and none of the components said 'Uniden' on them. However, I do recall reading about some Realistic base stations and other vehicle cb's made in the same time frame that have Uniden parts in them. So what I figure happened is that there are some high and low end products in the RS line as well back then. Maybe Uniden was contracted for the higher end stuff?

I would not buy one of their newer (90's on up) cb radio offerings... even if it were only 5 bucks. That's what I paid for one of my TRC 52's, lol.

And yes, from what I've read, the older stuff sounds better, and can be more robust. However, I also read you also have to watch out for bad capacitors and resistors, as well as cold/cracked solder joints. The newer stuff can be more compact and maybe more user friendly.

Well, so much for making that quick... better put the "Caution, have food and beer ready before reading..." disclaimer up top...
Reply With Quote
  #63  
Old 03-22-2012
Scrambler82's Avatar
Old Guy User… ltr
iTrader: (12)
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: SoCal
Posts: 6,773
Gotta love skip.
My first skip contact was from Northeast MA to OK, got a radio check from a trucker outside of Ok City. Got me started in HAM Radio, talk about talking to the world.

Older Radio components tend to dry out over time and fail but use them while you can or while you can find a repair house to fix them.
Reply With Quote
  #64  
Old 11-07-2012
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: hedgesville WV
Posts: 62
CB and Ham Radio!

Hi i am a radio Amateur also use cb alittle
best thing is your antenna. A full 1/4 wave
is best if not use one like a wilson. Here
is a link to a nice mount Pickup Truck Stake Pocket Bracket antenna Mount
Its a stake pocket mounting bracket. As far as radios go
get something in mid price range. I use a very old lafayette
TELSAT SSB-120 with 150w amp .
By the way if you want to get away from cb
look into M.U.R.S radios you have 5 channels FM
But heres a hint don't use a box stock radio buy
one of the Amateur 2 meter radios and get the
full tx mod for it they run 35 to 60 watts out.
73 Al
Reply With Quote
  #65  
Old 11-07-2012
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: hedgesville WV
Posts: 62
CB Radio Ham radio

O i forgot i run a FT-857D also HF amp is 500w and 300w on VHF
Reply With Quote
  #66  
Old 11-07-2012
GreaseMonkey01's Avatar
Member
iTrader: (2)
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Woodbridge, VA
Posts: 304
Zombie thread....back from the dead.
Reply With Quote
Reply

Related Topics
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
School me on CB radios bonez General Ford Ranger Discussion 3 05-08-2010 02:06 AM
Swaping factory radios SouthernMudSlinger New Ideas 4 01-22-2007 06:29 PM
CB radios Nate97Ranger General Technical & Electrical 27 10-03-2005 07:11 PM
CB Radios 00RANGER00 General Ford Ranger Discussion 36 06-19-2005 06:39 PM
What's the best dash kit for aftermarket radios? Mnemonic Audio & Video Tech 10 10-28-2004 10:33 PM


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 03:05 PM.


We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.