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Old 12-09-2012, 03:36 PM   #1
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Another Radio Mount Option

The JK is one of the hardest vehicles I've run into when it comes to radio mounting locations. I don't use CB radios, but I have to install mobile radios in my vehicles for Search and Rescue. I considered mounting the radio in the tray on top of the dash using blocks under the bracket, but I did not like the mic cord hanging down on the dash and did not want the radio blocking my view. That's where I mounted it in my TJ. I also did not want it mounted overhead or anywhere on the windshield since I plan to put the windshield down at times.

I finally decided on a RAM mount system. This particular mount uses bendable aluminum bars that attach to three of the passenger seat mount bolts and to a base for the ball and socket arms, allowing the radio to be positioned and re-positioned in a wide variety of locations. The RAM mount system is extremely sturdy and versatile. I installed the microphone and GPS on the same mount. No holes had to be drilled anywhere.

At first, I was afraid it would infringe on the passenger's space...but it does not.

I only needed to mount the relatively small radio control unit where it was accessible. The main part of the radio (100-watt power supply, etc) is rather large and takes up most of the space under the driver's seat.
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Old 12-09-2012, 04:14 PM   #2
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Pretty cool setup. May I ask where you got it from? I am looking at a radio install in the near future, but not sure where to put it.

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Old 12-09-2012, 05:05 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by d_rehmann View Post
Pretty cool setup. May I ask where you got it from? I am looking at a radio install in the near future, but not sure where to put it.
I bought it from Expressmounts.com. The RAM mount system can be a little intimidating at first because of the staggering number of options available. But since I have a RAM mount in my '08 Tundra, I knew where to start. I ordered 6 different items to complete the mount for the JK. Total cost was about $230. I probably could have gotten by with the smaller system that uses 1 inch rather than 1 1/2 inch balls which would have been quite a bit cheaper and taken up less space above the center console. But the larger system is absolutely bomproof. I don't have to worry about anything moving no matter how rough the road or trail. If anyone is interested, I can post a parts list for this 1 1/2-inch system. I ended up with a medium length arm that I did not use...so the cost could be a little less. The GPS mount is actually on a 1 inch ball and arm that was already mounted to the radio bracket in my TJ.
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Old 12-13-2012, 12:07 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Moabite View Post
If anyone is interested, I can post a parts list for this 1 1/2-inch system. I ended up with a medium length arm that I did not use...so the cost could be a little less. The GPS mount is actually on a 1 inch ball and arm that was already mounted to the radio bracket in my TJ.
I would be very interested in the parts list. Thank you in advance for posting it.
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Old 12-13-2012, 10:03 AM   #5
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Here is the parts list from this install:

D: RAM Mount Short Length Dual 1.5 inch Socket Arm
Model: RAM-201U-B SKU:RAM201B
$18.45
F: RAM Mount Rectangular AMPS Plate with 1.5 inch Ball
Model: RAM-347U SKU:RAM347
$9.71
C: RAM Mount Rectangular 1.5 x 3 inch Plate with 1.5 inch Ball
Model: RAM-202U-153 SKU:RAM202-153
$22.49
B: RAM Mount Long Length Dual 1.5 inch Socket Arm
Model: RAM-201U-D SKU:RAM201D
$34.55
A: RAM Mount Universal Vehicle Mount Plate RAM-316-3-202U
Model: RAM-316-3-202U SKU:RAM316-3202
$127.34
E: RAM Mount Multi Strap Base with 1.5 inch Ball
Model: RAM-108BU SKU:RAM108B
$17.07



Explanation:

This system uses 1 1/2" (size C) balls/sockets rated to hold 10 pounds. Depending on what you want to mount, you might be able to use the 1" (size B) system that is rated to hold 5 pounds.

A: The Universal Vehicle Mount Plate is centerpiece of the system...the base that attaches to the seat mount bolts. The feet are cast and because of the design of the Wrangler seat brackets, do not sit flush on two of the brackets...so I put a couple of washers in the space between the bracket and mount foot so I could torque the bolts back down and not break the feet. This particular part number comes with a medium length arm with 1 1/2" balls and base. You can also buy it without the arm if you wanted to build a B-sized ball mount. I ended up not using the medium length arm.

B: Long arm that the radio is mounted on.

C: Plate that the radio bracket is bolted to.

D: Short arm holding the mic

E: Strap base holding the short arm to the long arm

F: Plate to which the mic holder is mounted.

If you can get away with it, I would recommend the less bulky (and cheaper) B-sized system. MY GPS is mounted to a B-ball arm that was already bolted to the radio bracket when it was removed from my '03 Rubcon, so that part is not listed above. To build a B system, you would just need to get part A without the C-ball and arm.

OK...now after posting all this, I have discovered that RAM makes a base plate specifically designed for the Wrangler (RAM-VB-170-SW1), similar to what I have in my Tundra. I did not initially see it because I searched for a 2012 or 2013 Wrangler mount...it shows up as a 2010 mount which I assume would work. I may end up changing my entire system out...or not. The Wrangler mount part number is for the entire laptop mount...I would just get the base component and pole separately...much cheaper. They also make a huge number of simpler, single stalk mounts to hold smaller items like gps units, smaller radios, phones, etc. My current system would be overkill for most applications.
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Old 12-13-2012, 10:51 AM   #6
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On second thought, I don't think I will change anything out. With the bendable aluminum poles on the universal mount, I was able to position the base and radio exactly where I wanted it so that it does not interfere with the passenger, airbag, glovebox or any dash controls. The universal base without the C-sized arm is part #RAM-316-3AU. Then you would just need to build the B-sized system on top of that.
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Gone and fondly remembered: '03 Rubicon - Sold 10/31/12
'82 Scrambler purchased new in 1982 - sold in '96
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Old 12-13-2012, 12:39 PM   #7
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That looks great - both the overlay and the mount.

You have an automatic, but could you see the mount getting in the way of a manual stick?
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Old 12-13-2012, 12:43 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jag View Post
That looks great - both the overlay and the mount.

You have an automatic, but could you see the mount getting in the way of a manual stick?

Sorry, but I have no idea. The mount is infinitely adjustable, so I'm sure you could get it out of the way...especially if you went with the less bulky 1" ball system.

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2013 JKUR softtop - Photos here: http://www.wranglerforum.com/f33/my-...on-202906.html
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'82 Scrambler purchased new in 1982 - sold in '96
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