I was thinking about getting a CB radio, but am not sure which one to get. I want one that has the weather, and is a pretty good one overall, but not way expensive. Also, for those that have one, where did you mount it? Got photos?
__________________ "The Jeep, the Dakota airplane, and the landing craft were the three tools that won the war."
General Dwight Eisenhower
"If you don't have time to do it right, you must have time to do it over."
All the controls are on the remote, meaning instead of having to mount a big box inside the already cramped wrangler, you just mount that little metal box under the dash somewhere and drill a hole for the remote/mic to attach to. Seems very clean and have heard good things about them.
I have that cobra 75wxst in my jeep and I also sold them back in the day. Not a bad radio at all but if you plan on using while on the highway I would recommend an external speaker as it can sometimes get hard to hear over the jeep/wind noise.
Your Weather Band requirement threw a monkey wrench into my recommendation plans, I was going to recommend the Unden Pro510XL or Pro520XL as I run. They are only $40 and $50 respectively but they are extremely durable and reliable.
As said above, the Cobra 75WXST has the tiniest/tinniest sounding speaker (mounted inside its micropho9ne) I've ever heard and it doesn't put out much volume... and for me, not enough volume for a noisy Jeep cab. If you get one, be sure to also buy an external speaker for it. Not to mention you're not going to find replacement microphones for it at your local truck stop like you will most conventional CB radios.
__________________ When you have a choice, buy American.
As far as coax length, you really only need what it takes to go from the antenna to the radio. I myself use the 18' Firestik with the Fire Ring terminal as shown in my antenna pic.
As far as wattage, I think just about any antenna you find for mobile CB use will handle your off-the-shelf CB radio, but Jerry Bransford would be the guy to answer that question with an accurate technical explanation.
Speaking from my most recent experience (I just purchased and installed one), you will need:
- CB Radio
- Antenna (3' seems to be about the norm)
- Antenna mount (many options out there, but think about keeping it where the whip won't get damaged and you'll have a good ground. The teraflex brake-light mount works well for me)
- Antenna connector
- Coax (just as long as you need it to be, but several are purchased at 18')
- Extra wire to run the power and ground
- Place to mount the CB
Keep in mind that the connector should have a nylon washer/nut, a metal washer and maybe other movable parts. When you take it apart, make sure you put it back together in the correct order. Oh, and save yourself some headache, and spring the few extra bucks for the Firestik II with the tunable tip. No snipping involved.
Jerry has alot of info on the subject in past posts, especially in the Communication/Electronics forum. It helped me alot.
Most of the items listed above I purchased at a local truck stop. The Teraflex antenna mount had to be ordered.
This is everything I purchased to get it going, along with an SWR meter. It is (as others have stated) important to check your SWR and adjust your antenna length accordingly. Tons of write-ups in the Comm/Elec forum related to this process. Borrow an SWR meter if you can, otherwise, they're about $25.
I have an older cobra 29wxnwst in my truck, and it's a fine radio. I ran a "newer" Cobra in my CJ (don't remember the model number) and just felt and looked cheap. The volume pot became touchy and noisy in short order (do they still use pots? ) and the LED meter quit. I bought another one used that had a beat up chassis and put the two together and it was OK except for the tiny forward-firing speaker, but by the time I put out the money for the new one, then the used one to repair it, I could have bought something else..
My $50 Midland is no high-end radio, but it sure looks and feels better than than those cheap Cobras.