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Issues with new CB radio install, please help

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Issues with new CB radio install, please help

Post by beason » Wednesday, 09 August 2017, 19:48 PM

I am having some issues with my install, and I hope the knowledgeable group here can assist. here is my setup.

2012 jeep wrangler 4 door with hard top.
cobra 75 wx st installed under passenger dash. I had to replace the spiral cable, but i am pretty sure i wired everything correctly.
18ft firestik cable at its limits, no coiled cable.
fire ring connection
firestik twist lock
firestik HD spring mount
firestik 3ft adjustable tip antenna (blue)
mounted offcenter to the passenger side to a mount that is incorporated into the HD hinge set.

I have verified ground to the threaded collar at the radio end of the cable, and no ground to the center conductor. Ive also removed the powder coat on the mount to make sure i have good connection. SWR reads under 1.5 on both 1 and 40. (in my driveway, I know im supposed to tune in an open area, but it was a quick test to make sure i wasnt over 3.

The issue i am having is, I can only hear others if my squelch is turned down (up?) to the point of constant static. if i turn the squelch until i get silence (as i understand is the correct setting), I cannot hear anyone. If i turn the squelch to static, I can hear others, loud and clear. At this setting the auto scan feature does not work, since the radio never sees silence. The static changes slightly as i move through the channels, but never goes away.

I can hear the local weather broadcast fine (minimal background static).

This was a used radio, and i had to replace the coiled handset cord, so i am unsure if i should blame it on the radio, or if its something else im missing. Any advice is welcome!


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Re: Issues with new CB radio install, please help

Post by MDYoungblood » Thursday, 10 August 2017, 5:10 AM

Hello beason,
Welcome to the forum. You say the static never goes away, this includes with and without the motor running? I know those radios come with a cigarette lighter 12v plug, in a Jeep (I have a '15 Sahara) they themselves have a lot of noise. Jeeps are a funny thing, sitting inside after you turn off the ignition you still hear stuff running for several minutes afterward, the radio is probably picking up static from these. You could try wiring the radio directly to the battery, this eliminates any interaction in the fuse box. check out some of the topics about direct wiring to the battery.
as a new member can I get you to post a intro in the "Welcome to the Forum" topic, viewforum.php?f=89 , so others can say "Hi", thanks.

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Re: Issues with new CB radio install, please help

Post by beason » Thursday, 10 August 2017, 19:10 PM

the radio is hard wired to the switched cig plug in the center dash stack. the static goes away if i turn the squelch up, but once i do so, i no longer hear anyone talking. i can only hear people if i turn the squelch down to the point of constant background noise. I dont think its static as much as just background hissing that you normally hear if the squelch isnt set right.

if i understand correctly, i am supposed to turn the squelch until just after the background static goes silent. if i do so, then i no longer hear people talking either.

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Re: Issues with new CB radio install, please help

Post by jessejamesdallas » Friday, 11 August 2017, 3:38 AM

beason wrote:
Thursday, 10 August 2017, 19:10 PM
the radio is hard wired to the switched cig plug in the center dash stack. the static goes away if i turn the squelch up, but once i do so, i no longer hear anyone talking. i can only hear people if i turn the squelch down to the point of constant background noise. I dont think its static as much as just background hissing that you normally hear if the squelch isnt set right.

if i understand correctly, i am supposed to turn the squelch until just after the background static goes silent. if i do so, then i no longer hear people talking either.
Sounds like the radio is working as it should...

Scan feature may/ or may-not work with squelch turned off...When squelch is turned up it cut's out not only the static noise, but weaker signals as well..."That's what it's suppose to do!" This way you will only hear strong signals, and not all the background singers.

When scanning, and with the squelch turned up, once the radio scans a channel with a strong signal coming in it will stop scanning and monitor that channel for a short while to see if someone is actually still talking...If someone is actively using the channel, the radio may stay on that channel until you manually change the frequency.

Too much squelch, and then unless someone is parked right behind you, your radio may not ever pick up another station...

Personally I don't use the squelch since it can cut out weak stations that I may want to try and contact...
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Re: Issues with new CB radio install, please help

Post by MDYoungblood » Friday, 11 August 2017, 5:34 AM

Hooked up directly to the fuse box is still being hooked up to the fuse box where 99% of noise in receiving equipment comes from, every electrical motor is hooked in some way to the fuse box, wiring directly to the battery eliminates that 99%. Curious on what you used to adjust the SWR? An out of tune antenna reduces the won't receive signals as well but except static. The radio has a RS meter, how many bars of static is that reading?

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Re: Issues with new CB radio install, please help

Post by Rabbit Ears » Saturday, 12 August 2017, 6:44 AM

Generally, I wire my radio/amp DIRECT to battery. Twisting the positive and negative wires tightly together to create a shielding effect. Antenna is another matter. As for my mobile antenna, I run a separate ground from vehicle chassis to radio chassis.

NOTE: make sure that your wires to the battery are of ample size to handle the amperage your radio and amp.
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Re: Issues with new CB radio install, please help

Post by beason » Saturday, 12 August 2017, 15:58 PM

jessejamesdallas wrote:
Friday, 11 August 2017, 3:38 AM
beason wrote:
Thursday, 10 August 2017, 19:10 PM
the radio is hard wired to the switched cig plug in the center dash stack. the static goes away if i turn the squelch up, but once i do so, i no longer hear anyone talking. i can only hear people if i turn the squelch down to the point of constant background noise. I dont think its static as much as just background hissing that you normally hear if the squelch isnt set right.

if i understand correctly, i am supposed to turn the squelch until just after the background static goes silent. if i do so, then i no longer hear people talking either.
Sounds like the radio is working as it should...

Scan feature may/ or may-not work with squelch turned off...When squelch is turned up it cut's out not only the static noise, but weaker signals as well..."That's what it's suppose to do!" This way you will only hear strong signals, and not all the background singers.

When scanning, and with the squelch turned up, once the radio scans a channel with a strong signal coming in it will stop scanning and monitor that channel for a short while to see if someone is actually still talking...If someone is actively using the channel, the radio may stay on that channel until you manually change the frequency.

Too much squelch, and then unless someone is parked right behind you, your radio may not ever pick up another station...

Personally I don't use the squelch since it can cut out weak stations that I may want to try and contact...
I understand how the squelch works. the problem is, if i turn it enough to stop the background hissing, i no longer hear ANYTHING, including the strong signals it is supposed to allow through. I tested with a friend who lives just a few blocks away and i could not hear him with the squelch adjusted to block the background hissing. I should be able to set the squelch to have the radio be silent when no one is talking, but allow noise when someone keys up correct? right now i get nothing if i turn the squelch to make it silent when no one is talking. With the squelch adjusted to allow the hissing, i can hear and respond to others over 2 miles away on the freeway. loud and clear. if i turn it to stop the hissing. nothing.

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Re: Issues with new CB radio install, please help

Post by beason » Saturday, 12 August 2017, 16:02 PM

Rabbit Ears wrote:
Saturday, 12 August 2017, 6:44 AM
Generally, I wire my radio/amp DIRECT to battery. Twisting the positive and negative wires tightly together to create a shielding effect. Antenna is another matter. As for my mobile antenna, I run a separate ground from vehicle chassis to radio chassis.

NOTE: make sure that your wires to the battery are of ample size to handle the amperage your radio and amp.
its a small radio, with no external amp. the wires it is connected to are larger than the factory wires on the base. I used twisted and soldered connections.

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Re: Issues with new CB radio install, please help

Post by 295 antenna » Saturday, 12 August 2017, 18:56 PM

im not familiar with that radio but when i was reading about it i noticed something about setting the sound tracker .Did you do this step ? also about the static everything said here is absolutely correct .going straight to the battery will get rid of alot of excess noise (static) .Any way thats my two cents .
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Re: Issues with new CB radio install, please help

Post by jessejamesdallas » Saturday, 12 August 2017, 20:46 PM

beason wrote:
Saturday, 12 August 2017, 15:58 PM
jessejamesdallas wrote:
Friday, 11 August 2017, 3:38 AM
beason wrote:
Thursday, 10 August 2017, 19:10 PM
the radio is hard wired to the switched cig plug in the center dash stack. the static goes away if i turn the squelch up, but once i do so, i no longer hear anyone talking. i can only hear people if i turn the squelch down to the point of constant background noise. I dont think its static as much as just background hissing that you normally hear if the squelch isnt set right.

if i understand correctly, i am supposed to turn the squelch until just after the background static goes silent. if i do so, then i no longer hear people talking either.
Sounds like the radio is working as it should...

Scan feature may/ or may-not work with squelch turned off...When squelch is turned up it cut's out not only the static noise, but weaker signals as well..."That's what it's suppose to do!" This way you will only hear strong signals, and not all the background singers.

When scanning, and with the squelch turned up, once the radio scans a channel with a strong signal coming in it will stop scanning and monitor that channel for a short while to see if someone is actually still talking...If someone is actively using the channel, the radio may stay on that channel until you manually change the frequency.

Too much squelch, and then unless someone is parked right behind you, your radio may not ever pick up another station...

Personally I don't use the squelch since it can cut out weak stations that I may want to try and contact...
I understand how the squelch works. the problem is, if i turn it enough to stop the background hissing, i no longer hear ANYTHING, including the strong signals it is supposed to allow through. I tested with a friend who lives just a few blocks away and i could not hear him with the squelch adjusted to block the background hissing. I should be able to set the squelch to have the radio be silent when no one is talking, but allow noise when someone keys up correct? right now i get nothing if i turn the squelch to make it silent when no one is talking. With the squelch adjusted to allow the hissing, i can hear and respond to others over 2 miles away on the freeway. loud and clear. if i turn it to stop the hissing. nothing.
OK. got'cha....

Before turning the squelch up just enough to stop the static, first check your meter to see what the static level is peaking at, and also check the meter to see where your friends signal is coming in at..."IF" both signals are about the same, then when you turn the squelch up, your probably not going to hear your friend.

I know most of the time when skips not running, my meters needle is usually around the 1 mark on my meter. But sometimes when there's allot of skip, the meter maybe hitting as much as 9 s units (which is where some of my locals also come in at) so if I squelch out the noise, I also squelch out my locals.

If that's not the case with your radio, then maybe there's something wrong with the radio... I've just never ran across a problem that would cause the squelch to totally kill a signal... You may try adjusting VR5 which is the squelch adjustment pod.

Cobra 75wx_st
. SQUELCH control
( Tight Squelch )
1. Set normal band CH19.
2.Output of signal generator to the antenna
input terminal.
3. RF Gen. set 27.185 MHz , Fmod= 1KHz,
AM= 30%, RF level: 2000 µV.
4. Rotate the Squelch control to fully
clockwise position
1.Slowly turn VR5 to a
position that the audio
output waveform at the
oscilloscope just appears
from no output.
2.Must open at 4000uV.
3.Must not open at 800uV.
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Re: Issues with new CB radio install, please help

Post by beason » Sunday, 13 August 2017, 6:58 AM

MDYoungblood wrote:
Friday, 11 August 2017, 5:34 AM
Hooked up directly to the fuse box is still being hooked up to the fuse box where 99% of noise in receiving equipment comes from, every electrical motor is hooked in some way to the fuse box, wiring directly to the battery eliminates that 99%. Curious on what you used to adjust the SWR? An out of tune antenna reduces the won't receive signals as well but except static. The radio has a RS meter, how many bars of static is that reading?

3's

Greg
i purchased this meter in order to test SWR

WORKMAN SWR-2T CB RADIO ANTENNA SWR METER (for some reason i cannot post any links to anything)

the antenna was under 1.5 on both ch1 and ch40 right out of the box. i did not have to adjust it.

I am not familiar with the RS meter. could you give me more info on this?

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Re: Issues with new CB radio install, please help

Post by beason » Sunday, 13 August 2017, 7:00 AM

295 antenna wrote:
Saturday, 12 August 2017, 18:56 PM
im not familiar with that radio but when i was reading about it i noticed something about setting the sound tracker .Did you do this step ? also about the static everything said here is absolutely correct .going straight to the battery will get rid of alot of excess noise (static) .Any way thats my two cents .
It does have a ST button. it is supposed to help block some of the background noise, but i think it works best when the other party also has a ST enabled radio.

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Re: Issues with new CB radio install, please help

Post by beason » Sunday, 13 August 2017, 7:02 AM

jessejamesdallas wrote:
Saturday, 12 August 2017, 20:46 PM
OK. got'cha....

Before turning the squelch up just enough to stop the static, first check your meter to see what the static level is peaking at, and also check the meter to see where your friends signal is coming in at..."IF" both signals are about the same, then when you turn the squelch up, your probably not going to hear your friend.

I know most of the time when skips not running, my meters needle is usually around the 1 mark on my meter. But sometimes when there's allot of skip, the meter maybe hitting as much as 9 s units (which is where some of my locals also come in at) so if I squelch out the noise, I also squelch out my locals.

If that's not the case with your radio, then maybe there's something wrong with the radio... I've just never ran across a problem that would cause the squelch to totally kill a signal... You may try adjusting VR5 which is the squelch adjustment pod.

Cobra 75wx_st
. SQUELCH control
( Tight Squelch )
1. Set normal band CH19.
2.Output of signal generator to the antenna
input terminal.
3. RF Gen. set 27.185 MHz , Fmod= 1KHz,
AM= 30%, RF level: 2000 µV.
4. Rotate the Squelch control to fully
clockwise position
1.Slowly turn VR5 to a
position that the audio
output waveform at the
oscilloscope just appears
from no output.
2.Must open at 4000uV.
3.Must not open at 800uV.

OK, your over my head on troubleshooting. I am not sure if my meter has the abilities you are asking for. I have a basic WORKMAN SWR-2T CB RADIO ANTENNA SWR METER i got from ebay. I may have to find a radio shop.

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Re: Issues with new CB radio install, please help

Post by MDYoungblood » Sunday, 13 August 2017, 7:49 AM

beason wrote:
Sunday, 13 August 2017, 6:58 AM
MDYoungblood wrote:
Friday, 11 August 2017, 5:34 AM
Hooked up directly to the fuse box is still being hooked up to the fuse box where 99% of noise in receiving equipment comes from, every electrical motor is hooked in some way to the fuse box, wiring directly to the battery eliminates that 99%. Curious on what you used to adjust the SWR? An out of tune antenna reduces the won't receive signals as well but except static. The radio has a RS meter, how many bars of static is that reading?

3's

Greg
i purchased this meter in order to test SWR

WORKMAN SWR-2T CB RADIO ANTENNA SWR METER (for some reason i cannot post any links to anything)

the antenna was under 1.5 on both ch1 and ch40 right out of the box. i did not have to adjust it.

I am not familiar with the RS meter. could you give me more info on this?
The radio's meter has a bar graph for received signal, think it goes from 0 to 9 then +20, what does that read? If the signal is reading 9 all the time then there are other problems.

3's

Greg
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Re: Issues with new CB radio install, please help

Post by jessejamesdallas » Sunday, 13 August 2017, 14:08 PM

MDYoungblood wrote:
Sunday, 13 August 2017, 7:49 AM
beason wrote:
Sunday, 13 August 2017, 6:58 AM
MDYoungblood wrote:
Friday, 11 August 2017, 5:34 AM
Hooked up directly to the fuse box is still being hooked up to the fuse box where 99% of noise in receiving equipment comes from, every electrical motor is hooked in some way to the fuse box, wiring directly to the battery eliminates that 99%. Curious on what you used to adjust the SWR? An out of tune antenna reduces the won't receive signals as well but except static. The radio has a RS meter, how many bars of static is that reading?

3's

Greg
i purchased this meter in order to test SWR

WORKMAN SWR-2T CB RADIO ANTENNA SWR METER (for some reason i cannot post any links to anything)

the antenna was under 1.5 on both ch1 and ch40 right out of the box. i did not have to adjust it.

I am not familiar with the RS meter. could you give me more info on this?
The radio's meter has a bar graph for received signal, think it goes from 0 to 9 then +20, what does that read? If the signal is reading 9 all the time then there are other problems.

3's

Greg
Right, just look at the radios bar graph meter and see how many bars are lit-up when no one is talking and your just hearing static...If you have lets say 3 bars lit, and when people are talking no more bars lite up, then when you adjust the squelch, you maybe just squelching out stations along with the static...A external meter is not going to show you how strong a signal you have on the static or other stations...just your signal.

Another thing could be with your antenna...A 3' antenna is not going to receive or transmit very far...You may hear stations OK with it, but with a taller antenna you would get a better signal on them...3' is really just too short for CB...I would look for something 5' or taller.
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Re: Issues with new CB radio install, please help

Post by beason » Saturday, 19 August 2017, 9:49 AM

sorry for the delay, its been a busy week, but i was able to do some testing.

the meter runs 1-9 then 30+. it sits just over 5 with no RX. it stays the same weather i turn to squelch to allow or block the background static. When someone speaks it jumps to 9.

I had someone talking frequently yesterday, with a fairly strong signal. he was coming in clear with just a hint of static. as soon as i turned the squelch knob slightly, the radio went silent.

I guess the radio is bad. which is no good.

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Re: Issues with new CB radio install, please help

Post by MDYoungblood » Saturday, 19 August 2017, 10:18 AM

Having an S-5 signal all the time is a little high but saying the signal squelched out by touching the knob lightly could mean the squelch pot needs a squirt of deoxit. I will say those are starter radios, most upgrade rather quickly after realizing that, and since you already made a repair once it might be time for something new, check out the sponsor's sites, plenty of nice radios on their pages, better antenna systems too.

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Strong Supporter of America's Original Homeland Security Act
The Second Amendment


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Uniden Washington
Mobile
Texas Ranger TR-696FD1C
Handheld
Maxon HCB-40WX
Antennas
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Homemade Full Wave Loop
Homemade 1/2 wave Dipole
Hustler 102" SS Whip and Hustler Ball Mount

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Re: Issues with new CB radio install, please help

Post by beason » Wednesday, 23 August 2017, 18:10 PM

I found a like new replacement handle assembly on an auction site for $45, so i ordered that. All the important parts are in that, as the base is just power and connections. This will hopefully fix my issues.

Im assuming i will need to retune for SWR?

I know this is a beginner radio, but the benefit of its install options outweigh the need for a more highend radio. plus it wont see much use anyway. mostly for listening in on road trips, or the occasional offroad trip where most people will be within eyesight.

I am still debating on a big 5ft whip antenna, but i may hit overpasses.. lol
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Re: Issues with new CB radio install, please help

Post by battyice » Thursday, 24 August 2017, 4:32 AM

Sounds like an issue with the radio. Let us know how the replacement works out.

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Re: Issues with new CB radio install, please help

Post by MDYoungblood » Thursday, 24 August 2017, 4:41 AM

beason wrote:
Wednesday, 23 August 2017, 18:10 PM


I am still debating on a big 5ft whip antenna, but i may hit overpasses.. lol
I sure would like to see a pic of this Jeep if a 5ft whip would hit overpasses, I have a 102" whip on the back of my pickup and it doesn't come close, trees and parking garages are a different story. Now if you like that type of radio another choice would be the Anytone Apollo I or II, same handheld design but a lot better performance wise.

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23 AM "WORLD Image WIDE" 38 LSB

Strong Supporter of America's Original Homeland Security Act
The Second Amendment


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Mobile
Texas Ranger TR-696FD1C
Handheld
Maxon HCB-40WX
Antennas
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Homemade Full Wave Loop
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Re: Issues with new CB radio install, please help

Post by Firebreather » Thursday, 24 August 2017, 7:36 AM

Just my two cents worth, but if turning up the squelch until the static just disappears results in no received signals getting through, someone was inside that radio with the proverbial "golden screwdriver" and probably turned every pot on the board. A complete re-alignment is the only thing that will save that radio, unfortunately. You might be best served to buy an inexpensive new radio to get you up and running. At least the radio will be a known "good component" in your system. Sadly, when dealing with used radios, one never knows whose hands they have been in, and what those hands were doing to the radio with the covers off. Best of luck to you. I hope you get yourself up, running and jawing with the rest of us soon.

73's, Firebreather

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beason
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Radio: Cobra 75 wx st
Antenna: 5ft blue Firestik
Name: Blake

Re: Issues with new CB radio install, please help

Post by beason » Thursday, 24 August 2017, 11:06 AM

MDYoungblood wrote:
Thursday, 24 August 2017, 4:41 AM
beason wrote:
Wednesday, 23 August 2017, 18:10 PM


I am still debating on a big 5ft whip antenna, but i may hit overpasses.. lol
I sure would like to see a pic of this Jeep if a 5ft whip would hit overpasses, I have a 102" whip on the back of my pickup and it doesn't come close, trees and parking garages are a different story. Now if you like that type of radio another choice would be the Anytone Apollo I or II, same handheld design but a lot better performance wise.

3's

Greg
its not quite that tall, but the mount point is pretty high up. id say all together with a 5ft whip and the quick disco/spring i would be pushing 10ft total height. What do i have to do to be able to post pics?

Edit: i just went and measured. my mount point is exactly 4ft off the ground. 4'8" to the top of the HD spring. 9'8" or 116 inches with a 5ft whip.

I also noticed my other post automajically chanced e b a y to "an auction site" or maybe the mod did that. i dunno.
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beason
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2 PILL USER
Posts: 13
Joined: Wednesday, 09 August 2017, 19:33 PM
Radio: Cobra 75 wx st
Antenna: 5ft blue Firestik
Name: Blake

Re: Issues with new CB radio install, please help

Post by beason » Thursday, 24 August 2017, 11:08 AM

Firebreather wrote:
Thursday, 24 August 2017, 7:36 AM
Just my two cents worth, but if turning up the squelch until the static just disappears results in no received signals getting through, someone was inside that radio with the proverbial "golden screwdriver" and probably turned every pot on the board. A complete re-alignment is the only thing that will save that radio, unfortunately. You might be best served to buy an inexpensive new radio to get you up and running. At least the radio will be a known "good component" in your system. Sadly, when dealing with used radios, one never knows whose hands they have been in, and what those hands were doing to the radio with the covers off. Best of luck to you. I hope you get yourself up, running and jawing with the rest of us soon.

73's, Firebreather
you may be right. or i may have fubar'd the install of the new cord. I got it for a 12pk of cheap beer so im only out the $20 for the new cord anyway..


anyone know if the handset speaker works when the ext speaker is connected? my handset speaker never worked on this unit.
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beason
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Posts: 13
Joined: Wednesday, 09 August 2017, 19:33 PM
Radio: Cobra 75 wx st
Antenna: 5ft blue Firestik
Name: Blake

Re: Issues with new CB radio install, please help

Post by beason » Thursday, 24 August 2017, 11:11 AM

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