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  1. Default Installing CB in a 1999 Ford Ranger?

    Ok, so I've been wanting a CB for a long time now and finally bought
    one - a Uniden PC78 Elite Bearcat, 40 channels & all the goodies you
    could ever want.

    I've got a 1999 poor man's Ford Ranger (branded as a Mazda B-2500).
    Here's my trouble:

    1. Electrical connection is supposed to be made to the ignition
    accessory connection. Don't know where that is.

    2. Can't figure out the best place to mount the thing. Anybody who's
    been in a Ford Ranger knows they're rather cozy. Mine has a 5-speed
    manual, which eats up all the space over the hump up against the dash.

    Anybody want to help out?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Location
    Las Vegas, Nevada
    Posts
    10,060

    Default Mounting Bracket

    Quote Originally Posted by RoadTripper401
    Ok, so I've been wanting a CB for a long time now and finally bought one - a Uniden PC78 Elite Bearcat, 40 channels & all the goodies you could ever want.
    Welcome to the Great American RoadTrip Forum! Bearcat is a great unit!
    1. Electrical connection is supposed to be made to the ignition accessory connection. Don't know where that is.
    I can't help off-hand about that -- I would have to pull up the specs -- but from memory isn't there a junction block against the firewall just to right of the emergency shift lever?
    2. Can't figure out the best place to mount the thing. Anybody who's been in a Ford Ranger knows they're rather cozy. Mine has a 5-speed manual, which eats up all the space over the hump up against the dash.
    What about mounting the box vertical between the two front seats -- it has been a while since I was in a 1999 Ford Ranger, but I seem to recall that there is a about 4-6" gap where it could be mounted?

    Mark

  3. Default

    What's up RT401,

    CB's are fun, I have plenty of experience with them from home to car. Installing them is easy. Although it has been sometime for me with them, how I miss it, I know for a fact I can tell you how to install yours.

    ignition accessory connection, all that means is certain vehicle instruments get power when the ignition key is turned on. When you turn the key off they go off example, cig. lighter, radio, wipers, etc... Igntion switches have whats called an accessory position, acc. you turn the key to the first position or the one positon back w/out the engine running you can have all these instruments on.

    It's pretty much a luxury so you don't have to manually shut the CB off. Otherwise you can use constant power. Now installing your CB.
    You probably have two wires comming out from your CB (red +) (black -),Red being power and Black the ground. The easiest way could be to take a ride to radio shack and getting a fused cig. lighter adapter. You can solder the wires or they have some that are already wired, all you have to do is crimp the wires together, color to color. Then plug it into your cig lighter and your powered. I have installed CB's as much as using a empty spot in the fuse panel and the vehicles grounding block to make a really nice and neat job.

    If you have any knowledge about cars I could explain that but if you don't the fused cig. lighter adapter will work just fine and it's really easy. Remember if you get the wired cig. lighter don't solder the wires get connectors and crimp them, soldering two wires together will come apart in time. Use solder only if you plan on not using a pre-wired cig.lighter adapter.

    Your CB may have a inline fuse already in the (red +) wire, cut the fuse out crimp the wires and use the fuse in the tip of your pre-wired fused cig. lighter adapter. This is a real easy way to get your CB powered and can be very easily removed possibly to use it another car if you wanted.

    The fun part is now the antenna, you mentioned that you got all the goodies you can think of. What kind of goodies? Are you using a K40 antenna? My favorite. A magnetic mount or permanant mount? Either one you will have to calibrate the antenna. The fastest and accurate way is to purchase a SWR meter at radio shack. The antenna wire screws to the meter then from the meter another wire screws to the back of the CB. When you press the talk button on the mic the needle on the meter moves, you want the needle to stay as low as poss. A K40 antenna comes with the allen key that is used for the adjustment on the antenna.

    Loosen the screw used to lock the whip of the antenna into its housing, sliding the antenna up and down is how you calibrate the antenna. Each time you press the mic button depending on the needle position will determine if you have to go up or down.

    You really don't need to do all that the manuals on antennas give a basic calibration that will work out just fine. I have access to this kind of stuff so I use it doesn't mean you really need to. In a car your traveling dealing with different frequencies, so im sure you will be ok with that. I hope this helped you out and if you have any questions you can send a message. Good luck finding a mounting spot Im not that familiar with your vehicle's interior I'll look into it, see if the ford dealer has pics of it online. Good luck. keep me posted

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Location
    Las Vegas, Nevada
    Posts
    10,060

    Default Great Post!

    Quote Originally Posted by RoadTripper301
    Although it has been sometime for me with them, how I miss it, I know for a fact I can tell you how to install yours.
    Excellent post -- thanks for the info.

    Mark

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Ft. Collins, CO.
    Posts
    304

    Default more tidbits about mounting up a CB

    Quote Originally Posted by RoadTripper301
    You probably have two wires comming out from your CB (red +) (black -),Red being power and Black the ground. The easiest way could be to take a ride to radio shack and getting a fused cig. lighter adapter.

    Your CB may have a inline fuse already in the (red +) wire, cut the fuse out crimp the wires and use the fuse in the tip of your pre-wired fused cig. lighter adapter. This is a real easy way to get your CB powered and can be very easily removed possibly to use it another car if you wanted.
    Some additional info and alternative opinions from a nearly lifelong radio guy-
    (the moderator invited me)

    1) Radio Shack sells a cigarette lighter plug that has spring-loaded connections. Press the + button on it and stuff the red wire into the hole.
    Press the - button and install the black wire. Now you have connection.
    Simple and effective. Not permanent nor pretty though.
    I suggest that you do NOT cut out the inline fuse from the radio's original wires. A second fuse in the line does no harm at all. The sole issue might be that there is more wire length than you really need that needs to be neatly tie-wrapped out of the way. These spring connectors are how I power my (removable) CB and several police scanners in my vehicles.

    2) There is a different approach to taking power from "the ignition." In the autparts store in the fuses & accessories section there is a Buss Fuses (brand name) product HHA Accessory called Add-A-Line. This is kind of a piggyback fuse block that plugs into a normal fuse socket just like a fuse but it also brings out a hot wire that can be used to connect power to an accessory (like a CB). This creates a clever and tidy solution to finding power. Some thinking and testing will be required of you though. I suggest that you solder the wire connection and use heat-shrink tubing to insulate it. Small diameter crimped connections seem to slip too easily for my taste.


    3) I jam the CB and/or the scanner between the passenger seat cushion and the center console. I use a magnetic antenna. I hang an external speaker from the passenger's headrest on a nylon webbings strap so it's up and in the clear for good audio. When I want the radio out of the car it comes out in about 30 seconds. And I can hide the magnetic antenna easily so it's not obvious in a parking lot.

    4) In the couple of months since I appeared on this board with my screen name I have yet to hear anything civilized on CB Channel 9. Channel 19 is still mostly pottymouths. I get better road info from the police scanner.
    I drive at least 10 hrs/wk commuting 100 mi/day so I have lots of listening time. (Still running the experiment.) If you expect CB to provide help and support I assert that it's not very useful. If you have friends to talk to - have at it. Please don't be a pottymouth. I already know ALL those words and some you might not know yet. (Navy trained)

    noFanofCB

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
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    Posts
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    Default You have never heard me....

    Quote Originally Posted by noFanofCB
    I already know ALL those words and some you might not know yet. (Navy trained)
    Yeah, but you haven't heard my verbage inventory when I have been inconvenienced by someone who considers their multiple-choice lane choices to be more important than the safe flow of traffic around them...
    Last edited by Mark Sedenquist; 02-16-2006 at 09:27 PM.

  7. Default

    Not cutting out the inline fuse and keeping two fuses in the same circut for me would not be in your best interest.

    Electrical circuts can be very funny, for whatever reason your circut would trip, having two fuses could lead to only one of them blowing. I won't say it is likely to happen but but I can say it could be very poss. Why take the risk in damaging your radio, a quick snip it's gone a, a quick crimp you can put one right back.

    Wrapping the wires and squeezing it between the seat cushions is a quick way solve your "where should I install it?". Awesome spot to get it done and get you on the road cruisin with your CB. I have done that, I didn't use the cig. adapter at that time. I kept the inline fuse and remebered how flimsy the casing for the fuse was, and how easy it was to alway pop it open. Just keep in mind that flimsy holder being wedged somewhere and how easy it could be popped open, hehe. Bring Marshmellows.

    NoFan is right about the pottymouths they can take the fun out of the radio, but hey I'm a New Yorker and my wife and I have heard some real funny #%^@ when we are on the road. I carry a portable with us whenever we travel. I like having it I found it helpful. We like to have as much as we can when we travel, Cell phones can lose signals fast and I don't like to rely on that alone. I hope this was more help in getting your radio installed good luck.

    I'm still newbie, trying to figure how to do the qoute and post, sorry, for any inconveince or confusion I cause.


    steve

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Ft. Collins, CO.
    Posts
    304

    Default Fuses and wires and "funny circuits"

    Quote Originally Posted by RoadTripper301
    Not cutting out the inline fuse and keeping two fuses in the same circut for me would not be in your best interest.

    Electrical circuts can be very funny, for whatever reason your circut would trip, having two fuses could lead to only one of them blowing. I won't say it is likely to happen but but I can say it could be very poss. Why take the risk in damaging your radio, a quick snip it's gone a, a quick crimp you can put one right back.

    I kept the inline fuse and remebered how flimsy the casing for the fuse was, and how easy it was to alway pop it open. Just keep in mind that flimsy holder being wedged somewhere and how easy it could be popped open, hehe. Bring Marshmellows.
    steve

    Sounds like you hit a bad fuseholder design somewhere in the past. I haven't seen anything like that in better than 35 years of dinking with radios. But I don't doubt that it could have happened. A fuseholder is a connector and connectors are THE most evil electronic component in common use.

    Having 2 fuses in series might be conFUSEing (pun intentional) if one blows but there is NO risk of radio damage from their presence. Think of it as belt plus suspenders - a fuse is, after all, a safety device. The other thing to think about is that the manufacturer of the CB put in the right sized fuse. The manufacturer of the cig lighter adapter probably didn't since they don't know what you are powering.

    I'll be driving home tonight with 2 scanners running, both of which have TWO fuses inline just like they always have. No worries.

    noFanofCB

  9. Default

    Hey-

    My first RTA post... :)

    While we're here, I'd like to ask a couple of questions about CB's. Me, my girlfriend, and two friends are going to do a trip down from Vancouver, into Utah, through AZ, into CA and along the West Coast highway back into Canada, in early September. We will be working in Canada for 2+ months and will buy a cell phone for emergencies, but we understand that there will be large parts of the trip (especially through UT, AZ and NV) that will have little or no cell reception, so we were thinking of getting a CB. Now, we've seen Midland handheld models for around $60(US) on Amazon.com, so do you thin this will suit us? Also, are there any channels which are used for specific purposes? I've heard that channel 9 is used for emergencies, but is this correct?

    Thanks all!
    Last edited by Lunja; 02-18-2006 at 08:56 AM.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Ft. Collins, CO.
    Posts
    304

    Default

    You can find a previous thread about CB radio using this link:

    Or use the RTA Search function for "CB radio (handheld)"

    I posted a rather inflammatory opinion in that discussion which I hold to be valid but there's no sense in aggravating others again.

    noFanofCB
    Last edited by Mark Sedenquist; 02-22-2006 at 02:12 PM. Reason: URL syntax made simpler (I think)

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