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Author Topic: Where to mount Kenwood TM-281a in a Kia Optima.  (Read 2685 times)
N9ZQZ
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Posts: 12




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« on: February 25, 2013, 02:00:26 PM »

Hello All,

First post here. I am a returning to the hobby ham and purchased the kenwood tm-281a. It will be here in a week from what I am getting. With the Optima there isn't much in terms of locations to mount the thing. I was looking at possibly putting in the empty din slot under the radio but from what I have read the heat might get too much. I might mount it on the console on the passenger side of the car or possibly take out the cubby section (to be returned if I sell the car) and mounting it in there. I looked at the mounting pictures in the forums and got some ideas. I couldn't afford a removable head unit and have a dual band on the base (Icom IC2350) but want to keep that base side. The optima is a 2005. Similar to the Hyundai 2004 Sonata. The previous owner must have had either a ham or cd nmo mount as there is a plugged hole in the center of the trunk. I purchased an nmo mount to go back in there. If anyone has installed a radio similar to that and can give me any ideas that would be great. Learning alot on the forums and enjoying reading the information on here.

73's

Jamie N9ZQZ
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N9ZQZ
Member

Posts: 12




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« Reply #1 on: March 02, 2013, 09:42:18 AM »

Has anyone seen a mod to add a fan to the radio? I have seen some for the Yeasu radios and the ICOM but nothing for this one. I have some ideas about mounting under the factory radio and adding a cooling fan and put a switch on it so I can run it when the radio is operating. I will put some pictures up to help others who may be considering an install in this type/model of a car.
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KD5FPO
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Posts: 28




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« Reply #2 on: March 02, 2013, 11:46:03 PM »

Why is there so much interest in adding supplemental cooling fans to these new mobiles? The big 3, I/K/Y,  rigorously test these radios on high power without any air circulation around the heat sinks for HOURS without any letup, and these new rigs do great. We hams would be hard pressed to cook our mobile rigs. Of course the new heat sink materials are a huge part of the equation, but a buddy runs his FT-8800 at full tilt regularly,  it eventually melted part of his dashboard, that rig is still breathing easy 3 years on.

Personally if I were going to add a fan it'd be only to help circulate the air near the radio, but that's just me. 73 
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N9ZQZ
Member

Posts: 12




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« Reply #3 on: March 03, 2013, 04:44:00 PM »

Just unboxed the radio yesterday and put it on my base PS and antenna. Setup the memory channels and made sure everything is working. Ran it on high power for several QSO's and didn't get warm to the touch. I guess I was worried about nothing. I plan on finding some single din brackets and put it below the factory stereo removing the door covered bay below it. Lots of room back there so should be good and easily accessed. Hopefully a local audio install shop will have something I can use. Also waiting on the correct mount for my Browning br-150. Going NMO mount on the trunk (previous owner had an antenna there). I think it will take longer to get the power to the battery, put on the heat resistant tubing around the cables and tie them down so they don't get into any hot areas on the motor or into any moving parts. I will see about posting some pics of the process afterwards. Thanks for the reply. The information on these forums is very good.

73's
N9ZQZ
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KK4GGL
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Posts: 226




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« Reply #4 on: March 03, 2013, 06:58:50 PM »

I run mine on low power (25 watts), on my base PS and a twin lead J-Pole and it does get hot to the touch. I didn't leave my fingers on long enough to see if I'd get a blister, but it was hot to the touch.

I have it mounted in its mounting bracket which is screwed to a piece of wood. I'll be putting it whatever they call that indentation on the dash in my Jeep Wrangler when I get my 2 meter mobile antenna.
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73,
Rick KK4GGL
N9ZQZ
Member

Posts: 12




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« Reply #5 on: March 04, 2013, 04:45:41 PM »

Never thought of using a piece of wood to secure the bracket on base operation!! Will have to look into it. I stopped by a local stereo install shop with the radio and showed the tech what I was attempting to do. After the quote I went back and measured the opening and the radio and am going to attempt to make some custom brackets out of aluminum and a custom trim plate to take up any opening. Should be pretty straight forward.

On the radio I guess you could say the heat sink was warm but I was like you and didn't want to leave my fingers there long enough to get any skin irritation. I am thinking about trading in the Icom and getting a Kenwood dual bander for the base operation. I like the menus and the audio reports from local hams on the repeaters.

73's
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N9ZQZ
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Posts: 12




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« Reply #6 on: March 13, 2013, 04:41:09 PM »

UPDATE:

I made some brackets out of aluminum and mounted the radio under the factory stereo. There is alot of room back there. Made a make shift trim ring to go around the radio. Now that the antenna is tuned it is working very well on low power. On my first test in the car i was talking 2 counties away on 25 watts!!! The front fire speaker sounds really good. Love the microphone as well. As soon as I figure out where to host the pictures I will put them up. Does look almost factory.
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M6GOM
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Posts: 884




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« Reply #7 on: March 17, 2013, 06:13:31 AM »

I'm glad you found you don't really need to run flat out on VHF. My Kenwood TM-D710 has never been run on high power - I've not found the need to. By the time a repeater gets to the point I need to use high power to use it, the RX audio is usually bad enough due to the low signal strength that it makes it too hard to hear whilst mobile anyway. Distance wise a repeater 55 miles away is about at the limit of my mobile 2m install for talking through it on 10W and for RXing it as well. That repeater is using 10W ERP. I guess my little 1/4 wave antenna works OK  Grin

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