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Author Topic: For Alan K0BG, MK4 Mondeo SA680 install.  (Read 7827 times)
M6GOM
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Posts: 993




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« on: March 05, 2014, 05:16:28 PM »

Hi Alan.

Got a question I’d like answering before I go sink a load of money into a Scorpion SA680 to find I’ve wasted it.

Here’s my current installation on my MK4 Ford Mondeo. It’s a Little Tarheel II with 72” whip on a Diamond K400 on the hatchback. (Not my first choice of installation location but more will be explained below)

http://i300.photobucket.com/albums/nn9/computershack/Amateur%20stuff/Icom%207000%20install/20120811_202650.jpg

On my previous car the same antenna was mounted on the middle of the roof via a 3/8 fixed mount. This isn’t possible on this car because the roof sheet metal is too thin and they’ve put some sound deadening tar on the underside. The VHF antenna is installed on the only part of the roof I could see wasn’t covered in this without removing the headlining. To remove the headlining is half a day's work due to airbags in the side pillars and removing the tar stuff risks blistering the paint on the roof.

If you look at the rear quarter you’ll see a panel gap going from half way up the rear arch towards the rear light cluster and that is all plastic as its the rear bumper and there’s a gap about 4” deep between the bumper and the actual metal bodywork behind it. The tailgate from the horizontal line above the Ford logo down is all plastic so bolting it to the tailgate as G7DIE has done is out of the question. The rear quarter panel is double skinned with a gap between each skin of about an inch and a half so that makes putting a Breedlove body mount on the side of the rear quarter basically impossible as I can’t get to the back face of the outer panel.

The problem I have is that despite being sat here with a hole cutter and no hesitation to use it, no matter what I want to do the only mounting option I can see for a SA680 is a tow hitch mount. My concern about this is that its probably the worst place possible for efficiency.

This is the tow bar I’ve currently got fitted. The long bar bolts directly to the body in place of the rear crumple bar. It bolts to the body shell by eight M10 bolts.

http://thumbs1.ebaystatic.com/d/l225/m/mokGhTzvmSxPbrbBv2PidZw.jpg
 

 I can possibly double skin the roof to support a fixed mount for the Little Tarheel II where the VHF antenna is located if I could remove enough of this tar like stuff they’ve painted on the underside. An alternative for the Tarheel is to make up a metal bracket to support it fixed to come out of the gap between the tailgate and the roof.

Given my main bands of interest are 20-10m with maybe a bit of 40m, taking into account losses from using a tow hitch mount would a SA680 on a tow hitch mount be better than my Little Tarheel II wth 72" whip mounted on the roof?

If you’ve got any suggestions I’d love to hear them because I’m just coming up with a blank as everywhere I look there’s obstacles in the way.

Modern cars are definitely becoming a lot harder to install antennas on even if you’re willing to drill holes.

« Last Edit: March 05, 2014, 05:23:45 PM by M6GOM » Logged
MM0TFU
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Posts: 9




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« Reply #1 on: March 06, 2014, 01:40:36 PM »

What is the top surface of the tailgate made from (the section between the rear window wiper and the spoiler lip)? Would it be possible to plate the inside of the bootlid to strengthen it?
If that is an option, then what about one of Jerry Breedlove's model #124 quick disconnects.
I'm not sure I'd want to put an 18lb SA-680 on there though, but a SA-680S might be OK.
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M6GOM
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Posts: 993




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« Reply #2 on: March 07, 2014, 05:38:24 PM »

Its metal and fortunately you can get excellent access to the underside of it if you take the bottom half of the tailgate off which isn't actually that difficult. Only downside is we're back at the "metal under the antenna" and it doesn't really give you a lot. Still it gives you more than a towbar mount.

No response from Alan. Maybe I should've emailed him.
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G7DIE
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Posts: 65




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« Reply #3 on: March 27, 2014, 01:25:14 PM »

Modern European cars don't lend themselves to mounting large antennas, if you are looking to attach it to the tailgate you'll build your muscles up trying to lift it. Something like the Scorpion needs a substantial mount, along the lines of:

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G8YMW
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Posts: 256




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« Reply #4 on: March 27, 2014, 04:01:12 PM »

G7DIE
A recommendation, obscure that numberplate or the two legged vermin may clone your car and you will pick up their penalties.
(Speeding tickets, parking tickets, London's congestion charge)

Cheers de Tony
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73 de Tony
Sent by WW2 Royal Navy signal lamp
G7DIE
Member

Posts: 65




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« Reply #5 on: March 27, 2014, 04:08:01 PM »

G7DIE
A recommendation, obscure that numberplate or the two legged vermin may clone your car and you will pick up their penalties.
(Speeding tickets, parking tickets, London's congestion charge)

Cheers de Tony

I'm not worried Tony, it's not my car Grin it's Conor's the thread starter!
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M6GOM
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Posts: 993




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« Reply #6 on: March 30, 2014, 04:43:18 PM »

Looks like I'm going to be sticking with what I've got or buying a "radio car"  Grin
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G7DIE
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Posts: 65




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« Reply #7 on: March 31, 2014, 01:11:29 AM »

Stick with the Tarheel and buy yourself an MFJ1979 for when parked up.
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M6GOM
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Posts: 993




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« Reply #8 on: March 31, 2014, 03:36:46 PM »

Yeah I think that's the best option. Thanks for that.
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W5LZ
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Posts: 477




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« Reply #9 on: April 02, 2014, 07:25:49 AM »

For what it's worth, I don't think you could mount a Scorpion antenna on that car without some major modifications.  That 'SA680' is a very massive antenna.  It applies a lot of stress to whatever it's mounted to so that 'mount' has to be really strong.  I'm in the same position, can't mount one to my present car except for a trailer-hitch type thingy.  And since my car has a back 'hatch' it would be VERY inconvenient.
Good luck.
 - Paul
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G7DIE
Member

Posts: 65




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« Reply #10 on: April 07, 2014, 06:49:12 AM »

Paul, Conor mentioned my installation in his first post, I've installed a SA680 on my compact car as below:



I fabricated a large steel bracket with reinforcing bars on the inside to distribute the weight/stress. It's easy to see the German heritage in my car when I look at the amount of reinforcing the manufacturer has done in the first place, this antenna is very secure, so secure in fact that I can stand on the bracket when interchanging whips.

The only downside is the weight of the tailgate when I lift it, no need to go to the gym, just raise that bad boy a few times and your workout is complete, however when the weight goes over-centre the tailgate remains open.
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