I originated this thread of discussion to pull together advice on running battery power to the rear seat of the crew cab of my 2004 Chevy Silverado 2500HD pickup truck.
Well, the deed has been done. Yesterday (Wednesday, March 16th) I had the install done by the local Car Toys dealer. I am very pleased with the results -- very professional work.
So, what was done....
(1) Positive and Negative #4 cables run from the battery to the rear seat are of my truck. These cables run under the cab along the frame, nestled up and out of the way of any kind of road hazzard problem. Up through the floor board under the seat to two distribution blocks, one for positive and one for negative. The distribution blocks allow for tieing in 4 other wires if I want. Both positive and negative is fused at the battery location.
(2) Ground straps placed all over the truck. First, the negative ground of the battery was already strapped to the engine block which was also strapped to the main chassis frame up front. I also had a ground strap placed on the negative distribution block to the chassis frame. And, a ground strap between the truck bed and the frame.
(3) Antenna pass-thru connector in cab so that I can remove and replace the antenna at will. This is also protected from the weather due to the design and construction of the cab itself. I have easy access to this for the inside and on the outside. I have devised a weather protection cover that is water tight that fits on the outside when I do not have my antenna hooked up (as it is right now).
(4) By the way, all holes and other pass thru areas of cables and things listed above are sealed with silicone rubber (the kind used for this purpose on cars).
(5) Audio feed cable that runs from under the rear back seat to the GMC Auxiallary audio coupler for my truck speaker system. Also, this goes coupler handles output audio for pre-amp levels or powered speaker levels so it is quite flexible. By the way, this was the single most expensive part of the work at $100. One nice thing about this is that the audio feed is the aux input so I can switch between the truck radio/cd player and the transceiver by using a "mode" button switch there on my truck radio. It goes like (AM, FM1, FM2, CD, AUX 1, AUX 2).
I am using an Icom 706 with the base unit placed under the rear seat in the back and the remotable front control panel up front. The only things I have done yet are to finish building my antenna mount. I am building a special aluminum mount that fits into the tie-down slot on the rear of my truck bed. Also, I am going to probably put a water-proofed SGC auto-tuner right there at the base of the antenna mount. And, of course it too will be easily removable. The aluminum mount will be 1/4 inch thick so it will be nice and sturdy (it is not very big physically).
I have done one test and that was of the audio system. I put my ic-706 on the back seat but I ran a coax to my Traffie Hex beam (through the garage, through the basement, and into the back where I have my transmission line pass through box (see my web site). So, audio works and no RFI from the truck but it was only idling so this may not be the best test for that so far.
Thanks to all who have provided advice for my little project.