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Author Topic: Diesel Truck Install Questions  (Read 832 times)
VA6TJB
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Posts: 4




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« on: April 15, 2019, 11:09:22 AM »

Hello All,

I am a recently licenced ham and I am going to install a Kenwood TM-D710g in my 2009 GMC 2500 Duramax Diesel.
I just have a few questions regarding installation of the radio and best practice as I have read a lot of conflicting information. I may also be overthinking the problem before trying the install... as I tend to do.

My questions that I have are regarding antenna placement and where to pull power.

I will be installing a hood lip mount as the truck is too tall/inconvenient to have an antenna on the roof (my car will get a roof NMO mount). There are lots of places on both the drivers and passengers side to bolt the lip mount and I can drill holes if necessary. My question is, should I put the antenna on the passenger side or the drivers side? The drivers side of the truck has all the computers in the engine bay, my pyro and non-mechanical boost gauges, and my DSP5 switch for EFI live (electrical 5 position switch tied to the ECM to switch engine mapping on the fly) running through the firewall. The passenger side has minimal electronics but is closer to the fuel pump/Battery system/ stock stereo am/fm radio antenna (probably put a stubby on it anyway). Would it be better to install the Antenna on the passenger side and bring the coax in the passenger side to keep it away from the ECM and all the other electronics running into the cab? I have read some conflicting information on having the antenna on the passenger side that I don't fully understand, however I do understand wanting to keep coax/RF away from all my electronics...

My other question is, which battery is preferred to pull power from? I have 2 batteries, one is up close to the windshield on the passenger side and would probably be easier, and the other battery is in the traditional location. I would have to check how these batteries are connected, but would it be beneficial to pull power from the battery farthest away from the alternator?

Any opinions, tips, install thread links are appreciated, I am just trying to save myself some hassle by learning about what others have done, I know I will probably have some trouble shooting anyway given its a modern diesel but starting off learning from others always helps. Most people that I have talked to so far with a similar truck, have a mag mount, and a cigarette lighter power plug in for their radios so its hard to take their advice.

Thanks in Advance!
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G8YMW
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Posts: 750




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« Reply #1 on: April 15, 2019, 05:58:01 PM »

First things first, have you looked a k0bg.com ?
The hood / bonnet lip mount should go on the passenger side so it's  (for most of the time) out of your field of view
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73 de Tony
Windows 10:  Making me profane since March 2017
KC1GKG
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Posts: 1




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« Reply #2 on: April 16, 2019, 03:16:25 AM »

3 Quick Answers:

(I have a 2005 3500 Duramax).

- I have a back rack / cab rack. I installed my antenna on the top of that with a same-manufacturer plate.The closest thing I can show you are the pictures of my truck on this page (link below). Its the dark blue 3500 SRW half way down the page.
If you look real close, on the drivers side of the cab rack you will see a small metal platform with a 2m/70cm antenna sitting on it: https://www.northeastshooters.com/xen/threads/what-truck-do-you-drive.365555/page-4

- The antenna cable is run down the rack and goes up through a factory plug hole under the cab (re-sealed with silicone).

- The batteries are connected in tandem. So it does not matter which one you connect to (I am connected to the one
on the passenger side. The one on the driver's side has jumper connectors so it is more of utility configuration and
I'd rather not have my radio connection involved with that area).





« Last Edit: April 16, 2019, 03:21:18 AM by KC1GKG » Logged
K4VBX
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Posts: 4




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« Reply #3 on: April 16, 2019, 04:57:30 PM »

I have a 16 Ram diesel. I'm running a trunk lip mount on the driver's side of the hood. Passenger side has the am/fm whip, so I had to go to the driver's side. I have no known problems after more than a year running like this, but transmitting 50W on 70cm induces some noise in the FM receiver. I would strongly suggest you consider a simple NMO, quarter-wave whip and drill through the roof. I would run my old whip, but I can't figure out (yet) how to drop the headliner and how to get through the double-layer roof. This worked great on my last truck, maybe even better than the 2/70 or half-wave I use on the lip of the hood. Run power leads to the nearest source of power.
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VA6TJB
Member

Posts: 4




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« Reply #4 on: April 17, 2019, 07:52:43 AM »

3 Quick Answers:

(I have a 2005 3500 Duramax).

- I have a back rack / cab rack. I installed my antenna on the top of that with a same-manufacturer plate.The closest thing I can show you are the pictures of my truck on this page (link below). Its the dark blue 3500 SRW half way down the page.
If you look real close, on the drivers side of the cab rack you will see a small metal platform with a 2m/70cm antenna sitting on it: https://www.northeastshooters.com/xen/threads/what-truck-do-you-drive.365555/page-4

- The antenna cable is run down the rack and goes up through a factory plug hole under the cab (re-sealed with silicone).

- The batteries are connected in tandem. So it does not matter which one you connect to (I am connected to the one
on the passenger side. The one on the driver's side has jumper connectors so it is more of utility configuration and
I'd rather not have my radio connection involved with that area).


Thank you for your reply, I have seen your truck in past google searches, I cant remember why... Nice set up!

That is a good point about the battery, I will pull power from the passenger side battery. I'm not comfortable running electrical off the utility configuration. Now that I think about it, I also have my air compressor running off the drivers side battery. I believe its pretty easy to get it in on the passenger side as well.

Do you have any trouble when transmitting? I have read that the Duramax trucks can have trouble with the stabilitrak and ABS systems, however it sounds like they usually have coax running close to the sensor wiring.
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VA6TJB
Member

Posts: 4




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« Reply #5 on: April 17, 2019, 08:23:52 AM »

I have a 16 Ram diesel. I'm running a trunk lip mount on the driver's side of the hood. Passenger side has the am/fm whip, so I had to go to the driver's side. I have no known problems after more than a year running like this, but transmitting 50W on 70cm induces some noise in the FM receiver. I would strongly suggest you consider a simple NMO, quarter-wave whip and drill through the roof. I would run my old whip, but I can't figure out (yet) how to drop the headliner and how to get through the double-layer roof. This worked great on my last truck, maybe even better than the 2/70 or half-wave I use on the lip of the hood. Run power leads to the nearest source of power.

Excellent, thank you for the reply.

I would like to put an NMO mount on the roof but again, I would have to fold the antenna over and then up again (or screw it off and on) 3-4 times a day, the trucks roof is 7 feet off the ground and even at 6'1" its a climb to get to the center. When that situation changes I will be cutting a hole, no one is going to see the NMO mount anyway if I ever sell the truck, and I probably wont.

I think all you have to do on your dodge is remove the quarter panels that the seat belts/clothes hooks are attached to in the back and that gives you access to the headliner. I seem to remember there being a way to remove the roof light above the box and run coax that way as well (Down the pillar into the cab) but I could be wrong on that one.
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VA6TJB
Member

Posts: 4




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« Reply #6 on: April 17, 2019, 08:26:18 AM »

First things first, have you looked a k0bg.com ?
The hood / bonnet lip mount should go on the passenger side so it's  (for most of the time) out of your field of view

I have, thank you for the reference. I think I will put it on the passenger side to keep it away from the electronics on the drivers side.
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K4JJL
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Posts: 1126




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« Reply #7 on: April 17, 2019, 12:21:02 PM »

I've had 100W Motorola radios (Spectra, MCS2000, and XTL5000 as well as the PA system and PAC-RT vehicle repeater) running in my 08 GMC w/ a Duramax.  I pulled a #6 wire off the positive terminal of the driver's side battery and ran it through a firewall hole w/ a giant wiring harness.  The radios are in the back seat floorboard w/ the negative terminal under a seat bolt.  Been running this way for 11 years w/ no issues (other than leaving the radio on and running the batteries dead over a weekend when I didn't drive it).  The coax goes through a grommet in the floorboard and out to the back tailgate.
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