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Installing a fixed mount radio and antenna.

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Installing a fixed mount radio and antenna.

Old 08-20-2017, 04:21 AM
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Default Installing a fixed mount radio and antenna.

I have a new Robalo R200. After much consideration, shopping and advice on this site I've purchased a Standard Horizon fixed mount GX1700, a stainless steel antenna mount for my canvas TTop and a 4' Shakespeare antenna. Got all at really good prices.
The marina guys where I bought and keep my boat are telling me it's roughly 3.5 hours of labor and approximately $425 for installation. Sorry-but that seems ridiculous.
I'm above average handy, I have all the tools in the world, have some work background in electrical and I have time.
Question for the group: how hard is this install and can it be done, given patience and average skills, by a boat owner? Hole in the dash, wire it up, fish line through the TTop (probabaly not as simple as it sounds), ratchet down the clamp, screw on the antenna....what am I missing? And can you recommend a place to get a solid instructional view of this?
I don't discount the installers knowledge, and I know the screw-up risk is on them, but $100+ per hour? Common'!
Old 08-20-2017, 04:45 AM
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Originally Posted by Boatdogz View Post
...I'm above average handy, I have all the tools in the world, have some work background in electrical and I have time....
I don't foresee a problem for your to install the radio, the transmission line, and the antenna, and to make electrical connections for the radio power. There is more to creating a VHF Marine Band ship station that just the physical installation. I can offer some advice at

VHF Marine Band Radio Installation on a Small Boat
http://continuouswave.com/whaler/ref...tallation.html

My remarks may bring awareness to some other factors that should be considered when installing a VHF Marine Band radio station.
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Old 08-20-2017, 04:48 AM
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The hardest part is cutting the hole. Maybe soldering the antennae connector as well.

For a self install a remote mic/black box install is typically much easier as you are only drilling a hole for a bulkhead mount.

Can't comment on the price.
Old 08-20-2017, 05:46 AM
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https://www.youtube.com/results?sear...at+vhf+antenna
Old 08-20-2017, 06:09 AM
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Yeah, give it a go if you think you can do it. It's not terribly intricate.

Almost always better to do it yourself 3x than paying to do it once.

Nice to know how things work/are wired should anything go south when out on the water.
Old 08-20-2017, 10:03 AM
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Concur with all the comments above re doing it yourself. It really isn't that complicated.

Depending on the connectors on the antenna you purchased, you may or may not have difficult fishing it through the T-Top. Some antenna manufacturers (Digital Antenna) place a small connector on the radio end of the cable, with easy, screw-on connection of a PL-259 adapter to connect to the radio. If the larger connector is already on your Shakespeare antenna you will have to make larger holes and may have more difficulty. I always recommend the Digital antennas as they are excellent and the connector makes it much easier.

If you don't have a line in the T-Top for fishing something through, you can try the suction method. Put a large ball of cotton with a length of light line attached at one end of your cable route. Use a shop vac or similar to suck at the other end of the route. With luck you'll pull the light line through and be able to run a heavier line to pull the antenna cable through. HINT: leave the heavier line in place for the next time you need to pull something through.

Brian
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Old 08-20-2017, 10:08 AM
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I have not herd of this suction method. I will have to give it a try.
Originally Posted by ocnslr View Post
Concur with all the comments above re doing it yourself. It really isn't that complicated.

Depending on the connectors on the antenna you purchased, you may or may not have difficult fishing it through the T-Top. Some antenna manufacturers (Digital Antenna) place a small connector on the radio end of the cable, with easy, screw-on connection of the rest of the assembly.

If you don't have a line in the T-Top for fishing something through, you can try the suction method. Put a large ball of cotton with a length of light line attached at one end of your cable route. Use a shop vac or similar to suck at the other end of the route. With luck you'll pull the light line through and be able to run a heavier line to pull the antenna cable through. HINT: leave the heavier line in place for the next time you need to pull something through.

Brian
Old 05-31-2018, 12:50 PM
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Wow, what thorough information and detail you have provided! Thanks so much.

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