Another 2020 Ram 5500 Flatbed Camper Build

FAW3

Adventurer
Wonderful build. Some great ideas and fabrication in this thread.

Got an antenna question. I see your running your CB and what I think is a 2 meter rig using hood mounted antenna brackets.

My rig is a RAM3500 with a FWC Hawk. I'm deciding now how to mount mine...I'm leaning toward a roof NMO mount for each antenna. Gives me a pretty decent ground plane and gets the antennas "up' the most. The Hawk covers most of the roof with the overhang, only about 14" from marker lights to the Hawk front edge. Of course mounting here antennas are also more exposed to tree limbs. The simplicity, ease of installation, and no tree limb worries have me thinking of using a similar mount location as you are on the hood. How is your set up working for you? Good signal reception and TX?



Thanks and happy trails!
 

Brad_UT

Well-known member
Wonderful build. Some great ideas and fabrication in this thread.

Got an antenna question. I see your running your CB and what I think is a 2 meter rig using hood mounted antenna brackets.

My rig is a RAM3500 with a FWC Hawk. I'm deciding now how to mount mine...I'm leaning toward a roof NMO mount for each antenna. Gives me a pretty decent ground plane and gets the antennas "up' the most. The Hawk covers most of the roof with the overhang, only about 14" from marker lights to the Hawk front edge. Of course mounting here antennas are also more exposed to tree limbs. The simplicity, ease of installation, and no tree limb worries have me thinking of using a similar mount location as you are on the hood. How is your set up working for you? Good signal reception and TX?



Thanks and happy trails!
Thank you sir! I did go with a CB antenna and 2 meter ham antenna. The antennas are Larsen brand and the brackets I found on Ebay from a guy in Canada if I remember right. The fender mount is a compromise, but I'm really happy with how it performs. I added braided ground straps from the hood to the fender on each side to help the hood act as a ground plane. I worked at a commercial 2-way radio shop while in college and I remember this was a common practice on the "police package" vehicles we'd get in from Ford, Chevy, etc.

It's hard to beat a roof mounted NMO antenna for the reasons you mention. In your case, 14" may be enough room to mount it, but I'd worry about the cabover being too close to the antenna element. I'm confident you could tune it, but there's no telling what it would do to the radiation pattern. My guess is that it would be more distorted than a fender mount.
 
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Brad_UT

Well-known member
Camper Stairs!
I found a Youtube video of a guy that took some Little Giant folding stairs and modified them for his camper. I made some brackets that allow these to slide down over the stake bed rails. I can use them anywhere around the bed, not just under the door. I'll eventually build some extendable bottom feet for uneven ground, but for now, these are going to work great!

IMG_5009.JPG IMG_5014.JPG

IMG_5011.JPG IMG_5016.JPG
 

mk216v

Der Chef der Fahrzeuge
Not a clue, but now I’m even more curious and will do some digging, cause we know your millennial butt won’t 😜
I keep telling you sucka, I'm much older than a millennial, hence no laziness. :giggle:

All of the hatches, including the door, are Tern Overland. Pretty good quality from what I read.
Brad, I meant that it looks like you have the smallest (trailer size) TO door in your drawing. Is that correct?
Pass through dimensions:
Trailer size: 40 3/8" x 24 1/4"
Mid size: 52 1/2" x 24 1/2"
Full size: 70" x 22 1/4"
 

Brad_UT

Well-known member
Brad, I meant that it looks like you have the smallest (trailer size) TO door in your drawing. Is that correct?
Pass through dimensions:
Trailer size: 40 3/8" x 24 1/4"
Mid size: 52 1/2" x 24 1/2"
Full size: 70" x 22 1/4"
Good eye. Unfortunately it is the smallest one they offer. Going to the mid-size would mean raising the roof a few inches and losing the space above the door for the awning.

If I raise the roof, it starts to negate the main (only?) benefit of a pop-up. But I really want that taller door. I'll talk to Bison about it.

I'm watching the overall height closely. As it is, I can get the whole rig in the garage with an inch or two to spare (have to air out the bags completely). That's a big deal because I'll be finishing out the interior starting in January. Working on it in the driveway just isn't an option. Forget about doing any gluing or painting when it's 25F outside. No way to go between camper and shop without keeping the big garage door open, etc, etc....
 
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Brad_UT

Well-known member
Sweet build dude (y)

Im using a repurposed little giant for my stairs as well, though I integrated them 100% into the bed.
They fold and slide right into the bed.

That took some forethought getting them to slide into the bed like that. Looks super trick. Very nice!
 
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