Quick removal cb setup?

basing110

Observer
I got a really good deal on a bearcat 980ssb cb radio. I plan on using my 4runner for most expedition/offroad trips but the wife will be getting a larger suv in the next year or so. On the not so offroad heavy trips we will use her new rig for the road trips

Is it easily feasible to run the cb radio into a cigarette lighter and run a magnet mount antenna such as wilson 1000 or lil wil and still get a decent swr and sound? Maybe i will have to wire a noise filter inline with the power cable to keep any interference out...?

I have not got into HAM yet but that is also in my future. Still need the CB for truck to truck in some of the offroad club trips as it is a requirement.
 

4x4junkie

Explorer
You can do a cig-lighter connection and a magnet mount... The only thing is the factory lighter socket in many (most?) vehicles doesn't provide enough current for a SSB radio like the 980 for good performance, especially if you use SSB. If you have a separate aux lighter socket (perhaps for a fridge) in the vehicle wired with #12 or thicker wire, then you should be fine.

The 1000 is miles ahead of a Lil Will antenna in terms of performance (range). With a 1000 on the roof of both vehicles you should generally be able to talk 5-10 miles unless you happen to run into some power line static (can be fairly common around populated areas).

Hope that helps
 

1Louder

Explorer
Industrial strength Velcro to attach where you want it. Hard wire it but use a SAE connector between the panel and your radio for easy disconnect. Mag mount antenna is fine. I run a Lil Wilson and just remove the antenna when not in use. Lowes etc sell a thumb screw that is easy to remove. Mount stays in place with chord tucked into trim pieces as best as possible.
 

CGS

Observer
Cig lighter plug is more than sufficient for the 980SSB. I had that same radio awhile back, I don't recall it putting out more than about 15 watts at the most on SSB. That is a minuscule amount of power to draw. Even if you say that to make 15 it is drawing 30, that is still less than 3 amps at peak. People run 100 watts inverters all the time that draw MUCH more. If you are only running the cb and no other equipment like an SWR meter then I would use industrial strength velcro as mentioned by 1Louder or consider using a magnet like the scosche magnetic mount for tablets (maybe 2 of those). If you are going to have an external meter or any other equipment you might want to mount it all to a board (piece of wood, cutting board, etc.) to make it easier to manage.
 

4x4junkie

Explorer
I've had SSB radios not maintain frequency stability when used on a cig-lighter connection due to voltage drop (like a DC fridge, they can be finicky about their power connection), so is why I mentioned having an aux socket. 1Louder's suggestion of having a dedicated (disconnectable) power connection is excellent advice also.
 

CGS

Observer
I've had SSB radios not maintain frequency stability when used on a cig-lighter connection due to voltage drop (like a DC fridge, they can be finicky about their power connection), so is why I mentioned having an aux socket. 1Louder's suggestion of having a dedicated (disconnectable) power connection is excellent advice also.
No doubt there. I do agree that it is always a good idea to have direct power to the battery for any radio equipment. Honestly, I am not sure how much use you will get out of SSB anyway and the 980 is regarded to have excellent stability whereas other units could be notorious for drift. Some of the drift you mentioned could be tied to voltage drop but could also be linked to poor voltage regulators in the radio or just radios that have a tendency to drift. For AM use, you shouldn't notice any freq. stability issues using a cig lighter plug, especially with the 980.
 

4x4junkie

Explorer
Cobra 148GTL was among the units I had that didn't like a cig-lighter connection into a factory socket. The 148 is probably one of the most-stable units out there. The problem is the internal voltage regulator (of any SSB radio, the 980 included) cannot regulate well if the input voltage drops below about 10.5-11 volts... if the voltage drops below that, the frequency will "warble" with the modulation on both AM and SSB (though as you said, it generally would go unnoticed by most people on AM). The power output will be affected as well (probably reducing PEP by 30% or more).

I would say go ahead and try it if you want (it's not possible to actually damage the radio by plugging into an inadequate power source), but be prepared to find or install another power source if it doesn't work the way it should.
 

basing110

Observer
I will hard wire it up with some type of connector then so it can be moved. What is realistic distance a lil will would get me? Cb will be mostly used for trails.. the lil will is $30 and a 1000 is $100... big difference and i dont want to end up spending a bunch on a relatively short range comms... i got the 980 for $30 brand new in package un opened.
 

Martinjmpr

Wiffleball Batter
If you want something that can be installed/removed without any permanent attachments, consider the Midland 75-822.
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https://www.amazon.com/Midland-75-8...F8&qid=1476384650&sr=8-1&keywords=midland+822
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Although sold as a "hand held" it is designed to also be usable as a mobile unit with a pigtail that contains both a 12v cigarette lighter power socket and a BNC connector for a mag-mount antenna. I've been running one since 2007 and while perhaps not the greatest CB out there, it has worked fine as a trail radio (which honestly is about the best use you'd get from a CB anyway.)
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Personally I wouldn't waste money on a SSB radio. Does anybody even monitor SSB frequencies?
 

4x4junkie

Explorer
I will hard wire it up with some type of connector then so it can be moved. What is realistic distance a lil will would get me? Cb will be mostly used for trails.. the lil will is $30 and a 1000 is $100... big difference and i dont want to end up spending a bunch on a relatively short range comms... i got the 980 for $30 brand new in package un opened.
You could get a Francis CB-26 Hot Rod antenna instead... (about $25 or so I recall, plus a mag mount for it, maybe another $15-60, depending on what size mount you get). Performance with the CB-26 should be same or maybe even slightly better than the Wilson 1000.

A couple Li'l Wil antennas will probably get you 2-3 miles on average (much less than the 5-10 miles you'd get with better antennas).


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Personally I wouldn't waste money on a SSB radio. Does anybody even monitor SSB frequencies?
I take it you have not tuned in around the upper channels (36-39) and noticed, particularly when the band is open, signals that sound like "Charlie Brown's teacher"? Those muffled distorted *woow-woowmp-woop* sounds are all people using SSB (usually LSB). With a good antenna it's very possible to talk skip across the nation on SSB, and in some cases even to other countries (I've talked to Canada, Australia, Japan, and others on SSB). Of course for simple trail comms, plain AM (or better, FM, if it were more widely available) is best, and by far easiest, to use. Good antennas will always make even trail communications much more reliable, especially when those same skip conditions raise the noise level across the band.
 

CGS

Observer
If your trail riding companions are anything like what I have seen, the lil will should be sufficient to reach to the front and rear of a caravan. Personally, I prefer not using mag mounts because they are easily knocked off by brush on our trails. SSB with the same antenna will get out much further. Without getting too technical about it, SSB is just more efficient per watt and when you consider that with a stock radio you may only legally push 4 watts on AM and 12 on SSB, its even better.
 
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