I've seen a lot of threads from people asking what's the best set up we can get so I thought it would be good idea to just post what we're running now and we all can decide which one will work best for us.
Let's keep it as simple as possible but include all the upgrades done to your set up including coax, mic, antenna and so on. I'll start:
- 2010 International MAXXFORCE 13
- Cobra 29LTD Chrome (Modified by DTB Radio)
- Original coax
- Fire Stik II Antenna driver's mirror (I believe 4"09' I'll check later)
- Range: 2 Miles best, 3/4 worst
What's your CB Radio set up thread.
I"m a big fan of vintage equipment. These days I'm running a Philippines- made 148 that has had the frequencies expanded, the receiver upgraded, the clarifier opened and just generally hot-rodded so it can be all it can be. The output gets fed into a Messenger 2V amp - powerful enough to get the point across, not so powerful that it requires special wiring. Antenna is a vintage 5' Van Ordt Pow-r Stick on a Wilson gumdrop base and mirror mount. Coax is Astatic mini-8 with original Ampenol PL-259 soldered ends.
Range: On a quiet frequency I can talk with bases 15+ miles away. Last night I was chatting with another truck with a similar setup who was about 8-10 miles behind me. Of course during daytime skip conditions anything can happen and it often does. Was rolling through Eastern Arizona and was chatting with another driver over in Georgia for about 10 min, and this was on 19!
I'm running (in my pickup truck)
Galaxy 979 [prev owner clipped the limiter and turned up the mod pot it appears]
Wilson 2000 on a wilson gumdrop mounted to bed rail immed behind driver's seat. Bed, cab and frame rail bonded / grounded.
Wilson mini-8 coax
Road Devil RD104 mic.
I have been playing with this setup for a few weeks now, haven't really figured out how far it talks. I have the radio output power turned _way_ down so that the meter shows about a 5W dead key. Also turned down the mic gain (on both radio and mic) to just under half, that way when I talk I can see the modulation meter not constantly pegged. I can talk to other radios within a couple miles and everyone reports good clean sound. I realize a clipped limiter is not the best way to upgrade a radio but with the settings dialed way back it seems to be working well.
Cobra 25 NWSTWX (I rebuilt the NW power supply) to decent RG-58A/U to a coax switch that lets me choose whether I feed the 102" stainless whip plus 6" SS pot betlly spring on the left rear panel below the vent window on my minivan for road trips, or the 2-ft Barjan top loaded whip through a 3/8-24 to NMO adapter, then an NMO mount through the center of the van's roof. If the band is quiet, the wife & I can get 6-8 miles between our mobiles, or about 12+ miles to the modest base antenna (quarter wave dipole with the feedpoint at 40 feet AGL). That's fed with open (balanced) feeders to limit losses, as the feedline is about 90 feet from the windowsill antnenna feedthrough. Yup, there's an EF Johnson Matchbox at the base radio end of the feedline.
For me I've ran several combos, but here are a few that have worked well for me:
Cobra 21 LTD (same thing as Cobra 25),
4 watts of power carrier, 15 watts power modulation
Wilson 1000 antenna (same as 2000, just with a magnet)
Stock RG-5A/U coax that came with the Wilson
Range: (locally) 8 miles
(During skip) talked from Missouri to W. Virginia, Pennsylvania
Here's another combo I once ran:
Cobra 148 GTL
4 watts of power carrier/12 watts power modulation
Barjan brand RG-8X coax
102 whip with 6" barrel spring
Range: 14 miles (and this was on AM, NOT on SSB)
Another I once tried:
4 watts carrier, 18 watts modulation
Times Microwave LMR-240 coax
Range: 9 miles