2018 Ford F250 Aluminum Body Trucks

Discussion in 'Mobile Radio Systems' started by N3IIG, Sep 23, 2018.

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  1. N3IIG

    N3IIG Ham Member QRZ Page

    I want to install an 2/440 antenna on my new truck but the cab and bed are aluminum. I was thinking of getting the Larson product listed here - http://www.larsonelectronics.com/p-...Mdymri3W3OEUto2Jl9yrlrcuKFfDlGohoCMTQQAvD_BwE

    Will that provide a sufficient ground plane since it would be insulated between the brake light and the aluminum cab. The bracket itself is aluminum but has a small square of metal on the top for a mag mounted antenna. The have a gasket to prevent water infiltration and that also would not allow grounding. I am also considering to drill and a NMO mount to keep the antenna secure at highway speeds.

    Any recommendations on this?

    Thanks in advance,
  2. KA9JLM

    KA9JLM Ham Member QRZ Page

    For $200 :eek:, I would be tempted to drill a hole in the center of the roof.

    That would work much better in all directions.

    Good Luck.
  3. K0BG

    K0BG Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    Forget the plate if you're thinking a no-hole installation. You do, after all, need to bring the coax into the cab. The easiest install, is to remove the CHMSL. This gives you access at the rear of the roof panel to install an NMO mount. The coax can be snaked down either "C" pillar, with a bit of effort.
    KD8DEY, AI7PM and KA9JLM like this.
  4. AI7PM

    AI7PM Ham Member QRZ Page

    Just drill and do a proper NMO install in the roof. When you go to sell or trade-in, you can buy a bag of 5 NMO rubber plugs for under $5.

    This plate you're looking at will look like crap, generate wind noise, and the underside of your NMO mount will need weather protection/sealing. Plus, you'll save around $195 and have a better performance antenna install.
    NL7W, W3JJW, KA0HCP and 3 others like this.
  5. K0BG

    K0BG Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

  6. WA8FOZ

    WA8FOZ Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    And paint one of them to match the OEM color.
  7. KJ4VZJ

    KJ4VZJ Ham Member QRZ Page

    Another no-drill option would be using an NMO hood mount antenna bracket. It uses the existing bolt and provides sufficient ground. You can bring the antenna cable through a firewall grommet. My concern with a roof mount is the height and hitting things in parking decks and drive-thrus. You can see my hood mount if you look up my call sign profile. Robert
  8. KE5PPH

    KE5PPH Ham Member QRZ Page

  9. N0TZU

    N0TZU Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    Ford isn't the only manufacturer using aluminum. The hood and tailgate on my '14 Grand Cherokee are aluminum.
  10. KB0MNM

    KB0MNM Ham Member QRZ Page

    Aluminum and some other metals are known to corrode rapidly in the presence of water. For years, commercial house wiring electricians have used various chemicals where aluminum and copper wiring meet. This is typically the heavy-duty cable used to supply the 'range' or stove, and/or the electric dryer where the cable is aluminum and the service bus bar or breaker is copper. So if the NMO mount is brass ( most are on the underside ), you may want to ask in the electrical section of the big orange or blue do-it-yourself construction store for the chemical that the electricians use. Sometimes it goes by the name of 'No-ox(tm?)', other times folks just call it 'gopher grease' ( not sure why, maybe a Minnesota thing ). The overhead brake light is usually the best place for an NMO mount, because new vehicles typically have headliner airbags and also usually have double-wall roof supports near the dome light. If you can avoid drilling any holes in your headliner, you will avoid depreciation- try not to leave any serious 'creases' caused by tight bending- a wide pry bar helps. 'Bulldog clips' can be used to route the cable from the center over to a pillar area. Stay away from the seat belt retractors- better to use high-grade ty-wrap(tm) mounts ( better double-sided tape ) than to disturb the side-curtain airbags often now found in the pillar areas. No need to 'ty-wrap' to these points until the connector is installed and an SWR test is made. Test a second time in case you are concerned that the ty-wraps are applied too tight on the cable.

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