Aluminum body trucks and cars; F-250 fender mount

Discussion in 'Mobile Radio Systems' started by N0IOP, Oct 16, 2019.

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  1. N0IOP

    N0IOP Ham Member QRZ Page

    The aluminum body F-150 has been out there for a while now. There are others, Acura NSX, Audi A8, Tesla, Corvette, various more exotic cars.

    The manufacturers of these cars recommend that any metal accessory be isolated electrically from the body. If grounding is necessary, a wire is supposed to be run to the frame rails or another designated ground point.

    I have an F-250 and am installing a stainless steel bracket mount that fits between the hood and the fender, under one of the fender bolts. I put some grease between the bracket and the paint. Will probably put a rivet through the side of the bracket for extra rigidity. Will probably run braid from the bracket to one of the designated ground points.

    Further advice welcomed. Practical experience of antenna installs on these sorts of vehicles also welcomed. I would put an NMO mount in the center of the cab except that my canoe would hit it when I have it up on the rack up there.
  2. VE3HIX

    VE3HIX Ham Member QRZ Page

    Many years ago I owned an aluminum-bodied Land Rover, and found that where steel meets aluminum and gets wet with salt water, the aluminum turns to a white paste that dries out and then disappears. That is, the aluminum disappears and leaves a hole! If you can remove one of the elements like the water or salt, it should be OK.

    Bob VE3HIX
    N0IOP likes this.
  3. KE7MWT

    KE7MWT Ham Member QRZ Page

    I had a newer F150 with the aluminum body and mounted both my 2M/440 antenna and HF ATAS-120 to the bed lip just behind the cab. Radios were mounted under the back seat and coax run through the cab vent behind the back seat. The power was all run along the door floor area and up through the harness boot through the firewall and over to the battery. The only issue I had was tuning 40M. I just couldn't get it to go 100% of the time. A copper clad piece of Plumbers tape and some self tapping sheet metal screws to tie the bed body to the cab section under and out of site was all I needed to fix the 40M problem. I had no additional noise added when I had the engine running or stopped. It was great. I now have a 2019 Ranger and tuning is not the issue, transmitting and disabling about 3 systems due to the RF IS the problem... The Ranger is a steel body, but you asked about aluminum and I never worried about it, I just mounted the antennas and added a ground strap from the base of the HF to the bed body and the above straps and it worked like a champ. Now if I could just get the RF out of the Ranger computer I'd be good to go...
    N0IOP likes this.

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