Help! Need Advice On Truck Lip VHF / UHF Antenna Mount

Discussion in 'Mobile Radio Systems' started by N9NY, Nov 17, 2019.

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  1. N9NY

    N9NY Ham Member QRZ Page

    After three attempts to install a NMO antenna by drilling a hole on the roof of my 2016 Jeep only to hit a tree limp and have the antenna snap off, I have decided to have the hole professionally filled in and take a different route. Instead I am looking to install the antenna which is 36" tall mounted on to a trunk lip mount. I've attached a couple of photos. One is the spacing on the jeep where the mount would go and the other is a mount that caught my attention. It's a Nagoya RB-700N, which is a medium duty mount.
    Would greatly appreciate your advice.
    73 Gregg N9NY Jeep.jpg Negoya.jpg Negoya.jpg
  2. N8VIL

    N8VIL Ham Member QRZ Page

    If this mount is going to be installed at the same height as the through the roof mount, I don't see the advantage. My antenna is a through the roof but has a spring at the base to minimize breakage. Have you tried a sturdier antenna on your existing mount?
  3. KF4ZGZ

    KF4ZGZ Ham Member QRZ Page

    A trunk lip mount ...... Jeeps don't have trunks. ;) (sorry, I have jeep friends, I just had too:))
    Soooo, don't see how that's gonna work.
    If you are going to put that on the top edge of the lift gate .... the pic is confusing ... it's going to scrape the roof.
    AJ5J likes this.
  4. AJ5J

    AJ5J Ham Member QRZ Page

    Why not keep the NMO hole mount and use a Diamond or other brand of whip that easily folds over when clearance is needed? You could also use a 19.5" GP instead of a taller antenna to good effect.

    The trick is to be vigilant in regards to possible overhead obstructions. It's often better to mount roof antennas on the driver's side since most tree branches are lower on the opposite (passenger) side, too.

    I suspect the lip mount will be no better and maybe even be more problematic.
    W9YAP and N0TZU like this.
  5. KB0MNM

    KB0MNM Ham Member QRZ Page

    Before filling that NMO hole permanently, you might want to consider a temporary NMO-hole mount made of something like an old license plate ( not the ones with numbers and letters pressed inward, rather one with the numbers and letters printed on a smooth surface ). Compare the distance that you get from a favorite repeater with the temporary plate mount compared to the NMO-hole mount that you have, with the same NMO mount hardware and cable. You may find that you will want to return the lip-mount ( unused ) to the seller- or not. The temporary mount may not last beyond a month or two, due to the thickness and nature of the metal ( usually somewhat brittle ) if a license plate is used, yet it should give you an idea of what to expect- especially if you add a thick ground braid to the chassis. Most of the metal will have a durable paint- a drill-mounted wire wheel, safety glasses/shield, and gloves can solve that issue.
  6. N0TZU

    N0TZU Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    There are rubber plugs you can put in the hole. But, I second the flexible ground plane antenna idea. It also works on 70cm but with a more upward pattern, which might work just fine for you, lots of people go that route.

    I would not use one of those clamp on mounts. They tear up the paint and can move if hit by a branch or an arm of someone working on the car. Use a mount that screws into the body below the seam and sticks through the seam slot. (By the way, the hood may not be metal. You didn’t specify what Jeep model but my 2014 GC hood is a composite material.)
    AJ5J likes this.
  7. AI7PM

    AI7PM Ham Member QRZ Page

    That "lip" mount will bend your metal and break when it encouters a tree. Stay with the NMO and get a spring equipped antenna.
    AJ5J likes this.
  8. KC9ONY

    KC9ONY Ham Member QRZ Page

    I don't know much about Jeeps, but it would help to have more pics of your particular
    model. ;) Also going to assume you are just talking about using a dual band antenna
    for VHF/UHF repeaters in the Chicago area? Do you go off-road where you might be
    hitting tree limbs on a regular basis or just trees in the urban areas?
    AJ5J likes this.
  9. W1GHD

    W1GHD XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    I switched to a shorter dual-band antenna for the winter, because the longer tri-band hits the garage door. I got tired of folding it over going in and out of the garage.

    There are several NMO options with springs in the 19 to 21 inch range.
    N8VIL likes this.
  10. W9YAP

    W9YAP XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    I agree, give the roof another try, but change the antenna, improve the mount, and at least, try to find the highest point of passage under those pesky branches for the antenna to sneak through. In the end, if you can't get through, as they say: Don't Drown, Go Around ...err, you know what I mean:p

    I run a Comet SSB5NMO (fold over) on my Tacoma roof. The sheet metal surface is less than ideal, but it has worked well for 7 years. Obviously, due to my lack of reinforcement, as one would expect after countless branch whacks, the Pulse/Larsen NMO mount had started to bend in and "tear" or stretch the hole open. The antenna is a beast, and has not had any issues.

    Lesson Learned: Add some plate reinforcement (should have done in the beginning) or use a better mount...a la Breedlove:)

    I just used a dolly to straighten out the old hole and put a rubber NMO hole plug in it. I installed a Breedlove Puck rear ward about 3" from that location and it is amazingly solid! I may upgrade to a Larsen antenna next, as I don't park in the garage anymore and I can just unscrew the antenna for parking garages and touchless washes. The Pulse/Larsen Rain cap works really well and the NMO surfaces stay completely dry after any pressurized washes.
    KX4O and AJ5J like this.

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