Installing Yaesu FT-8900 in a 2011 Toyota Tundra Pickup

Discussion in 'Mobile Radio Systems' started by NM5RW, Jul 22, 2012.

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  1. NM5RW

    NM5RW Ham Member QRZ Page

    Just traded my 2006 Toyota Highlander for a 2011 Toyota Tundra pickup. Had a very comfortable installation of my FT-8900 in the Highlander. Main xcvr unit in the open area under the center console, the control head mounted to a wood block in the ashtray. Had a Comet UHV-4 quad band antenna mounted to a Comet RS730 "lip" mount on the back hatch door. Worked fine. For in/out of the garage/in town I used a mag-mount w/ a short 2 band VHF/UHF ant.

    The new truck has a very nice looking fiberglass shell on the bed with a pair of 1" dia. tube Yakima bars across the top of the shell.

    Question: has anyone installed a rig in a late model Tundra? Would be interested in where/how. Also how you mounted the control head. As to the antenna (I wish to avoid drilling holes unless absolutery necessary--other than in the fire wall to run the power through): One friend suggested installing the antenna lip mount on the hood driver's side, but have to watch the antenna orientation when opening the hood. Has anyone used a bolted mount on Yakima-type roof racks--being on fiber glass, these will be ungrounded. Any thougts on that?

    Appreciate any thougths or your experience.

    73, Ray - NM5RM
  2. KD0PWN

    KD0PWN Ham Member QRZ Page

    Just upgraded today to general, so this post stirred a thought on the 8900. What do you use for an antenna, and how much luck have you had on 6m and 10m?
  3. K0BG

    K0BG Ham Member QRZ Page

    You both would be better off with an all-mode transceiver rather than sticking to FM.
  4. KC7YRA

    KC7YRA Ham Member Volunteer Moderator QRZ Page

    I have both a 2008 and a 2012 Tundra that I have outfitted with multiple radios and HF setups.

    If you don't want to drill holes (which is real easy in the Tundras), you can buy special Tundra brackets that use existing fender bolts to hold them onto the hood/fender. They aren't cheap but they work great.

    As for the control head, I stick all of mine up in the top left corner of the windshield with an adhesive from Larsen antennas. It is out of the way as far as getting stuff spilled on it or kicked or anything, easy to look at without taking your eyes off the road, and it looks good. Nobody knows it is there.

    Tundra Roof.jpg IMG_0149.JPG radio head mount.jpg Radio in window 2.jpg Radio in windshield.jpg

    I know you have a topper but I also put on a pic of my HF antenna so you can see what I like. Then a few fuzzy pics of the floating control head in the window (it looks crooked but it isn't). I also have my 857D control head photo. That is of of a Pro-fit mount and has been working great. In both trucks I also have a cell booster as well as several digital scanners.

  5. NM5RW

    NM5RW Ham Member QRZ Page

    I agree, but this is what I've got for now. Thanks for the thought.
  6. NM5RW

    NM5RW Ham Member QRZ Page

    I use a Comet UHV-4, 4 band (10-6-2m-70cm). Works fine. As to 10 & 6 FM, I've made a few contacts on 10M when the band has been open, which isn't very often. In Oct I had a QSO with a guy in New Zealand mobile!! Nothing since. Only 6M I've worked has been on 6M repeaters passing through cities that had them. That's it. K0BG's comment below about getting an all-mode rig would be the better way to go. But as I said below, this in the rig I've got right now. I have an Icom IC-706MKIIG which I used to run in a Ford Explorer, but that is my shack rig now.
  7. NM5RW

    NM5RW Ham Member QRZ Page

    Alan, a question for you: is there an all-mode rig you would recommend, outside either the IC-706MKIIG, whatever the next generation Icom rig is, or a Yaesu FT-857D or the 817 QRP rig? A VHF/UHF rig?
  8. NM5RW

    NM5RW Ham Member QRZ Page

    Brad, thanks for the info. Where do you get the Tundra brackets? and how about the mounting device which holds your control head on the window--is that a Larson product, too?
  9. KC7YRA

    KC7YRA Ham Member Volunteer Moderator QRZ Page

    I will have to find the hood bracket company. Can't remember for the life of me.

    The control head in the windshield is mounted on a cheap old cellphone bracket. I have even used a piece of 2x6 that I cut at a narrow angle before. The adhesive is made by Larsen and it is available in the KG reinstall kit. It is a double stick type material that is used for remounting glass mount antennas. Tough as hell.

    Most everything else I made myself.

  10. K0BG

    K0BG Ham Member QRZ Page

    Of all of the current made-for-mobile offerings, only the Alinco is relatively new (<2 years). The IC-7000 dates back to 2005, and the 857 to 2001. Both the 7000, and the 857 have a strong following. In the average mobile, there probably isn't much difference between them. However, if you do all of the requisite noise abatement, the 7000 is a better bet, especially when band conditions are marginal.

    The Alinco is an interesting transceiver, but it doesn't have VHF coverage. I've not owned one, but after playing with one at Dayton, it is a great transceiver considering the monies your pay for it. Is it better than the rest of the pile? I don't think so. The reason is, as I alluded to above, few mobiles can take advantage of the extra sensitivity the 7000 offers. Even then, it has a few drawbacks, especially when there are a lot of close by signals. The only transceiver that handles that well, is the TS-480. But it too has some drawbacks.
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