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Nice. I got an SWR meter for when you calibrate if you need.

Also.... great album in the background. Contains some of my favorite Pantera songs: Slaughtered, Use my Third Arm, Strength Beyond Strength
 

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Discussion Starter #102
Initial hardware install and the antenna cable routing went well. TBH... I've seen cleaner installs on this web site, but then I'm new to the CB world. Anyways - grounding the antenna mount requires only a bit of sanding down to bare metal. I dont think you need to draw blood here.
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Man I used the same cb antenna mount and had a really hard time bending the piece to fit without having it contact the hatch when closed.

Were you successful? Mine still contacts slightly when closed. not bad though. and i was using less than ideal tools for the job. I really dont think the ground strap is necessary. but it sure wont hurt.

looking at it closer I see that you went the opposite direction, (rearwards) with the part that sticks out. i wonder if that would have been easier .
 

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Discussion Starter #104
Yep - even after putting it in a vise - and bending it - I still have some contact w/ the hatch ! It really wasn't a good fit beforehand. Hatch would not close, and at least now it does. After getting it snug, ground correctly, and routing the antenna cable thru the grommet in the rear hatch, and snaked along the inside edge ( down the drivers side ) and under the carpet to the console box ...probably a good 2 + hours or so. The Firestick antenna itself arrives tomorrow. Only at that point do I dare turn the Uniden on and see if I can get any sort of signal. This will need some tuning still of course..so hey let's see what happens.
 

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IMHO... ditch the spring. Watch this video and look at how much my antenna waves all over the place while out on the trail.
Balanced Rock - Brunnie and PhulD head to Tower Arch

Once I got rid of the spring the antenna mount doesn't have as much strain on it, and the antenna doesn't beat on the side of the rig.
 

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Man, now I see why the tennis ball..lol. The HD spring might have to go away ! Your antenna is 6' I'm guessing?
4 ft. Firestik antenna.

I don't have any video of my antenna now that the spring is gone, but I have noticed that while on the trail there is much less "tail wagging".
 

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interesting, I never really thought that it whips around too much and its my understanding if you dont have the spring you could actually break the antenna.. idk though, they are flexible to a certain extent at least.
 

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IMHO... ditch the spring. Watch this video and look at how much my antenna waves all over the place while out on the trail.
Balanced Rock - Brunnie and PhulD head to Tower Arch

Once I got rid of the spring the antenna mount doesn't have as much strain on it, and the antenna doesn't beat on the side of the rig.
Looks like you are using the non-HD spring? Or maybe the tennis ball makes it swing more?
Blackbird, here is my setup using the HD spring. You can see how it reacts to a tree and then more importantly, how it handles afterwards. It moves a little bit but nearly as much as Brunnie's antenna.


I worry without using a spring simply because there are so many branches in WA that will catch your antenna depending on the height. If it is much higher than your roof, I would want one. If it is <12" higher, then you are probably not gonna be hitting it very often and I think you would be safe with no spring. But I do see Brunnie's point of it putting a little extra stress on the mount.
 

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Looks like you are using the non-HD spring? Or maybe the tennis ball makes it swing more?
Blackbird, here is my setup using the HD spring. You can see how it reacts to a tree and then more importantly, how it handles afterwards. It moves a little bit but nearly as much as Brunnie's antenna.


I worry without using a spring simply because there are so many branches in WA that will catch your antenna depending on the height. If it is much higher than your roof, I would want one. If it is <12" higher, then you are probably not gonna be hitting it very often and I think you would be safe with no spring. But I do see Brunnie's point of it putting a little extra stress on the mount.
I broke my first antenna because of limbs. Didn't have a spring. I do now and haven't had an issue since.
 

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Discussion Starter #112
Ah - good video - and I do have an HD spring that will go on there. Yesterday I had borrowed a 5' antenna from Eric, but wasnt thrilled at how the pivot screw on the swivel mount kept letting it tilt too far back. That got on my nerves right away... changed the screw location to the bottom hole. Which I think will solve the problem.

Even better - when I got home my Amazon order 3' Firestick was waiting for me ( perfect timing?) so I ran out there and installed it this AM. As you can now tell I clear my car port just enough to get the Xterra underneath...but just barely. A SWR meter calibration will also need to happen. BTW - on the trail we all just used Eric's walkie talkies which were just as excellent. Those things are so tiny / simple/ powerful/ convienent I'm still not sold on the whole CB radio thang.

123869
 

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BTW - on the trail we all just used Eric's walkie talkies which were just as excellent. Those things are so tiny / simple/ powerful/ convienent I'm still not sold on the whole CB radio thang.
lol you are not wrong man. I have some ~20 year old Motorola walkie-talkies that my parents gave me recently. I remember using them in elementary school.... Now, they work great up to a couple miles with their tiny antenna even from INSIDE the car. CB has more range depending on antenna set-up, but for 90% of situations with 2-3 vehicles, the handhelds are usually just fine. TBH I just carry both at all times just in case since CB has been the standard for so long.
 

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I like mine, I expect it's portability will lead to others wanting to use it lol!

Also since there was some talk of springs on CB antennas, I've had a stiff antenna (Wilson 4ft), stiff with a spring (HD spring) and both had pros and cons but weren't the right solution for me. I opted for a flexible antenna. It can bend more than 90 degrees without issue but doesn't flop around or touch my truck when it rebounds.
 

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I can say I thoroughly enjoyed todays run up to Manastash Ridge Observatory. Not too much snow, nobody got stuck, and I only got sideways once. I suspect that in the spring this could be a great mud run.
We'll have to take you to "Funny Rocks" in the summer over there. It's a combo of mud, rocks, and unique Moab-like terrain that makes for a great weekend.
 

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Discussion Starter #119
Ok, so I've oficially gone mad... and I'm trying to see the benefits/ hazards of the following scenarious - any feedback is really appreciated here. I've read a few great writeups so far, but still need to consider the wild wacky options still on the table. In my local Xterra community thats already been through this fiasco - Derek and Eric are the two guys that come to mind, I've seen both of their set ups and it all makes some sense.

My 2012 X is a basic S model set at 3.13 ratios. Sitting on 33" Mickey Thompson ATZ p3's, and so far none of the axles are e-locked/ lokka/ air locked. Not T/S and dont think I will be soon. So - of all the mods I could possibly do - this will be towards the top of the list to change next :

A.) Running onboard air - to fully ARB locked both front R180 and rear M226 differentials ( @ 3.69 )

B.) Installing an automatic locking Lokka in the front R180. Then sourcing an e-locking M226 rear and installing/ plugging that in. There are a few of you on this forum that have gone this route and I'm wondering prices and level of difficulty on this situation.

I would buy a case of beer and a Ben Franklin or two for anybody local that would let me use a covered garage for a weekend. : )

C.) Leaving the R180 alone - ratio is already geared @ 3.69 and not installing any sort of locking mechanism on it at all Then installing just an e-locking rear M226. A local parts yard has one now - it's one out of a Pro 4x manual @ $ 1100.00 which is do-able here soon for me financially. This would leave me at a minimum of having a locked rear diff...better than none at all.

D.) None of this crazyness. Just go on trails and offroading without a locked anything. Enjoy getting stuck more !

Ok, D isn't really an option. I'm really thinking B or C seems more likely.

Getting my claws on a used decent condition e-locked rear differential is harder than when I started scheming a few months ago. I've learned some things since then. : )

Would I ever step up into 4.10 ratio on 33" tires? Nah. It's not totally out of the question, it's just about 20% more not likely.

Anyhoo...appreciate some perspectives here...let me know if theres something on the table I should also consider ?
 

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NewX’er 4life
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Your options B and C are the same for the rear diff, and if getting an m226 in 3.69 is your goal it will very likely be one with an e-locker. Since you don't plan on going to anything more than 33's in the near future or Titan swapping (from what I gather) the 3.69 is great for an auto, you may get away with leaving the front alone for now, but it depends how much you offroad it. A Lokka is a quick and easy solution to preventing the r180 from grenading but it has some trade-offs in drivability. Just make sure the m226 in 3.69 comes with the ABS sensors, they are pricey.

I have yet to install my ARB front locker, been sitting on a shelf for over a year, the rear locker has been fine so far. If you get to a point where the front locker is necessary, you might want a winch and some bumpers first :p
 
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