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cobra 29 ltd classic , and orginal starduster for home base,, need help.

Discussion in 'General CB Services Discussion' started by itsonlysir, Feb 5, 2009.

  1. itsonlysir

    itsonlysir
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    hello all , thanks for takeing time to read this . im very very new to cb's , like as in a week into learning .. the 29ltd classic ( Mobil unit) i have has had a ecko board and it has been peeked and tuned .. i will be getting a swing kit installed , the guy says he can get 35-40 watts out of it for me ....
    but i met a old guy that had a original m400 starduster ( from wayback ) it was brand new in the box , and never had been put together..

    my set up ,,
    i have the 29 hooked to a car battery temporarily, and i have ( rg58 cu ) coax cable at a 60 foot length . the antenna is on a 10 foot mass ( aluminum pipe ) and screwed right into the treads on the antenna , i have the mass pipe mounted to the very top of a 4x4 that is part of my privacy fence, so the part of the antenna that screw into the mass pipe is about 15 feet off the ground .\( it will be mounted on the top of my two story house but id rather get it working right before mounting it up there.

    i cant really hear anyone , i can barley hear them its like muffled alot ..
    and i havent been able to get a radiocheck back at all ..:headbang:headbang

    ok so now you know what i am looking at .. i have a few questions ..

    do i need to ground this antenna ?

    do i need to ground the Mobil 29 ltd classic ??

    the antenna does not seam to have any place to tune it , soo how do i adjust for swr ??

    is my problem that the antenna is not high enough in the air ?




    any info would be great , i have a swr meter , i will do some checks and post them in a few mins ,,,
    thanks for any and all help ,,,
     

  2. itsonlysir

    itsonlysir
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    ok i beleave im doing this correctly but not 100% sure , so imma describe what i am doing

    ok i am using a radio shack field strength / swr tester ( little black box ) in between the antenna and the radio ,

    turn radio on and put the switch on the swr meter to calibration . with the radio set to s/rf and on channel 20 i key up the mic and adjust the knob on the tester to try to get it to the ( cal ) mark on the tester . now this im not sure about because there is a line from cal/ swr switch on the meter to the center line on the adjustment knob. if i put the knob to where it lines up with the line comeing from the cal switch , i get a little more then half way on the dial , about 2.5 , not in the red area where it says cal .. if i adjust the knob to where i get it as close to the cal mark as i can the dial goes about half way into the red area , still a bit away from the cal mark ...

    this seams weird from what i been reading .. but anyways

    i leave knob on the swr tester alone alone and move switch to where it says (swr) .. and key up mic .. and the dial is in half way between 1 and 1.5 ...

    leaveing the dial adjusted i move to channel 40 . the cal reading is the same .. switch to swr ,, and its reading just a hair below where it was for channel 20 , so im guessing 1.1 maybe.


    ok now to channel 1
    still not adjusting knob , the cal mark is very close to the cal mark... and when switched to ( swr ) , i get a dead on 1.5 reading....

    sorry for the long reads, just trying to give yall as much info as i can , to help you help me ...

    i have done research but alot of what you read is back and forth and what people feel is better ,,,, so i just asked ,,:confused:
     
  3. Sickpuppy22

    Sickpuppy22
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    When you check your SWR you have to recalibrate the meter after every check.

    1: Key mic set the needle to the very far right so it lines up with the CAL line, with the mic still keyed slide switch from cal to swr, take reading repeat step on ch 1 -20 - 40. Always recalibrate when testing another channel.

    (note: turn mic gain down so that you dont accidently pic up backround noise throwing off your reading)

    Ch 1 reading higher than Ch 40 antenna is to short
    Ch 1 reading lower than Ch 40 antenna is to Long.

    Now redo your swr check note the readings and if all checks out your good to go, if not you might have a ground issue and im sure someone with the knowledge here will give ya a hand.

    Have a good one.
     
  4. Moleculo

    Moleculo
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    If you're SWR readings (assuming you've done the calibration procedure properly) is 1.1 on channel 20 then you've got the antenna adjusted perfect. How far away are the stations you're trying to get a radio check from? 15' of antenna height really isn't very tall, so you might not get more than 5 or 10 miles of "talk distance". What is interesting is that you say that they sound "muffled". Check all the switches to make sure they're in the correct position and also all the dials on your radio. Crack the squelch all the way open (counter clockwise) and the RF gain all the way up (clockwise) and see what happens. Perhaps you have one of those set wrong.
     
  5. Marconi

    Marconi
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    Usually if I can hear em' I can talk to em'.

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    I think the radio has a delta tune and that adjustment could be off. I have talked over 50 miles on my Starduster when it was only 15' to the hub.

    itsonlysir, after the tech work was done, did you ever hear the radio work on any other antenna that you know was working good? Or was this the first time you heard your radio at the point when you installed the Starduster and hooked up the radio?

    The guys are right, if you are having a problem with the SWR meter not being able to set the to the CAL mark in the set mode, then the DK may be set to low. You should know that though. Do you know what your DK should be?
     
    #5 Marconi, Feb 5, 2009
    Last edited: Feb 6, 2009
  6. Bionic Chicken

    Bionic Chicken
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    If the Starduster is put together as the instructions show there should not be a problem with SWR. Back in the 70's and 80's I put 100's of them together and never had a problem that was antenna related with SWR.
    With the SWR meter not fully going to the CAL mark it could be either with the tune job the dead key is too low to cause a full deflection of the meter or the internal CAL trimpot in the radio has been adjusted improperly.
    60' is a little long of a run with RG58 (lot's of loss) but still should allow you to be able to make contacts.
    Just to make sure: Set the switch to CAL, (do not move it) and then key the mike and move the CAL knob to set to the mark on the right side of the meter. If in this mode it will not go that far you need to get an external meter to check the SWR. Maybe someone you know that has a radio has one? One other thing to think about is you might not be on a channel that people in your area monitor. Usually you can pick up something on channel 19 but not always.
    Hopefully someone else in your area with a CB will be able to help you check the radio out and you can see then how it performs.

    BC
     
  7. itsonlysir

    itsonlysir
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    ok ill answer the questions the best i can in the Oder they where asked..

    Sickpuppy22 ,, thanks for the reply and the help, yea i have been trying to set it to cal , but it wont go all the way over to the cal mark ... it stops calf way in the red , then when switched to swr its at like 1.1..
    i tryed 20 and 40 the same way , when i have the ( external meter ) on the cal mark and adjust the knob it will go all the way to the left ,, but again will not go al the way to the cal mark witch is to the right..


    moleculo,,, thanks for the reply and the help . ,, im just trying to talk to anyone ,, lol , i can get people every once in a wile ,, and i can get a radio check every now and then .... but the furthest i have been able to track it is about 7 miles... by asking a trucker to tell me as he pass"s a mile marker..also i have moved the antenna up to the top of my roof ( 2 storry house , ) so it is around 25 feet of house then 3 feet of satellite mount( try pod) made to hold my 10 foot masss so the bottom of the antenna now is sitting roughly 38 feet off the ground ... i have also tryed adjusting the rf and the sweltch all the way to the left like you said , and just cant seem to get a clear channel . this is what is happening ,, i sit here and monitor channel 11 and i will pick up one person clear , and he will be talking to another person but i cant hear the other person , just a slight muffell... with the settings in alot of different ways encludeing the way you said to do it ,, still cant getthe needle to the cal mark .. i have tryed the in radio meter and a external meter , as well . ??? so useing the swr / cal knob on the radio and the knob on the swr meter i cant get it to ( cal ) ..:confused:


    Marconi,,, yes it does have a delta tune, but that doesnt seam to make a change in the signal ,, but also my radio has had a ecko board installed and also it has been peaked and tuned from what the guy said who i bought it from. and yes the old guy that i bought the antenna from had all kinds of fancy meters and what not ,, he hooked it up in his shack and key a few friends ,, they came in clear as a bell , and also said the radio was very clean and crisp sounding ,, also the old guy said it was putting out like 7 wats,, he had a 40 tower and the antanna that has a long rod in the middle and 4 poles at the bottemin a + . ive seen it around as par as pics on here . but yea he said the radio has had some work done to it and that it sounds great on the other end ,,, but to answer about my dk ( :blushing:) umm i have no idea what that is , ,, sorry , but i will be researching it as soon as i post this .. lol



    Bionic Chicken,,,,,,, yes the old guy i got it from , tested it and then tested with his meters said the meter on the radio was very close to what it should be , and seamed to be acting correctly ( as far as swr readings) before i hooked up the starduster , but with it hooked up i cant get it no matter what i do to the cal mark .... the way you described it is the way i did it , no moving it , and it just wont go to the cal mark .. i got 60 feet because i wasn't sure of how many feet i was going to need, i plan on putting it up higher on the roof , but for right now i have it bolted to the satellite dish tripod . i will more then likely be cutting off like 15-20 feet of cable , but it was very cold and windy today and dident want to move the tripod to the permanent location today so i just bolted it to the tripod to get it higher off the ground to see if it would help... i was on 19 for 4 hrs today ,, i get a driver to radio check back but again when i talk to them they say i sound good , but there only like 7 miles away , and even when they sound great i cant hear the other people they are talking to ... and then i lose the driver i can hear at about 8 miles ... and also with the same radio i have use a wilson 1000 in the car and the swr works like it should .


    also i took the satellite cable , it has double g6s cables and then a smaller thin solid copper wire also in the wire from the satellite so i driller a hole in my mass and attached the bare ground wire to the mass , the other end i hooked to the grounding rod for my house...

    what kinda distances should i expect from it being roughly 50 feet up in the air ???

    also i took my volt meter and put it on oams to where it beeps if you put the red and black connections together ,,, no on my wilson1000 if i test the middle and the center of the p- fittings ,it beeps ... but if i do same thing to the antenna cable ,, no beep ???? just something i notised..



    thanks for all you guys help,,,,
     
  8. Moleculo

    Moleculo
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    Distances you will get locally depend a lot on your surrounding terrain. While Marconi can get 50 miles in Texas, I'll never touch that in L.A. with all the building and mountains.

    I don't know that particular antenna very well, but I wouldn't expect your multimeter to show a short (beep) on that base antenna (from what I've seen in hard to read, tiny diagrams, anyway).

    I do think that your SWR is way off on this setup, though. What is interesting is that you can get the SWR meter to calibrate on your mobile, but not on the base. Most SWR meters require at least about 2 watts of input power to be able to calibrate. The fact that it won't calibrate leads me to believe that the radio is seeing a high SWR and cutting the power output back severely. Is there any way that you can take a close up picture of the antenna installation and post it? Or at least describe it in more detail?
     
  9. itsonlysir

    itsonlysir
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    moleculo ,, my back yard is a big field ,, with the interstate behind the field , so im like 200 feet from the interstate , sevral houses around but back yard is wide open ... also im in Virginia , and where im at there isnt any tall buildings ..

    i just took some pictures , i hae to add them to photobook or something to post im asumeing,, so ill be getting that done right now ..
     
  10. itsonlysir

    itsonlysir
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    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    what you are looking at is a satellite mount for the roof that i took the satellite dish off , and slid my 10 foot mass into it ,, i the drilld holes threw both pipes and put a bolt threw , from the way it sits in there it doesnt move ,, i plan on putting the antenna up on the peak you see to the right above the satellite mount...

    you can see my white coax that is my wire going to radio , and the thicker black wire is the old double r6 satellite wire , but you can see where i left the small ground wire there , that ground wire i put a screw in my mass and wond the ground around it then tightenedthe screw in al the way,, that ground wire connects to the main ground rod for my house ..

    i left the coax cable long so that if i move it then i have enough , and i put the antenna up on that mount just trying to get a better signal ,, and its easy to take down there ( for adjusting ) , i just dident want to permently mount it and then have issues and have to take it all down to make adjustments ,,,

    thanks again for the help , i will explain anything and take any pics anyne needs to help me , and again im sorry for my ignorance but we start somewhere i guess, :laugh:
     
  11. itsonlysir

    itsonlysir
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    ok maybe that dident work ,
     
    #11 itsonlysir, Feb 6, 2009
    Last edited: Feb 6, 2009
  12. itsonlysir

    itsonlysir
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    trying again

    [​IMG]
     
  13. itsonlysir

    itsonlysir
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    and anouther

    [​IMG]
     
  14. Marconi

    Marconi
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    So you know that the radio works fine in your mobile TX and RX. Then, if it doesn't work when hooked up to the SD'r, then something is wrong in the SD'r, the coax, or the end connection at the antenna is bad. I have seen other's make bad connections in the antenna using SD antennas, because it can be difficult to connect without damaging something.

    What are all the extra wires running around here and there?

    How are you getting the coax out of the bottom of the mast pipe? It looks like it is a foot or two above the bottom.

    It looks like some sort of pig-tail splice sticking out the mast opposite side of the coax, about a foot above the tri-pod. If so, that is not right.

    Or, is the two short wires seen sticking out maybe a guy wire attachment or something else?

    I can't see the details of the mast/tri-pod connection. Does the mast pipe attach to another pipe, side by side in the tri-pod somehow? I can't tell from your images. In other words does the longer mast pipe inside the antenna hub of the SD'r have an open bottom end? This is necessary to provide a way for the coax inside the pipe to exit to the radio?

    Or, have you jury-rigged some other type of coax connection at this point?

    I could understand this if the mast pipe was down inside the tri-pod and stopped just before resting on the roof. It would not be very stable, but this would allow the coax to just come out of the bottom toward the radio. However, it also looks like there is some retainer attached to the roof and the bottom of the mast is sitting inside that retainer to support the mast from moving laterally back and forth. Not enough info.

    Moleculo is right, an OHM test of the center to shield at the radio end of the coax to a SD'r---it should show an open circuit. It is just like a center fed dipole connection. This would not make his audio alarm go off in his OHM's meter---as there is no DC continuity there.
     
  15. Marconi

    Marconi
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    Usually if I can hear em' I can talk to em'.

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    Ignore some of my questions above, I either failed to read your last post fully or I was working on mine when you posted. You answered some of my questions, regarding the large coax for one. Even so, I'm still not getting a good picture of the setup on the roof.

    don't worry about the confusion, just don't get fustrated and let it block your common sense. You do not have to appologize. We have all been there.
     

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