Ham Radio Install Question

RangerVol

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I picked up a Radioditty DB-25D the other day since they had a 20% off Black Friday sale. I didn't want to spend a ton of money on a radio because I don't do a lot of rag chew also our repeater doesn't really get busy until a Skywarn net is activated. It also does DMR so I can use my hotspot or the local DMR repeater for that

https://www.radioddity.com/collections/business-radios-mobile-radios/products/radioddity-db25d

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It only does 20W on high, 5W on low, that's all the power I really need for working repeaters locally.
It only comes with a power cord that plugs into the 12V cigarette lighter port and has a 10A fuse according to the manual.
Only the positive has a fuse, the picture in the link makes it look like both +/- are fused. I haven't opened up the plug head to see if there's a fuse in there also

Do you guys think there would be any issues just plugging it into the cigarette lighter port with the radio and transmitting at 20W?
Also is that 12V port hot all the time or only when the engine is on?

I bought a Comet trunk lip NMO mount and a Comet Antennas SS-680SBNMO. Did a test fit, plan to mount it passenger side hood and it'll be perfect there. Just got to get the antenna wire inside, think I'll use the wire grommet that's behind the coolant reservoir.
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Frenchy

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To my understanding the cigarette lighter ports turn on when the BCM wakes up and when you start the truck. After you shut the truck off and wait 15 ish minutes or open the door the cigarette lighter port turns off. As for the fused end it is ok where it's at. Its normal for just the power to get the fuse so things have less chance of buring up.
 
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RangerVol

RangerVol

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Thanks Frenchy. I was hoping the ports didn't stay hot in case I forgot to turn the radio off haha

Do you think this little 20W radio would cause a problem? It would only see 20w when transmitting
 

Frenchy

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Not really. It is designed to work off the Cigarette lighter. Also the wattage usually refers to how much potential range you can get. For example I have a 15 watt radio. I can get a 50 watt version that will reach farther, but im not too concerned about it. Also for power consumption the cigarette lighter port should have a 15 amp fuse. To give you an idea 15 amps running 12 volts(general reference here) is 180 watts. You are way lower then that and I'm sure the Radio has its own specifications for power draw.
 
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RangerVol

RangerVol

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Thanks. I think I'll be using the Cig lighter port, may as well put it to use for something HAHA instead of running cable for it although I don't guess it would be that much of a problem to do since I have to pull the Antenna wire in.
 


Frenchy

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Now that I remember I used a 10 amp power source that used to be for a factory amplifier. Still have yet to have an issue woth that one. Mind you I had to cut the cigarette lighter part off the harness.
 
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RangerVol

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Mine's plugged into lighter and no issues...
What radio are you using if you don't mind my asking...

Looks like the hardest part will be getting the antenna cable in.
The barrel on the comet lip mount comes off so it makes it a little easier.
Right now leaning from removing the screws from the coolant reservoir just to move it slightly out of the way and go through the wiring grommet right behind it, otherwise I'll have to think of something else
 

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What radio are you using if you don't mind my asking...

Looks like the hardest part will be getting the antenna cable in.
The barrel on the comet lip mount comes off so it makes it a little easier.
Right now leaning from removing the screws from the coolant reservoir just to move it slightly out of the way and go through the wiring grommet right behind it, otherwise I'll have to think of something else
I have more than the GMRS plugged into the 12v system lol...everything on and no sign of protest from the electric department...have a look around my build thread...

https://www.ranger5g.com/forum/threads/project-msfitoy-v3-0.2804/page-82
 
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RangerVol

RangerVol

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I have more than the GMRS plugged into the 12v system lol...everything on and no sign of protest from the electric department...have a look around my build thread...

https://www.ranger5g.com/forum/threads/project-msfitoy-v3-0.2804/page-82
Dang man LOL
Not only do you have a ton of lights, you have a ton of stuff on that 12V system ???
Yeh my poor little radio won't even be noticed by the system

I should get my GMRS License and a HT to leave in the truck. I need to look into it and see if I have a need for it

I bought a cheap $30 TriBand Baofeng the other day to leave in the truck just to monitor 1.25M since we have a repeater here, it's probably not used much
It can also charge via USB so no need to take it in the house to charge it.
 

Msfitoy

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Dang man LOL
Not only do you have a ton of lights, you have a ton of stuff on that 12V system ???
Yeh my poor little radio won't even be noticed by the system

I should get my GMRS License and a HT to leave in the truck. I need to look into it and see if I have a need for it

I bought a cheap $30 TriBand Baofeng the other day to leave in the truck just to monitor 1.25M since we have a repeater here, it's probably not used much
It can also charge via USB so no need to take it in the house to charge it.
Yes sir...you're good to go lol...
 
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RangerVol

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Yes sir...you're good to go lol...
Ok got the radio installed today... took way longer than my buddy and I thought it would to get the coax in, had originally tried coming in on the passenger side grommet behind the coolant reservoir but gave up, finally came in through the grommet on the driver side next to the brake.

Radio is a Radioddity DB25-D (2M/70cm/DMR) 5W/20W
Comet SS-680SBNMO Antenna
Comet CP-5NMO Trunk lip mount
After we got everything mounted and ready. Called my buddy on the repeater and he said I sounded good and we talked for a while.

We have another repeater that does DMR and a 70cm, didn't try either but did hear someone on the DMR repeater Tennessee Statewide channel.
When I got home. I switched over to my Hotspot channel and keyed up the Parrot on it and I echo'd back and it sounded good.

IMG_8344.jpg


Radio is mounted right in front of shifter and in Park. Think I need to get me a black lighting cable for my iphone hahah

I used some Gorilla double sided clear tape to mount the radio...says to press for 60 secs and probably fully seated in 24hrs or so...let me tell you. That thing is study and not moving. Happy with that.
The mic comes with a magnet on the back. I used a quarter size washer with double sided tape and mounted it next to the shifter for the mic to stay


IMG_8346.jpg




Here it is in Drive and you can clearly see the screen. I put some some tape around the red led on the cigarette adapter so it doesn't show at night...it's BRIGHT but I also turned it toward the bottom so it's not as in your face...

Also my cigarette port seemed to stay hot, well at least the red led continued to be visible think 20mins after I had locked the doors so maybe mine doesn't lose power??? I unplugged it for the night. I may plug it in tomorrow and check it after an hour.
That being said I don't think that little red led even if it stayed on, as long as I turn the radio off would be enough to kill the battery, shouldn't be any worse than an alarm led that flashes, except this one stays steady. What do you guys think? Unplug or just leave in even if the red led stays on?
If the light is going to stay on. I will wrap the tape back around it so that it doesn't stand out at night

IMG_8347.jpg



In this pict you can see the tape I used to cover the LED on the bottom of the socket.
I've since tilted the radio down after I've taken these pictures. Screen is still visible but tried to get the GPS antenna more vertical and hopefully able to get a GPS lock. The GPS or antenna on this radio must not be that good or has to sit directly on the dash and that's not happening. Last week I had it sitting in the passenger seat and hooked up to a mag mount antenna I had sitting on a plate in the rear seat. It took it over 10mins to get a GPS lock, today I wasn't able to get a lock, it was slightly cloudy but didn't think that would matter, it's probably just too low where I got it mounted in the cabin. I wanted to try APRS. Once I got home today I switched it to use my location I programmed in instead of using the GPS for it and key'd the APRS channel and I show up on aprs.fi at my home coordinates I programmed in. The GPS and APRS aren't a deal breaker as I doubt I'd really use APRS.

I'm goin to take a sharper to that orangish label so it doesn't just jump out at you.
Clean up the wires just a little

IMG_8349.jpg


Radio works but has a few quirks I don't like but will live with.
 
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RangerVol

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For future reference, there is a grommet under the carpet on the driver's and passenger's side. They are really easy to access and a little silicone seals it up to keep water out.
I don't remember one on the passenger floor only the one that came in behind the glovebox, but didn't look too hard.
Wound up pulling the driver carpet up and came in up by the brake.

Also I found the cigarettes power port turns off in an hour and lowing the radio down from the tilt position did seem to help the GPS. Still took about 6-8mins but at least it did finally lock
 

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I don't remember one on the passenger floor only the one that came in behind the glovebox, but didn't look too hard.
Wound up pulling the driver carpet up and came in up by the brake.

Also I found the cigarettes power port turns off in an hour and lowing the radio down from the tilt position did seem to help the GPS. Still took about 6-8mins but at least it did finally lock
its close to the transmission tunnel. I hard wired my GMRS radio and have left it on all night by accident, it hasn't affected my ability to start. It pulls so little power.

I'm on the hunt for a 2m radio, but I am also the only with my amatuer license, so I can really only talk to myself... ha! Waiting for my wheeling buddies to get their liceneses.
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