Think about where you install your CB in your vehicle
So you have just bought your first CB radio.
It's cool looking, it's shiny, and you just can't wait to get it installed in the vehicle and start talking.
But before you can do that you have to find a place in the car to mount the radio. Shouldn't be too tough you figure. So you walk out to your car and you stare at the dashboard, you stare at the centre console, you look in the glove box and you even look underneath the seats.
You say to yourself "Where the heck should I mount this thing? Well you aren't the only one.
I won't discuss installation of power wires or coax cable in this article, but take those into careful consideration when picking out where you mount your radio.
I've found that there are a number of useful hints to remember when mounting a radio in a vehicle.
Long word but simple meaning. Can you reach the radio? A CB radio has knobs, switches and lots of other fun controls located on the front. You need to be able to reach these controls easily and without taking your eyes off of the road. If you don't mount your radio with easy reach you will regret it.
Once upon a time I knew a guy who mounted a radio underneath his driver’s seat. His thinking was that it was out of the way and no one would see it to steal it.
He was right on both accounts, but he seemed to forget that a big part of using a CB is knowing what channel you are on, and unless you only ever plan to run one channel you need to be able to see your channel display. In fact, you want to be able to see all of your radio's functions.
The best installs for visibility allow the driver to glance quickly at the radio and be able to read and mentally record all of the current settings of the radio. Take into consideration sunlight glare, shadows, and even other objects such as changing gear or the steering wheel that may block your view of the radio.
Is your radio in the way?
I used to love to mount my CB radios underneath the glove box in the passenger side foot well area. It was a bit of a reach for me but it had great visibility and was seemingly "out of the way”.
At least it seemed that way until I got a girlfriend. After she banged her shins a couple of times on my prized radio I realized something had to change quickly (to protect both the radio and my relationship).
Often we may find the perfect place to mount a radio only to later find that it gets in the way every chance it gets.
Is your mounting location good for the radio's health?
Seems like a silly precaution, but many radios die an early death due to dust, dirt, grime and moisture. If you mount your radio too close to the floor or in a foot well area it's likely to get dirty and bumped and kicked by feet or legs.
If you mount a radio too close to a door it may get rained or snowed on as you get in and out of the vehicle. Many people mount in the centre console area, but that also is where most people put their fast food and drinks; leaving open the possibility that your service station coffee could be the potential killer of your radio.
If you are putting a radio in a work truck it's often better to mount it higher in the cab to protect it and get it farther away from the dirt and grime.
If you live in a wet environment try to mount the radio someplace where it won't come in contact with as much moisture. And if you live in a hot dry climate make sure to mount your radio in a location that will keep it out of the sun and cool.