Mobile HAM radio CX-5

Pipemajor

Hoot Mon!
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Minnesota
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2017 CX-5 GT AWD
I just passed my amateur radio license (HAM Technician class) and am interested in installing a mobile VHF/UHF radio (probably around 50W) in the CX-5. Most mobile units come with detachable faceplates which mean you can mount the radio chassis anywhere. More concerned about the antenna. It would be nice to replace the XM shark fin antenna with a mobile whip antenna. Alternately one could use a lip mount and use the top of a window or perhaps the rear hatch.

Any CX-5 HAMS out there?
WA7HPK
 
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'16.5 CX-5 AWD
I use a 6 dB Midland whip on a mag mount for my GMRS radios. Run the wire through the hatch and tie the wire to a roof rail with a Velcro strip. One transceiver is 40 watt. It doesn't bother the car.
 

Pipemajor

Hoot Mon!
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Minnesota
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2017 CX-5 GT AWD
I'm primarily interested in the VHF/UHF mobile rigs which would be the VHF 2 meter (~144 MHz) and UHF 70cm (~420 MHz) bands as I could then use the many amateur repeaters to reach out to a wider geographical area. I'm also a local elected official (municipal) and would like to listen in to public safety bands.

Interesting that the GMRS license (ZA service) used to cost $70 for a license but was recently reduced to $35 while my amateur (HA service) was only $15. Both are good for 10 years but the latter requires an exam. You practice with the actual exam question so a little prep and it's virtually guaranteed.

My HAM Technician license authorizes me to operate up to 1500 watts VHF/UHF but mobile HAM rigs are far below that. The HF bands are restricted for Technician level and I can only operate @ 200 watts. For hand-held radios, you certainly don't want to be radiating anything that strong inches away from your head.
 

Gozo

2020 Mazda6 2.5T
The most important part of your antenna system is going to be the ground. Clip on mounts stink without a counterpiose. At VHF/UHF that’s doable, but a ground plane like the roof is the way to go. A mag mount will capacitatively couple to the roof metal. With a permanent antenna; getting the cable into the vehicle is another issue. Best practice would be to drill a hole and run the cable through the roof liner and down one of the pillars. If you have a sunroof make sure to steer clear of the space it needs.

If it were mine, I’d use a mag mount as a test to see if you can access the repeaters you want to. You’ll be surprised how little power you need for the local ones. Most of the time you’ll be using just one or two so don’t go overboard.

I used to have a 110w Micor (shows how old I am) in the old car (not a Mazda) and with 20 amp drain on key down, you could tell the engine had to give a bit extra to keep up. Make sure to use an adequate wire gauge for your power leads. Currently I use the HT in the cup holder and do just fine with all the systems around town.

Have fun with it all. 73’s