2014 Ford F-150 Mobile Install

Well, my truck is now back from the shop (don’t ask), so today I finally got around to doing my mobile install.  For this install, I’m only going to have 2m/70cm – no HF.  I decided to put in my Kenwood TM-V71A.  While I really like having this in the house as my main base radio, these days, I just am not having so much time while at home to get on the radio.  Plus, I want both bands available for ARES work, so in it goes!

First was the antenna install.  I am reusing the Browning antenna I pulled from my Ford Flex before selling it and using a vehicle specific NMO bracket from theantennafarm.com.  I purchased a Browning BR-1010 NMO mount to go with it.  There is the slightest contact between the bracket and my hood when closed, so for now I’ve put a couple wraps of black gaffers tape on it to protect the paint.  I still need to find a permanent solution.

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Next I needed to get the antenna wire and power through the firewall.  Power was run direct from the battery (passenger front right corner).  Both went through grommets and into the space behind the glove box.  I used jumpers from PowerWerx.com to go from the battery ring terminals to Anderson Power Poles and again from the OEM T-connector at the back of the radio to Anderson Power Poles.  This should make connection changes later simple and quick.

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After that it was a matter of getting the wires up through the dash and to the center tray, where I intended to place my radio.  Originally I was going to mount the radio to the top of the tray, but it fits perfectly beneath it, so I thought it would be nice to hide it there and just make a hole for the speaker mic and remote head cable to come through.  For the remote head, I simply cut an old telephone handset cable and crimped on an RJ-45 connector to match the factory cable.

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I’m still not sure where I’ll mount the control head, but for now, it’s a working solution.  I also ran a 3.5mm-to-RCA stereo cable from the back of the radio into the A/V input for my factory radio.  This will allow me to hear it through the factory speakers, though the built-in speaker sounds good enough even buried beneath that dash tray. smile

As you can see I do have a ProClip mount for my iPhone 6, so I may purchase an extender plate for that and put the control head there.  For now, I generally leave the head laying down below where you see the RCA connectors – there’s a small try there intended to hold a cell phone.

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Would love to hear anyone’s comments and suggestions for improvements.

Kudos to my [UPDATE 2017-07-29] as-yet-unlicensed brother Ben [KG5SCH] for spending his morning being the brains behind this operation!