Project Cherokee: CB and Antenna Installation

A CB is usually a "must" when on a trail. It allows you to communicate with other vehicles in your party. I have put a lot of thought into which brand and model of CB I wanted. I have had the Cobra brand previously in past vehicles. I eventually sold that CB because I had made up my mind that I wanted the Cobra 75 WX ST. The reasons were pretty simple, I wanted a good brand CB that was small, and had the weatherband channels on it. I like the way you can easily disconnect it when not in use. The box that powers the unit and connects to the antenna easily mounts out of the way. Enough on that, lets move on to the install.

I mounted the control box underneath my center console. This allowed me to mount the remote cable out the side of the console so that I could easily connect the handheld portion when needed. I ran the antenna cable along the passenger side of the truck under the door moldings. There is a nice raceway on both sides of the Cherokee. Once in the cargo area, the cable still tucks nicely under the side panels. I then decided that I wanted to go with the Firestik Door Jamb Antenna Mount. This was mounted just above the rear tail light.

What I ordered: I ended up ordering the Cobra 75 WX ST from Valco Electronics. They easily had the best price at $89.99. Most other places on the web are easily sitting at $119.99. After a little bit of asking around, it seems like the best place to mount an antenna on a Cherokee is in the rear tailgate. I opted for the Firestik door jamb mount. After checking some local truck stops and coming up short, I sent an e-mail to Firestik asking where I could buy one on the web. The replied with 3 places, but only one, ALF Enterprises, actually listed it on their website. I must give them some kudos for extremely fast shipping. I would say the part arrived in about three days!

Installation: Follow along as we install the antenna mount. The first step was to make some holes in the black plastic circle to get the antenna cable through.

Where I brought the antenna cable through.

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The next step I did was removed the three bolts holding the tail light on. This allowed me to figure out where I wanted to place the mount. I had half decided that I wanted it to be partially behind the tail light as this would increase the strength of the mount a little. I also decided that I was only going to use three screws as the fourth screw ended up on the body seam. I marked each of the holes with a pencil, and then got out the drill. I also coated the drill holes with some grease. Hopefully this will keep the rust to a minimum. I also put some grease on each of the screws too.

Where the antenna mount was placed.

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I then fished the antenna cable through the hole in the black plastic circle and pulled it into position. I hooked it into the bottom portion of the mount. The next step is to hook the tail light back up and then mount the antenna.

Antenna in place.

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Antenna installed.

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Overall, that's really all there is to it. I still need to tune the antenna with a SWR meter to make sure I get maximum range out of it. I am also going to look into getting some sort of grease to coat those antenna connections to keep the rust at bay. For now, I just keep the CB on the console. I unhook it when it is not in use.

Cobra 75 WX ST CB installed.

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Vendor Links:
Valco Electronics
ALF Enterprises

Vehicle owner: Bryan Penberthy
Words and photos: Bryan Penberthy
Install performed by: Bryan Penberthy

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