Satellite Radio antennas

The friendliest place on the web for anyone with an RV or an interest in RVing!
If you have answers, please help by responding to the unanswered posts.

blueblood

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 16, 2005
Posts
1,082
I had the covers put over the roof vents so I just drilled a hole and bolted the truckers antenna into cover. Works very well.
 

Tom

Administrator
Joined
Jan 13, 2005
Posts
48,489
Leo

I sit the small XM antenna on the dash and have rarely had a problem getting a signal, although that antenna is meant to sit on the roof of the coach. If/when I decide to mount it permanently, I'll mount on the roof above cockpit.

My XM also has a "home kit". When at home, the larger home antenna sits on a bookshelf alongside the receiver.
 

Terry A. Brewer

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 4, 2005
Posts
1,446
Smoky

>>Where do you guys mount your XM and Sirius antennas?<<

I installed one on Fred's Dutchstar on the front cap by the entry door, run the cable trough the window trim to the radio.


Terry
At Clark Fork, ID
 

Smoky

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 11, 2005
Posts
3,589
Location
wherever we are parked
Good ideas all.

Looks to me like there should be room for running wiring between the padded ceiling of my coach and the fiberglass roof.  I just can't figure out how to access that area.
 

John From Detroit

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 12, 2005
Posts
24,576
Location
Davison Michigan
Tom said:
Leo

I sit the small XM antenna on the dash and have rarely had a problem getting a signal, although that antenna is meant to sit on the roof of the coach. If/when I decide to mount it permanently, I'll mount on the roof above cockpit.

One thing to consider.. Those antennas are intended to go on the METAL ROOF of a car which would block the signal from getting to the antenna if it was under the roof.

Your Motor Home it's more likely got either rubber over wood, or fiberglass upstairs, both of which are "Transparant" at XM frequencies

You might try moving it to a high point in the entainerment consoul area if you wish,,, but no need to put holes in the roof

10 years ago I put a CB in my all plastic mini-van... Recently I checked out the antanna,  SWR was in the 1.2 to 1.3 to one area (Excelent)  after 10 years... of course that's 10 years of no road salt, no sunlight, no rain, no... (The antenna is in the wall of the mini-van, INSIDE the mini van)
 

beekay

Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2005
Posts
23
Location
Conifer, Colorado
I ran the sat antenna up to the cap over the cap on my C.  i peeled back the rubber gasket that hid the screws and ran it under there.  easy to do.  used double stick tape to put it in place once there.

bk
 

edjunior

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 12, 2005
Posts
2,520
Location
Roman Forest, TX.
Well, I don't have a motorhome, and this probably wouldn't work for those, though it might for a class b or c.  After the first time the car wash scratched the roof of my truck by not taping down my XM antenna, I started searching for a better way.  I found a F-150 forum where someone mounted the antenna under the top grill of his truck (the one under the windshield wipers, right by the front windshield).  I looked into this, and sure enough, I found a place to mount mine under the grill of my truck.  It is now hidden out of sight, and it won't scratch the paint anymore.  You would never know I have XM now.  I haven't had any problems with it, except that sometimes it is a little slow finding the satellite (we're talking about 10 or 15 seconds after I start the truck).  The only thing with this type of mounting is, you have to have the antenna just underneath the grill (as close to the grill as possible), and having it mounted on metal really helps.  I just happened to have a little metal "tab" sticking out under the grill, and I attached a piece of metal to that, which extended the antenna out and up enough to get very good reception.  The antenna wire is run all inside the truck so none of it is visible either.  Very clean and no worries.  I love it.
 

Marsha/CA

Moderator Emeritus
Joined
Mar 9, 2005
Posts
4,489
Location
Home base-Kernville, CA
We have XM satellite and as Tom mentioned, Tim and I were reluctant to drill holes in the roof of the coach.  However, he did it.  It's attached to the fiberglass roof just above the driver.  Tim also put some kind of "goopy" stuff to attach the roady and make sure there would not be any leaking from rain.  He then dropped the line into the driver's side over head cabinet hooking the antenna into the Roady.  At first we used the wireless sending unit, but it didn't last long.  So, Tim picked up a connecting unit from Radio Shack and wired the roady directly to our media center.  Now we turn on the inverter, turn on the media center and have the Roady in "surround sound". 

FYI, when we were using the wireless cigarette connector, and the wires were laying loose and crossing over each other, we would get a scratching interference sound.  We don't get that with the direct connection.

Now we just have to figure out tivo.....! {smile}

Marsha~
 

Tom

Administrator
Joined
Jan 13, 2005
Posts
48,489
Marsha

We too were unhappy with the wireless adapter, both the one that came with the Roady and a different brand that I bought. Like you, we now use it through the surround sound.
 

beekay

Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2005
Posts
23
Location
Conifer, Colorado
sorry for the delay.  there is a rubber strip that hides bolts on our bigfoot Class C. i ran the wire through the dash and out along the trim outside the cab and into the slot where this rubber strip resides (our rig is fiberglass, so i am guessing this is how they build the components and put them together).  the strip goes all the way up the roofline and I ran the wire up to the roof, put the rubber strip back on and we are good.  i should have though about it before posting, not all Class C's are built the same:)

As far as FM Modulators;  Wireless FM Mods are no good for much of anything, however, My Cadillac SRX does not have any way to integrate Sirius or my Ipod so I had to use one.  I found an in line FM Modulator (antenna goes in and out of unit) and it has a switch that turns off the antenna and uses the RCA input as the source.  this works 99% of the time and is perfect for Sat Radio and a B+ for Ipod.  Audiovox makes the unit and you can search for it.  this is a pretty freakin good solution if you have no input options on your radio.

Alternatively, there are several companies that make adapters for CD changer inputs, or you can get a switch and splice it into your CD changer line (as a bud did recently).  many aftermarket stereo's make adapters and kits for additional aux inputs such as Pioneer and the Icelink, which allows you to piggy back many diffferent inputs and control them via the head unit (stereo).

performance:  Auxilliary input is best, Cassette adapter, wired FM Modulator (tie with cassette), then wireless modulator is the worste.  I dont like to use teh surround sound setup mostly because i like to be in full control of everything and with the Class C the surround is over my head and facing back, so I don't get the full sound as you might with a Class A

I love music and stereos!

bk
 

Smoky

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 11, 2005
Posts
3,589
Location
wherever we are parked
Every FM modulator I have tried sucks...except one very good one!

The one really good one I have I use when I drive the motorhome for my Ipod.  I cannot hear any difference from a direct connect unless i get on a channel where there is a local radio station.  It is called a Transpod and can be obtained at Best Buy.  It is a full docking station that plugs into a cigarette lighter.  It gives a digital freq readout and you can tune to any FM radio frequency.  It also charges the unit while it is playing or when it is turned off.  There is no reason a good FM modulator cannot be manufactured, so I suspect most of the units out there are jut poorly made with a focus on a big profit margin.



 

Ned

Moderator Emeritus
Joined
Feb 1, 2005
Posts
25,107
Location
USA
Wireless modulators don't work at all in our motorhome.  The FM antenna is on the roof and the modulators just can't get enough signal up there to work.  An inline wired unit would work but getting to the back of the radio is not easy.  We just play lots of CDs or listen to our iPods with ear buds while travelling.
 

beekay

Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2005
Posts
23
Location
Conifer, Colorado
you cant pop the radio out?  it cant be that hard especially for a smarty like you Ned:)  a little pulling and prodding and things will come loose and you will find all the bolts to get that dog out of there.

The reason why wireless modulators are not that good is mostly because of FCC regulations for output, and as Smoky says, folks shooting for profit.  transmitters need power to work and most run off of batteries, which don't last long (Belkin!), and those that plug in can get ground loop static if the rig is not perfectly wired.

 

Ned

Moderator Emeritus
Joined
Feb 1, 2005
Posts
25,107
Location
USA
It just doesn't seem like it's worth the effort.  I can always plug into the notebook and play all of our ripped music through my headphones and Lorna has her iPod.  When we're parked, we don't use the radio and I can connect the computer directly to the home theater if I want to do that.
 

Smoky

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 11, 2005
Posts
3,589
Location
wherever we are parked
I agree Ned.

The only time it is worth it to us is when we are underway. Then it comes in pretty handy as the laptop is tied up with other duties.  I can also directly plug into my sound system, but with the Transpond I no longer feel the need to do so.

I have a feeling that the Transpod has an advantage of being located within an inch of the radio when it is plugged in and thus does not have to travel to the outside antenna.  Of course each vehicle will have its own unique problems and possible sources of interference.  I did find that most modulators I tried in the past were puny little things and maybe with puny little circuits.  This Transpod is pretty hefty and therein lies my one complaint... the dog occasionally knocks it out of the cigarette lighter.
 

Ned

Moderator Emeritus
Joined
Feb 1, 2005
Posts
25,107
Location
USA
I can, and do, run Street Atlas, vmcPC, and iTunes all at the same time on our notebook while travelling.

There are no free 12v outlets on our dash, with a GPS III, Street Pilot 2620, and the Apollo brake monitor, they're all full.  One even has a 2way outlet in it.  The PressurePro is hardwired.  Too many cables as it is so we don't need another one.
 

beekay

Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2005
Posts
23
Location
Conifer, Colorado
I hear you, that is a lot of plugs in a few outlets! 

It could be a good place to think about building a 12V power center. run a fresh 10gauge wire from the battery to the console and make your own power center.  you could do some fun stuff and keep it safe.  its all in what you want to do and the amount of effort you want to put into your design.

Thanks for giving me an idea!  i just might do this myself LOL!
bk
 

Forum statistics

Threads
117,622
Posts
1,178,590
Members
121,912
Latest member
Mimi0705
Top Bottom