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post #1 of 7 Old 03-26-2011, 11:13 AM Thread Starter
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CB troubleshooting

So I installed my CB yesterday, finally after having a long wait for the antenna cable. And it seems that I have the opposite problem that most people have. No static, no issues with power to the system, its just quiet. Total silence. I am a total newb to CBs and not that great with electronics in general, any ideas? I assume when I am driving down a highway in Houston at rush hour on channels 17 or 19 I should hear something right?

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post #2 of 7 Old 03-26-2011, 11:39 AM
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Did you turn it on? Is the volume turned up?

Just kidding. Check the squelch. You may have it gated way down. You've got it calibrated per the user manual instructions and it passes any internal test features it has? Beyond that, take it to a truck CB shop and have them look at it.

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post #3 of 7 Old 03-26-2011, 12:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CJBeavJK View Post
So I installed my CB yesterday, finally after having a long wait for the antenna cable. And it seems that I have the opposite problem that most people have. No static, no issues with power to the system, its just quiet. Total silence. I am a total newb to CBs and not that great with electronics in general, any ideas? I assume when I am driving down a highway in Houston at rush hour on channels 17 or 19 I should hear something right?
Don't try to transmit until you make sure you can receive. If there's a dead short you can blow out your final power transistor which at today's labor rates essentially means buying a new radio (unless you can get it fixed under warranty).

Make sure the squelch is turned all the way down. If there's a gain knob, turn it all the way up.

Check your antenna mount. There should be a nylon isolator, like a stepped-diameter washer, that goes in the antenna mounting hole on the top of the bracket between the bracket and the antenna. The threaded stud from the antenna-side connector goes up from the bottom of the bracket, through the hole and the isolator, and the antenna screws-on. The idea is that the isolator protects the antenna from getting shorted to ground. If this isolator is missing or if you torqued-down the antenna so hard that it breaks or thins-out, it will ground the antenna making it useless.

If you can access a multimeter, measure the resistance between the center conductor and outer ground, it should give infinite resistance (e.g., no change in measurement from the meter being disconnected). Wiggle the cable and connectors while watching the meter to see if there's an intermittent short. The measure end-to-end resistance on the center conductor, this should be around zero ohms, again wiggle to check for intermittents. Finally, check end-to-end on the outer ground, again wiggling.

Finally, find a buddy who has a handheld CB and magnetic-mount antenna and try swapping his radio onto your antenna and see if it works. If not, and your coax tested okay, you probably have a bad antenna. Put his antenna and coax (they probably cannot be separated) onto your radio and see if that works. If not, your radio is bad.

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post #4 of 7 Old 03-26-2011, 01:36 PM
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If you're using an external speaker make sure it's plugged into that jack and not the pa one. Also if there's a pa/normal switch me sure it's not on pa. I've done both of these by mistake before. Taking a radio in and out of the big rig every day is a pain. If there's a switch for nb/anl try turning that off to see if you hear anything then

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post #5 of 7 Old 03-26-2011, 02:21 PM Thread Starter
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Beginning to think it has to do with that nylon isolator that was mentioned in the 2nd post. Not sure that I installed the antenna to the bracket completely in order. Going to check that when I get home.

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post #6 of 7 Old 03-26-2011, 03:01 PM Thread Starter
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Went out quick at work to check out the install on the antenna. The isolater is sitting above a small metal washer. So basically the order of the antenna bracket location from bottom to top is bolt, bracket, metal locking washer, nylon isolator, big nut, antenna. Im going to assume that it is being ground out per your suggestions. Will remove and replace when I get home and see what happens.

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post #7 of 7 Old 03-27-2011, 01:26 PM Thread Starter
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Just wanted to say thanks to the above posters. Moved the isolator and it works like a charm now.

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