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Soliciting ideas as to how to mount a ham radio tranceiver in my Sierra 1500 crew cab

Discussion in 'Chevy Silverado Forum (GMC Sierra)' started by ChuckHarding, Aug 16, 2012.

  1. ChuckHarding

    ChuckHarding New Member

    What I'd like to do is mount the radio between the dash and the front of the seat without drilling any holes, but I've been unable to find a suitable console that will fit and has the space needed. I'd also like to find out how people add after market electronic devices with minimal modification, so, if somewhere down the line I want to trade it in, I won't take a hit on the trade-in value. So far my wife & I love the truck - it is so comfortable to ride in and works so well with all the things I need it for, such as hauling my DJ equipment around, shopping at Costco, and hauling my grandkids and dogs around. Thanks, and keep on truckin'!!
  2. moogvo

    moogvo Epic Member 5+ Years 1000 Posts

    Welcome to the group! Mounting options will vary from one year model to the next since the dash and console underwent many changes over the model years. Knowing your particular model year and maybe even a picture would be of assistance in ideas for your install.

    Again, Welcome!

    73,
    N4KCN
  3. ChuckHarding

    ChuckHarding New Member

    Oops!! I thought that info was in my signature block - have to go update it. Anyway, it's a 2012 Sierra 1500 SL Crewcab, with the front center console that folds up to make a middle seat, like this: IMAG0338.jpg
    You can see how I have my rig hooked up now, just sitting in the tray. It's an Icom 208H by the way. I have a mag mount 2m/440 antenna on the roof.
    73,
    Chuck K6CKT
  4. moogvo

    moogvo Epic Member 5+ Years 1000 Posts

    you know Chuck, one of the things that comes to mind is to get a pre-built communications console made for your truck. Yes, it means losing the center seat in favor of a center console, but that is going to be the fastest, no modifications way to do it.

    you could build a custom console and then tie it to the floor by using the bolts that hold down the inboard seat tracks of your front seats. you could build a bracket from some flat aluminum stock from lowe's and then take a second piece of flat stock to attach to the first pieces. you would bend that flat stock to run over the transmission hump. you could then mount your console to that bracket. One thing I like to do for custom modifications like this is to look on ebay to see what sort of consoles I can find that are of the size and shape that would best fit my needs and then build whatever brackets it needs to mount it securely.

    Another thought is to remote the face plate of the radio (which I believe the Icom 208 has the ability to do) to a location that will not require any visible drilling to mount it. Maybe there is a bolt on the bottom of your dash that you could take out and then stick through your radio mount to hold it up. With my Explorer, I got creative and bought a second center console top that I could cut up and then restore back to original before I sold the vehicle. The pics are below.

    What about getting an OEM style center console and cutting that up to meet your needs? That way, you could put the center seat back in before trading it in and there would be no evidence that you had ever modified anything! you could also build your own console and make it in such a way that it mounts to the same bolts as your center seat... Creativity is the key here!

    This was the center console I had to work with. I bought a replacement top for the console from someone on the Internet (The grey part).
    [​IMG]

    Then I started drilling, cutting, wiring and gluing:
    [​IMG]

    I ran switches for my grille and strobe lights, cut out a place for a speaker and remote mounted the faceplate to the console before installing it. The RF Deck was mounted in the rear cargo area behind the trim panel, out of sight:

    [​IMG]

    I made up a cat5 cable with the correct connectors to run to the console for the remote face plate, ran a speaker wire to the console and mounted the speaker in the console to give a finished factory look:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Here is the console installed and cleaned up:

    [​IMG]

    And of course, the finished vehicle:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    A little creativity and a bit of know how goes a LONG way!

    73,
    N4KCN

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