BADASS of New England

An automobile club for the enthusiast who enjoys the last of the big GM cars. The rear wheel drive B and D bodys. Chevrolet Impala SS, Caprice, 9C1, Buick Roadmaster, Oldsmobile Custom Cruiser, Cadillac Fleetwood
 
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 Bad antenna cable/wire

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Matt Trakker



Posts : 5075
Join date : 2009-07-30
Age : 35
Location : Reading, MA

PostSubject: Bad antenna cable/wire   Sun Sep 11, 2011 12:41 pm

My Caprice had crappy radio reception since I bought it (weak FM, pretty much NO AM at all) and it always drove me nuts. Once I tried fiddling with the connector under the hood near the firewall and that helped a little but it got bad again soon after. A couple weeks ago, I tried undoing the connector, it was stuck together, and the wire pulled out of the connector itself on the longer end of the wire that runs from the radio, not the side of the connector that runs into the fender and then the antenna.

Can I just get this cable anywhere? How would I replace it, pull the radio, tape one end of the new wire to the end of the bad one, then snake the new one through the firewall to the dash and stuff?

Pisses me off, I think I drove the car twice in the past week and a half because of it. lol
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Cadet57



Posts : 4476
Join date : 2010-03-14
Age : 29
Location : Chicopee, MA

PostSubject: Re: Bad antenna cable/wire   Sun Sep 11, 2011 9:38 pm

Matt Trakker wrote:
My Caprice had crappy radio reception since I bought it (weak FM, pretty much NO AM at all) and it always drove me nuts. Once I tried fiddling with the connector under the hood near the firewall and that helped a little but it got bad again soon after. A couple weeks ago, I tried undoing the connector, it was stuck together, and the wire pulled out of the connector itself on the longer end of the wire that runs from the radio, not the side of the connector that runs into the fender and then the antenna.

Can I just get this cable anywhere? How would I replace it, pull the radio, tape one end of the new wire to the end of the bad one, then snake the new one through the firewall to the dash and stuff?

Pisses me off, I think I drove the car twice in the past week and a half because of it. lol

I think autozone has the whole cable in their GM universal antenna kit.
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Matt Trakker



Posts : 5075
Join date : 2009-07-30
Age : 35
Location : Reading, MA

PostSubject: Re: Bad antenna cable/wire   Sun Sep 11, 2011 11:05 pm

Thanks, I'll look into that, I had to replace one in my Suburban a long time ago but I half-assed it when the cable turned out to have the wrong end on it, lol.
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1984twodoor



Posts : 4059
Join date : 2010-03-30
Age : 23
Location : Wilmington/Wakefield/Andover

PostSubject: Re: Bad antenna cable/wire   Sun Sep 11, 2011 11:24 pm

JY a box antenna cable, probably more reliable! Never had a problem with mine. Plus its a pocket item
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sdstick



Posts : 4278
Join date : 2009-03-20
Location : Revere, MA

PostSubject: Re: Bad antenna cable/wire   Mon Sep 12, 2011 9:26 am

When I was reading this it sounded like the power connector, not the antenna cable.
Which is it? I highly doubt you were messing with the actual antenna coax because thats beneath wheel well.
I'd just splice it, thats no big deal.
I THINK the reception problem has to do with the antenna (mast) to its internal connection IN the antenna body.
Just for kicks, splice the power (even jumper it with clips) so you have power & when the antenna is up spin the individual mast sections to get new contact to each other.

_________________
Steve


96BBB 28K 3.42 Bolt-ons
95BBB 100K 3.73 383 New DD...already broke fixt the 4L60E twice
95 Black WB4 Hole...ee...grail
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Matt Trakker



Posts : 5075
Join date : 2009-07-30
Age : 35
Location : Reading, MA

PostSubject: Re: Bad antenna cable/wire   Mon Sep 12, 2011 11:40 am

My Caprice actually has the fixed mast non-power antenna, lol. The wire that came apart is on the firewall, just next to where the antenna is on the fender, one end from the connector runs down toward the inside of the fender, I forget where the other half ran but I think it went down the firewall someplace? I have to look again and take a picture...
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sdstick



Posts : 4278
Join date : 2009-03-20
Location : Revere, MA

PostSubject: Re: Bad antenna cable/wire   Mon Sep 12, 2011 1:29 pm

Oh, OK, sorry, I'm impala info or nothing
On the impala I'm pretty sure the antenna cable went thru behing the wheel well too.
I'll try to take a look today (Matts car in the bay)

_________________
Steve


96BBB 28K 3.42 Bolt-ons
95BBB 100K 3.73 383 New DD...already broke fixt the 4L60E twice
95 Black WB4 Hole...ee...grail
96 Black WB4 No holes in this
95BBB 189K 3.08 Old DD Stolen...by Matt. Cool
Whine..eee...Silver LS6
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Matt Trakker



Posts : 5075
Join date : 2009-07-30
Age : 35
Location : Reading, MA

PostSubject: Re: Bad antenna cable/wire   Wed Feb 29, 2012 10:32 pm

Just an update on this-

Tonight, in the dark and the snow, I did some messing with this while I had an hour to kill. I got a Type F (?) coax cable connector jack thingy, one of the ones you can twist on without crimping tools that's for cable TV wires, etc. I also got a Type F to male RCA jack adapter. The intact wire of the two in my car's antenna circuit was a female RCA. So I figured I'd try that.

The wire that had the ripped off connection had NO slack and it was pain getting the coax jack on there. Then the conductor wire in the center snapped off when I tried screwing the adapter in...haha. But there was apparently still enough to complete that circuit. So one wire is all set.

The RCA connection ain't that good. The factory side of the connection seems crappy, like it's worn out or something. The new adapter that's screwed into the Type F jack isn't the exact type of connector I need, so it has to be held in with tape, and if you move the wire, the signal gets choppy. However, I did have very good signal depending on where the cable was, my seek button actually stopped on all the stations! So, I'm thinking I can use the other Type F jack I have, cut off the remaining factory RCA and replace it with the Type F, then use a barrel connector between the two and see if that works. I think the twist on connector side of the whole thing is good. We'll see what happens. For now at least I have some sort of a functional radio! The only channels that were sorta coming in were 92.5, which I listen to, and 93.7, which blows becuase it's not Mike FM anymore. Laughing

I wonder if I can return the adapter thing even though I opened it...
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Matt Trakker



Posts : 5075
Join date : 2009-07-30
Age : 35
Location : Reading, MA

PostSubject: Re: Bad antenna cable/wire   Sat Mar 24, 2012 9:16 pm

I think I'm screwed as far as my antenna goes...lol.

A few weeks ago I put a screw on type F cable wire connector onto the cable coming from the antenna on the fender, since that's the end that had ripped off. I found an adapter that screwed into that (type F), but the other side of the adapter was an RCA jack type, that allowed me to put it into the factory wire coming from the radio in the car. However, that was a crappy connection too, it seemed like the factory RCA female end had rust in it or just plain sucked ass.

I cut that off today, put a second Type F on the other cable, then spliced them together using a barrel connector I found in the cable TV box on the side of my house where the splitters are. Laughing

Now the connection got worse, I should have left well enough alone! LOL

What happens is when I screw the jack onto the barrel connector, as soon as it touches the connector the radio signal gets crappy. Maybe I connected something wrong? I followed the directions and everything on how to use the no-crimp connections... Surprised Maybe the barrel connector I found is way too long for the application or something. I just don't want to spend anymore cash on cable TV/speaker wire connectors at Home Damage when I could spend the money on a new antenna cable or even get the parts from a junked car or whatever.

I just want my radio to work right! I have barely driven my 74 in 2 years because the radio stopped working and I can't take it!
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Matt Trakker



Posts : 5075
Join date : 2009-07-30
Age : 35
Location : Reading, MA

PostSubject: Re: Bad antenna cable/wire   Sun Aug 19, 2012 11:24 pm

So yeah, another update-

I grabbed one of these "Metra Universal Amplified Antennas" when I was at Advance, because I'd seen them on the big board a couple times? Saw them on other forums as well for people wanting a hidden antenna on old cars. I specifically remember someone put one in their back window on the SS forum. Decided to just bypass the whole old mast antenna. Anyone here ever run one of these things?

I got it installed, came out pretty slick looking overall, but it's not great right now. Damn thing took me nearly a week to finish due to time constraints, distractions of assorted kinds, and general laziness.

This thing comes with a signal cable that goes into the radio, a power wire that you tap into the switched 12v at the radio harness, and there's also a ground strap (a mini one) coming off the antenna itself. There is a red LED to let you know the antenna is powered on (grounded).

I spliced the power wire into the yellow 12v for the radio, that was easy. The ground wire is running up above my headliner to the screw that holds the inboard clip for the pass. side sunvisor on the ceiling. The main signal cable is weird- it's jack is way bigger than the jack on the back of the radio. I had to force the male end from the new antenna into the jack on the radio! The "dink" is all the way in butt the metal barrel part is not. I don't know if that means it's not grounded, if they make some sort of different size adapter to fit it into the radio by reducing the size of the connector, or what. The radio is a 1994 radio instead of a 93, but my 93 cable plugged right into that one, and I've seen these antennas in B's newer than mine, so I dunno what's going on there.

Anyway, I drove the car for a few days with the dash all apart and the radio just kinda hanging out in the dash with the antenna stuck loosely up above my rearview mirror. It seemed to work pretty good then. Today I buttoned everything up with the wire hidden and stuff like that, adhered the antenna to my windshield, and now it's shitty. The AM reception is EXCELLENT, which is odd because that never worked as long as I had the car! But, if I put this on FM, and hit scan, it stops all the time on stations where there is no station (will stop at 88.9, 92.5, etc., but then at 102.3 which is not a station, skips 102.5 which IS a station, then stops on 102.7), and certain stations that used to come in weak are strong while stations that you'd think would come in clear as a bell are weaker now. WTF?

Now, the thing is, I totally forget if I had this thing grounded when I did the test run with it for a few days. Yes I am an idiot, I know. I want to say it was NOT grounded. Maybe this antenna is "too strong" in some ways and picks up a lot of chatter, allowing the radio to stop on "non-stations" and needs a "squelch" effect like a CB or police scanner?

I like this thing otherwise. It was under 20 bucks. I'll just look into the connection issues via google, I believe I remember people saying sometimes they grounded it, some did not, some left it non-powered, and whatnot.











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Matt Trakker



Posts : 5075
Join date : 2009-07-30
Age : 35
Location : Reading, MA

PostSubject: Re: Bad antenna cable/wire   Mon Aug 20, 2012 12:15 am

Ha, it appears some people just leave the power wire off...I might try to put a hidden switch someplace just in case like was mentioned here:

http://www.amazon.com/Metra-44UA200-Univ-Glass-Amplfd/product-reviews/B0007WRQ8K/ref=dp_top_cm_cr_acr_txt?ie=UTF8&showViewpoints=1
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MASShole9C1



Posts : 4211
Join date : 2009-12-16

PostSubject: Re: Bad antenna cable/wire   Mon Aug 20, 2012 3:49 pm

Yup. That's the one I was gonna give you. It worked the same way. Not having the patience or the shit to give, I took it out.
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Matt Trakker



Posts : 5075
Join date : 2009-07-30
Age : 35
Location : Reading, MA

PostSubject: Re: Bad antenna cable/wire   Mon Aug 20, 2012 4:12 pm

^LOL holy crap dude, I totally forgot your text that time! WTF! Laughing

Oh well, it's nice to know I'm not nuts. We'll see how it goes, if it becomes a complete fail, maybe I'll frankenstein some kind of fixed mast antenna off of another junkyard car with a newer mast with the wind noise spirals and stuff on it, and hook up cables running in place of the old antenna circuit...
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MASShole9C1



Posts : 4211
Join date : 2009-12-16

PostSubject: Re: Bad antenna cable/wire   Mon Aug 20, 2012 5:01 pm

I have one of those antennas with the wind spirals.
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Matt Trakker



Posts : 5075
Join date : 2009-07-30
Age : 35
Location : Reading, MA

PostSubject: Re: Bad antenna cable/wire   Mon Aug 20, 2012 6:28 pm

Why did you get the hidden antenna, just for the shaved look?
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MASShole9C1



Posts : 4211
Join date : 2009-12-16

PostSubject: Re: Bad antenna cable/wire   Mon Aug 20, 2012 6:44 pm

Yea. There wasn't anything wrong. While I had my trunk lid being done, I was gonna have the antenna hole welded up. Figured I'd wait until i get the rear wheel wells filled. I did have an idea for relocation. Once I move on and redo my interior, I'll let you know if it works.
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