Fitting a VHF Antenna to the roof.. Easily done?

wipe_out

Active member
Joined
23 Feb 2013
Messages
1,396
Location
Bournemouth
I am trying to decide whether to get the VHF radio and antenna fitted by the shop or whether I can do it myself and save the fitting costs for other bits.. Boat is a new Merry Fisher 695.. The radio is easy enough by the looks of things but mounting the antenna and running the cable looks like it could be a challenge..

Is this something I should leave to the experts?
 

jac

Well-known member
Joined
10 Sep 2001
Messages
9,181
Location
Home Berkshire, Boat Hamble
Not familiar with the class but something like that should be easy enough. Make sure you specify the correct mounting for the antenna ( some can go on masts and are therefore at right angles )

Simply remove any headlining underneath where the antenna will be. Drill through holes for the cable. Depending on type you might need a cable gland which is separate from the actual antenna base but fixing those is similar. You should be able to secure the antenna and gland with self tappers rather than through bolting but make sure you bed in on something like sikaflex 291i. When screwing on, leave the final tightening for 24 hours so that the sikaflex is set and doesn't all get squeezed out by the pressure when being installed. ( just the last mm or 2 is fine)

Run the cable through any conduits available to where the radio is. ideally you should secure the cable so that it doesn't move and don't cut the antenna cable. - just coil up any extra neatly behind the headlining.

For running cable - an old wire coat hanger is invaluable for poking things through tight spaces. If the cable has a socket / plug on the end - protect it before poking it through - maybe some tape over it or a small lid to act as a cap. You may need to use the coat hanger to run some pull throughs - then withdraw the coat hanger - attach the cable to the pull through and feed through. Can be fiddly but it's not skilled work.
 
Last edited:

dan from bhg

Member
Joined
6 Nov 2014
Messages
49
Location
Lymington
Hi,

I can talk you through it when I get a bit more time. Flat out at the moment! It’s not too difficult to do and I can show you the routing we take. Basically, from the console, route the wire downwards, run it along behind the galley, then up the starboard side buttress into the roof, then a watertight gland to seal the cable and onto the antenna (either fixed to the GRP or rail mounted to the roof rail. Luckily for you, you have the upgraded electronics package which includes the roof speakers. You can take the speaker out, poke a stout wire (we use the inside of a control cable) through the speaker hole and down the pillar, and grab it from under the galley. Use this as a mouse. As far as I can see, it’s impossible to do without the speakers in the roof!

Dan
 

paultallett

Active member
Joined
25 Mar 2009
Messages
1,422
Location
At work!!
I have to replace my vhf aerial too...... Thanks for the tips :)

Looks like we'll both have scraped knuckles.
 
Top