Grand Cherokee CB Installation
Installing a CB in your Grand Cherokee ZJ Short Cuts

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by: Randy Halvorsen
Dec '99

Grand Cherokee CB Installation

A simple after-market item you will want to add to your Grand Cherokee is a CB.  Every trail ride I have been on has used CB's for communication. While trail riding with a CB you will be kept informed of the happenings in front of you and behind you.  CB's can also be extremely useful in emergency situations.

CB and associated parts.
Backside of  mounting bracket showing nuts and bolts.
Mounting bracket

I considered several different placements for the CB in my '94 ZJ.  I did not want to place it under the glove box because it would be a long reach to access any of the controls.  If mounted above the driver's legs, the microphone cord would have hung down and been quite bothersome.  After much trial fitting, I decided to mount it on the side of the center console, next to the drivers hip.

I installed a Radio Shack, Model# TRC-504.  On this unit, the microphone is able to select the desired CB channel.  In addition to the squelch, it has RF Gain control, for those trails where everyone is bunched together and you don't want to be overpowered by the close proximity of the other CB's.

After I had decided to mount the unit to my center console, I trial-fitted the bracket and CB on the side of the console.  I wanted to be sure that there would be room for my hips and seat belt next to the CB.  There was no problem with clearance.  It was an easy fit.

I began by removing the console bucket.  The mounting screws are in the bottom of the bucket.  With the bucket removed, I positioned the bracket and drilled the two mounting holes through the side of the console.

Using washers under the nuts to give some additional support, I fastened the bracket securely to the side of the console.  

 I ran the power wire under the length of the console, up under the cigarette lighter and tapped into the power wire for the lighter.  This is a switched power source.  One advantage of going with the switched power supply is that you will be less likely to run your battery down due to leaving the CB powered 'on' overnight.

The most convenient place to mount the microphone was forward on the console, closer to the driver's knee.  At this location, it is within a few inches of your right hand and easy to pick up and replace.  If you will be using the mic frequently, you can just lay it in your lap for even easier access.

I purchased a Radio Shack magnetic mount, center-loaded antennae.  I placed it on the roof, over the driver's head and routed the coaxial cable back to the roof-rack rail, and through the rear driver-side door opening.  

SWR Meter

 The antennae came with instructions as to how to tune it with a SWR (Standing Wave Ration) meter.  Tuning involves keying the microphone on both channels 1 and 40, and adjusting the length of the antennae to make the meter reading equal on each channel.  I was able to achieve a reading of 1.8 on channels 1 and 40.  Keeping the reading under 2.0 is a goal.

Completed installation.

Using the CB has been fun.  On the road I can listen to the truckers talking about the local traffic conditions, and on the trail I can keep on top of all the chatter going on between the vehicles.  This addition to your vehicle comes highly recommended from me.

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