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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I read alot of messages on this and other boards about how bad the Honda CB radio is. Well I'm here to tell you that I haven't noticed any issues with low transmit distance etc. True, the wing doesn't provide the Ground Plane that a car does, but I bought a good SWR meter at Radio Shack and was able to adjust the SWR's down to a flat match on 19 and they're 1.1 to 1 on 40 and 1, so it don't get much better than that.

If you're riding around the phoenix area and you've never checked your SWR's and your CB performance sucks.. I'd be happy to throw the meter on it and check it out for you. It only takes a few minutes to make the adjustments (I had to cut about 1/2" off mine to get it to a 1:1 flat match.

Matt Caswell
Mesa, AZ

[email protected]
http://www.thesabrehood.net
 

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1/2" to 3/4" removal is normal for the stock Honda GL1800 CB antenna. While doing a SWR check and "tuning" the antenna helps, it won't fix the shortcomings of little to no ground plane on the 1800. But tuning the antenna will maximize the CBs power output and reception reducing the loss in a mismatched antenna.
 

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mattcaswell said:
I read alot of messages on this and other boards about how bad the Honda CB radio is. Well I'm here to tell you that I haven't noticed any issues with low transmit distance etc. True, the wing doesn't provide the Ground Plane that a car does, but I bought a good SWR meter at Radio Shack and was able to adjust the SWR's down to a flat match on 19 and they're 1.1 to 1 on 40 and 1, so it don't get much better than that.

If you're riding around the phoenix area and you've never checked your SWR's and your CB performance sucks.. I'd be happy to throw the meter on it and check it out for you. It only takes a few minutes to make the adjustments (I had to cut about 1/2" off mine to get it to a 1:1 flat match.

Matt Caswell
Mesa, AZ

[email protected]
http://www.thesabrehood.net


I found the same to be true with mine. Mine worked out to very nearly 1 to 1.3 between all the channels. I ended up jut letting my top piece all the way down. turned out great.
 

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additional loss

methinks much ado about nothing :D
This link:
http://www.solred.com.ar/lu6etj/tecnicos/roe/En_roe.htm
will show you a graph displaying the additional loss due to mismatch (an swr > 1:1).
It's hard to believe that short length of coax on the wing (even tho its small, lossy coax) will have more than 1 db of loss (at most). Even 10' of crappy, tiny RG174 has about a .5 db loss at 27MHz.

If that is so then an swr even greater than 2:1 will only cause <.1 db additional loss.

Like I said, much ado about nothing
 
G

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Re: additional loss

ctgoldwing said:
methinks much ado about nothing :D
This link:
http://www.solred.com.ar/lu6etj/tecnicos/roe/En_roe.htm
will show you a graph displaying the additional loss due to mismatch (an swr > 1:1).
It's hard to believe that short length of coax on the wing (even tho its small, lossy coax) will have more than 1 db of loss (at most). Even 10' of crappy, tiny RG174 has about a .5 db loss at 27MHz.

If that is so then an swr even greater than 2:1 will only cause <.1 db additional loss.

Like I said, much ado about nothing
I fully agree. Don't get anal about SWR on a bike CB. It doesn't mean diddly unless there is something very wrong and it is off the scale. ie 4 or 5:1.

You have a glorified bike to bike intercom, with maybe an occasional conversation with a trucker. If you have good reliable TX and RX for a mile or 2, that is about all you can expect. Atmospheric and terrain conditions can affect range drastically on CB radio.

Ride safe.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Re: additional loss

IBTrike said:
ctgoldwing said:
methinks much ado about nothing :D
This link:
http://www.solred.com.ar/lu6etj/tecnicos/roe/En_roe.htm
will show you a graph displaying the additional loss due to mismatch (an swr > 1:1).
It's hard to believe that short length of coax on the wing (even tho its small, lossy coax) will have more than 1 db of loss (at most). Even 10' of crappy, tiny RG174 has about a .5 db loss at 27MHz.

If that is so then an swr even greater than 2:1 will only cause <.1 db additional loss.

Like I said, much ado about nothing
I fully agree. Don't get anal about SWR on a bike CB. It doesn't mean diddly unless there is something very wrong and it is off the scale. ie 4 or 5:1.

You have a glorified bike to bike intercom, with maybe an occasional conversation with a trucker. If you have good reliable TX and RX for a mile or 2, that is about all you can expect. Atmospheric and terrain conditions can affect range drastically on CB radio.

Ride safe.
So it's no big deal if you're car would get 40 mpg if you tuned it up but you won't because it works just fine getting 35mpg? Is that right? So you won't do the tune up because it's not that big an improvement? I just want to make sure I can follow this logic. I always felt that things that you can adjust, should be functioning at their best.
 

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mattcaswell

I see a problem with the 1.1:1 at the band edges. That is telling me the antenna is very broadband. The antenna is pretty short, less than 5 feet.
I don't know the exact length, but if it is 5 feet, the radiation resistance would be 9.317 -j328.3 ohms. You would need inductance to cancel the -j317 ohms, That would add maybe 2 to 3 ohms to the RR bringing it to 11 ohms. If you have it tuned to present a 50 ohm load (1:1 SWR) then you have 50 - 9.3 = 40.7 ohms of loss and most likely occurring in the grounding of the antenna. This fools the radio into thinking it is working when in fact, 80 per cent of your power is going away as heat and 20 per cent as radiation. You signal will be approx 8 db down.

If the antenna is 4 feet, the numbers are .. 5.304 -j483.1 ohms. or 50 - 5.3 = 44.7 ohms of loss. Or approx 10 db of loss... 90 per cent into heat and 10 per cent into radiation.

If you hook a 8 or 9 foot piece of wire to the base of the antenna, and route it thru the bike toward the front, and the SWR changes, you have bad grounds.

JMHO 8)
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
KA7W said:
mattcaswell

I see a problem with the 1.1:1 at the band edges. That is telling me the antenna is very broadband. The antenna is pretty short, less than 5 feet.
I don't know the exact length, but if it is 5 feet, the radiation resistance would be 9.317 -j328.3 ohms. You would need inductance to cancel the -j317 ohms, That would add maybe 2 to 3 ohms to the RR bringing it to 11 ohms. If you have it tuned to present a 50 ohm load (1:1 SWR) then you have 50 - 9.3 = 40.7 ohms of loss and most likely occurring in the grounding of the antenna. This fools the radio into thinking it is working when in fact, 80 per cent of your power is going away as heat and 20 per cent as radiation. You signal will be approx 8 db down.

If the antenna is 4 feet, the numbers are .. 5.304 -j483.1 ohms. or 50 - 5.3 = 44.7 ohms of loss. Or approx 10 db of loss... 90 per cent into heat and 10 per cent into radiation.

If you hook a 8 or 9 foot piece of wire to the base of the antenna, and route it thru the bike toward the front, and the SWR changes, you have bad grounds.

JMHO 8)
I don't know what to say because your statements are so far beyond my level of understanding that I'll just admit to being stupid at this detail level. My experience is from years ago when I, like alot of others was a 'Rubber Duck" looking for "Big Ben" C'mon! I adjusted the SWR's on dozens of CB's and always found the power output was improved. Perhaps the Wing CB is the exception. The next one I do on a wing, I'll take some power output readings before Tuning, and then after just to compare them.
 

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Re: additional loss

mattcaswell said:
IBTrike said:
ctgoldwing said:
methinks much ado about nothing :D
This link:
http://www.solred.com.ar/lu6etj/tecnicos/roe/En_roe.htm
will show you a graph displaying the additional loss due to mismatch (an swr > 1:1).
It's hard to believe that short length of coax on the wing (even tho its small, lossy coax) will have more than 1 db of loss (at most). Even 10' of crappy, tiny RG174 has about a .5 db loss at 27MHz.

If that is so then an swr even greater than 2:1 will only cause <.1 db additional loss.

Like I said, much ado about nothing
I fully agree. Don't get anal about SWR on a bike CB. It doesn't mean diddly unless there is something very wrong and it is off the scale. ie 4 or 5:1.

You have a glorified bike to bike intercom, with maybe an occasional conversation with a trucker. If you have good reliable TX and RX for a mile or 2, that is about all you can expect. Atmospheric and terrain conditions can affect range drastically on CB radio.

Ride safe.
So it's no big deal if you're car would get 40 mpg if you tuned it up but you won't because it works just fine getting 35mpg? Is that right? So you won't do the tune up because it's not that big an improvement? I just want to make sure I can follow this logic. I always felt that things that you can adjust, should be functioning at their best.
:lol: :lol: :lol:
Not quite the same analogy. You would be able to see the difference in your gas consumption in your example. If your swr was 1.1:1, 1.5:1 or 2:1 you couldn't tell the difference and it would not affect your transmitting or receiving capabilities. But if it makes you feel better :p
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Re: additional loss

ctgoldwing said:
Not quite the same analogy. You would be able to see the difference in your gas consumption in your example. If your swr was 1.1:1, 1.5:1 or 2:1 you couldn't tell the difference and it would not affect your transmitting or receiving capabilities. But if it makes you feel better :p
Perhaps, but I believe that an SWR of around 1:4 or higher may degrade performance. When I first connected the SWR Meter to the CB, the SWR's were very much into the RED zone.

Oh well... it's not like low SWR's will solve the worlds problems.
 

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Oh well... it's not like low SWR's will solve the worlds problems.
But like you said if it can be adjusted.....adjust it to the proper(best) spot you can. Get the most out of it! I'm with you on that. the numbers don't tell me squat except where they say "good" is. If I'm there then I'm happy :D
 
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Re: additional loss

ctgoldwing said:
mattcaswell said:
IBTrike said:
ctgoldwing said:
methinks much ado about nothing :D
This link:
http://www.solred.com.ar/lu6etj/tecnicos/roe/En_roe.htm
will show you a graph displaying the additional loss due to mismatch (an swr > 1:1).
It's hard to believe that short length of coax on the wing (even tho its small, lossy coax) will have more than 1 db of loss (at most). Even 10' of crappy, tiny RG174 has about a .5 db loss at 27MHz.

If that is so then an swr even greater than 2:1 will only cause <.1 db additional loss.

Like I said, much ado about nothing
I fully agree. Don't get anal about SWR on a bike CB. It doesn't mean diddly unless there is something very wrong and it is off the scale. ie 4 or 5:1.

You have a glorified bike to bike intercom, with maybe an occasional conversation with a trucker. If you have good reliable TX and RX for a mile or 2, that is about all you can expect. Atmospheric and terrain conditions can affect range drastically on CB radio.

Ride safe.
So it's no big deal if you're car would get 40 mpg if you tuned it up but you won't because it works just fine getting 35mpg? Is that right? So you won't do the tune up because it's not that big an improvement? I just want to make sure I can follow this logic. I always felt that things that you can adjust, should be functioning at their best.
:lol: :lol: :lol:
Not quite the same analogy. You would be able to see the difference in your gas consumption in your example. If your swr was 1.1:1, 1.5:1 or 2:1 you couldn't tell the difference and it would not affect your transmitting or receiving capabilities. But if it makes you feel better :p
Don't fret CT. Some folks have trouble with the concept of comparing apples and apples.

As you (and I) have tried to point out, fine tuning the SWR on a bike CB is a "feel good" exercise that will accomplish nothing.

The original poster asked for opinions. He got mine and he got yours. He and everyone else are at liberty to do with them as they wish. Everyone has a perfect right to waste their time falling for urban CB legends.

Come to think of it, the weather is supposed to be lousy this weekend. Maybe I will get out my trusty ham radio all band SWR meter, and fine tune my CB antenna. Maybe...just maybe, I will get better gas milage or smoother shifting. :roll: :lol:

Ain't life grand?

Ride safe all.
 
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