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Old 08-28-2006, 06:32 AM   #1
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We have a 2005 4103 Essex.
We will be using a Verizon aircard / cellphone during our travels. We hear that it is helpful to add a Wilson Trucker's cellular antenna and amplifier to increase the range. The Wilson antenna with the best performance requires a hole to be drilled through the roof. That is not my preference. They also have a magnetic roof mount that I might be able to attach to my Carefree aluminum mounting braket (glue it on) but I still have the issue of a 16' max length 3/8" cable.
Has anyone installed one of these? How was the performance? What options do I have to route the cable into the front of the coach with existing entrance holes? I don't seem to see any place where I can access the overhead cables/wiring with the roof liner.
Any suggestions would be appreciated.
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Old 08-28-2006, 06:32 AM   #2
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We have a 2005 4103 Essex.
We will be using a Verizon aircard / cellphone during our travels. We hear that it is helpful to add a Wilson Trucker's cellular antenna and amplifier to increase the range. The Wilson antenna with the best performance requires a hole to be drilled through the roof. That is not my preference. They also have a magnetic roof mount that I might be able to attach to my Carefree aluminum mounting braket (glue it on) but I still have the issue of a 16' max length 3/8" cable.
Has anyone installed one of these? How was the performance? What options do I have to route the cable into the front of the coach with existing entrance holes? I don't seem to see any place where I can access the overhead cables/wiring with the roof liner.
Any suggestions would be appreciated.
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Old 08-28-2006, 06:53 AM   #3
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Hello MBnKen, I have checked into the Wilson and other Cellphone boosters myself. I plan on getting a system to boost cell phone and internet (Verizon wireless Broadband). I hope to get a wireless model using the indoor antenna to pick up and receive signals inside the rig and a glass mount antenna. Wilson does not recommend it but I would probably go this way to start rather that go through the roof.. IMHO

<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by MBnKen:
We have a 2005 4103 Essex.
We will be using a Verizon aircard / cellphone during our travels. We hear that it is helpful to add a Wilson Trucker's cellular antenna and amplifier to increase the range. The Wilson antenna with the best performance requires a hole to be drilled through the roof. That is not my preference. They also have a magnetic roof mount that I might be able to attach to my Carefree aluminum mounting braket (glue it on) but I still have the issue of a 16' max length 3/8" cable.
Has anyone installed one of these? How was the performance? What options do I have to route the cable into the front of the coach with existing entrance holes? I don't seem to see any place where I can access the overhead cables/wiring with the roof liner.
Any suggestions would be appreciated. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>
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Old 08-28-2006, 08:23 AM   #4
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Ken,
I talked to a Wilson Tech who said the window mount would not be bad...but not great either. He mentioned that line of sight is the issue. Only a small portion of the antenna will stick above the MH so cell towers to the rear are almost completely blocked. The reception to the front would be OK. The second issue is the signal loss through the glass itself. I wish it was easier.
Please let me know if you go the glass mount route and what are the results.
I may try the magnetic roof mount and figure some way to get the cable in. I will share the results. We are currently parked where one cell phone only gets 1.5 bars when hooked to the charger and the other brand gets nothing.
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Old 08-28-2006, 08:27 AM   #5
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Gentlemen,
If you will check janeandjohn.org you will see the website of fellow iRV2 member John Canfield, who has made MANY mods to his Itasca Horizon, one of which was a permanent cellular boost antenna.
Check his site for his mods, it's a great site!
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Old 08-28-2006, 09:38 AM   #6
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If you have over head fan ports over your windshield area there is room to mount ant in front roof area and fish wire across vent chamber to windshield A frame drivers side panels to your ant boost in dash area. The vents are powered by blower behind compartment over drivers seat in cabinet back wall. Make a good seal when mounting ant and you should be aok.
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Old 08-28-2006, 03:56 PM   #7
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I installed the wilson antenna on my 2003 Mountain Aire near the roof line between passengers window and windshield the antenna is above the roof line and increases the signal 2- 3 bars without other amplification. very easy installation drilled small hole and removed the trim strip to route cable to under dash at passenger seat. works great. Dan B
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Old 08-28-2006, 07:17 PM   #8
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Thanks for the info Dan new someone would have a follow up.

How about a new title to go along with that MA you have Newmar FORUM MEMBER.
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Old 08-29-2006, 05:06 AM   #9
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Dan B,
Thanks for the reply. That is the same place I am looking to install my antenna. In the Essex, there is a double wide cabinet over the entry door and passenger seat. I am hoping to drill down into that space without hitting any wires (checking with Newmar on that). There is a 12 V outlet in the cabinet if I decide to add the amplifier.
Did you drill down into a similar cabinet? Any issues with wires or damaging the headliner? The roofline at the cabinet point on the essex is rounded so I need to get an angle mount. Did you have a flat surface or also at the rounded point?
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Old 08-29-2006, 05:14 AM   #10
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Bob,
Thanks for the tip on janeandjohn.org. That is the exact installation I am looking to do. It doesn't look so scary when you see someone else having done the work successfully.

I want to ask the Newmar techs about any wires in the area before I get out a drill. Hopefully will have it up and running before we head out to Arizona & Quartzite in January.
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Old 08-29-2006, 05:24 AM   #11
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Hi -

I installed glass-mount cell and CB antennas on my previous rig, mainly because I didn't want to poke any holes in the skin (I think it would hurt less to be gouging holes in myself! ).

I found that, with either the CB or cell antenna, I would get just about the same range as if I threw the radio/phone in the general direction to get the other person's attention. Not saying they aren't useless, but as noted, a glass-mount leaves a lot to be desired.

Still trying to get up the courage to carve up the new rig. Been looking at coming thru a clearance-lite hole or maybe even snake cables back to the frig-vent, and then doing a surface mount.

I'm going to follow this thread to see what y'all decide to do (and how painful it is).

Thanks!
Ron
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Old 08-29-2006, 07:40 AM   #12
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If you have cabinets up front over head should be no problem getting wire thru area to "A" frame to your amp. Try a small hole for wire and make up new plug for amp end of connection.

Courage Ron.
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Old 08-29-2006, 09:47 PM   #13
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In my 2000 Dutch Star I installed a RV/Truckers antenna without an amp and it boosted my signal two or three bars. I drilled a hole through the roof and into a cabinet to mount the antenna. Heck, I drilled 38 holes in the roof installing a large solar system so one more hole didn't matter.

When I ordered my 2005 DS I told Newmar to install a tri-mode roof antenna and it looks good and also boost the signal two or three bars.
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Old 08-30-2006, 12:35 AM   #14
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I have used this booster antenna on a few Class A's and have had excellent results. Can stand on a desktop or fasten to any window. Why go to all the trouble of a Wilson if all you need is a decent booster antenna like I mention. Install a Wilson in your RV and you only have use of it when in the RV.. Oh, yes.. your concern of cable length is well founded.
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