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Old 03-14-2010, 04:47 AM   #1
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Drilling a Hole in My Roof?

A couple of months ago, I bought the Trucker's Antenna to help with our cell signal to our Verizon Air Card. I've been pleased with the results but have been in denial about drilling a hole in my roof to route the wire.

I've mounted the antenna to my Winegard Bat Wing and want to run the wire through the roof in an area above and just left of the drivers head.

So, any tips on how to proceed? Is there a certain type of gromet that should be used? Do I just find a gromet that works with the wire I'm routing and then use a bunch of sealer? Any good way to secure the wire to the roof where it runs from the antenna to where it will enter the coach?

As always, I'd appreciate any and all insights.

Thanks Much!
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Old 03-14-2010, 06:03 AM   #2
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i would caulk the area where the wire goes thru, and then put an eternabond cross on it with 4" tape. from what i've seen ,its as good as anything out there
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Old 03-14-2010, 07:12 AM   #3
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On our previous MH, I mounted the antenna on the driver's side, above the window in the vicinity of the overhead cabinet. Side-mount works just as well and provides for an easier/neater installation. The antenna wire is hidden in the cabinet and routed down the windshield channel where other wires are normally run. Caulk hole and under the mounting bracket and you'll stay dry!
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Old 03-14-2010, 07:45 AM   #4
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I mounted mine just above the passengers side window and ran the wire down the "A" pillar. The antenna is connected to a Wilson amp. My original reason for the install was for my air card as we were living in the rig.





I also mounted an Wilson antenna on the roof of my metal building so I could get my air card working inside the building. Also we were sitting 12 or so miles from the nearest town... right on the edge of cell phone service.



Here are the before and after shot of the Sprint and Verizon using the Wilson antenna and amp.









As with any upgrade "Your Mileage will vary".
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Old 03-14-2010, 08:36 AM   #5
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Oemy, i would guess you needed to extend the cable on the wilson antenna on your metal building? thinking of doing the same thing at the house. thanks! jim
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Old 03-14-2010, 09:08 AM   #6
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RickO
I'll second the "eternabond" suggestion. That stuff is great. I recently had my handy RV guy use it on every seam/hole on my 08 roof. It was also used on the cable/wire holes. As far as what to do with the cable running across the roof, I used eternabond strips to tie it down... I figured why put more holes in the roof to clamp it down when eternabond once applied is not coming up.
Good Luck
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Now can someone tell me where to buy the "trucker antenna"? I have the verizon MIFI and there are times I wish I had a signal booster of some kind.
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Old 03-14-2010, 09:51 AM   #7
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Thanks all. I too am running the cable into the coach above the cabinet so it is hidden. All of this advice is reassuring and I've debated picking up eternabond before but I'll certainly do it now.

I bought my antenna through 3GStore.com. They were great to work with. We've now covered 20 states and continue to be impressed with the service we get from our Verizon Air Card.
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Old 03-14-2010, 12:44 PM   #8
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Rick,

I have the Wilson Trucker's antenna, and like you was very apprehensive about drilling into the roof. However once I bit the bullet and got started it was actually very easy. Whichever location, roof or side, you decide to mount it, I would recommend putting it on the DS as there will be less chance of hitting low tree branches. My coach is an '09 Phaeton so the following won't be specific to your coach, but may help.

My hole is 16" OC straight back in line from the air horn inlet line. That puts it 4" from the rear wall of the cabinet, and 5" from the outside wall. Once I determined where I wanted the hole on the inside of the cabinet, I then ran two pieces of wide masking tape on the outside of the coach up onto the roof in line with the air horn line and the location of the hole I wanted to drill. I transferred the front to rear location mark from the inside of the cabinet onto the masking tape and ran a straight edge up to the roof, and marked that hole location. I then ran a straight edge back from the airhorn inlet and placed the other mark so I was in line side to side. I wedged a piece of wood under the inside top of the cabinet to keep from tearing the fabric. Drilling was very easy as it was only going through fiberglass, styrofoam and wood. The antenna installation was very simple and did not require any leveling spacers as it is on a flat surface. Of course, just make sure you caulk around the threaded rod nut and boot real well (I used Bostik 1100 Urethane Sealant). I probably went overboard so it ain't pretty, but I don't think it's going to leak.

Here's a link to some pics of my setup http://photobucket.com/comm_center
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Old 03-14-2010, 01:37 PM   #9
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tedward1555, the last time i checked the mi-fi does not have an antenna port, so you will not be able to use the rv/trucker antenna. jim
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Old 03-14-2010, 02:02 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RickO View Post
I've mounted the antenna to my Winegard Bat Wing and want to run the wire through the roof in an area above and just left of the drivers head.

So, any tips on how to proceed? Is there a certain type of gromet that should be used? Do I just find a gromet that works with the wire I'm routing and then use a bunch of sealer? Any good way to secure the wire to the roof where it runs from the antenna to where it will enter the coach?

As always, I'd appreciate any and all insights.

Thanks Much!
Take a look at these pics... Again, MM with the good ideas.
No new holes. How does your regular TV antenna get into the rig?
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Old 03-18-2010, 05:30 PM   #11
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tedward1555, the last time i checked the mi-fi does not have an antenna port, so you will not be able to use the rv/trucker antenna. jim
Hey Jim, I actually found one that works. It has a cradle for the mifi to sit in and receive the boosted signal from.
here's a link: Cell Phone Antennas and Cell Phone Boosters at Wilson Electronics
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Old 03-18-2010, 06:09 PM   #12
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Borrow a hole

Mount your antenna near or on your ice box vent.

Use eternabond to hold wire to roof if mounted on roof, or if mounted to the vent just add clamps for the wire.

Route the wire down the chamber and gain access from the back vent door.

Now you can connect to battery power or run to the bottom of the MH and come up through the floor where your computer is.
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Old 03-22-2010, 03:41 PM   #13
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When I had to bore a hole in the roof recently, to install a jefatech wifi antenna, I used a weatherproof junction box to complete the job:



The junction box was bought at Home Depot and the cable feedthroughs were bought from jefatech when I bought the antenna. I used plenty of sealer around the hole inside the box as well as around the outside of the box. So far it hasn't leaked...

I positioned it above the front cabinet over the passenger seat because that's where I wanted the cables to end up.
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Old 03-23-2010, 12:00 PM   #14
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Thanks all. I think the waterproof junction box sounds best for my application. My OTA and Sat TV get into the coach via their own drops but neither is in a location which would work for my Trucker's antenna. The vent idea would require that change the location of my Cradlepoint and route AC to it as well as having to remove the refridgerator to access the back where the vent is located.

Thanks again for all the help!
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