I recently was given a Cobra 29 LTD Classic CB radio from a driver at work. Most of the veteran truck drivers at work have used the Cobra 29 Classic for over 20 years.
Here is my problem:
This radio is giant.
There really isn't anywhere to mount it where it can be hidden but still be accessible and functional when I need it. I have seen other people's solutions to mounting this radio, such as LonghornTaco mounting it behind the console and MonkeyProof mounting it inside the cup holders. Those are both great ideas, but I did not want my radio to take up any room in the cab (leg room) and I wanted my radio hidden from passengers. I don't want to cut up the cup holders and loose the use of them. And, most importantly, I need the radio in a spot where I can access it easily while driving. I really like Ccoorreeyy's idea of using the glove box, but the Cobra 29 is too large to fit.
Here is the solution I came up with:
I decided relocate the face of the radio in the center console and secure the body (main circuit board, housing and speaker) under the passenger seat.
This is accomplished by cutting the wires that connect the circuit board to the face plate and splicing in longer wires to bridge the gap between the passenger seat and the center console.
Here is how I did it:
Extending the faceplate wires
I took apart the radio and found over 40 wires connecting the faceplate to the body. This includes wires for the switches, dials, display and SWR meter gauge. I decided to use CAT5 ethernet cable because I had an old 500 ft spool setting around for a few years and each strand has 8 wires in it. In all it took me about 6 strands of the CAT5 cable.
So, I plugged in the soldering iron, turned on the Fox Saturday baseball (Dodgers vs. Cubs) and got to work. By the time the Dodgers had shut out the sorry Cubs I was almost finished.
So, over 80 solder connections later, I was finished with the toughest part. I immediately tested all functions of the radio to make sure everything worked. To my amazement everything worked. I must be lucky or good at soldering.
Mounting the Radio Housing
I removed the center console and passenger seat. I ran a power cable to the fuse block and ran my antenna cable.
I was able to fish the power cable under the carpet to where the shifter is and from there to the fuse block.
I was able to strap the radio down to the floor using zip ties connecting with some metal support braces under the carpet. Not very pretty, but no one will see it.
I mounted it with the speaker facing up. I will see if it is loud enough, if not I will get an external speaker at a later time.
Mounting the Faceplate
I cut a hole in the bottom of the center console to feed the wires through. Then I cut a new base plate for the console out of some plywood.
I covered it with some felt (to look pretty) and installed the faceplate in wood base plate. I added some wood blocks under the deck to provide the spacing I needed and while I was there I decided to add a 12v power source.
Here is the finished product
Below are 2 pictures with the seat slid all the way back.