Installing a Yaesu FT-857D in a 2016 Jeep JK Unlimited (Mobile Mount)
This is Part 2 of Outfitting a Jeep JK Unlimited for Ham Radio. In this article, I will explain how to mount the radio under the passenger’s seat.
Amateur Radio Equipment to Install
- Yaesu FT-857D HF/VHF/UHF Transceiver
- Yaesu MBB-82 Mobile Mounting Bracket
Tools and Equipment Used
- Phillips-Head Screwdriver
- Black Sharpie Pen
Step One – Disconnect Transceiver from the Power Cable
Picking up from the last step of the electrical installation, disconnect the transceiver from the power cable. Make certain to leave enough cable that you can connect it again. We will stow excess cable at the end of the installation.
Step Two – Prepare the Passenger’s Seat
The 2016 Jeep JK Unlimited has various cables under both the driver’s seat and the passenger’s seat. Jeep supports some of those cables with a metal plate that is mounted to the chair structure. We will use this plate to secure the FT-857D.
Step Three – Mounting the Bracket Assembly
Set the MBB-82 Mobile Mounting Bracket atop the metal support plate. Thread one of the support screws from the bottom of the assembly and secure with a nut.
Step Four – Label Plugs and Connections
For easier access to the antenna connections, I mounted the radio upside down under the passenger’s seat. To keep things straight, I used a Black Sharpie Pen to label each of the seven connectors on the back of the radio.
Step Five – Mount Radio to Bracket Assembly
Slide the FT-857D into the Bracket Assembly and secure with the four screws provided by Yaesu. To provide the radio as much ventilation as possible, I mounted the radio as high up into the bracket assembly as possible.
At this point, here is what you will see when you open the passenger’s door. Note the easy access to the antenna connectors. The CAT input is not as easy to reach, but only marginally.
As with any mobile station, direct ground to the vehicle’s chassis is important for proper operation. In this configuration, the MMB-82 connects to the chassis because the metal plate is connected to the chair assembly, which is, in turn, bolted to the Jeep’s chassis. Later, we will address electrical bonding for the antenna. For now, however, your FT-857D should be quite happy with this ground configuration.