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Thread: RadioMike's H3

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    RadioMike's H3

    I have been involved with Radios all my life. My Dad got CB's in the 60's and I was hooked. I did the CB thing. Got into Ham Radio 20 years ago. I have held my Extra License since late 90's. I have been involved in Commercial radio (Law, Fire, EMS) for 30 years. I have built over 300 Patrol Cars. Installed equipment in Ambulances and Fire Trucks. Am I an expert? NO WAY! But, I do love mobile electronics and Radios.

    This is my third Hummer. This H3 is the Base model without the Nav. Radio and Bose Amp. I pretty much new what I wanted to do to another H3 when I found one. I pulled the factory radio and ordered the double din Radio adapter that gives two single din slots. I had a GMOS-01 adapter and reused it. I installed the Pioneer single din mount Radio and the Pioneer Navigation unit . This set up gives me AM-FM Radio, CD, USB music, and I have a 16GB SD card pretty much full of music. Numerous advantages over the stock Radio with navigation memory on a SD card rather than CD based Nav unit.
    If you are considering a Radio change out in your H3, give this some serious thought. The flip out face puts the screen a little further up to your viewing area and gives a tilt backwards for better viewing. There are no disadvantages to this route. It will block your 4 wheel drive switches, but you can easily flip the screen down to put in and out of 4 wheel action.

    Also this frees up the lower din for another radio such as a UHF - VHF radio or CB etc.

    I will also cover three different HF Radio installs in my H3. The first will be a Kenwood TS-B2000 with the optional remote Head. The second will be a Icom IC-706mkIIg with remote head and the final will be a Kenwood TS-480HX. The 480HX will be the install I go with for the long run. It will give me a full 200+ watts on the HF bands. All three radios are very good performers and have different features for the end user's needs. The TS-B2000 and IC-706mkIIg will cover two meters and 440 also. I don't need this since I run dedicated VHF and UHF radios.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by RadioMike; 07-26-2015 at 10:18 AM.

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    Re: RadioMike's H3

    There are many options for use with the lower din. There are many din mountable CB Radios on the market. What I did was to locate a Kenwood Commercial 45watt TK-890 UHF Radio and a Kenwood 100 watt TK-790 Radio Unit. I paired these two radios to one Kenwood advanced head that will control both. The Radio units are in the back of the H3 and just the Head is at the Dash. This set up will do narrow and wide band. So, it is still legal for any narrow band commercial "analog" communications in the UHF and VHF bands. The Radio set will do a total of 160 channels in a total of ten banks. There is a dual priority scan with this set up. This gives me the ability to have, two meter FM, 440 FM, business VHF and Business UHF along with GMRS (General Mobile Radio Service), FRS (Family Radio Service) and all the NOAA radio channels. The UHF radio is turned down to 25 watts to be legal on GMRS. There are NO FRS TRANSMIT frequencies programmed in and only receive on the NOAA channels. This makes for one fantastic setup for communications along with my HF set up that I will cover later. I use a 6" long antenna for the UHF Radio and a 19" long antenna for the VHF Radio. These are permanent mounted in the roof of the Hummer.
    This Radio is built very tough and will stand up to many years of use. I know most of you have saw the adds in the back of the many 4 wheel magazines relating to "Race Radios" This is the big brother to those.
    As I mentioned earlier, this set up will cover GMRS. A GMRS license is only a form and is $75 for 5 years. That's only $1.25 a month to be legal and use these frequencies. UHF Radio is quite when not in use and is not plagued with skip as with CB. A 6" long quarter wave UHF whip on the top of your rig with 25 watts will reach a farther than a 4 watt CB with a 4 foot wound whip mounted on the lower left front fender. Also if you are in the north Georgia / lower south east part of Tennessee, there is a great network of GMRS Repeaters that can be accessed with permission.
    DSCN0187.JPG DSCN0185.JPG DSCN0197.JPG
    Last edited by RadioMike; 07-19-2015 at 07:28 AM.

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    Re: RadioMike's H3

    Nice setup...was looking at getting a midland but may consider an alternative setup like yours...

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    Re: RadioMike's H3

    Yes, this set up makes good use of the dash space available. Remember the Kenwood I have mentioned above does not do CB. It gives me the advantage of talking on Ham Frequencies, Commercial Frequencies, and GMRS. It also makes a great scanner. I do have my Extra Ham Ticket and have a GMRS license. A CB Radio is still a very desirable Radio for SUV vehicles. The one handed CB's are very good for trail ride communication between buddies. As I mentioned, there are many CB Radios that will fit in the lower din mount if that is all someone is looking for. I will be working on my HF / CB install this weekend. I will go ahead with this post and show you how I installed my HF / CB antenna mount. I had a truck stake bed mount I had fabricated for a pickup. I took that mount and trimmed it just a little to fit my spare tire mount. The cable runs through the vent hole and follows the wiring from the door to the body. Very sturdy and no added holes.DSCN0199.JPG
    Last edited by RadioMike; 12-27-2014 at 04:54 PM.

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    Re: RadioMike's H3

    Below are some more pictures of my HF / CB antenna Mount. The bracket is made of stainless. The Antenna base is a Wilson brand "Tear Drop" mount. I like this Wilson branded mount because it is solid vs some of the cheaper hollow mounts. I did drill one hole in the spare tire mount and add a 1/4 inch screw to help keep the mount upright.
    DSCN0202.JPGDSCN0201.JPGDSCN0199.JPG
    Here are three very good antenna choices.
    DSCN0206.JPG
    The first is a Hustler Brand that is center loaded.
    DSCN0203.JPG
    The second is a Wilson that is top loaded.
    DSCN0204.JPG
    The third is a center loaded that will adjust to different frequencies via an internal motor. The third antenna is what I am using so to be able to talk on different HF Bands.
    DSCN0205.JPG
    Last edited by RadioMike; 12-27-2014 at 05:17 PM.

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    Re: RadioMike's H3

    Nice, I like the Kenwood 2-way.

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    Re: RadioMike's H3

    OK, here are some pictures of my 1st HF Radio install in the H3. Some may call this a "Shack in a Box". It covers all the HF Bands from 10 Meters through 160 Meters. Also covers 6 Meters, two Meters and 440 Mhz. It does 100 watts on HF - Two meters and 50 watts on 440. It works as a general coverage receiver. It can monitor two frequencies at once. (You can work HF on the main band and monitor your local two meter repeater on the Sub Band.)

    The Radio is the Kenwood TS-B2000. It was designed to be controlled via a Computer or a remote Control Head.
    B2000.jpg

    I control the Radio with the optional Kenwood RC-2000 Control Head.
    RC2000.jpg

    And I use the Little Tar Heel II "Screw Driver" Antenna.

    The Control Head is mounted to the dash with some 3M double sided tape. The back of the control head base is slid under a DayStar dash organizer. To install the organizer you take a plastic plug out of the top of the dash and snap the DayStar in place. The opening also has a factory hole that the control head wire will pass through. So you have a install that is perfect for viewing and operation and does not alter the stock dash what so ever.
    DSCN0192.JPG DSCN0195.JPG DSCN0196.JPG

    Here are a few views of the various screen options. One shows HF only. One shows VHF only. One shows HF and VHF at the same time.
    DSCN0208.JPG DSCN0209.JPG DSCN0210.JPG

    The main body of the Radio I elected to place in the floor board directly behind the drivers seat. My wife and I are in our 60's. The kids are grown and we will not have back seat riders. Also, I will be swapping this Radio out in the Spring for another set up that I have in mind.
    DSCN0211.JPG

    OK, the last part. The Antenna. It is attached to the spare tire mount. It is controlled by an interface that will tune the antenna to the lowest SWR each time I change bands or move fare enough to trigger the controller.
    DSCN0214.JPG

    One last note. The lower you go down in frequency, the longer a 1/4 wave antenna gets. The Radio will operate down to 160 meters but this particular model of the Screw Driver Antenna will not physically tune that far. It will do OK at 80 meters and great on all the other bands.
    But, you can carry a "Wire" antenna rolled up in the back and have communications no matter where you are parked .
    Last edited by RadioMike; 07-26-2015 at 10:01 AM.

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    Re: RadioMike's H3

    Did do a couple more things to the H3 this week beside Radios. I like the accent that the black painted bar on the Wheel center cap gives. I took my center caps off. Sanded the bar, taped off, and gave three coats of black and two coats of clear seal.
    DSCN0198.JPG
    Last edited by RadioMike; 07-19-2015 at 07:30 AM.

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    Re: RadioMike's H3

    Started to work on the removal of some of the chrome that does not appeal to me. Removed the chrome hood louver cover.
    DSCN0183.JPG

    Cover came off fine. Someone had used a mess of Silicon Glue on the application. None had stuck to the cover. All on the OEM black cover. Two pictures show what I am facing, and after an hour of "Blob" removal. Still got a few days of hard Elbow grease.
    DSCN0216.JPG DSCN0217.JPG

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    Re: RadioMike's H3

    Planned on putting in new Speakers this weekend. Ended up doing repairs and preventive maintenance.

    Heard a rattle noise under hood. Upon investigation found that the radiator fan was real loose. After reading articles here, I figured out that the water pump is subject to the bearings going out by the pressure of the fan and belt pressure. So a replacement was in order. There are many good posts on replacing the water pump, so I won't go into detail.

    Ended up replacing the water pump. Did a antifreeze flush and replacement. And, installed a new serpentine belt.

    There are numerous threads about low water temperature readings on the H3 I5 motors. I was getting a low temperature code about once a month. So I took this opportunity to replace the temperature thermostat. Readings are now up around 200 degrees. Within spec for this motor.
    Last edited by RadioMike; 07-19-2015 at 07:31 AM.

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    Re: RadioMike's H3

    Did some more project items this weekend.
    First item on list was to replace the factory speakers with 4 new Pioneer Speakers. Installed the speakers to the adapter rings in the house. Also installed the plug and play wire pigtails. Once outside the whole install took about one hour. Very easy. Attached is a picture of two of the old factory speakers. Deffinetly needed to be replaced.
    DSC00144.JPG

    Next was to install a set of Putco in channel window shades. I have been watching these on Ebay and found a new set for $50 shipped. These deffinetly don't add to the looks of any vehicle, but do allow a person to crack the windows to help keep the temperature down in the Summer and keep rain out during the pop up Rain Showers.
    IMG_0495[1] - Copy.JPG IMG_0496[1] - Copy.JPG
    Last edited by RadioMike; 01-18-2015 at 08:53 PM.

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    Re: RadioMike's H3

    Been a while since I have posted anything. So I will Show and Tell.
    Maintenance wise, I have changed over to full Synthetic Pennzoil.

    I ordered some spare Omron relays off of Ebay to replace the bad / dirty relays that creep up over time. This one shown in the picture is the worst culprit to most people. It has a fair current draw across it. This is the one that when it acts up, your windows may not operate and your key will not come out of the Ignition switch. It is relay #88 and is located to the upper far left of the Fuse box, just under the 125A fuse.
    DSC00168.JPG

    I defeated the DRL (Daytime Running Lights) by simply pulling the #39 fuse from the Fuse Box under the Hood.
    DSC00166.JPG

    The H3 factory headlights are very poor in light output to say the least. I installed a relay under the Hood Fuse Box to turn on the Factory Fog Lights when in High Beam operation. A very big improvement.
    DSC00166.JPG DSC00167.JPG
    Last edited by RadioMike; 06-23-2015 at 06:49 PM.

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    Re: RadioMike's H3

    As I stated in my very early post reguarding my Ham Radio, I have changed to the ICOM IC-706mkIIG. This Radio covers all of HF, Six Meters, VHF and UHF. The 706 differs from my first install, (the TS-B2000) in the fact that the IC-706 will only operate on one band at a time. If HF is up, no monitoring two meter and visa versa.
    DSC00163.JPG

    It has the remote head, so the body of the Radio sits under the drivers front seat. (This is why I opted for the base model on this go round of the Hummer. The non electric seat gives plenty of room under the seat for a Radio, Amp, Computer box etc. I never adjust a seat once it is set the first time.)
    DSC00165.JPG

    The Head is attached to a PanaVise 75143-206 cell phone mount and the cable passes through the lip of the trim piece cover. ( Again, no holes will be left when removed.) Makes for a very ergonomic setup.
    DSC00160.JPG DSC00161.JPG DSC00162.JPG DSC00163.JPG

    Next , will be the Kenwood TS-480HX set up.
    Last edited by RadioMike; 07-26-2015 at 10:25 AM.

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    Re: RadioMike's H3

    I picked up two of these OEM Hummer switches off of Ebay for $38 for the pair. They install in the center panel in the unused space just under the Heater Controls.
    DSC00157.JPG
    I will use one for controlling my winch mounted LED light Bar. This switch will enable the LED Light Bar to come on and off with the High Beam Head Lights when installed.

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    Re: RadioMike's H3

    What a detailed build. thanks for sharing

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    Re: RadioMike's H3

    Well it came time to replace my differential bushing on the front 4 wheel drive third member. I have read many articles on ways to replace / repair this bushing. I won't go into detail on this since it has been covered many times. Just shows the great information that the Hummer Forums can provide. Attached are some pictures of my repair. Cost me around $50 for a kit of bushings that I machined down to get three replacement sets for the cross piece.
    DSCN0238.JPG DSCN0239.JPG DSCN0240.JPG DSCN0241.JPG DSCN0242.JPG DSCN0243.JPG
    Last edited by RadioMike; 06-23-2015 at 05:27 PM.

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    Re: RadioMike's H3

    Also leveled my front by cranking each torsion bar 4 turns and installed the new Trail Duty Extended Front Bump Stops.
    DSCN0244.JPG

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    Re: RadioMike's H3

    Saw some discussions on add on Gauge options that use the OBDII port. Attached is a pic of the Scan Gauge II. Neat device. You can monitor any 4 of the avaliable readings that the ECM compiles and also read ECM trouble codes and erase trouble codes.
    DSCN0247.JPG DSCN0248.JPG

    Attached this with double sided tape and is positioned on the dash above the Speedometer cluster.
    Last edited by RadioMike; 07-06-2015 at 02:57 PM.

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    Re: RadioMike's H3

    Here are three more items in the works or completed.
    (A) Gotta have a Winch on a Hummer. On my last two Hummers I went with the Warn Winch and manufactured winch mounts and had well in excess of $700 - $900 in them. Both were never used. So on this go around, I read up on various winch installs and came up with what you see. I wanted and exposed winch to give the H3 the rugged look. Also this gives me a platform to use for other brain Storm Ideas.
    Bought the BadLand 12000 Winch on sale and a coupon for $275 plus tax. Also bought the universal winch plate for $40. I cut the plate down to the length I wanted for the front of the H3. I welded up some brackets for the winch plate to work with the stock front tow hooks.
    DSCN0245.JPG

    (B) Next I used the fairlead to mount a 8" LED Light Bar. This bar is put in and out of circuit with a dash mounted switch. When the switch is on, the Light will illuminate with the High Beam headlights. Very impressive at night.
    DSCN0246.JPG

    (C) As I mentioned, I use to build emergency vehicles. I have a box full of old Sirens etc. ( I will not use the Siren function on the streets, so no need to get that dabate started.) This particular unit will give me a 100 watt PA function and also Air Horn and six switches that control load relays for whatever. Again with the no holes drilled route, I made a bracket and clip mounted the remote control head to the lip of the Sun Roof molding. (No holes and the cable routes under the molding.)
    DSCN0249.JPG DSCN0250.JPG

    The body of the Siren is mounted in the back. Also as I mentioned, I made use of the winch plate to mount the Siren Speaker.
    DSCN0253.JPG
    Last edited by RadioMike; 07-26-2015 at 09:18 PM.

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    Re: RadioMike's H3

    Here are some pics of the final HF install. It is a Kenwood TS-480HX. This radio will do a little over 200 watts. Plenty for a mobile setup. It does HF and Six Meters. Does not do VHF or UHF. I have that capability with the TK-790 / 890 Radio. I used the same bracket as the IC-706 control head was mounted to and just reshaped a little bit to form to the head and dash fit.
    DSC00177.JPG DSC00178.JPG DSC00181.JPG DSC00182.JPG

    The Radio body is mounted under the front seat. Two important things here are the RF choke on the power leads and the RF ground strap from the body of the Radio chassis to the nearest Body point being the car seat slide bolt.
    DSC00173.JPG

    Both the positive and the negative power leads run to the battery and both the positive and negative are fused at the battery connection. Running the ground to the battery may seam overkill and not necessary. I was skeptical also till I tried it. It will work to help keep the mobile noise out of your install.
    DSC00174.JPG

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    Re: RadioMike's H3

    Looks good, now you find your way anytime.

    God did not build mountains in vain, but to be climbed by Hummers,
    2006 H3 3,5L manual transmission ,Adventure pack with 4:1 Tcase and rear diff locker, 2,5" front lift ,Bilstein 5100 front shocks with 1/2" extended Bump stops, 1,25" rear lift warrior shakles and Bilstein 4600, 315/75/16 COOPER STT PRO , UCP, tow package, PCM tune, home made snorkel (under hood) , optima yellow.

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    Re: RadioMike's H3

    Thanks. The H3 modifications have been covered in great detail in other Threads. I have gained a lot of knowledge by reading them. Just thought I would shed some ideas on electronics and Radio installs. Looking into some HID or LED retrofit Fog lights. Also want to put a DMR radio in and a TOPO GPS unit.

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    Re: RadioMike's H3

    That's why this is the best Hummer forum

    God did not build mountains in vain, but to be climbed by Hummers,
    2006 H3 3,5L manual transmission ,Adventure pack with 4:1 Tcase and rear diff locker, 2,5" front lift ,Bilstein 5100 front shocks with 1/2" extended Bump stops, 1,25" rear lift warrior shakles and Bilstein 4600, 315/75/16 COOPER STT PRO , UCP, tow package, PCM tune, home made snorkel (under hood) , optima yellow.

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