"upgraded" CB installed - but no TX - BMW Luxury Touring Community
 
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post #1 of 33 Old Oct 5th, 2007, 12:20 pm Thread Starter
 
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"upgraded" CB installed - but no TX

I just had my "new upgraded improved" BMW CB installed on my 07 LT -- I can hear truckers on 19 VERY clearly -- when I PTT I can see the TX and bar indicator show on the display AND I can hear me in my headphones -- BUT AIN'T NOBODY TALKIN BACK TO ME -- I'll see how it goes with one of my riding buddies but I'm betting there is one of the many settings I have not gotten to yet --- got no idea what that dial set up is in the tank compartment !! LOL -- thnx, BTSOOM
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post #2 of 33 Old Oct 8th, 2007, 1:44 pm
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You are experiencing the same thinng I (and I suspect many others) have with the CB. I hear everyone loud and clear, but I had no come backs when I transmitted. I thnk the range for Tx is very low. Most CB info on the web points to the antenna and the mount to the bike and the ground plane, which I cannot define but is related to the fact that the bike does not provide a great base for transmission. My reading of lots of advice is go to a professional CB shop that has the equipment to test and tune your antenna and radio setup, ask em to look at your SWR. With lots of work and some mods to antenna you may be able to transmit a few yards but don't expect too much without a lot of fidling.

Laurence Hendrick

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post #3 of 33 Old Oct 8th, 2007, 3:10 pm
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Here's a thought.....the Push-to-talk button is connected properly, so the transmit light comes on. The microphone is *not* connected/functioning properly, so they don't hear anything you say. You are broadcasting silence.

Another possibility....they're ignoring you. You don't sound like one of them, so they don't want to be bothered.

If you know someone else fairly local who has a CB, or even a Ham radio operator could listen on their radios and tell you if you are transmitting audio.

...and as was mentioned by Laurence, if your antenna system isn't tuned properly, you won't be transmitting very far, and may damage your radio.

...Bob
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post #4 of 33 Old Oct 8th, 2007, 7:34 pm
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I helped a rider here in the NorthWet with a Voice II and a BMW handlebar mounted CB (made by J&M). He had the same problem until he went to BMW and bought two new lower cords (from plug to helmet short cord). The pins are slightly different on the boom mic to CB. Ask your local store to let you try a cord and see if that fixes your problem.

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post #5 of 33 Old Oct 9th, 2007, 5:48 pm Thread Starter
 
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Thanx for these sugestions -- on Sunday I was with a pal on his HD and we read each other fine -- but I will get to a CB shop somewhere and do the tuning thing - also, I have the new lower cords in use --- wil advise, thnx, BTSOOM
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post #6 of 33 Old Oct 9th, 2007, 10:17 pm
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Jimbo.. yup.. your reflectivity to the "sides" is good.. close in, bike to bike.. good...

No good for a "smokey check"...

A "ground plane" is a 90 degree from antenna conductive surface... for instance.. the big trucks move their antennas to the side mirrors so the get good "reflectivity" off the nose of the truck and can still "talk" behind themselves due to the large sides of the truck.

On a car, the center of the roof makes best sense and performs best.

On a bike.. well.... just doesn't cut it..

If you want to get range out the "front" of the bike, an antenna mounted there will help... but will look bad.

Here is a "test"... go buy an "emergency" hand-held CB.. or a toy one from some toy-store...that transmits on a CB channel. Have a patient friend walk a 360 degree circle around the bike while you are stationary in a parking lot... while you transmit/receive from them and you'll see there are "hot" and cold spots...

Finally, the SWR is crucial to a good "wave" from your bike/antenna... you cannot just "plug-n-go" because I've NEVER seen a CB work out of the box... it must be "tuned."

...............
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post #7 of 33 Old Oct 11th, 2007, 3:44 pm Thread Starter
 
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Good idea for a test -- will do.

But I gotta say, out of the box -- both of my GL Honda CBs were fantastic. The J&M on my RSV was near perfect -- and Lord help me for saying this, but (gulp) the one on my 06 HD Ultra CVO was really nice. Will keep ya posted -- BTSOOM


Quote:
Originally Posted by cfell
Jimbo.. yup.. your reflectivity to the "sides" is good.. close in, bike to bike.. good...

No good for a "smokey check"...

A "ground plane" is a 90 degree from antenna conductive surface... for instance.. the big trucks move their antennas to the side mirrors so the get good "reflectivity" off the nose of the truck and can still "talk" behind themselves due to the large sides of the truck.

On a car, the center of the roof makes best sense and performs best.

On a bike.. well.... just doesn't cut it..

If you want to get range out the "front" of the bike, an antenna mounted there will help... but will look bad.

Here is a "test"... go buy an "emergency" hand-held CB.. or a toy one from some toy-store...that transmits on a CB channel. Have a patient friend walk a 360 degree circle around the bike while you are stationary in a parking lot... while you transmit/receive from them and you'll see there are "hot" and cold spots...

Finally, the SWR is crucial to a good "wave" from your bike/antenna... you cannot just "plug-n-go" because I've NEVER seen a CB work out of the box... it must be "tuned."
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post #8 of 33 Old Oct 12th, 2007, 10:05 am
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Between the CB bull$*)* and the foggy windshield I am about ready to sell this beast and get an Ultra...............
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post #9 of 33 Old Oct 12th, 2007, 10:14 am
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Have to agree. My wings CB's were always flawless and had great range, but none of them beat my Ultra for distance and clarity. Most truckers didn't know I was talking on a little radio. The one on my LT...practically useless. I have had truckers ask...no order me, to shut up and take my radio to the shop, cause it sounded like crap and the trucks were no more than 100 yds away from me. I went to a CB shop and the guy said, "OK, so where is the CB?" I pointed to the unit mounted atop my clutch reserve and he said, "No, not the controls, the CB. Where is it located?" So, I don't know if the stuff they need to get to in order to tune the CB are somewhere else on the bike, or if what you see is what you get on the handlebar? In either case he wasn't going to start pulling off plastic to start looking for it...for TWO reasons. So, how do they tune a BMW CB?

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post #10 of 33 Old Oct 12th, 2007, 11:03 am
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I ajusted (tuned) the SWR but it was hook into where the CB antenna cable hooks to the CB cable from the radio in the Midland I am trying to use. But I do not know where the stock cable from the antenna meets the radio. With any luck it is on the frame under the seat or around the gas tank area that would not make you take the tupperware off.....

Wish I could help but surely some one here has tuned their SWR on the stock set up.
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post #11 of 33 Old Oct 12th, 2007, 12:59 pm
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I have been having CB problems also. I can receive but not transmit, I think the PT button is on the fritz. Any suggestions as a replacement?

As to the tunning, the cable is along the left inside of the area under the seat near the front of the bike. There is a coupling that you unscrew and attach the SWR meter for tunning.

Larry Norris
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post #12 of 33 Old Oct 12th, 2007, 3:30 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cmabmwriders
I have been having CB problems also. I can receive but not transmit, I think the PT button is on the fritz. Any suggestions as a replacement?

As to the tunning, the cable is along the left inside of the area under the seat near the front of the bike. There is a coupling that you unscrew and attach the SWR meter for tunning.

Hopefully it had been working fine and something somewhere is loose. The mechinism is easy to get to. Just take the top tupperware off the left handle bar. I would try there first as that is where the PTT wiring hooks into the factory wiring.

If it has never been able to transmitt then welcome to the club of non working cb's on a BMW LT
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post #13 of 33 Old Oct 12th, 2007, 3:45 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cmabmwriders
I have been having CB problems also. I can receive but not transmit, I think the PT button is on the fritz. Any suggestions as a replacement?

As to the tunning, the cable is along the left inside of the area under the seat near the front of the bike. There is a coupling that you unscrew and attach the SWR meter for tunning.
Okay, they can get to the connection to check the SWR, but where do they go from there to correct it?

Jerry
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post #14 of 33 Old Oct 12th, 2007, 4:25 pm
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Tuning of a CB antenna typically involves lengthening or shortening the radiating element. At the base of the antenna, maybe under that plastic coil cover, is probably a set-screw that holds the whip to the coil. Loosen the screw, pull the whip out a little and tighten screw. Check SWR again at that setting. If it needed to be shortened rather than lengthened, the SWR would have gotten worse by lengthening it.

...Bob
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post #15 of 33 Old Oct 12th, 2007, 4:39 pm
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I have heard that the problem with the LT antenna is that it is about 5" too short for CB waves. Can anyone varify this?

Jerry
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post #16 of 33 Old Oct 15th, 2007, 9:44 am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lonewuff
I have heard that the problem with the LT antenna is that it is about 5" too short for CB waves. Can anyone varify this?

I do not have the answer to your question but would like to know as well. The K1200LT has got to be the worst touring bike to get a CB of any type to work properly. It is a very frustrating ordeal.

If I get mine working I will sure let everyone know. That is if it works before I trade the beast...........
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post #17 of 33 Old Oct 16th, 2007, 5:00 am Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GBaker
Between the CB bull$*)* and the foggy windshield I am about ready to sell this beast and get an Ultra...............
(LOUD SCREAM) Brother, IMHO, and my $120,000 worth of HD experiences over the years --- HD is crap --- unless you want to pose and shine. But if you were attracted to the LT for "riding" then hang in there -- we'll find a way to get these suckers tuned!!! BTSOOM
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post #18 of 33 Old Oct 16th, 2007, 10:49 am
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I sure hope so. I came from a Road King to the LT. Did 4,980 miles in 9 days in an Iron Butt run and was glad for the ride.

All the technology in this ride to have these issues with a CB as well as the seemingly lack of customer service on the part of BMW relating to it has been a major disappointment.
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post #19 of 33 Old Oct 21st, 2007, 4:05 pm
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I have a J&M CB2003 installed on my 2001LT and it works just fine. Range is about 5 miles including transmit. I purchased a cheap SWR meter from Fry's electronics.

The biggest problem during the install is getting a good ground. If you don't get a good ground, you will receive, but not transmit well. The CB antenna base needs a good connection to the bike frame. Scrape off / remove the paint from the mounting plate on the frame side and from around the antenna mounting bolts and use Star washers. Also be sure to remove the paint from the bolt threads. I used a conductive paste between the LT frame plate and the LT CB antenna mounting bracket (after removing the paint and other crap.



I am connected into the LT's stereo and even added the CFRG (cell fone, Radar and GPS adapter).

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post #20 of 33 Old Oct 22nd, 2007, 1:48 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rspyder
I have a J&M CB2003 installed on my 2001LT and it works just fine. Range is about 5 miles including transmit. I purchased a cheap SWR meter from Fry's electronics.

The biggest problem during the install is getting a good ground. If you don't get a good ground, you will receive, but not transmit well. The CB antenna base needs a good connection to the bike frame. Scrape off / remove the paint from the mounting plate on the frame side and from around the antenna mounting bolts and use Star washers. Also be sure to remove the paint from the bolt threads. I used a conductive paste between the LT frame plate and the LT CB antenna mounting bracket (after removing the paint and other crap.



I am connected into the LT's stereo and even added the CFRG (cell fone, Radar and GPS adapter).

Glad to hear some one is "on the air". Do you use headset and the left handle PTT button or a conventional handheld mike?

Thanks

Gene
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post #21 of 33 Old Oct 23rd, 2007, 7:03 pm
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I don't have the additional PTT switch, so I just use the one on the CB2003. I don't remember which J&M headset I have added to my helmets. I wish the bass response was better, but I enjoy the sounds.

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post #22 of 33 Old Oct 24th, 2007, 1:09 pm
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I added the J&M CB to my 2002 LT a couple summers ago. As Roger mentions, the key is the grounding to bike and antenna tuning. I did the same with my antenna prior to installation scraping paint and filing to a slightly rough metal to metal surface on bracket and bike to gain a solid ground connection. The tuning(match) is easy at the left side seat connection where the CB unit antenna cable extension piece connects to the cable from the antenna. After verifying the antenna was functioning properly I was able to adjust it down to about 1.5 on the scale. One must be careful in handling the antenna. Loosening the coil load at the base and pulling up can snap the connection inside. To tune you loosen the two small allen screws at the top of the load and move the antenna up and down until you reach your lowest resistance. My unit is hooked up through a BC-3 with the PTT switch through J&M headsets with the new lower cables. The resistor they put in the lower lower cables makes a big difference over my originals. The combo works very well with good range and clarity. I also have an ICOM GMRS wired through the BC-3. With a flip of the TX toggle in the oddments box it also works well. I often monitor CB while using the GMRS on our group frequency.

One thing I have discovered in helping other install the J&M CB unit is failure to install the extension cable for the antenna. It's about three feet long. The unit cable and the antenna cable are not long enough to reach each other. There is a connector under the left front seat as I mentioned that runs to the right side of the bike where it connects again under the pillion seat. Yours may be a little different but ensure the antenna if connected at both places before doing your SWR testing. You can get a meter at Radio Shack or any other radio/electronic store that carries testing equipment. Best bet is to borrow one if possible. If you're ever in NorCal I'll check it for you!

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post #23 of 33 Old Oct 25th, 2007, 3:30 pm
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Tallyho,

Metal to metal on the antenna bracket is some thing I did not do. Mine is the BMW cb antenna but I do not recall that in the install instructions...

There were instructions to run two ground wires form the base plate bolts to the relay box bolts under the seat in a specific manner which I did. So I A S S U M E D that was sufficient ground.

Last night I ran the ground from the radio chassis to the shield on the antenna cable but it still had the howl ...........

Any thoughts?

Thanks
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post #24 of 33 Old Oct 26th, 2007, 10:35 pm
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Just to clarify... you have a J&M unit? Try turning the passenger intercom level all the way down. My unused passenger volume was turned all of the way up and I remember that caused some feedback noise.

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post #25 of 33 Old Nov 4th, 2007, 7:19 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lonewuff
I have heard that the problem with the LT antenna is that it is about 5" too short for CB waves. Can anyone varify this?

468 divided by the TX frequency (in mHz) will give you a "resonant" 1/2 wave antenna length. Divide the number by 2 and you get the "real" length that wip antenna on your bike should be.(with a good RF ground.)

All those loaded/shortened antennas are just designed to make the radio think it's transmitting into a real antenna.
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post #26 of 33 Old Nov 4th, 2007, 7:45 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ErnieA
He had the same problem until he went to BMW and bought two new lower cords (from plug to helmet short cord). The pins are slightly different on the boom mic to CB. Ask your local store to let you try a cord and see if that fixes your problem.
Had the same kind of problem with my BMW branded J&M CB. Had one of the first units that came out in 2004. Took it back to my dealer about 6 times because no one could understand my transmissions. Gave up on them and took to another dealer. They found that the antenna base plate was not in good contact with the bike frame where it mounts. They scraped it down to bare metal and remounted and it helped alot. Still not the best, but its usable.

Does anyone have the BMW part numbers for these new lower cords or do you order these from J&M? I need to get new ones and want to make sure I get the right ones. I get a lot of noise in my headset. Do these help this also?

Carl

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post #27 of 33 Old Nov 5th, 2007, 1:35 pm
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You cannot order the lower cords from J&M. They have an exclusive agreement with BMW. BMW no longer makes the old version. All of the current lower cord stock should be the new version. The resistor in it improves audio quality with all devices not just the CB. Be ready to grab your britches when you hear the revised list price for the lower cords too. They are much closer to $100 these days than $50.

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post #28 of 33 Old Nov 7th, 2007, 2:02 pm
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Smile upgraded CB installed

My bike has been in the BMW shop for over two weeks now to get the CB problem resolved.

Initially, when brand new, the CB worked. But, in reading this forum, I saw that it wasn't supposed to. It was a 2005 and the CBs didn't work correctly for it. Of course it was installed by the BMW dealer, but I doubt that they did more than turn it on to see if the display lit up.

Anyway, I remember using it with a friend who had a CB on his GW. It seemed to work, but as his was not working correctly at the time, I really don't know how well it worked.

Just before the end of my two year warranty, I attempted to use the CB one day. Noticed that the PTT button installed by BMW was not keying the transmit. Took it apart and tested the switch. Working perfectly. Still not keying the transmit. Then, tried the transmit button on the J&M CB itself. (That is the whole CB btw). It would key and transmit once, (not sure how the cycle worked, but maybe once a day?), and then would only transmit garbage.

Side note. Early on, BMW said the lower cable (just the rider's) needed to be changed. I did so. BMW charged me $29.00 for the new lower cable. I thought they should have given it to me for free, in exchange for the original lower cable THEY sold me, but they didn't. So, I have the new lower cable. Recently about the time of this whole scene (sometime in October), the poorly designed J&M lower cable began to fray just above the connector to the bike. Why didn't they put a 90 degree connector there in the first place? So, this time, the Service Mgr (second one at this dealership) replaced my lower cable. The current price is $84.00 I think. Quite an increase in two years.

Ok, back to my story. BMW Svc Mgr and myself took the bike to a CB shop near the dealership. The CB guy recommended a power filter because of the junk that was being transmitted. It was not installed simply because to get to the power connection, all the tupperware has to come off to get to the audio unit. Why didn't BMW put some type of simple access to something so integral? I left the bike with the dealer and a week ago, he called me and said that BMW is replacing the whole CB. Now they'll have to take the skins off to remove and reinstall it and see why the PTT button isn't working, etc. When tuning a CB antenna, the place to put the SWR meter is next to the CB, not out at the antenna which is where you have to do it if you don't remove all the tupperware. There is a connection where you can insert your swr meter under the seat. But there is at least 3 feet of cable going to the CB, and another 3 feet going to the antenna. So, the most accurate tuning is best done at the CB.

I don't intend on paying for any service or parts, or labor or anything else until I see the unit perform properly. The range should be at least a mile or two. Hand-held units will go that far. The max power is 5 watts, but I'm sure this unit is rated at less than that.

I'm pretty cynical when it comes to truckers and CBs. I've read magazine (for truckers) articles telling how to boost power on a CB to 100 watts. I had a CB in my auto many years ago and I'm certain that I encountered some of those whose wattage was much more than the legal 5W. Their signal was so overpowering that it almost blew the speaker in my CB. And there was no truck in sight.

I only want my CB for use when riding with other bikers. Or, for emergency when not in a cell phone area. Of course, there may not be any other CBs in the area either. The weather channels on the CB are a nice feature.

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post #29 of 33 Old Nov 7th, 2007, 6:54 pm
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I feel your pain. As I understand it the "new" BMW CB's are in stock in the US. Part number 71600441937 retail price $495.00.

Any one have one or know if the "new" lower cord is needed? Do they work any better than their predecesors??

My lower cord is a J & M from J & M last November and it works fine with the Kenwood FRS/GMRS plugged to the Voice Com II.
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post #30 of 33 Old Nov 21st, 2007, 5:27 pm
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upgraded CB installed

Well, my original post about my "CB" woes was posted on Nov 7th. Here it is Nov 21st (two more weeks) and it is still at the BMW dealership. I've not ridden it in over a month now.

I talked to them today. So far, they replaced the CB unit itself, then they had to wait for some kind of amplifier (???????) to come in, and then last Friday, they said they were replacing the radio. I have no idea exactly what they're replacing, but I suspect my bike is getting bumped for it to be there this long. I have to be out of town for a week, and if it isn't ready when I return, I'm really at a loss as to what to do to get this resolved.

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post #31 of 33 Old Nov 26th, 2007, 12:35 pm
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Triker what is the part number of your CB? I just bought and installed the 'new' one for the K1200LT with Voice Com II it was part number 71600441937. This is the newest one and not even listed in the their web catelog. Every thing was in the kit including the noise suppresor that is fairly easy to mount it a factory prepared place as well as the grounding cables for the antenna. The big difference as I see this vs older ones is this CB has a ground wire that goes direct from the cb to the neg on the battery and another small wire that is grounded to the bikes radio chassis in the odiments box.

Hate so say it but mine is in and working fine. I did have a little hic cup on the noice suppressing cable to pin 5 on the stereo but it to was fairly easy to solve. Biggest pain was removing and replacing the tupperware...

PM me if I can be of help. If it wasn't for others here I would have been stumped on that number 5 pin thing...

Gene

Gene
'06 K1200LT
IBA 31499


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post #32 of 33 Old Nov 28th, 2007, 8:58 pm
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Location: Longmont, CO, USA
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CB - saga

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Originally Posted by GBaker
Triker what is the part number of your CB? I just bought and installed the 'new' one for the K1200LT with Voice Com II it was part number 71600441937. This is the newest one and not even listed in the their web catelog. Every thing was in the kit including the noise suppresor that is fairly easy to mount it a factory prepared place as well as the grounding cables for the antenna. The big difference as I see this vs older ones is this CB has a ground wire that goes direct from the cb to the neg on the battery and another small wire that is grounded to the bikes radio chassis in the odiments box.

Hate so say it but mine is in and working fine. I did have a little hic cup on the noice suppressing cable to pin 5 on the stereo but it to was fairly easy to solve. Biggest pain was removing and replacing the tupperware...

PM me if I can be of help. If it wasn't for others here I would have been stumped on that number 5 pin thing...

Gene
Well, the thing that seems to give the greatest problems on CBs in general is this "bad/poor/improper/faulty GROUND" and yes, that's what BMW has related to me that the problem on my CB was... bad ground. Of course, it was their fault since they installed it. The tech said that when the proper ground was connected, it began working immediately. Go figure.
So, after only 6 weeks, I finally have my bike back. I plan to ride right on through the winter with my original policy, namely, if it ain't precipitating in the morning, I ride. If it is, I don't. Temperature is NOT a consideration.

Triker
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2005 LT Hannigan Trike
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post #33 of 33 Old Nov 29th, 2007, 12:53 pm
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Talking NEW CB installed - PTT fixed


Well, here it is, 6 weeks later and I just got my bike back last night. So, I rode in to work today. Only 26 degrees, but hey, it's dry, so it's riding weather.

OK, so without any testing on my part so far, (the other guy who has a CB that I was going to test with today didn't ride, so it will be tomorrow before it gets the acid test), and taking the Svc Mgr's word for it, the CB is now functioning. you're not going to believe what was wrong. (Well, maybe you will.) BMW installed the CB on my bike originally, so it was their doing, but the main problem was a faulty/bad/poor ground. Can you imagine that? A grounding problem. Wow! Who would've thought it would be so simple? So, new radio, amplifier, and CB in place and ready to go. The BMW dealer to be fair, did go above and beyond on this one. No charges at all, not even parking fees for the 6 weeks in their shop. They even had a local CB shop professional come down and tune the antenna and his report was that I would have a range of approximately 2 miles. That's super. I only need it for bike to bike communications on group rides, so 2 miles is great.

Oh man, I just got my new IntaRide wireless, bluetooth stuff in last night and won't have time to install it until this weekend. Look for an update on it next week.

Triker
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