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Old 08-07-2003, 04:13 AM
ddpete88 ddpete88 is offline
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Anybody with experience replacing the am/fm antenna cable?

What is the best way to reach the grommet where the cable enters the cab? I can't get my hand up under the dash to reach it. Looks like I need to pull the air conditioner evaporator and blower motor. Can I reach the area under the cable mast by pulling the heater blower motor?

Any suggestions will be appreciated. Want to get some input before I start taking things apart.
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Old 08-07-2003, 05:17 AM
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talntar talntar is offline
 
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pop the chrome cover off the base of the ant. and you shall find two screws that hold it to the body.i would think you could get it off that way
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Old 08-07-2003, 06:44 AM
ddpete88 ddpete88 is offline
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I managed removing the base just fine and took the bezel off the dash to remove the radio. Found I could not pull the antenna cable from either direction. Finally figured out there is a grommet with a pinch clamp where the cable enters the cab under the dash. The grommet and clamp were holding the cable. Finally jerked on the cable hard engough to tear the grommet and pulled the old cable out. Now I need to replace the cable.

I am looking for suggestions on the best method for getting to the grommet so I can feed the new cable back through it.

By the way, it is an '88 Grand Wagoneer.
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Old 08-07-2003, 07:46 AM
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woodstock woodstock is offline
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That is not a fun job! You're right, you can't pull that cable at all because of the grommet and the angle of the turn. For me it was a two person job, lucky I have a brother nearby.

We removed the A/C condenser/fan unit to get to the grommet. I don't think there is any alternative. Take out the bolts, angle and pop it, it's a tough one because it takes a little force to get it out and in and, of course, you don't want to break it.

The other problem is that the cable is flimsy. With the grommet out we fished a straightened-out coat hanger up the fender to the antenna hole then taped the new cable to the wire and pulled it back through. If I remember correctly, it wasn't too dificult getting it from the grommet to the back side of the radio. I think I just used my hand to get it back there, but I'm sure the wire would work easy too. Hindsight: I would have pulled the new cable in with the old cable, all the way to the radio.

I don't know a thing about attaching a new cable to the old antenna. I just bought a Universal Ford antenna from Advance, less than $10 I think. Just looks like a beefier version of our stock antenna. I had to make the hole in the fender a little bigger with my Dremmel. Even though it's supposed to be permanent and looks beefy, I wouldn't trust it at cloth car wash, touchless only.

[ August 07, 2003, 01:49 PM: Message edited by: Easy Rider ]
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Old 08-09-2003, 03:47 AM
ddpete88 ddpete88 is offline
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Thanks for the feedback Joshua. Doesn't look like many others have had to replace the atenna cable. I have found this to be the most frustrating minor repair I have attempted. I guess because I thought it would be a simple pull the new cable in with the old cable.

I guess I will start to pull things apart to get to the grommet this weekend.
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Old 08-09-2003, 06:03 PM
BigBrownTriz BigBrownTriz is offline
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Look through by where the door hinge is and see if you can fish the antenna itself up through the hole. I haven't had to replace one in years and don't remember if this is even possible, but this is how we do it in most cars at my stereo shop. Get a 3-4 foot long zip tie to help with running the cable. They make life a lot easier.
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Old 08-09-2003, 06:06 PM
BigBrownTriz BigBrownTriz is offline
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Also, you can splice a new cable to the old. Just get some crimpers and butt connect the center conductors together and the outer sheild together. It can be tricky without experience but a good connection on both will get the same reception as a new cable, if the old cable is good to that point.
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Old 08-09-2003, 06:31 PM
Bob Barry Bob Barry is offline
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You may be able to get by with dropping the A/C unit, rather than removing it entirely. You can't get at it by removing the heater blower, or through the hinge access hole.

Good luck; I don't envy you.

Let us know how it turns out.
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