Communications

Given the limited space, low dash, and stadium-style seating in the Discovery, the best solution for mounting additional displays and controls turned out to be a custom dash pod. This position on the dash allows for easy viewing on the road, no obstruction of the road from the driver’s seat, and minimal permanent changes to the vehicle.

The pod is built out of 1/8th-inch aluminum plate assembled and ground smooth to match the contour of the dash. On the top of the box, two small speakers provide better sound quality from the radios and conceal access to the only two bolts required for secure mounting. An internal frame holds the CB radio, power wiring, phone charger body (USB based), and the data/audio splitter for the phone (routed to the stereo for music playback). Surface-mounted on the face is a Pro-Clip cradle for my phone, microphones for the CB and amateur radios, the display/GPSr of the amateur radio, dual 12-volt power ports, and dual Anderson power poles.

Comms 02

Underneath the passenger seat where the original CD changer used to reside, a 1/4th-inch aluminum plate holds the guts of the amateur radio and other wiring. An APO-3 ensures power is cut from the aftermarket equipment before the battery’s charge drops too low to start the vehicle, and a RIGrunner 4005 distribution block provides clean wiring and the simplicity of Anderson power poles.

A slight trimming at the bottom of the “B” pillar allows antenna cable in protective conduit to slip in and up to the roof. The power cabling follows a similar route forward under the foot plate and passes through a factory-provided grommet in the firewall to the engine bay. Once through the firewall, the 8 AWG wire heads through a 40-amp circuit breaker for fuseless protection, and has ample capacity remaining for a planned carputer setup. The primary battery has also been upgraded to an Odyssey 2150.

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