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Old 04-22-2015, 05:44 PM   #1
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Default Power Antenna Question

Last summer I carried a 5gal jug of water in the trunk (one of those that goes on the top of a water cooler), and around a right hand corner after I'd forgotten it was in there, it slid across the trunk and smashed into the antenna. No physical damage at all, but now the antenna doesn't go down. It doesn't make any noise, or apparent attempt to retract.

Thoughts on what I might be able to check and/or fix? Or do I need to just replace it? If replacement, what decent cheap short antenna is a good replacement? I don't use the radio an awful lot, but I do use it sometimes.
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Old 04-22-2015, 05:47 PM   #2
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Goto the Gross Build, Recent posts showing moss shorty raked antenna
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Old 04-22-2015, 06:29 PM   #3
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Check the connector. It's fairly easy to dislodge. White connector with 2 wires, if I recall correctly.
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Old 04-23-2015, 08:02 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rleete View Post
Check the connector. It's fairly easy to dislodge. White connector with 2 wires, if I recall correctly.
I checked the connector and it appears to be fully in tact and connected.

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Goto the Gross Build, Recent posts showing moss shorty raked antenna
I saw the raked antenna, and while it could work, it is raked a lot for the shape of the car, in my opinion. If it's really the best option, though, I can forgive that.
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Old 04-23-2015, 10:10 AM   #5
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There's not a lot to them. Maybe the switch that tells it to stop retracting is jammed or damaged? Pull it out and mess with it. Unless it's stripped, it ought to be fairly obvious what needs to be fixed.

No operation at all suggests to me that it's an electrical issue.
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Old 04-23-2015, 02:19 PM   #6
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It's a fairly simple device.

Receives constant 12V power on L/R (Blue/Red) via the Room fuse. Uses 12V as rise trigger on GY/B (Grey/Black). Ground is a black wire directly to the mounting bolt at the base of the antenna. Remove 12V from GY/B and the antenna retracts.

If yours will not retract it is either mechanically broken or the L/R or B wires are disconnected or 12V is being maintained at GY/B (maybe shorting to L/R).

Check for 12V at the L/R wire. Then at the GY/B - it should be absent with the ignition (or radio) off.
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Old 04-23-2015, 04:18 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BarbyCar View Post
It's a fairly simple device.

Receives constant 12V power on L/R (Blue/Red) via the Room fuse. Uses 12V as rise trigger on GY/B (Grey/Black). Ground is a black wire directly to the mounting bolt at the base of the antenna. Remove 12V from GY/B and the antenna retracts.

If yours will not retract it is either mechanically broken or the L/R or B wires are disconnected or 12V is being maintained at GY/B (maybe shorting to L/R).

Check for 12V at the L/R wire. Then at the GY/B - it should be absent with the ignition (or radio) off.
Thank you! I checked the pins last fall, but realized I had no idea what normal was and wasn't bothered enough at the time to find out. Now I don't remember what I found, so I will check again. That last scenario seems plausible as the battery died faster this winter than it should have (full charge to "too flat to illuminate the trunk lights" in 2 weeks) and I have no other thought on what it could be.
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Old 04-23-2015, 05:30 PM   #8
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Alright, so this is weird...
Checking voltage at the connector, with connector unplugged. Multimeter set to the 20VDC mode, voltage between black and GY/B is 0, but as soon as I touch the probe to L/R it blows the ROOM fuse. The first time I thought maybe I touched the probes or something, but then it did it a second time. I have no idea why it would do that; there should be no current through the multimeter on voltage mode! I have not checked GY/B with the ignition on yet. Thoughts?
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Old 04-23-2015, 06:58 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skidude View Post
Alright, so this is weird...
Checking voltage at the connector, with connector unplugged. Multimeter set to the 20VDC mode, voltage between black and GY/B is 0, but as soon as I touch the probe to L/R it blows the ROOM fuse. The first time I thought maybe I touched the probes or something, but then it did it a second time. I have no idea why it would do that; there should be no current through the multimeter on voltage mode! I have not checked GY/B with the ignition on yet. Thoughts?
Eliminate the variable - leave it unplugged and put a test lamp across L/R and B, it should light.
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Old 04-24-2015, 06:10 PM   #10
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Ok. I have no idea why the multimeter was blowing the fuse, but the test light says the supply is correct, so I pulled out the antenna and took it apart. The circuit board inside is cracked, obviously from being hit with a 5 gallon jug of water.

It looks like only three traces (one of which is the ground plane) are actually broken, so I think I might try to fix it with jumpers, but if that fails; any other suggestions?
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Old 04-25-2015, 01:17 PM   #11
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Ok. I have no idea why the multimeter was blowing the fuse, ....
Thinking about this - does your meter require moving the probe wire from a volt/ohm socket to a current socket? Any chance you didn't do that?

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....The circuit board inside is cracked, obviously from being hit with a 5 gallon jug of water.

It looks like only three traces (one of which is the ground plane) are actually broken, so I think I might try to fix it with jumpers, but if that fails; any other suggestions?
I'd say you found the problem. While you have it apart, function the drive wheel by hand to see if the antenna moves without binding.
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Old 04-25-2015, 01:23 PM   #12
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I'll check my probe locations, but I never move them so I doubt they are on the wrong spots.

I checked the drive wheel, and it moves fine. I will probably put some white lightning in there while I have it apart anyway, since the current lube is 13 years old.
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Old 04-25-2015, 08:54 PM   #13
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All fixed! Let's see how long it lasts. Free is best, but if it breaks again I'm just going to replace it with a shorty of some kind. That power antenna is stupid-tall and makes it look like an RC car.
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