The information on these pages is accurate to the best of the author's knowledge. The author can assume no responsibility for the use or misuse of this information by the reader. The reader is expected to secure any other information needed from Service Manuals or other sources. It is up to the reader to determine his/her ability to make any modifications noted. If the reader does not feel qualified he/she should enlist professional help.

Using the stock PTT for other stuff.
(if you don't want a CB or Intercom)

By Chet Walters

Click for Chet's Wing Pages


With only a few small parts from Radio Shack, you can use your PTT for other things. Here, I show you how to install a closed circuit 1/8 audio jack which uses a 1/8 plug added to a GMRS radio PTT headset with boom mic for the mic key so I didn't have to take my hand off the bar to key the mic. This installation is dual purpose because long ago I utilized my PTT for a garage door opener and I wanted to easily keep that and get the PTT with my radios.  For the method to use your PTT for this and for a garage door opener you will need to refer my SWITCHES page >CLICK<.

MATERIALS (or equivalents)
Two Stereo Headphone Extension Cables
One 274-246 1/8" Stereo Panel-Mount Phone Jack
GMRS radio (or handheld CB or HAM)
A PTT headset for your radio
Optional momentary PTT (see @ right)
small 4" zip ties
electrical tape
liquid tape
heat shrink
TOOLS
#2 phillips
power drill w/ 15/64 bit
wire cutter/stripper
xacto knife or equivalent
needle nose pliers or forceps
solder gun

 

Click any picture to see enlargement For steps not described fully - see your service manual. See also my SWITCHES page >CLICK< for the OEM PTT conversion..

STEP ONE: install a 1/8 MALE cable to substitute for your radio's PTT switch.
Click here for scrollable printable pic.
First, you need to cut one of the Stereo Headphone Extension Cables so there is about 36" on the MALE side and there is at least 1 foot on the FEMALE side. Then, you need to pry open your PTT button switch on your headset. These items are all about the same so just insert carefully an exacto knife on one end and pry it open. It's not likely glued. Inside find the button. Pay attention to which wires are hooked to the button because those are the wires you will hook to your MALE Stereo Headphone Cable.  Here we only need two wires and we want to leave the shield in place unused so de-solder your PTT button and solder the RED wire to one of the wires that was hooked to it and the WHITE wire to the other wire that was hooked to the button. Since we will need TWO male cables an only one FEMALE cable, for this I used an old stereo cable that once plugged into my computer sound card. It was just right for my needs so I only needed to buy and butcher one 42-2562 Stereo Headphone Cable.  The picture to the left shows our finished soldering job eliminating the PTT and substituting our own. Carefully coat these with liquid tape and fold them so that you can enclose it in the empty PTT shell as shown in the right picture. Single headphone cord to one end and both of your plug wires on the other. I found it necessary to clip part of the housing's ends so the two wire opening was a bit larger.  Zip tie securely and zip tie the double cords to each other for about 6 inches down.

 
STEP TWO: Construct the closed circuit 1/8 audio jack with about a foot on the FEMALE end of a 42-2562 Stereo Headphone Cable  so it can be easy to remove later.
Click here for scrollable printable pic.
Here you use the one foot FEMALE end of the one you cut in step one. Refer to the circuit drawing below.  Onto the 274-246 1/8" Stereo Panel-Mount Phone Jack we will solder the RED lead onto pin 5 (it's the common wire leading to the bike's PTT). Solder the WHITE lead to pin #2. It will come from the bike PTT and will alternately feed out the jack or to pin #2 to which we solder the shield wire from the cable.  When the plug is not in, the shield on #3 is mated with pin #2 which feeds it back to the door switch. Install your 1/8 jack anywhere it will be convenient to plug in the 1/8 plug that we made in step one. Don't forget, it will be connected to your radio and yourself so choose wisely. I chose to mount mine inside the right pocket because I wanted it protected from the elements and I wanted to use the closed door as a strain relief in case I forget I'm plugged in! Choose a panel that is not too thick and drill a 15/64 hole for the jack, mount it and thread the FEMALE end of the wire to somewhere you can reach it from under the seat with the MALE cable we will make next.
STEP THREE: Construct the MALE harness which will grab the 3 wires from the FEMALE that's set up in step two.
Click here for scrollable printable pic.
First thing you will want to do is solder a few inches of at least 20 gauge wire to the ends of the 274-246 1/8" Stereo Panel-Mount Phone Jack leads for strain relief. Shrink wrap, fold them over like in the little picture at left and zip tie. Cover with a large hunk of shrink and zip tie the ends tight as you can.  Now, feed the MALE end to wherever you put the FEMALE end in step two. I had to go under the shelter which is not too hard if you take off the 10mm nut under the side cover and pull out on it. Once it's plugged in, take a little tape and wrap around the two plugs to keep out gunk. If you ever need to remove the part that your 1/8 jack resides in, you can just unhook it here!

On the other end of the cable where you soldered the heavy wires, connect one wire that comes from your bike PTT, one wire that comes from the opener switch and the wire that comes from pin #5 of the cable (if you followed, it should be RED). Next, to the other wire that comes from the other side of the bike PTT, connect the wire that comes from pin #2 (if you followed it should be WHITE). To finish, connect the shield wire from pin #3 to the other side of your garage door opener. I chose to do this under the seat where my opener lives.

STEP FOUR: Go for a ride!
Click here for scrollable printable pic.
Yer pretty much done, but I have found that if you put everything back together, something won't work. TEST it all first THEN go for a ride! I personally carry my radio in my jacket pocket with all the wires I can get in there with it. The only wire that exits is the new one I made that plugs into my new PTT control jack. To dismount - only one wire to unplug.  Stuff that in your jacket and you're off. 

Make sure to do a continuity test on your cables so that you are getting the correct colors to the correct pins. Short pin - mid contact #5 (where we show RED). Long pin - tip contact #2 (where we show WHITE). Shield - large contact (not important for our purposes).

PINOUTS for FRS/GMRS and HAM (will add more as I find them)
Find some at this link: http://www.dxzone.com/cgi-bin/dir/jump2.cgi?ID=8202


MIDLAND FRS/GMRS


KENWOOD/QUANSHENG  HT

 


Quansheng TG-UV2
Dual Band Dual Display 2 meter/70cm HT
(KD8UVH)
By Chet Walters
Click for Chet's Wing Pages

You can grab one of these awesome radios from Amazon for $?? shipped. Ham test costs you $15 and a week of study. If I can pass it, YOU can pass it. I won't provide all the specs for the radio here here.

This little bad boy is smaller than many FRS/GMRS radios but packs a wicked punch. I've hit repeaters thirty miles away from home while still in the house with only the rubber duck! Li-on battery is good for 10 hours. I know, I know, all the old HAM boys have been telling me "sure, 10 if you only listen - and you have to put it on LOW." Well, if they would only listen - my boys are stuck in the dark age. This battery lasts 10 hours TX/RX at an average rate of conversation on Med or Hi which is great for an HT.

Extras include that it's "jailbroken" -- it will RX/TX in the FRS/GMRS bands as well as many "others" (see specs at link). It sounds great at distance and is remarkably easy to use after a short learning curve. Weighs in at half a pound with battery and fits really well in the hand. I have made a custom mount (see below) and it works great with my headset PPT switch set up (see above).

It's compatible with all KENWOOD accessories such as headsets, data cables etc. In riding, our group uses 145.620 national simplex 2 meter and I have yet to have a problem with any of the big rigs outperforming me with distance, clarity and all the things you want with bike to bike comm and I'm still only using the RUBBER DUCK!

Some reviews of the TG-UV2 here: http://www.eham.net/reviews/detail/6220.

Making the PTT work with the Quansheng.
Click here for scrollable printable pic.
Kenwood headset plugs are a bit different in that they use the small 2.5mm plug for the headset and the big 1/8 for the mic.  Pins are also spaced more than normal but you can get around that by using a 2.5 single and a 3.5 single. The pinout of the Kenwood headset is shown but here are the details. The earpiece/speaker is the smaller plug and it's SHIELD = COPPER and RED = "HOT". You should not need to worry about these connections because they are not interrupted in the headset line maintaining the insulation from stem to stern. The MIC is SHIELD = COPPER and BLUE = HOT. The BLUE and COPPER are twisted together toward the MIC and the BLUE and SHIELD are isolated on the plug side of the switch. Simply short the MIC SHIELD and SPEAKER SHIELD on the plug side externally and that will key the MIC.
Unobtrusive secure mounting plate for the Quansheng (and others, use your own dimensions)
Click here for scrollable printable pic.
This mount was made from 5mm thick PVC solid vinyl baseboard.  It's plenty strong and is not metal nor brittle. You could probably make this out of plywood if you don't have a source for the black PVC. Bolts are stainless button heads 45mm long M6 and behind the plate going into your MC clamp are 12mm spacers so the board will clear the clamp and there is enough space to put the belt clip on (you still have to slide it in from the inward side - I wanted this as unobtrusive as possible).  There is a small patch of Velcro added in the back for stability so the radio doesn't "rattle" around.  Velcro also acts as a shock absorber.

Bonus is that you can mount it on either side to suit your needs. Just flip it to "mirror" itself. Top remains top and bottom remains bottom. Add Velcro to the new side.