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Thread: Rear headset jack install/intercom install (looking for suggestions and pictures)

  1. #1

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    Rear headset jack install/intercom install (looking for suggestions and pictures)

    I am thinking about doing a panel mounted intercom and was wondering if anyone has suggestions for placing/routing the rear headset jack. Pictures and/or descriptions would be welcome.

    Right now I have a portable sigtronics, but I can't seem to find a way to store it so it is out of the way, so I'm considering a panel mount.

  2. #2
    mvivion's Avatar
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    In Husky’s, we installed them under the rear throttle cover, with the cords pointed down. Makes a clean install, just run wires through the throttle cover. Also keeps cords out of rear seater’s face when looking out the window. I personally hate the cords dangling from the wing root.

    MTV
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    wireweinie's Avatar
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    Sigtronics !? Ugh. lol

    Yes, do yourself a favor and get a panel mounted intercom. The typical locations, up here, for the jacks, is in the left overhead panel. Reasons: not over the r/h door. Not draped over your forearm or knees. Not hanging over your trim crank or flap lever. If you go to the left overhead, make sure to place the pilots jacks far enough aft to route the cable over your shoulder and not over your ear.

    Other intercom installation points;
    - install emergency jacks between the intercom and radio. Even if you never use them, they are well worth the effort when it comes time to troubleshoot issues.
    - install isolation washers on all jacks, including the music jack. DO NOT let any jack ground to the airframe or you'll get noise issues.
    - with the exception of sigtronics and flightcom, wire the intercom exactly as the manufacturer's diagrams show. Weird things happen when you take shortcuts.
    - wire PTT functions all the way to the pilot and copilot mic jacks.This allows you to use a plug in PTT switch if you should ever need to.
    - easiest way to connect the pilots PTT switch is to wire it to the pilots mic jack.

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    sjohnson's Avatar
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    I agree with MTV. My jacks are on the rear throttle cover beside the rear seat cushion, pointed down, out of the way. My PTT is on the throttle cover, pointed down, roughly even with the stick. The rear PTT is rarely used. Seems to work well, for 11 years.

    Don't put the PTT on the rear stick. It adds opportunity for maintenance problems, and makes removing the stick a little more difficult.
    There are three simple rules for making consistently smooth landings. Unfortunately no one knows what they are.
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  5. #5

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    Yes, as wireweinie said. I have mine there and it works great for routing headset wires. You can put yours there too!

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    Thank you for that info! That is very helpful. Right now I have been getting by with a handheld radio that is held in place with a Ram Mount and then just jerry rigging a spot for the portable sigtronics intercom, but it is awkward and could definitely get in the way if you were dealing with an emergency. The sigtronics is ok in a side-by-side, but in a narrow tandem cockpit it just doesn't work.

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    hotrod180's Avatar
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    Why all the hating on Sig intercoms?
    I have one in my C180 & it works well.
    Cessna Skywagon-- accept no substitute!

  8. #8
    wireweinie's Avatar
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    They have the noisiest intercoms on the market. But they were great in 1979.

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    Out of curiosity, is there a compact, lightweight dash mounted intercom people recommend?

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    wireweinie's Avatar
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    PS Engineering, PM501. It's now renamed PM500EX.

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  11. #11
    daedgerton's Avatar
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    My plugs are up in the wing root panel on my 18 and on my 12... I have a "brain box" that holds the ANR module up out off the way. I use the intercom that is built in the TRIG radio... My PPT switches are just in front of the throttles.

    I'm a helicopter guy.. When I rebuild I'm going to single plug U-174 up in the wing root panels with coiled cords... Will also probably move my PPT's to the stick..
    Last edited by daedgerton; 03-20-2021 at 10:52 AM.

  12. #12
    Steve Pierce's Avatar
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    Here is how I have been installing them. I like flying them when they are installed this way as well. I velcro the Bose or Lightspeed control box to the overhead tubing. Rear seat PTT is by the jacks.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    That is how my Cub is and have been getting some back seat time and it works well. She made her first gravel bar landing last night.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Steve Pierce

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  13. #13

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    I prefer the jacks to be above me. Cord management is easier. My USB outlets are on a dedicated breaker that’s almost always off.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

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  14. #14

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    I tried placing headset jacks on left side of rear seat and have been very pleased. Wires aren’t dangling from wing root in front of windows, headset control box (ANR) is not pulling on the Jack’s.
    I placed a strip of Velcro on pilot headset controller and it’s secured conveniently on the left side of pilot seat, about armpit height, and not tugging on my headset.
    This plane is set up with a safari seat so may not apply to other rr seat configurations.


    Click image for larger version. 

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    Last edited by Oliver; 03-20-2021 at 10:47 AM.
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  15. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by Oliver View Post
    I tried placing headset jacks on left side of rear seat and have been very pleased. Wires aren’t dangling from wing root in front of windows, headset control box (ANR) is not pulling on the Jack’s.
    I placed a strip of Velcro on pilot headset controller and it’s secured conveniently on the left side of pilot seat, about armpit height, and not tugging on my headset.
    This plane is set up with a safari seat so may not apply to other rr seat configurations.


    Click image for larger version. 

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    Very great idea. my cc 180 is set up this way

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    hotrod180's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Pierce View Post
    .... She made her first gravel bar landing last night.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Good for her!!
    The knuckles on that throttle hand look a little white, but with good reason!
    Cessna Skywagon-- accept no substitute!

  17. #17
    wireweinie's Avatar
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    If you place the jacks low enough for any kind of body contact, it's important to protect the headset plugs from being broken. Having a plug sticking straight out of a panel is just asking for it to be snapped off by leaning against it or arms/legs reaching and stretching. I like using these housings (mfg #FAP08-1, Aircraft Spruce #10-01595) to mount jacks recessed into a panel in these cases. You can angle them to make it easier to plug in the headset and yet the recession protects them from harm.

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