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Thread: Replace Antenna - advice please

  1. #1
    jfmika Guest

    Default Replace Antenna - advice please

    Folks,

    My power antenna got broken off and I want to replace it with a manual antenna - I'm sick of the full height antenna getting caught on trees etc and breaking, so I'm just going to have one 1/2 up all the time.

    Anyway, I replaced a manual antenna once on my old VS wagon - no trouble. However, yesterday I tried it on the VYII and I got stymied by the wheel arch lining (I assume that the best way is through the wheel arch... please tell me that there isn't some magic door somewhere!!)

    The "inner" row of screws on the lining turned out not to respond to a screwdriver. Asking around at work today, someone suggested that they might actually be press clips. Is that true? If so, will they come out easily? Is there a trick to it?

    One final thing... after I take out my old power antenna, do I need to somehow disable the power up/down mechanism (ie. pull out a fuse or something), or can I just terminate the various power wires etc in a terminal block or something similar?

    thanks for any and all advice,

    Joachim Mika.

  2. #2
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    VY2 Commodore

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    Hi Mate,

    I too have a problem with the antenna in mine. The Holden dealer refuses to change it under warranty. The reason is that you have to take the whole front fender off to do the job properly. Bugger of a job.

    I didn't belive this until I got a VY shop manual and low and behold it referes to removing the front fender.

    I hope you've got small hands.....

  3. #3
    jfmika Guest

    Default Surely you jest!

    Front fender off!! Please, Snap, tell me you're joking!

    On my VS I just had to take off the wheel and go in through the wheel arch, and I figured it would be the same here. It certainly looks doable.

    I'm going to give it a damn good try next weekend (when I've got a few hours of daylight). The more I think about it, the more I'm convinced that those other things are actually press-in clips. Does the shop manual talk about taking out the wheel arch lining?

    Joachim.

  4. #4
    Boonz's Avatar
    Boonz is offline Donating Member
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    green 355 VG ute

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    inner guards have to be bent back without bending the guards, 2 screws on the sideskirts out, 10mm bolts antenna motor assembly, 1 screw holding earth strap in place, underneath glovebox is the aerial connector which ahs to be pushed as far outside as possible, then the assembly should be out far enough to pull the mast and rope out and replace with new one..... this is a 2 person job as one person need to operate the radio to retract the rope into the housing

  5. #5
    jfmika Guest

    Default

    OK.. I think I got it. When you say "inner guards have to be bent back without bending the guards", I'm assuming that you're talking about what I call the "wheel arch lining", right? It sounds like you're saying that I don't actually remove it, just undo the screws attaching it to the fender and push it out of the way (because it's fairly flexible) while I work.

    Joachim.

  6. #6
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    VY Berlina - had VS Exec, VP Berlina LE, Turbo VL

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    I did mine a few weeks ago - VYI Berlina. Didn't have to bend anything or remove the guards. Its still a bit of a shit of a job - especially as I had an issue and had to learn on the job. I bought an "Aeropro" replacement mast assembly from Autopro for about $28.

    On the power to manual thing - my power antenna remembers the last position it was used in. I live on a dirt track with plenty of trees so I lower the antenna so that less than 30CM in protruding and it remembers this setting. At least it retracts when parked - gotta be better than having Sid Snot break your antenna in a car park somewhere.

    As I've said elsewhere.... I wish Holden would put them in the rear drivers side, use a diversity antenna in the rear screen or something like the ones that BMW 3 series use.

    Here's how to replace it..............

    Jack up car, Remove wheel - gives you a bit more room to work. If you can elevate the car to standing up height - all the better!

    You need to remove the wheel arch lining - those little plastic retaining screws are a bitch. They are supposed to screw out but the outer always seems to turn as well - Ended up busting a few - but no big loss - I assuming Holden has millions of them. I had to remove the mudflap and loosen the side skirt as well.

    Remove inside passenger kick cover and pop the ECU off its mounting. This will give you access to the inline antenna socket. Find this and disconnect.

    Inside the guard there is a single bolt which retains the power antenna and a copper earthing strap with a screw on it. Remove these, pop off the wiring harness and the whole motor assembly should come out easily.

    Unscrew the silver retaining nut on top of the motor where the mast goes in and the mast / nylon drive should pop out of the top of the drive. My car is second hander which spent some time near the ocean so I had a few issues here. On the bottom of the replacement mast there is a steel sleeve which fits into the top of the motor. Mine was corroded in - on the old one (Car is only 3 years old!) but I manager to push it (read bust it) away from the motor and the whole thing was easy after that. I had to remove the mast extension tube from the motor to do this but under normal circumstances you shouldn't have to disassemble this far.

    You need a hand here. Get a mate (my wife is my best mate) to get in the car and turn on the accessories. Connect the harness and rig up an earth. Feed in the nylon drive - the side with the cogs goes on the inside. Get your mate to raise and lower the antenna from the inside to get the nylon drive engaged in the motor. There is probably some sense is putting a smidge of grease on the nylon - dunno what the best sort is - wheel bearing should be OK. Once this is accomplished - it will take a few gos, replace the retaining nut, feed the antenna lead back behind the ECU, connect etc and replace all the gear. Don't forget to re-attach the earthing strap! You might want to check the radio is OK before you button everything up!

    I know this sounds odd but it might be possible to replace the mast without removing anything. Next time I'm gunna try removing the black plastic spacer from where the mast leaves the guard. A long box spanner should be able to pop the nut from the top of the motor and if you don't have corrosion issues the whole shebang should come straight out.

    Pretty easy - like all things once you figure it out - simple.

    Here's an example of not knowing - I spent 30 minutes trying to figure out how to get the glove box out. On my VS there was a plastic retaining bolt in the bottom of the box. On VY you just need to give it a good yank! DOH!

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snap
    Hi Mate,

    I didn't belive this until I got a VY shop manual and low and behold it referes to removing the front fender.
    manuals tell you many things, e.g. you have to remove the dash and it takes 6 or so hours to replace a heater core in a VN-VP commodore, actual fact is you can do it within an hour without removing dash. thats just one example. there are many short cuts that the manuals dont tell you.

  8. #8
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    VY2 Commodore

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheIceman
    manuals tell you many things, e.g. you have to remove the dash and it takes 6 or so hours to replace a heater core in a VN-VP commodore, actual fact is you can do it within an hour without removing dash. thats just one example. there are many short cuts that the manuals dont tell you.
    Aint' that the truth. What really nags me is that Holden also claim that this must be done. Hence why they don't want to replace it under warranty. But hey thats another problem entirely.

    Bottfodder thanks for the instructions I'll use them when it's out of warranty and I can get a replacement.

  9. #9
    jfmika Guest

    Default Well... I did it...

    Thanks for all the information, guys - it really helped. Unfortunately, I didn't see the one from BottFodder until after I did it, but it sort of confirms what I did.

    Anyway, the key bit for me was those stupid little plastic "rivets" (that's what they're called on the parts invoice). Once I realised what they were, I stopped trying to "unscrew" them and just cut, pushed, pulled them out any old way and bought some new ones. Pulling out the lining and getting access was then easy.

    However, I did get stymied by the antenna cable. People mentioned pulling out the glovebox, and taking out the "passenger kick cover" but I couldn't figure out how to do that stuff, and since I've only had the car a few weeks, I didn't feel like getting violent. So I cut off the old cable just near the antenna and attached a socket. That was a prick of a job in the confined space, esp. since the central conductor is rediculously thin, but I finally managed it. I hope vibration doesn't work it loose.

    (I'm really going to have to lose my aversion to working on the bodywork and interior. I'm no mechanic or car fanatic, but I'm happy to tinker with most stuff. However, I get all worried when it comes to ripping apart the interior bits - it's never obvious to me how it all comes apart properly)

    Finally, in putting in the manual antenna, there's no obvious way to support it. Luckily the power antenna bracket is at just about the right height to sit underneath and hold it up from the bottom, so I used a bit (well... maybe more than a bit) of duct tape to hold the antenna in place. By that stage I was getting real tired from leaning in under the wheel arch (I was working at ground level) and I just put everything back together and hope that it stays put!

    Anyway.. thanks for all the advice, folks. I'll definitely come back here when I tackle my next job!

    Joachim

  10. #10
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    VY Berlina - had VS Exec, VP Berlina LE, Turbo VL

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    Does any know the "right" way to remove the passenger kick panel?

    The issue I had was getting the extension that runs down towards the door sill out. I think I was a bit "brutal" about it but I comes out eventually. There is a retaining bolt down there but its under the continuation of the door sill.

    Still - its all fixed now!

    This forum is fantastic - every time I have an issue there is someone else out there that has had the same one! One I love is the recent posts about rear speaker grilles. A couple of weeks ago I need a gas bottle refil. I was buggered if I was gunna put it on the back seat so I stuck it in the rear foot well. Puttilng them in the boot is just asking for it. Anyway swung around a hard right corner - gas bottle breaks loose and smashes the left had rear speaker grill.....

    Thats life!

    Cheers

    BottFodder

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