What about CB radios?

Discussion in 'Communications' started by Trevillian, Mar 25, 2018.

  1. Trevillian

    Trevillian Trigger Trash Charter Member Supporting Member

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    ive used them off and on for companies I worked for but don't know much about them.

    If I just want to maintain contact with my "group" or some such. Why wouldn't CB be fine? No license needed, etc.

    I've been looking into ham a lot. I've noticed none of our posts in this area ever mention CB. So I'm just curious
     
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  2. DRFury

    DRFury Active Member

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    Mostly a range issue. CB is good 3-5 miles. With Ham and various bands I am good all over the world.
     
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  3. Mirac

    Mirac Epic Replies ---> Charter Member Supporting Member

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    It would be fun to have a CFF CB group.
    I dabbled in some years back , making directional antennas and what not.
     
  4. Cocked & Locked

    Cocked & Locked Super Moderator Staff Member Benefactor Charter Life Member

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    Good idea. I used to like the CB years ago as most folks did. Last set up I had was a Sears SSB 40 + with VFO in my truck.

    Had another Sears SSB in the house plus a Siltronix 10/11 C. Shakespeare Big Stick and a PDL2 quad on a rotor.

    Some of those things were not legal on 11 meters then and are probably not now.

    Different house now for the last 24 years. Still have some of those boxed up though.
     
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  5. noway2

    noway2 Senior Member Charter Life Member

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    The range issue is a function of frequency, and power. With FM the power is typically distributed into a wider bandwidth so it may not provide an intelligent signal as far out.

    The CB frequency, about 27MHz is actually a good distance band, at least when the atmospheric conditions are right. This is mostly a left over effect of the technology limits back in the 70s when it wasn’t feasibke or economical to make transistor based oscillators and DSP processors didn’t exit. CB is legally limited to fairly low power 16w PEP / 4 Watts AM which will limit your range to several miles unless there is a band opening (10/11 meters can be fickle - I did 10 meters at field day last year and it would move around the country a lot), but a lot of people run illegal amplifiers.

    If you’re wanting a local talk group, there is nothing wrong with CB. Give it a try. It’s not even expensive.
     
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  6. scottr

    scottr Member

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    When are you looking to use them? How far are you talking?

    Ham radios work MUCH better. Less people and more coverage Up to the whole world.
     
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  7. fishgutzy

    fishgutzy Senior Member

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    If only one didn't have to take an exam and get a license for ham.
    Like any hobby, ham can get very expensive very quickly. Base stations, tower antennas, mobile......

    Sent from my SM-G935V using Tapatalk
     
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  8. hp468

    hp468 Member Supporting Member

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    It's as expensive as you want to make it.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  9. noway2

    noway2 Senior Member Charter Life Member

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    The test is easy. My artist wife got a 100% on it.

    You can get radios that, while not the greatest, will get you on the air got $25 or less.
     
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  10. scottr

    scottr Member

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    the question and answers are out for everyone to see and read.
     
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  11. hp468

    hp468 Member Supporting Member

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    Yep.. my g/f got her tech and general, no problem (with no previous electronic/radio background).
     
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  12. noway2

    noway2 Senior Member Charter Life Member

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    They change in July if my memory serves.

    A few glasses of Riesling helped with the ohm’s law and power calculations :p
     
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  13. hp468

    hp468 Member Supporting Member

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    ...and look at it this way.. if you get your FCC ticket and miss the "environment" of CB radio.. you can always roll that knob to 7200 and be right back at home. :rolleyes:
     
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  14. Trevillian

    Trevillian Trigger Trash Charter Member Supporting Member

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    I'm liking all of this. I want (will get)a ham license but as I said originally, CB just seems like an obvious, if old school way to keep in touch regionally:)
     
  15. RetiredUSNChief

    RetiredUSNChief Get over it, snowflake. Charter Life Member

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    Illegal amplifiers?

    You mean, like a Texas Star 667 with a 3 3/4 Watt input that dead keyed at 800 Watts and modulated at 1,000 Watts?

    Don't know what you're talking about.
     
  16. noway2

    noway2 Senior Member Charter Life Member

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    Neither does my friend Jack. Neither does he know about the crystal change to get the upper 40 channels.
     
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  17. MostWanted

    MostWanted I used to be JustInCase

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    Sounds like guns. Or hunting. Wait, I just bought a fishing kayak and a new saltwater rig. Never mind.
     
  18. MostWanted

    MostWanted I used to be JustInCase

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    Now I know what you did on that submarine.
     
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  19. RetiredUSNChief

    RetiredUSNChief Get over it, snowflake. Charter Life Member

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    I've got stories...
     
  20. RetiredUSNChief

    RetiredUSNChief Get over it, snowflake. Charter Life Member

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    "Buy" the way..."CB" really means "Continually Buying".

    If you're going to go with CB's (or ham radios), then I recommend you invest in a decent setup from the start.

    A good radio isn't all that difficult, or expensive. You don't have to go overboard, here. But you absolutely can NOT skimp out on the antenna. A cheap $10 antenna will pretty much be useless once you leave the parking lot.

    There are, I imagine, plenty of good choices. Years ago, I found the Wilson 1000 magnetic mount antenna to be an excellent choice. They're still available, and less than $100.
     
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  21. Friday

    Friday Polite-Knock raid Charter Member Supporting Member

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    I still have 2 like new Cobra handhelds. Take AA batts. They're perfect for me and my neighbors in a shtf.
    The range they afford is the range I'm concerned about monitoring, and me & the neighbors already got the code.
    "Meet me over by cranky bob's fence"
    If you're not from here you'll never know what the hell we're talking about.
     
  22. Combat Diver

    Combat Diver Well-Known Member

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    You can be "Convoy"




    CD
     
  23. RetiredUSNChief

    RetiredUSNChief Get over it, snowflake. Charter Life Member

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    If there's anything I've learned from the time I ran a radio in my car, it's that it really doesn't matter what "code" one speaks...it'll eventually come out in the wash.

    A bunch of redneck wannabes learned this lesson back in the early 90s.
     
  24. Button Pusher

    Button Pusher Well-Known Member Benefactor Supporting Member

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    You mean 1,000 Bird Watts?
     
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  25. JohnFreeman

    JohnFreeman The bane of my existence Benefactor Charter Life Member

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    Splatter o matic
     
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  26. RetiredUSNChief

    RetiredUSNChief Get over it, snowflake. Charter Life Member

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    I mean 1,000 Light-Up-A-4-Foot-Flourescent-Light-From-Across-The-Street Watts.

    I mean 1,000 Holy-Cr*p-Don't-Touch-The-Antenna Watts.

    I mean 1,000 Listen-To-The-Engine-Bog-Down-When-I-Key-The-Mike Watts.
     
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2020
  27. noway2

    noway2 Senior Member Charter Life Member

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    This applies to all radio communications and is something to be aware of if you’re concerned about it, especially in a SHTF scenario.

    It is very easy to directionally locate a transmission. You just need a directional antenna which can be made from a piece of pvc pipe and a tape measure. A lot of ham radio clubs practice this skill in a game called fox hunting. The technique was also employed to confirm the location and identity of a local (Truad area) ham who is no longer permitted to use the Greensboro repeater as a result of intentionally causing interference.
     
    Last edited: Apr 18, 2018
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  28. RetiredUSNChief

    RetiredUSNChief Get over it, snowflake. Charter Life Member

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    If you have a mobile radio with a signal meter and a variable sensitivity adjustment for reception, you can also track down signals by following the signal strength as you're driving. When you get close enough to peg the meter during reception, dial down on the sensitivity to back the meter to mid-range and continue driving. Takes a little longer, but if you're already driving a lot it's pretty easy.

    This is the tactic I used years ago during pizza delivery to track the locations of the redneck wannabes that thought they were hot sh*t harassing me on the radio. I had a book full of addresses, vehicle and plate descriptions, names, etc in short order.
     
  29. Trevillian

    Trevillian Trigger Trash Charter Member Supporting Member

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    So what kind of rig do our members run now-a-days??
     
  30. noway2

    noway2 Senior Member Charter Life Member

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    In my main commute vehicle, I have an Icom ID-880H. In my truck, I have a Kenwood TM-281A.
     
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  31. SDIVER2006

    SDIVER2006 SDIVER2006

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  32. JohnFreeman

    JohnFreeman The bane of my existence Benefactor Charter Life Member

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    Don't even think about using it on ham frequencies without a license.
     
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  33. RetiredUSNChief

    RetiredUSNChief Get over it, snowflake. Charter Life Member

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    Actually...there's not really much consequence in this UNLESS the user makes himself a real nuisance by, say, interfering with other electronic equipment with your equipment. Other radio users, hospital equipment, television, etc. In other words, if you're just using the ham radio to communicate with other people and not otherwise causing a problem, the likelihood that any legal consequences will come of it are exceedingly small.

    Doesn't mean it's right, nor that there will never be any possible consequences.

    Probably, people are most likely to be caught if turned in by other Ham users themselves.
     
    Last edited: May 29, 2018
  34. LeeMajors

    LeeMajors Newly Empowered Bionic Man Staff Member Charter Member Life Member

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  35. SDIVER2006

    SDIVER2006 SDIVER2006

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    Thank you.
     
  36. noway2

    noway2 Senior Member Charter Life Member

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    It's more than a ham radio. The specs show transmit capability outside of the ham bands. Here's what it says:
    It looks like it's designed to transmit in some of the licensed fixed/mobile or possibly marine or aeronautical spectrum. One would need to be careful that you use it in the correct bands, per ones license.
     
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  37. Button Pusher

    Button Pusher Well-Known Member Benefactor Supporting Member

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    If you want to get more info on amateur radio aka ham, you can locate a club in your area.
    http://www.arrl.org/find-a-club

    Many of us also own a CB radio too, CB good when you are in remote areas, ch 9 still monitored for emergencies.
     
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  38. JohnFreeman

    JohnFreeman The bane of my existence Benefactor Charter Life Member

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    Yes there is.

    Get a license or play elsewhere.


     
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  39. GoWolfpack

    GoWolfpack Member Benefactor Charter Life Member

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    CFF members: "The Second Amendment is my permit."

    Also CFF members: "Don't dare use these electronics without your permission slip from the government."

    Sent from my XT1565 using Tapatalk
     
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  40. Button Pusher

    Button Pusher Well-Known Member Benefactor Supporting Member

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    The license shows you have basic working knowledge of the radio theory and how to use it, we as amateur operators share
    the radio spectrum with military, aviation, emergency services and governments, domestic and international.
    Very easy to end up causing interference to the above services. The license also serves as your unique identifier
    and is only required to transmit, anyone can receive to learn how it is done.
     
    Last edited: May 29, 2018