Citizens Band Radio | Walcott Radio

Citizens band radio (CB Radio)

Citizens band radio, used in many countries, is a land mobile radio system, a system allowing short-distance person-to-person bidirectional voice communication between individuals, using two way radios operating on 40 channels near 27 MHz in the high frequency band.

Citizens band is distinct from other personal radio service allocations such as FRS, GMRS, MURS, UHF CB and the Amateur Radio Service ("ham" radio). In many countries, CB operation does not require a license, and (unlike amateur radio) it may be used for business or personal communications. Like many other land mobile radio services, multiple radios in a local area share a single frequency channel, but only one can transmit at a time. The radio is normally in receive mode to receive transmissions of other radios on the channel; when users want to talk they press a "push to talk" button on their radio, which turns on their transmitter. Users on a channel must take turns talking. Transmitter power is limited to 4 watts in the US and the EU. CB radios have a range of about 3 miles (4.8 km) to 20 miles (32 km) depending on terrain, for line of sight communication; however, various radio propagation conditions may intermittently allow communication over much greater distances. Wikipedia

Citizens Band radio is, in many countries, a system of short-distance radio communications between individuals on a selection of 40 channels within the 27 MHz band. Citizens band is distinct from the FRS, GMRS, MURS, and Amateur Radio Service systems. In many countries, CB operation does not require a license, and it may be used for business or personal communications. Like many other two-way radio services, citizens band channels are shared by many users. Only one station may transmit at a time; other stations must listen and wait for the shared channel to be available. It is customary for stations waiting to use a shared channel to broadcast the single word "Break" during a lull in the conversation. This informs people using the channel that others are waiting. A number of countries have created similar radio services, with varying technical standards and requirements for licensing. While they may be known by other names, such as the General Radio Service in Canada, they often use similar frequencies, have similar uses, and similar technical standards. Although licenses may be required, eligibility is generally simple.

Cobra 138XLR Single Sideband CB Radio

History of the CB Radio

A U.S. Coast Guardsman carries a radio on beach patrol during World War II

A U.S. Coast Guardsman carries a radio on beach patrol during World War II / Image from the U.S. Coast Guard

Interest in amateur radio arose around the turn of the 20th century, shortly after Italian inventor Guglielmo Marconi successfully sent the first transatlantic wireless signal in 1901. The interference of amateur broadcasts with commercial and military transmissions led to the institution of government control in 1911. After World War I, amateurs became active in radio experimentation, contributing to developments in long-distance broadcasting and becoming the first radio operators successfully to exploit the upper medium-frequency and lower high-frequency radio bands. Over the years, amateur radio operators have also provided emergency communications during forest fires, floods, hurricanes, and other disasters. They serve as an important link between stricken communities and the outside world until normal communications are reestablished. (resource)

The CB radio–or Citizens band radio–was created by inventor and wireless communication pioneer Al Gross in 1945. Besides the CB radio, Gross also invented walkie talkies and the telephone pager. Gross was a brilliant inventor ahead of his time. Among his many inventions was a two-way wristwatch transmitter which is said to have inspired cartoonist Chester Gould and his crime fighter character, Dick Tracy, began sporting the high-tech watch in 1948.

By age 12, Gross had learned radio code and became a ham operator. By 16, he earned his amateur radio license. In 1938 at the age of 20, Gross had invented and patented his first version of a handheld two-way radio called a walkie talkie. On the brink of World War II, his brilliance with wireless and mobile communication caught the attention of the U.S. government. Gross was recruited to design two-way communication systems for ground troops to communicate with bomber pilots behind enemy lines. After the war, Gross turned to making two-way radios for personal use.

From Military to Civilian Use

After the war in the late 1940’s, Gross formed the Citizens Radio Corporation and received the first approval from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to use his new Citizen’s Band radio equipment for personal use.

In the 1960’s, Midland Radio Corporation became the first CB radio manufacturer in the United States. Through advancements in electronics, these radios reduced in size and cost making them attainable for the general public. CB radios quickly became popular among farmers, truck drivers, and radio hobbyists. CB radio clubs sprang up across the country, and the CB radio craze began.

By the 1970’s, the country was at the beginning of what would become Sammy Hagar’s heartache with 55 mph speed limits. A nationwide speed limit of 55 mph was implemented due to the oil crisis and shortages. Drivers turned to their CB radios to alert each other of police speed traps and gas stations with gas.

The CB radio phenomenon didn’t end there — it was only getting started. Throughout the 1970’s, truckers used CB’s to organize massive conveys and stage civil protests of gas prices. By 1977, 40 more channels were opened up to the public to accommodate the excitement and demand. This lead to the CB radio playing a prominent role in pop culture including the Burt Reynolds’ classic Smokey and The Bandit and Cledus Maggard & the Citizen’s Band 1976 hit White Knight.

(resource)

CB Radio Range

CB radios have a range of about 3 miles (4.8 km) to 20 miles (32 km) depending on terrain, for line of sight communication; however, various radio propagation conditions may intermittently allow communication over much greater distances.

CB Frequency

It is authorized 40 channels between 26.965 MHz and 27.405 MHz. Similar service includes the General Mobile Radio Service (GMRS). The CB Service provides a service for short-distance communications by individuals and businesses. (resource)

CB Radio Channels (FCC)

CB Radio Channel to Frequency Guide

(resource)

Using CB Radio

Remember:

  1. Be considerate to other users.
  2. Respect operating conventions – you should leave Channel 9 clear for emergencies, Channel 14 for calling and Channel 19 for mobile use. Also respect any local conventions regarding the use of a channel for a specific purpose.
  3. Always give priority to emergency calls on any channel. The next emergency call may concern you, your family or friends.
  4. If you hear a call for help and if no-one else is providing assistance, give any help you can.
  5. CB is not a substitute for the 999 () service or marine distress and calling channels. There is no official organisation monitoring CB, and there may not always be a “local volunteer” monitor listening.
  6. Before you transmit, listen with the "Squelch" control turned fully down (i.e. background noise at a maximum). Don't barge in on existing conversations.
  7. Where possible, keep conversations short. Don't hog channels. Everyone has an equal right to use them.
  8. Be patient towards newcomers; everyone has to learn. Help them with interference and other problems if you can.
  9. Be sympathetic to neighbours suffering interference to their radio or television reception.
  10. CB can be an aid to business as well as an entertaining and useful hobby. Help others to enjoy it as much as you do.

Safety

Remember

  1. Never erect or remove an antenna near to or under electricity transmission lines. CB users have been killed doing so. If in doubt ask your local electricity supplier for advice.
  2. Take care at railway level crossings when driving a vehicle fitted with a CB antenna. High antennas can touch low wires causing electrocution so do not fit long antennas to vehicles or use any type of long antenna for mobile operation.
  3. Use common sense when transmitting. Do not let your use of CB interfere with your ability to drive. 10 Citizens’ Band Radio equipment– information and operation
  4. Do not transmit with the antenna less than 15cm (6 inches) from your face. Remember that concentrated radio energy can be dangerous. v) Use Channel 9 only for emergencies and assistance.

(resource)

Around the World

CB radio in the United States

In the United States, the CB Band Radio Service, or Citizens' Band ("CB"), known as the Class D Citizens' Radio Service before 1976, is one of several personal radio services defined by the FCC's Part 95 rules. It is intended to be a two-way voice communication service for use in personal and business activities of the general public, and has a reliable communications range of several miles, though the range is highly dependent on type of radio, antenna and propagation. Class A and B are no longer in existence (the frequencies were folded in to the GMRS radio service). The former Class C, now known as the Radio Control Radio Service (RCRS) is a Radio Control ("R/C") model service and is covered further down in this article.

CB radio is most frequently used by long-haul truck drivers for everything from relaying information regarding road conditions, the location of speed traps and other travel information, to basic socializing and friendly chatter. CB radio is also frequently used on larger farms for communication between machinery operators.

CB radio in the United Kingdom

Citizens band radio (often shortened to CB radio) is a system of short-distance radio communications between individuals on a selection of 40 channels within the 27-MHz (11 m) band. In the United Kingdom, CB radio was first legally introduced in 1981, but had been used illegally for some years prior to that.

In December 2006, CB radio was deregulated by Ofcom and it is now licence-free. Although the use of CB radios in the UK has declined from its peak, it is still popular, especially with the farming community, Land Rover owners and Mini-Cab services. It is also fitted as standard to 'Street Glide' and 'Electra Glide' models of Harley Davidson touring motorcycles sold in the UK.

Citizens band radio in India

Citizens band radio (also known as CB radio) is a system of short-distance radio communications between individuals on a selection of channels within the 27-MHz (11 m) band. In India, this frequency band extends from 26.957 MHz to 27.283 MHz. There are several different channel plans in use. Citizens band is distinct from the Family Radio Service, GMRS, Multi-Use Radio Service and amateur radio (Ham). In many countries CB operation does not require a license, and (unlike amateur radio) it may be used for business or personal communications. Like many other two-way radio services, any citizens band channel is shared by many users. Only one station may transmit in a channel at a time; other stations must listen and wait for the shared channel to be available. Also, the system works in half-duplex mode, which means we may transmit and receive information, but not both at the same time.

Personal radio service

A personal radio service is any system that allows individual to operate radio transmitters and receivers for personal purposes with minimal or no special license or individual authorization. Personal radio services exist around the world and typically use light-weight walkie talkie portable radios. The power output, antenna size, and technical characteristics of the equipment are set by regulations in each country. Many regions (for example, the European Union) have standardized personal radio service rules to allow travelers from one country to use their equipment in another country. Examples of standardized services include PMR446 and FM Citizens Band Radio (CB) in the EU and several other countries/regions. 26–27 MHz CB radio is the oldest personal radio service and is used in nearly every country worldwide, with many countries and regions copying the United States 40-channel frequency plan. In many countries, CB radio is less popular due to the availability of other personal radio services that offer shorter antennas, better protection from noise and interference.

(resource)

Best CB Radios

These Are the Top 5 Best CB Radios for Truckers

  1. Uniden PRO520XL Pro Series 40-Channel CB Radio. Features: Front Mount Microphone. ...
  2. Cobra C75WXST Handheld CB Radio. Features: ...
  3. Uniden BEARCAT 980SSB 40- Channel SSB CB Radio. Features: ...
  4. Cobra 29LX Professional CB Radio. Features: ...
  5. Galaxy-DX-959 40 Channel. Features:

(resource)

In the News

https://www.exchange99.com/2020/09/25/global-cb-radio-market-report-production-capacity-and-consumption-analysis-by-regions-and-country-wise/

https://www.whichcar.com.au/gear/electronics-gadgets/gme-xrs-330-cob-review

CB FAQ

What mean CB?

CB, an abbreviation for 'Citizens' Band', is a range of radio frequencies which the general public is allowed to use to send messages to each other.

What is a good CB?

The 8 Best CB Radios of 2020

  • Best Overall: Cobra 29 LX 40-Channel CB Radio at Amazon. ...
  • Runner-Up, Best Overall: Uniden BEARCAT 980SSB CB Radio at Amazon. ...
  • Best Budget: Uniden PRO510XL CB Radio at Amazon. ...
  • Best Features: Cobra 18WXSTII Mobile CB Radio at Walmart. ...
  • Best Value: ...
  • Best Handheld: ...
  • Best Splurge: ...
  • Best for Truckers:

Does anyone still use CB?

Yes, CB radio is still used, but not very much. Mobile phones with a hands-free kit are far more useful and have a much bigger range (effectively around the world). ... The use of the CB radio is now likely to be only for hobby purposes, or for short-range communication with friends.

What is the use of CB?

CB Radios are utilized during disasters and emergencies and can save lives. Police, emergency responders, volunteer responders, and many more use CBs to communicate when infrastructure is damaged or nonexistent. See our other article regarding use of CB communication during disasters and other similar events.

Can a CB radio be traced?

Not hard to do, since all you need is a CB. And yes, the FCC can track where a CB is transmitting from, Heck, they can even tell what kind it is etc. BUT, thats if you're a real bad guy threatening The Prez, for instance, not some backyard dunce with a base station harrasing us poor truckers.

What are the most popular CB radio channels?

CB Radio Channels

Channels 17 and 19 are the two channels most commonly used by truckers; in some areas, those on north- and southbound roads use channel 19, while those on east- and westbound roads communicate on channel 17. (resource)

How many miles can a CB radio transmit?

CB radios have a range of about 3 miles (4.8 km) to 20 miles (32 km) depending on terrain, for line of sight communication; however, various radio propagation conditions may intermittently allow communication over much greater distances.

Hours & Location
  • 2940 N Plainview Rd Walcott, Iowa 52773 USA MAP
  • Store Hours: M - F 9 - 6 | Sat 9 - 5 | Sun Closed
Copyright 2020 Walcott Radio
Visit our Store! 2940 N Plainview Rd Walcott, Iowa 52773 USA