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Citizens Band CB Radio: Communication on the go, no contract required!

Posted by Bill Dick on

Otherwise known as CB radio, Citizens Band radio is in many countries; a system of short distance radio communications between individuals usually on a selection of 40 channels within the 27 MHz (11m) band. A CB radio is used for both personal and business communications in many countries, and its possession or operation does not require a license unlike the conventional radio.

The CB radio was first used in the United States as one of the numerous personal radio services regulated by the Federal Communications Commission in 1945. However, the use of these radios became widespread during the 1973 oil crisis in the United States. It was used majorly by truck drivers to notify other drivers of service stations with better fuel supplies and the worthiness of particular highways. They also used it actively to organize protests against the imposed speed limit and other trucking regulations by the government in 1974.

In Canada, the General radio service authorized the use of CB radio in 1962. There are no special requirements to use the CB radios, both for either Canadians or Americans while travelling across the border or not. Initially, Americans were required to obtain a temporary license for use in Canada.

The use of CB radios on vehicles especially an off road jeep or a 4x4 vehicle is very easy and beneficial to both the drivers and trucking companies. To use a CB these radios also require the mounting of an antenna. As 27MHz is a considerably long wave length for mobile communications, the choice of antenna has a considerable impact on the performance of the CB radio. The commonly used CB antenna is a roughly 2.7m tall vertical whip with a ball and spring mount to enhance flexibility. Some drivers on the other hand prefer to use a co-phased CB antenna which involves the use of two different vertical antennas one placed by the side mirror on front of the vehicle while the other is placed at the back. While the co-phased antenna system requires at least eight feet distance to work perfectly, some drivers prefer to just mount one antenna merely for the beauty of it.

Shipping is also a concern of the antenna. For this reason Fleetwood Digital recommends the 3’ antenna as it will provide the best balance between cost and performance. One important thing to note while mounting a CB antenna is SWR. SWR stands for Standing Wave Ratio. A “SWR” meter is used to measure how well the transmit power signal emitted from a transceiver (radio) is traveling through the antenna system into the atmosphere. A better SWR will yield a stronger signal at the antenna, and less stress on the CB radio, thus potentially extending the life of the radio. Fleetwood Digital stocks a number of SWR meters allowing you to tune your equipment for peak performance.

Fleetwood Digital, is a perfect place to get the CB radio, CB antenna, and other radio accessories, like s SWR meter. With our warehouse located in Canada there is no extra cost involved in shipping them in from abroad.



Visiting from outside North America?

Check this article that covers other radio options.

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