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  1. #1
    Bobtail Member
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    Why do truckers use linear amplilfiers with their CB radios?

    Why do 'outlaw' truckers use a linear amplifier with their CB radio? what does said amplifier do for them?


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    Keeper of The Snakes FriedTater's Avatar
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    OutLaw ?

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    Medium Load Member Sabine in Mo's Avatar
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    Yeah, my question too....OUTLAW TRUCKER?

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    TECHNICALLY someone who breaks a law IS an "outlaw" since the word actually means outside the law. But we as a society tend to assign
    degrees of "outlaw-ness" depending on our opinion of the severity of the violation. We also tend to excuse our OWN transgressions when (and because) it suits our own purposes.

    Drivers use amplifiers for a number of reasons.
    1) because there is a perception that *I* need it to get over the noise
    and hash.

    2) because it makes me feel powerful if I can walk over another station.

    3) because it makes me "big and bad"-----even validates the reputation
    of the trucking industry and its drivers as "cowboys", rebels or, yes,
    even outlaws!


    But what DOES the use of splattering amplifiers actually accomplish in the
    REAL world? WHY are they illegal to start with? Let's answer the second question first.
    a. they are illegal because they are actually dangerous to the user
    and the people around them.

    b. they expose the users to harmful radio frequency energy that has
    been shown to heat the body's cells and alter their structure.

    c. they can interrupt one's reproductive cycle (ability).

    d. CB operators have NO training as to how to install, when, how, or
    why to use additional power. For example, licensed amateur radio
    operators must execute and have on file in their station records a
    survey (using specific formulas) as to the effects of RF power on
    themselves. This includes distance to the antenna from the oper-
    ating position, the amount of power being used, and the height of
    the antenna.

    The FIRST question relates the primary reason for NOT using amplifiers:
    interference to other users. How many drivers have heard WAAAAY over-modulated, WAAAAAY over-powered trucks on the CB talking to the next truck ahead? How much power does it TAKE to talk to a truck 30 feet away? HUH? C'mon, ya gotta admit it's kind STOOPID, right? All this extra AND UNNECESSARY power does only ONE thing: mess up someone else who is trying to do his job!!! "BIG" power only increases the amount of noise and hash encountered (and what all drivers complain about)! IF (and I know it's not gonna happen, btw) there were NO amplifiers, all drivers used 4 watts, you'd be astonished at how WELL you could talk with that level of power! The noise would be MUCH less, people could talk for 20-30 miles (with a bit of courtesy and better utilization of the channels). When you've got people trying to work "skip" (also illegal for the same reasons--interference) with over-powered, over-modulated, clipped and snipped, illegal radios, it just compounds the problem.

    CB amplifiers are NOT very well built or filtered. They generate harmonic signals, Lord knows WHERE all, and other radio services (including the amateur service) hear muffled noises, scrapes, and mysterious sounds coming from their radios. If "sniffed" out by tuning up or down the bands, you'll find some CBer with a modified, amplified radio sending out muffled, unintelligible (or un-intelligent) signals from DC to daylight. Harmonics are generated at the primary, secondary, tri-level (and so on) which causes that ugly word again: INTERFERENCE to other services; not just to other CBers. CBers don't KNOW that, and likely don't care since, to many of them, the interruption of communications, is a badge of "merit" because it validates their small, unimportant world and makes them (in their own minds) IM-PORTANT!!!! They don't HAVE to learn anything about their operations. They aren't tested or anything, so they don't KNOW that they are doing. Anybody can operate an appliance, and, unfortunately, is what a CB is. Yet that so-called "radio service" causes more grief than all other radio services COMBINED, and I lay that not on CBers, but squarely at the feet of the FCC that abdicated its responsibilities in the '80's. However, because of the "creeping" theft of radio spectrum BY CB operators, their "extree channels", their splattering amplifiers, the Feds are now compelled to act!!!!!

    POWER is not the answer to effective communications! IN fact, other than creating interference, it is actually less a factor than CB operators think in making their OWN communications better. For example, CBers think that if they "double" their power, it will make a whopping difference in their signals! IT DOES NO SUCH THING!!!! In fact, increasing power from 4 to 8 watts will do absolutely N O T H I N G to the perceived signal strength at the receiving station! Power (the perceived loudness of a given signal) is measured in DECIBELS. IN ORDER FOR A SIGNAL TO BE DETECTED AS LOUDER AT THE OTHER END, A SIGNAL STRENGTH MUST BE INCREASED BY 4 TIMES ITS ORIGINAL POWER IN ORDER TO BE DETECTED BY THE HUMAN EAR. That means that a 4 watt output would have to be increased to 16 watts to affect the 'loudness" at the other end by one additional S unit! The 16 watts then must be increased to 64 watts for 2 S inits! Then you have to go to 256 watts to get a
    increase of 3 S-units. (6 Db= ONE S-unit). Now you've gotta go to over 1,000 watts for 4 S-units!!!! Now look what's happening! The amount of "watts" required to achieve the addition S-units actually produces LESS "return" for the amount of signal produced! You are now running 1,024 watts for a measly 4 S-units! ! But................untrained people think
    they are really doing something when they are causing problems for themselves and OTHER people.

    That's why they use amplifiers: simple ignorance of the facts!!!

    Gadfly

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  6. #5
    Bobtail Member
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    Sorry. My buddy who is a trucker refers to truckers who do illegal things such as forge their logs or use linear amps as 'outlaws'.

    Thanks for the helpful and informative reply. So how do truckers boost the signal range of their CB (as I thought that was really was amps did)? Besides a good antenna? What do truckers have their CB's tuned?

    I'm very curious.

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    Some amateur radio operators have contest for furthest distance with 1 watt of power. Usually on 20, 40 , or 80 meter, occasionally 160 meter. They take great pride in reaching 200-1000 miles on the least amount of power available.

    KB0ZOR

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gadfly View Post
    The FIRST question relates the primary reason for NOT using amplifiers:
    interference to other users. How many drivers have heard WAAAAY over-modulated, WAAAAAY over-powered trucks on the CB talking to the next truck ahead? How much power does it TAKE to talk to a truck 30 feet away? HUH? C'mon, ya gotta admit it's kind STOOPID, right? All this extra AND UNNECESSARY power does only ONE thing: mess up someone else who is trying to do his job!!! "BIG" power only increases the amount of noise and hash encountered (and what all drivers complain about)! IF (and I know it's not gonna happen, btw) there were NO amplifiers, all drivers used 4 watts, you'd be astonished at how WELL you could talk with that level of power! The noise would be MUCH less, people could talk for 20-30 miles (with a bit of courtesy and better utilization of the channels). When you've got people trying to work "skip" (also illegal for the same reasons--interference) with over-powered, over-modulated, clipped and snipped, illegal radios, it just compounds the problem.

    I think there's a lot more these days that causes interference problems on the CB than people running linears. Think about it...."back in the day" we didn't have as many high tech gadgets on the market like we do today. Those kinds of things are what causes most of the issues. Also I think most operators don't use their linears unless they're far away and the opposite party is having trouble hearing them. I think most operators otherwise keep their amps off.


    Quote Originally Posted by drobsan View Post
    Sorry. My buddy who is a trucker refers to truckers who do illegal things such as forge their logs or use linear amps as 'outlaws'.

    Thanks for the helpful and informative reply. So how do truckers boost the signal range of their CB (as I thought that was really was amps did)? Besides a good antenna? What do truckers have their CB's tuned?

    I'm very curious.
    Well for one thing, most truckers don't use what would be considered the "best" antenna avaliable, because of how big/tall the truck is/sits. As most should know, an antenna is what makes or breaks any radio, and most of the ones used on semis really aren't all that great. Simply put, "height is might". Meaning a little Uniden 510 with a 102 whip positioned dead center of the top of the vehicle will get out better than a Connex 3300 with a trucker style fiberglass whip.

    So to make up for that is why I believe a lot of truckers revert to linears. Because you can't really run a 102 whip on a semi. But you can add a lot of watts to compensate for that.

    "Tuning of the radio" is supposed to set it on track. CB's are mass produced to the point of where they don't even put out 4 watts stock anymore and sometimes they might be off frequency just a bit. That's typical of all the radios made today.

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  10. #8
    Road Train Member DsquareD's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by drobsan View Post
    Why do 'outlaw' truckers use a linear amplifier with their CB radio? what does said amplifier do for them?
    Because non-linear amplifiers don't work very well with AM and SSB signals.

  11. #9
    Bobtail Member beerfart's Avatar
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    Perhaps its compensation for lack of other personal sizes, or abilities? *Just a thought*

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    Keeper of The Snakes FriedTater's Avatar
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    I'll PROMISE YOU THAT ISNT THE ISSUE HERE !!
    I run amp's because I can afford to,just like any other.
    You pay to play and thats all there really is to it.

    Cant afford it,then ya have to sit out
    Dont feel then need ? Dont bash on those with different intersts then you.

    "OUTLAW TRUCKER"(said it)

    Quote Originally Posted by beerfart View Post
    Perhaps its compensation for lack of other personal sizes, or abilities? *Just a thought*

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