Citizens’ band or short-distance CB radio was invented and first licensed in 1947 operating on a 27 megahertz (MHz) or 11-meter radio frequency over 40 channels. Military and other government entities originally used CBs to communicate until the 1960’s when taxis and other businesses began to use them. It’s range of use is around one to five miles.
CBs became mainstream when truckers began to use them to communicate with each other in the 1970s. Speed limits were lowered to 55 mph for safety and gas shortage reasons, often resulting in speed traps operated by law enforcement. Truckers would use CB radios to alert each other to slow down for police. CB communication also aided those in trouble. Channel 9 was designated the emergency station.
Today, truckers have digital gear to maintain communication such as GPS systems and cell phones, so CBs are mostly relegated to hobby status and neighborhood use in an emergency. No licensing is required.
CB Radio Information
- CB History: Who initiated CB radio and how it evolved.
- How Does a CB Radio Antenna Work?: Site describes the technical aspect of capturing radio waves to communicate via CB radio, including how to determine the proper length for the antenna.
- The 18′ Coaxial Myth: Hooking a coaxial cable from the CB to the antenna for tuning purposes. Offers proof for the argument that it is a myth.
- Weather and CBs: Radiowave propagation, weather forecasts and sunspot activity that may affect transmission.
- FAQ: Questions and answers about questions regarding CB vs. ham radio, common codes and slang, skips, Uncle Charlie and antennas.
- National Communications Radio FAQ: More Q&A regarding CBs, a little more in depth answers.
- National Association for Amateur Radio: News, bulletins, education, services, and operating activities regarding use of walkie talkies, CBs, and ham radio.
- CB At-a-Glance: As defined by the FCC.
- Rules for Truckers: CB-FCC usage specifically for those in the trucking industry.
- Radio Glossary: Extensive glossary covering radio, electronic and military communications.
- General Information: Dozens of CB topics from frequencies and codes to what is a CB to operations and theory.
- Trucker Slang and CB Lingo: Alphabetical list of terms and lingo explanations.
- CB Slang Dictionary: Ever wonder what a smokey was? What a handle is? This dictionary spells it out for you.
- The 10 Codes: Numerical abbreviations for questions and answers used over the radio. For instance, “What’s your 10-20?” means “What is your location?”
- Freeband Frequencies: Global call and monitoring 11 meter frequencies.
- Personal Channel: Private channels above and below the legal 40.
- Channels to Avoid: Specific channels regarding many military and civil government usages to steer clear from or get reported to the FCC.
- International Table: By model, frequency, mode and channel with pictures.
- Division Numbers: Country freebanding division designations.
- Clusters: Freebanding site links with searchable data, charts, and guides.
- Personal Radio Services: The FCC telecommunications breakdown of personal radio services including what frequencies are available for CB use.
- CB Models and Modulations: Broken down alphabetically by radio brand in table form by CB model, number, modulation, AM and SSB power.
- How’s My Modulation?: Definition of modulation and how much is too much.
- CB Frequency List and Warnings: Lists American CB radio frequencies, bootleg and illegal frequencies, includes a warning regarding reports to the FCC.
- Performance: How to maximize the performance of your CB communications.
CB Lore, Movies, and Music
- Trucker Movies: Top 10 trucker movies, television trucker shows. Fun nostalgia.
- Trucker Music: Red Sovine is arguably the most famous of the “trucker singers.” Read bios of such personalities as C.W. McCall, Charlie Douglas, and Bill Mack.
- CB Nostalgia: Website dedicated to CB history, audio clips, CB projects, equipment, and the 70s.