What is CB Radio?

Discussions related to CB radio gear and operations can be found within this forum.
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What is CB Radio?

Post by N6KZM » Tue Feb 05, 2019 7:34 am

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 the type of radio, antenna, and propagation. Class A and B are no longer in existence (the frequencies were folded into 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.

There are no age, citizenship, or license requirements to operate a CB radio in the United States, and the service falls under the "License by Rule" part of the FCC rules (basically, if one follows the rules one is considered licensed). Operators may use any of the authorized 40 CB channels; however, channel 9 is used only for emergency communications or for traveler assistance and the higher number channels are almost exclusively SSB modulation. Use of all channels is on a shared basis. However, foreign governments and their representatives are not eligible to use citizens' band radio within the United States


Ray N6KZM

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