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Old 08-08-2007, 07:38 AM
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Groucho Groucho is offline
Rising Sun Ham Guru
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Arvada, Colorado
Posts: 1,679
Default Figure out what is right for you...

Originally Posted by waggoner5 View Post
You answered my question in your description. To go to a CB channel you must know the exact frequency and tune to it...Right?
To listen to a CB frequency on anything other than a FCC "type-accepted" CB radio yes, you would need to know the frequency. I did this yesterday on my HF radio at home while writing my first response. I tuned in the CB band and was listenting to some foul mouthed truckers on channel 18 probably using illegal amplifiers talking nonsense. I would not be able to key my mike, because the radio is designed to prevent transmitting on that frequency.

Originally Posted by waggoner5 View Post
My only issue is that 99% of the people I run with have CBs and I want to be able to communicate with them also without having to have 2 radios. .
Easy. Convince all of your buddies to get a ham license and radio OR don't worry about getting the ham radio and stick with CB.

Originally Posted by waggoner5 View Post
So...theoretically you could use use a ham to talk to CBs, but it would be illegal because of the power output? .
If you took all the technical aspects of modifying the radios for granted, yes, you could use a Ham radio with a transmitter designed to operate in those frequencies to talk to CB.

Originally Posted by waggoner5 View Post
You also say that it would take one of the 2 radios you mentioned to be able to communicate on both cb and ham levels and even then those radios would have to be highly modified to work. Right.
Just trying to understand what I am up against better.
Thanks for the tech help on this.
Those two radios represent the high and low price range of mobile/portable ham radios designed to work(not necessarily transmit) on frequencies that include both 2 meter and CB. For some folks the modifications are realatively straight forward, I myself would not attempt them for two reasons. One, I was not the factory who built the radio and would not come near to making the modifications as well as the factory who designed and built the radio in the first place. Two, any modification of this sort voids the warranty, so if something does go wrong(given the sensitivity of some of the circuits in those radios this is highly likely for anyone not skilled in doing so correctly), you have on your hands a $700-$1200 paperweight.


Seriously, though, anyone interested in these questions needs to determine the reason for doing the ham radio hobby. Consider all the pros and cons, and then figure out if it is right for you. Maybe you want the Ham radio for the extreme difference in clarity over CB. Maybe you're interested in the hobby. Maybe it would be too much of a pain to have 2 radios. If all of the folks you wheel with are die-hard CB folks, maybe you want to keep things CB.

My old adage with regards to CB is "Don't polish a turd." You can spend $200-$500 on CB stuff and still not achieve the quality, clarity and range of VHF for trail talking. You can spend $150 on all you need for a VHF setup and talk to people 30 miles away like you were face to face. If you want to stay CB, make whatever equipment you buy work, don't just slap it together and expect great things.

My 0.50, whew!
--Choose Wisely--
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