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CB Radio Forum - Discussions regarding Citizens Band Radio (CB)

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Old 08-16-2015, 9:07 PM
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Default How are call signs assigned for CB radio?

Hello,
I'm brand new to CB radio and I was wanting to ask how CB call signs are assigned? I'm under the impression that SSBer's (Single Side Band users) are the primary users of call signs and was wondering how they are assigned?
Thank you
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Old 08-16-2015, 9:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kc0bus View Post
Hello,
I'm brand new to CB radio and I was wanting to ask how CB call signs are assigned? I'm under the impression that SSBer's (Single Side Band users) are the primary users of call signs and was wondering how they are assigned?
Thank you
Citizens Band radio is not licensed in the United States, so there are no callsigns, unless you make up one yourself.
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Old 08-16-2015, 10:46 PM
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Well, not since the 70's at least.


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Old 08-16-2015, 10:51 PM
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But, back until 1979, they were assigned sequentially with 3 letters and 4 numbers. They all started with the letter K. I think later they started using the W series, too.
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Old 08-16-2015, 11:05 PM
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And they were assigned by the FCC. But Citizen's Band radios are no longer licensed so no call signs are assigned any longer.
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Old 08-16-2015, 11:13 PM
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Arrow W series were first

W series was used first back in the late 50's early 69's
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Old 08-16-2015, 11:56 PM
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Default CB call signs

The prefix letters for each country are assigned by an international agreement. The letters assigned to the USA are W A N and K,and the call sign must start with one of those 4 although other letters and a number are used for the complete call sign.
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Old 08-17-2015, 12:01 AM
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Old 08-17-2015, 12:20 AM
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So we would up with W, A, N, and K? British humor at its finest - they got us to agree to be called bloody WANKers! LOL!
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Old 08-17-2015, 10:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jaspence View Post
The prefix letters for each country are assigned by an international agreement. The letters assigned to the USA are W A N and K,and the call sign must start with one of those 4 although other letters and a number are used for the complete call sign.
Though the W, A, N, and K prefixes at one time meant something. These days it just signifies a US call with numbers generally signifying a region. Back in the days of Morse and Marconi it signified operating regions.
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Old 08-17-2015, 11:59 AM
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Quote:
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So we would up with W, A, N, and K? British humor at its finest - they got us to agree to be called bloody WANKers! LOL!
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Old 08-17-2015, 3:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Voyager View Post
But, back until 1979, they were assigned sequentially with 3 letters and 4 numbers. They all started with the letter K. I think later they started using the W series, too.
For what it's worth, I think the FCC went from a 3 letter x 4 number call system until around 1975 / 76, when they were forced to go with a 4 letter x 4 number system. Because of the CB boom at the time, they would have run out of call signs with the old system.
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Old 08-17-2015, 4:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BillMcE View Post
For what it's worth, I think the FCC went from a 3 letter x 4 number call system until around 1975 / 76, when they were forced to go with a 4 letter x 4 number system. Because of the CB boom at the time, they would have run out of call signs with the old system.
You are correct about the 4-letter prefixes. In about 1976, I was issued KAOG8548. In the Late 50's & EARLY 60's, there were callsigns with this format: 11W4035 and 11Q5257 (two callsigns I remember while living in Riverside, CA at the time).
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Old 08-17-2015, 5:31 PM
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I was licensed in mid 1975 with KSO9073 so they went to the 4X4 format after that. Not sure why I even remember that call, its been 40ys.
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Originally Posted by KR4BD View Post
You are correct about the 4-letter prefixes. In about 1976, I was issued KAOG8548. In the Late 50's & EARLY 60's, there were callsigns with this format: 11W4035 and 11Q5257 (two callsigns I remember while living in Riverside, CA at the time).
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Old 08-17-2015, 10:37 PM
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My dad was KBKF9922, and used the handle "Firebear" as he was a fire police officer with a volunteer fire company in our township in PA.

On the AM channels, most users have a made up handle. The FCC does encourage users to use a callsign of sorts. Under rule 17, one of the suggestions is to use the K prefix, your initials, and your residence ZIP code. Mine then would be KJHG85345. I'm not aware of any users who actually follow that suggestion.

https://www.fcc.gov/encyclopedia/cit...and-cb-service

SSB users may belong to a local or regional club, and are issued a 'callsign' through that club. That callsign of course carries no legal weight as an FCC issued callsign would.

Years ago, I acquired the callsign SSB-83T through the SSB Network. I believe that that national group no longer exists.

John
Peoria, AZ
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Old 08-18-2015, 5:02 PM
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Thanks for all the information. I was casually reading an emergency communications chapter in a book on CB usage and I think it mentioned the callsign idea of using the initials of your name and zip code, etc...
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Old 08-26-2015, 5:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kc0bus View Post
Thanks for all the information. I was casually reading an emergency communications chapter in a book on CB usage and I think it mentioned the callsign idea of using the initials of your name and zip code, etc...
I read somewhere that the FCC still recommends following this suggestion/guideline to this very day. Apparently some follow it. I guess most don't... (shrugs)...
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Old 02-03-2016, 3:40 AM
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My first CB License call I got in the Summer of 1978 was KBKD-5981
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Old 02-03-2016, 6:22 AM
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In Canada we started with XM then a numeric combination. In reality most AMers used handles and when the licensing was stopped the SSBers switched to unit numbers or club numbers. Here Trans Canada radio was a popular club with weekly check ins and assigned numbers. It was a breath of fresh air compared to the "dime" (ch 10) which was the local call channel on AM and pure chaos....
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Old 02-03-2016, 11:07 AM
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Default I was licensed in late '69 but can not remember

the call sign.
KB7MIB, I also was a SSB member back in the early '90s; SSB-84N.
IIRC, they were based out of Italy. Still have some of my QSL cards.

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