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Not New 2 CB But Need Help Setting Up

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Hi,

I had a CB in the early 90's. My EX stole that hobby before I ever really had a chance to enjoy it.. Well hes gone now and its been a few decades and I plugged in an old Uniden I have and Im shocked how much traffic I hear.

Im psyched!

I have some questions

1) Is there a HAM/CB rig that scans the channels. Im not a HAM but I LOVE scanners and listening in so Id love to hear everything.
2) I wanna hook up my rig in my familyroom. My computers are here. I fried my computer the last time I used my CB in this room. How do I prevent this?
3) I dont want to bleed into my neighbors houses, is there a way to prevent this without buying them stuff? OR them knowing Im a CB hobbyest?
4) Are these worth it? http://www.amazon.com/Midland-75-82...UTF8&qid=1406735093&sr=8-1&keywords=mobile+CB Will I be able to contact my son at home driving 5 miles away with one?
5) Are there any compact but powerful home antennas and magnetic auto antennas?
6) Are there any CB installers nowadays?

THANKS in advance
 

n9mxq

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1. Yes
2. Don't run a Linear Amplifier
3. See #2
4. Too many variables to list. Power on both ends, terrain and topography, antenna types and heights
5. Compact and decent gain are mutually exclusive.
6. I doubt it.
 

k8krh

Member
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Dec 12, 2009
Messages
372
I would stick to a GALAXY, I have a lot of good luck with them.
Make sure you use good coax rg58 or rg8, buy at r and l electronics on internet. You will also need a power supply for power to the radio, make sure it is at least 15 amps for the radio. Also use a ground to the radio.
I would purchase one at coopers electronics on the internet.
Yes you can talk to the other station at 5 miles or so, with a good antenna.
< I do not have any interest in the above companies>.
The GALAXY radios have a good warranty 2 years most others don't.
Try a SIRIO D27 a dipole can be mounted horizontal or vertical h&y sell them, good reviews on them.
DOCTOR/795
 
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KB0VWG

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Lyford, Texas
Keep you output power at the legal limit and then you shouldn't bother your neighbors, Make sure your equipment is grounded,Make sure its grounded no matter if you decide to run with high power or not. Higher the antenna you get up in the air the further you will be able to get out. Look for a A99 or solarcon antenna.
kb0vwg
wqoi992
73's
 

mmckenna

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Also, use the highest quality coax you can. Cheap coaxial cable has gaps in the outer shield that can let some of the RF escape. That RF can get it to other electronic devices (yours or your neighbors) and cause interference. Good coaxial cable rarely comes from Radio Shack.
I wouldn't run RG-58 cable unless your cable run was pretty short, as in less than 20 feet. RG-8 isn't much better. If you have a longer cable run, you really want to use a higher grade coax to get the most amount of signal to/from your antenna.

Make sure your antenna is properly tuned, too. If it is not tuned properly, some of the RF signal can get reflected back down the cable. That can cause interference issue, reduce the amount of signal that "leaves" your antenna, reduces range, etc&#8230;.

While it's easy to focus on your radio, you really want to have a good antenna system. The better your antenna system is (and that includes the coax connecting it to your radio), the better your system will work.
 

mmckenna

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I have some questions

1) Is there a HAM/CB rig that scans the channels. Im not a HAM but I LOVE scanners and listening in so Id love to hear everything.
No, not legally. Best choice here would be to get a good CB and antenna system. Then, get a separate receiver and antenna system. CB's and Ham (amateur) radio are two different things and cannot -legally- be in the same radio.

2) I wanna hook up my rig in my familyroom. My computers are here. I fried my computer the last time I used my CB in this room. How do I prevent this?
Do a proper installation. Use high quality coaxial cable (see my post above). Keep the computer and CB separate. Don't use an RF amplifier. Keep the antenna and computers F-A-R apart.

3) I dont want to bleed into my neighbors houses, is there a way to prevent this without buying them stuff? OR them knowing Im a CB hobbyest?
Use high quality coax and a legal CB radio. Don't use RF amplifiers. If your neighbors complain about interference, check into a high pass filter for your antenna system. It'll greatly reduce any signals above the CB band that get radiated by your system, and help reduce those unintended signals from getting into other electronics. Using proper equipment, you shouldn't need this, though.
It's going to be difficult to hide an efficient and well performing CB antenna from your neighbors.

4) Are these worth it? Amazon.com : Midland 75-822 40 Channel CB-Way Radio : Two Way Radios : Electronics Will I be able to contact my son at home driving 5 miles away with one?
Should be, but based on the price and the design, they are kind of a pain. A traditional mobile mount or base CB might be easier to use.

As for contacting your son 5 miles away, there are a whole lot of variables involved and no one can guarantee that. It would not only depend on your radio and antenna system, but your sons radio and his antenna system. The terrain between the two radios can affect coverage. RF noise level can reduce range, as can atmospheric conditions. The right answer to this question is "maybe, maybe not". Only way to know for sure is to try.


5) Are there any compact but powerful home antennas and magnetic auto antennas?
"Compact", "powerful" and "CB antenna" are three things you won't get in one package. Antenna size is dependent on the frequencies used. CB frequencies require a rather large antenna to operate efficiently. Trying to shorten a CB antenna to make it low profile results in it's efficiency going down the toilet. Antenna design and efficiency is governed by the laws of physics, and there are no shortcuts to this. If you want a good performing CB radio system, your antenna is going to be big. Same with vehicle antennas. "Low profile" and CB are mutually exclusive. Low profile CB antennas will not work well, no exceptions to the physics involved here. There is no magic solution to this, no matter what anyone says. Laws of physics can't be cheated or bent.

Magnetic mount CB antennas are certainly available. Lots of them available online. Just make sure it gets mounted up high and in the clear on the vehicle if you want it to work well. Stay far away from any and all mobile CB antennas advertised as being "low profile" if you want it to work.


6) Are there any CB installers nowadays?
There are a few. Check with the truck stops in your area, they'll likely know.
 
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poikaa

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A better and cheaper way!

CB is alive and well! well yes it is but....

With your questions in mind you may be better off having both you and your son to get your amateur radio license, easy cheap and the first license will allow far more than what you would have with the CB band.
New radios can be had cheap and they also scan. Used radios can be found but a companyu called Baofeng sell a small hand held 2 meter and 70 cm band on transmit plus receives most anywhere from 136-174/400-480. It can transmit here also! Here is a link to a seller you may have heard of....

Amazon.com : Baofeng UV5R 136-174/400-480 MHz Dual-Band DTMF CTCSS DCS FM Ham Two-Way Radio (Black) : Frs Two Way Radios : Car Electronics

For the price of the Midland you can buy two of these! Range on these radios on simplex is about 3 to 12 miles depending on terrain and connecting to a repeater it is possible to talk across your state and even around the World most any time! Even contacting the ISS (International Space Station) is easy!
These transceivers will work on the FRS/GMRS bands on UHF and the MURS band on VHF, antenna works well and is included or you can connect the radio to a base station antenna you can build yourself or buy. The FRS and MURS frequencies are free to use under Part 95 of the FCC rules but the Baofeng has up to four watts output. The amateur 2 meter and 440 mHz band need a license but it is easy to get.
I'm sure your HAM friend will tell you all this.... And you always can use the CB bands.... I operate both CB and amateur radio (HAM). With HAM radio I enjoy talking all over the World and across town. Comparing the potential of HAM to CB is like comparing a cold sandwich to a full Thanksgiving dinner!
Not much interference with amateur radio with the small Baofeng and low chance of damaging your computer. You can build you 'station' slowly, adding and outside antenna later as your hand held has it's own. The antennas used for the bands this radio covers are small, no more than 20 inches for a 2 meter 1/4 wave length.
Any other questions, feel free to contact me or any other HAM radio operator. CB is still an option and is fun but HAM radio is light years ahead!

73 Rod KB8DNS aka mechanic on CB
 
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poikaa

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Yes! It IS easy and there are several places on line where you can take sample test as many times as you want to be sure you can pass. The first license is easy, the test is multiple choice so when you take sample tests you can learn the answers by rote!

Practice Amateur Radio Exams by QRZ.COM

https://www.google.com/#q=qrz+sample+HAM+tests


Poikaa is my moniker and it means boy in the Finnish language.....

73 Rod KB8DNS
 
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LoyalServant

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One thing I have not seen mentioned here.... and some may disagree with me here..

Coax: Thinknet coax for 10 base 5 networks is good stuff, just hard to work with.
Might be able to find some of it still.
I ran some of that for years without issue and it did weather a little but not badly since it's indoor stuff.

Antennas and NIMBYs....
I have always put them up and not connected them.
When I bought my last house I put up an A99, ran the feedline to the house in conduit and left it in a coil on the outside of the house. Low and behold I get inquiries from neighbors.... what is it, whats it for... my kid is going to get radiation, etc.

Then comes the complaints.... my tv doesn't work.. my phone cuts out... my microwave blew up last week.
Got blamed... show coax spooled up outside not connected.
INSTANT silence....

So.. if you think you might have issues.... put it up and let the neighbors get used to it before you use it.
 

brey1234

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Go all the way

If your REAL serious about communicating consider getting your ham ticket.

I found a GREAT program that has a subscription price BUT after 20 years of trying to "absorb" the technical data for the Extra class exam this program had me take the test with a 90 percent score.
I highly recommend it. They even offer your money back if you fail your test after taking their program!
HamTestOnline - Ham Radio Exam Courses and Practice Tests
 

poikaa

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LOL!

I cant even remember things at the grocery store, how is my 47 yr old brain supposed to remember 69 pages of questions?
The test is 35 questions from a 'pool' of 426, you need only to pass 26 to make the grade and win your license!
By taking online tests on a site like QRZ, you can re-take the test over and over till you remember the proper answers. This is a memory way just like learning the alphabet and multiplication tables when you were a small kid in school. When the test re-loads it is different each time with some repeats of questions.
Just for the fun of it I went through the test and found I did not pass the first time! Second time was fine but I am still going through the extra exam!

73 Rod KB8DNS
 

Dawn

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Pinecrest,Fl
LOL!

I cant even remember things at the grocery store, how is my 47 yr old brain supposed to remember 69 pages of questions?
Wouldn't it be just far easier to learn the theory then memorization of a pool of questions? There were no pool questions when I got my tickets. You either understood the theory behind the question or didn't. If you have a grip on the theory, then doing practice pool questions makes things vastly easier. You learn nothing by route memorization. The only thing it proves is that you have a good memory.
 

mmckenna

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If CB is what you are comfortable with, and you think it will fit your needs, then go for it. CB is a great place to start. Many, many people get their start in CB. Give it a try and if you really want to get into amateur radio, then you can always do it later.
 
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