• To anyone looking to acquire commercial radio programming software:

    Please do not make requests for copies of radio programming software which is sold (or was sold) by the manufacturer for any monetary value. All requests will be deleted and a forum infraction issued. Making a request such as this is attempting to engage in software piracy and this forum cannot be involved or associated with this activity. The same goes for any private transaction via Private Message. Even if you attempt to engage in this activity in PM's we will still enforce the forum rules. Your PM's are not private and the administration has the right to read them if there's a hint to criminal activity.

    If you are having trouble legally obtaining software please state so. We do not want any hurt feelings when your vague post is mistaken for a free request. It is YOUR responsibility to properly word your request.

    To obtain Motorola software see the Sticky in the Motorola forum.

    The various other vendors often permit their dealers to sell the software online (i.e., Kenwood). Please use Google or some other search engine to find a dealer that sells the software. Typically each series or individual radio requires its own software package. Often the Kenwood software is less than $100 so don't be a cheapskate; just purchase it.

    For M/A Com/Harris/GE, etc: there are two software packages that program all current and past radios. One package is for conventional programming and the other for trunked programming. The trunked package is in upwards of $2,500. The conventional package is more reasonable though is still several hundred dollars. The benefit is you do not need multiple versions for each radio (unlike Motorola).

    This is a large and very visible forum. We cannot jeopardize the ability to provide the RadioReference services by allowing this activity to occur. Please respect this.

Survivalist SSB CB Freeband Channel Frequencies

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Sep 15, 2013
Trusted Advisor
About Freeband

Freeband refers to unlicensed radio transmitting on the frequencies above, below, and in between normal HF, VHF or UHF radio bands. Freebanding is communicating on the freeband frequencies. CB radios, HAM radios, and commercial radios can be modified to get freeband channels. The increasing awareness of the need for alternative communications among survivalists and preppers has led to expanded freeband activity.

Freeband HF frequencies around 27 MHz CB are the most popular and have been widely used by thousands of freeband radio operators worldwide over the past 40+ years. A recent article documents the most common Single SideBand (SSB, USB, LSB) Freeband frequencies for Survivalist Radio Operators and Preppers.


Freeband Radios for SHTF Survivalist Prepper Radio Operators

Freeband-capable CB radios are well-suited to SHTF survival situations. The direct radio-to-radio distance range of freeband CB SSB is much greater than a ham VHF/UHF HT or MURS or FRS or GMRS. This is because 27MHz travels further than line-of-sight, due to ground wave that can extend the range over hills and valleys. A big advantage is that inconspicuous CB SSB radios modified for freeband look exactly like normal CB radios. With a good antenna, these radios can usually cover a wide range around a local town or county area. The radios run on 12 Volt DC, can be powered for many days on a car battery, and then recharged with solar or alternative energy. Military surplus manpack HF SSB radios can be used for freeband. Marine HF SSB radios can be modified for freeband, and some Aeronautical HF radios can work on freeband. Keep in mind that many of these radios are only capable of Upper SideBand, so USB is usually selected by SHTF survivalists for HF freeband frequencies.


Freeband Radio Rules

“License? They don’t need no stinkin’ license!”—an often misquoted saying that applies well to freebanders. Freebanders don’t have a license for these frequencies. CB radio rules, channels, modes, and frequency bands vary quite a lot from country to country. 99.99% of the time, the governments don’t enforce radio rules or regulations on the common freeband frequencies unless someone uses a high power linear amplifier to create radio interference for neighborhood TV sets or other services. Enforcement pretty much gave up on this part of the spectrum a long time ago, and it is mostly considered “sacrificial spectrum” in the “wild west of radio”. However, there are some frequencies in this spectrum that wise freebanders avoid. For example, between 28.000 MHz and 29.700 MHz, the 10 meter ham band, they are very likely to be tracked by ham operators and reported to the authorities. In USA, many CB truck drivers don’t heed freebander frequency caution; they often talk on 28.085 MHz (sometimes known as “high 19″) where they are easily tracked down by hams. Their trucking companies are often fined by FCC, and the drivers get fired. The wiser freeband operators look down upon that kind of carelessness; they just try to blend in with other signals, and most observe informal commsec with common phrases or nicknames for people and places.


Why Freeband?

So, with all the issues surrounding it, why do people use freeband? Simple. It works. The frequencies are clear; free of the busy chatter and interference of normal CB channels. Freeband goes further than other common unlicensed radios like FRS, GMRS, or MURS. Freeband distance range is similar to ham radio 10 meter HF SSB. Freeband is compatible with the CB radios. The radios are widely available, inexpensive, ubiquitous, and easy to use.

SHTF Happens

When SHTF survival hits, you may find yourself needing to communicate on the freeband frequencies. Is your radio ready? Do you know the channels? Are you prepared?


Here are some freeband frequency channel charts for various types of radios.


Blog: RadioMaster Reports
Survivalist Communications for the SHTF Prepper
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