C.B. Radio

Topic 9740 | Page 1

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Mud Dog's Comment
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Over the years, the CB Radio has become obsolete on the roads. There is a major lack of communication between drivers. A tractor trailer is a machine, operated by a man/woman with many blind spots. Today's drivers do not see the importance of this communication. I hear the same excuses all of the time, "I can't speed", "I don't want to listen to the noise", etc. However; there are too many positive reasons to have communication to validate these excuses. A professional driver should be aware of his/her surroundings at ALL times. A CB allows us to know about upcoming conditions before it's too late. There could be a police officer around a blind curve, a gator in a lane, a strap hanging from your flatbed, a shifting load, a flat tire, snow, ice, stopped traffic ahead. The list goes on and on. 80,000 plus pounds of metal can be difficult to maneuver in a last minute situation. Just a thought.

Errol V.'s Comment
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Yes, CB an become a great tool. However, there's way too much immature and ignorant garbage flying around channel 19. (Why are you worried about a police officer around a blind curve? Just askin'.)

guyjax(Guy Hodges)'s Comment
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Why are you worried about a police officer around a blind curve? Just askin'.)

The officer or other people maybe on the line around that blind curve and you will not be able to stop before hitting them.

As you know officers also remove stuff out of the road to help prevent cars and trucks from hitting it. What if the officer and picking something out of the road and here you come around the corner with no warning. I bet you wish you have a radio then.

The are many reasons to have a radio... Especially if you do refer trailers since many shippers and receivers use the cb to call drivers... Ie Walmart DC.

Shipper:

The customer who is shipping the freight. This is where the driver will pick up a load and then deliver it to the receiver or consignee.

Ken W.'s Comment
member avatar

When I drove, I always had my radio on. If I didn't like all the noise, I'd turn the gain down and the squelch up so I could only hear people really close to me.

One of the things going into my bag for when I start with Western Express in a week and a half, is my trusty cobra 19. I'm not sure if the truck will have a cb in it, it barely takes up any space in the bag, and I couldn't imagine being on the road without it.

Mud Dog's Comment
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I am merely trying to point out the importance of communication to the new drivers out here. Learn how to use the radio and you will not here all of the garbage.

Jessica A-M's Comment
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I've never heard a CB in person so I watched videos and I've also heard on shows. Are CBs seriously that staticky? I can't understand the people talking worth a damn anytime I listen to these CBs. Mix that with some really deep accents and I don't think the CB is going to save my bacon. I still want one but, wow.

Brett Aquila's Comment
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Mud Dog, I agree 100% and I've been saying the same thing all along. It makes no sense whatsoever not to have a CB in the truck. You can turn it off if it gets too obnoxious like when you're going through West Memphis......we all do. But you have to have one with you. I wouldn't dream of driving down the road without one. I wouldn't want to drive a mile without a CB.

Brett Aquila's Comment
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I've never heard a CB in person so I watched videos and I've also heard on shows. Are CBs seriously that staticky? I can't understand the people talking worth a damn anytime I listen to these CBs. Mix that with some really deep accents and I don't think the CB is going to save my bacon. I still want one but, wow.

The most important thing for making yourself easy to understand is having a noise cancelling mic. Most people that want a great sound use Astatic Mics. They're amazing. It eliminates all that static on the broadcasting side.

If you set your squelch too sensitive it will make a ton of noise on the receiving side. The squelch is the receiving sensitivity. If you make it more sensitive it will pick up faint signals and a lot of static. If you make it less sensitive that static in the background will stop and you'll only pick up stronger signals.

Ken W.'s Comment
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I've never heard a CB in person so I watched videos and I've also heard on shows. Are CBs seriously that staticky? I can't understand the people talking worth a damn anytime I listen to these CBs. Mix that with some really deep accents and I don't think the CB is going to save my bacon. I still want one but, wow.

The static can be tuned away. People that don't understand how to properly use a cb, and people that want to hear every transmission on the channel, will listen to the static all day. This goes along the routes of the new generation is sticking with new technology, and the cb is not new technology. It is simple to use though, once you learn how to use it.

I'll use a Cobra 29 as my example, so you can look up a picture of it and follow along. The 29 is my main radio, and I have a 19 as my back-up radio. The cobra 19 is way cheaper, and has very limited functions, but is still a good radio. Most cb's will have this same basic tuning available to them.

Now, any performance you you get out of your cb radio depends on your antenna(s), and how they are tuned. Having properly tuned antennas is key, and without that, you will get limited performance. I'm not going to go through how to tune antennas here, but it isn't hard. If you buy your cb from an actual cb shop, you can probably get the shop to tune your antennas for you.

Ok, so on to tuning for best reception. Turn the radio to Channel 20, flip the swr/rf/cal switch to CAL, press the button on the mic, but don't talk. The meter will swing to the right, and you can use the swr cal knob to move the needle, you want to move the needle so that it lines up with the upside down triangle on the right side of the meter window. Then you can let go of the mic switch, and flip the swr/rf/cal switch to s/rf. (the swr position will show your approximate swr setting after keying the mic)

This next part is going to change a lot depending on where you are. This is the rf gain and squelch. When you are closer to a populated area, channel 19 is going to get more congested. So, first you turn the squelch and rf gain all the way down. Then you can turn the rf gain up slowly till the s/rf meter starts to move a little, at this point you will hear static. Then the squelch knob can get turn up slowly, you will notice sometimes that as you approach the gate the static will get louder, then it just goes away. Once the static is gone, give the knob just a little more turn and it will keep those static filled transmissions from being heard. If you were wondering here, the rf gain is the receiver power, turning it up increases the sensitivity, which increases how much it can hear. The squelch is used to control the noise from turning the rf gain up, and to block low power transmissions from being heard since you don't want to hear all the static. This tune will have to be adjusted according to your conditions if you want to hear the maximum amount of transmissions, or you can adjust it in a busy city and leave it there which will keep your radio quiet and only let closer transmissions be heard.

As far as the value of a cb radio, it can be a real time saver, and possibly save a life. If there is traffic ahead, you can find out how bad it is, how long the line of traffic is, and then you can make an informed choice on if you want to get off the freeway for a bit. Either take one of your breaks and let traffic settle down, or reroute, or if you are close to the end of your day, pull off and park for the day so you don't run over your hours.

I personally have used a cb to save a life. I was out on I20 in the middle of nowhere Texas late on a Friday night. This SUV came past me, and it was barely staying in it's lane. It got about an 1/8th of a mile ahead of me and lost control, rolled, and ended up in the ditch. I stopped and ran up to the suv to see if the person survived, they were unconscious but breathing. I didn't see any risk of the suv catching fire, so figured best not to move the guy. My cell phone didn't have any signal, not even a 911 call was going through, so I hopped on the cb. Luckily, someone else had their cb on and heard me and was able to call 911 for me. The paramedics got him out of the suv, and said that he had a collapsed, possibly punctured lung and broken ribs (you could see parts of them pushing the skin of his chest out). That made my radio worth more than the 150 bucks I paid for it if you ask me.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Dennis R. (Greatest Drive's Comment
member avatar

Cb radio comes in very handy.There are plenty of jerks in any profession.If you use it,and show respect to others,you usually are returned the same.Just yesterday a driver whitnessed a newer driver,having trouble blind siding,into a spot,at full truck stop.Driver radio'd,and traded a straight line back parking spot.Experienced driver made the blind side back look easy.

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