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Comparing Ham Radio to CB

Warren Shulz (WA9GXZ) on December 8, 2016
View comments about this article!

Comparing Ham Radio to 11 meter Citizens Band:

I was giving a demo of a newly purchased HF transceiver out at RV campsite with a relative. We strung up a Windom long wire and he picked up on the RG-58 as CB coax. He asked how many channels is ham radio compared to CB. Whew! -- I say many many more but I was at a loss to qualify the difference. I just never considered the metrics in that comparison.

So here it is. I did not attempt to show CW only or other limits but just compared 10 kHz channel width count from 14 ham bands 160 meters to 70 centimeters. So you can see those ham band segments offer 43.4 MHz of spectrum vs. CB's 0.4 MHz its well over 100 to 1 ratio...that is a wow factor I never quantified. (Don't let FCC chairman Wheeler see this or he will start the auction to pay down the national debt.)

With SSB and CW you can pack much tighter than channelized CB band. If you channelize the digital modes: PSK, JT-9, WSPR X, RTTY, Olivia so forth and so on...

It is privilege to have access to so much RF real estate! On the other hand with the number of licensed ham operators it would seem impossible to occupy all that bandwidth at any one time. But it’s something for everyone... You got to wonder if allocations were being made today you wonder how that would go.

This is amazing when you think about the bandwidth 'granted' to citizen hobbyist. Would this have happened under today's tic-for-tac administration? I am sure if it weren't for ARRL it would be gone. Support for ARRL dues is the 'spectrum fee' paid by the ham operators. Hams have this entire spectrum to use: uses it, pay for it, stay active, or loose it. Talk about a cryptic hobby. Names like ARRL, ham operator, DX, bands in meters, are the inside lingo.

Amateur Radio Bands and 10 kHz Channel Count:

			
Band	Span in MHz	10 KHz Channels	
160 Meters	1.8 to 2.0	20	 
80 Meters	3.5 to 4.0	50	 
60 Meters	5.33 to 6.4	5	
40 Meters	7.0 to 7.3	30	
30 Meters	10.1 to 10.15	15	
20 Meters	14.0 to 14.35	35	
17 Meters	18.06 to 18.17	10	
15 Meters	21.0 to 21.45	45	
12 Meters	24.89-24.99	10	
10 Meters	28.0 to 28.7	70	
6 Meters	50-54	400	
2 meters	144-148	400	
1.25 Meters	222-225	300	
70 centi meters	420-450	3000	
		4390	kHz BW
			
11 meter CB 	27 MHz	400	
Family Radio Svc		8	

Warren Shulz
WA9GXZ

Member Comments:
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Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by ONAIR on December 8, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
Unfortunately, when 10 and 11 meters are open, you will find way more stations coming in on CB Channel 38 LSB (as well as all the other CB channels) than you'll find on the 10 meter ham band, and this is years after the so called "CB craze" supposedly died out! There are also a huge number of those so called "freebanders" worldwide, who operate illegally above and below the CB frequencies at will. They have lots of websites dedicated to "freebanding", and even generate their own call signs!
 
Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by K3FHP on December 8, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
I think you have a typo you mean 40CB channels not 400 or did I miss something?
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by AA4PB on December 8, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
Even more important than the total spectrum (number of channels) available in ham radio is the fact that the bands are spread throughout the radio spectrum. This allows you to select the frequency range (band) that supports propagation over the distance that you need to communicate.

In addition, ham radio permits the use of various modulation methods (modes) so that you can select the one best suited to the type of communications that you need. Hams have available various types of voice communications, digital communications for sending printed data and computer files, various type of image communications for still images, TV communications for moving pictures and even hi speed computer networking communications (WiFi) that can function over much greater distances than normal consumer WiFi. All of this is legally available at a much higher power output than a CB.

 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by N8FVJ on December 8, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
CB is not open all the time now. Ham radio always has a band open day & night.
Channel jamming with multiple stations on same frequency is a nightmare.
Keeping legal at 5 watts input guarantees no long distance that is illegal anyways.
About zero local nets exists now. 2 meter FM repeaters have many friendly local nets.

It is a no brainer- go ham.
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by KF4HR on December 8, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
Lot's of differences. Unfortunately there's a growing number of similarities too.
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by K9MHZ on December 8, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
Ha, true! Just check out the Misc Forum for a certain "8" call and his absolutely moronic musings. And, he LOVES CB.
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by N9AOP on December 8, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
If the sun goes Maunder, they will not talk very far on 11 M.
Art
 
Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by WA7SGS on December 8, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
CB is good for checking 12/10m. Just tune into the Super Bowl (Channel 6), which is the Ultimate QRO Event That Never Seems To Stop for radio...LOL! That'll let one know what's going on.

Where you want CB: On the BLM roads in Oregon where the log trucks run, the narrowness of these roads means CB is used to call off the mile markers as you pass them. Hear nothing? Good! Proceed. If you hear a reply from another trucker, then time and distance allow the truckers to figure who is going to pull over and let the other one through. When the skip is not running, CB then does what it is supposed to do, offer short range communications at an affordable price for those who need it.

So if you hunt or go out for firewood, mushrooms, cascara bark and so on, be sure to pack a CB in these parts or risk running into 80,000 pounds of iron and wood motating along.

What I do notice for amateur activity by truckers: A few do use 2m, sometimes simplex and sometimes repeaters. We have so many repeaters in this region (southwestern Oregon) that finding one open for QSO's is easy. A trucker can be buried in the woods, far away from cellphone coverage, but it is almost a "for sure" that a repeater can be hit from anywhere deep in the woods. The logging companies sometimes also use VHF commercial radios.

Having both a CB and a 2m rig in a truck to go with the usual cellphone strikes me as the best way to be in the back country, which is known for gobbling unwary people up. You might as well have a chance to call for help since yelling won't do much good...LOL!

Rick
 
Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by K5ML on December 8, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
Comparing ham radio to CB is like comparing Secretariat to a $100 claim horse. Just sayin'.
 
Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by WB6MMJ on December 8, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
The kind of operators I`m seeing now, for the most part, on the bands leads me to believe that there is no difference between CB and Amateur Radio operators anymore.
All the cursing, the drama, the druggies and CB jargon is all over the Amateur bands now.
This is because of lack of enforcement and deregulation by the F.C.C. and the non caring attitude of the A.R.R.L. who just wants more members, now matter what the cost to Amateur Radio.
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by K8QV on December 8, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
Humans seem to have a need to feel superior to others. Ham radio and CB are two different things, serving different needs and different people with different interests. Is there some competition between the two that nobody told me about? I'd like to feel superior too!!!
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by WB6MMJ on December 8, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
I guess you havn`t listened to CB radio or how Amateur Radio was 30 or more years ago. CB radio is what I call "The Ghetto" of two way radio.
Now Amateur Radio is, for the most part, CB radio.
CB radio was almost always a free for all.
Amateur radio was a lot more serous. It use to be about learning and service. Radio had to be in your blood, so to speak. You had to study hard and learn the code to get your Amateur license.
Now 5 year old`s can get their Tech. license.
I have heard many people say, on the air, that they are using a "Home Brew" dipole. LOL The words "Home Brew" use to be reserved for building gear, such as, transmitters, receivers and amplifiers. Building a dipole was just a given. You never said you "Home Brewed" your wire antenna.
Amateur Radio have been dumbed down quite a bit, through the years. It`s sad to see this but I sure can`t do anything about it.
I just keep trying to learn and build and help when I can.
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by W3DBB on December 9, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
License examinations are about 25% of what they should be. FCC amateur enforcement is nil. Our national association has a penchant, particularly since 9-11-01, for playing a more activist role in petitioning the FCC for Part 97 and other rule changes. Some of this is good. Other times, particularly with respect to numerical quantification of bandwidth and amateur special interest spectrum grabs, the optics are poor. All of this has lowered the value and esteem of holding an FCC-issued amateur radio license. This has been recognized internationally; check the CEPT reciprocal operating privileges for the General Class license. It's regrettable those in control had to go out of their way to screw things up. The regulatory/enforcement environment in the U.S. is not on the upgrade as key decision-makers have yet to come to their senses.
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by KD7YVV on December 9, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
I remember when my dad got his first CB.
A Johnson 23 channel where the mic and speaker were
in the style of a telephone handset. Then he had a
Midland 23 channel that you could put 10 AA batteries
in. His callsign was KYH0398. When the FCC stopped
licensing, and I got my first 40 channel radio,
I made plenty of friends. Channel 4 in NJ was nice.
I met a person named Milk Man and his mom, Spunky Lady
from North Bergen and Jersey City. Channel 12 was also
a nice channel, Mother Superior had a nice roundtable
conversation going nightly. People were polite, and
courteous. Some hams may not admit to being a CB'er
back in the 70's but I made a lot of friends and had
a good time. My very first walkie-talkie was a set
of Star Trek Communicators (CB Channel 14 back in
those days. Phone calls from North Bergen to
Jersey City were free, but if you went up into
Fairview and tried to call Jersey City, it would
cost you. CB was free. I miss my friends as they
are SK now, but I still remember the first time
I talked to a CB'er on that Star Trek Communicator.
Fast forward 20+ years, and now I have friends on
ham radio. Here's a history link. :)

https://youtu.be/tMeFe68vDCc

Granted, channel 9 and CB aren't what they used to be.
The little film reminds me of how it used to be.


 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by AF3Y on December 9, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
From above....... "There are also a huge number of those so called "freebanders" worldwide, who operate illegally above and below the CB frequencies at will. They have lots of websites dedicated to "freebanding", and even generate their own call signs"

Sounds like yet ANOTHER group who should have their reproductive organs removed.

73, Gene AF3Y
 
Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by WB4M on December 9, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
There are also a huge number of those so called "freebanders" worldwide, who operate illegally above and below the CB frequencies at will. They have lots of websites dedicated to "freebanding", and even generate their own call signs!
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
And these are the people the ARRL openly recruited with ads in various "radio" magazines. One poster has it right, present day CB is a ghetto, ham radio is now CB.
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by K9MHZ on December 9, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
Hey Gene, reproducing is not an issue because it involves interacting with the opposite sex. And then there's that pesky issue of body mechanics with their BMIs starting in the 40s. I'd bet they haven't actually seen that little guy in years.

America today.
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by K6AER on December 9, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
The ARRL is no different than the New York Times. They just want to sell paper.

Adding hundred of thousand hams who have no want and desire to develop their skills in the hobby has not had the intended outcome everyone though it would have. VHF and UHF is mostly a wasteland. Some HF bands have become a cesspool of clicks and clusters of aberrant behavior. Have a contest and watch adult behavior go out the window for the weekend.

Discussing which ready made dipole to buy passes for a technical article. How many postings a day come into E-Ham asking for advice on a radio but the owner has not read the manual that came with the unit.
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by W1RKW on December 9, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
I'm perplexed by the claim that amateur radio frequency allocations are huge compared to any other allocation in the specturm. Look at the FCC's allocation chart. Nothing can be further from the truth. if anything we have an equal if not one of the smallest allocations from DC to light with commercial broadcast taking up the largest.
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by K1WJ on December 9, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
My Dad got my brother and I a Midland 23ch. cb for X-mas when I was 14. Had a lot of fun with it. A year later we were getting our novice tickets, he knew what he was doing. Complaining about cb'ers and the decline of ham radio is a joke....the jerks on the bands today have nothing to do with cb. Treat the HOBBY with respect, there will always be fruitcakes where ever you go and what ever you do.............73 K1WJ
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by AA4PB on December 9, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
"I'm perplexed by the claim that amateur radio frequency allocations are huge compared to any other allocation in the spectrum."

The claim was that amateur radio frequency allocations are huge when compared to the CB allocation.
 
Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by AC5UP on December 9, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
Comparing amateur radio to citizens band ?
What an absurd premise......... There is no comparison.

CB is far more popular.
 
Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by KC2WI on December 9, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
CB was great in the 70's
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by N6DMR on December 9, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
I find CB to be off the radar. I got started with a CB, and a Moonraker IV yagi on a 40ft tower. It was a fun experience and lead me to "upgrade" all the way to extra class. Since being licensed in Amateur Radio, I have not even listened to any CB channels.

Sadly, bad behavior on any radio band and even in life is unavoidable. I would not blame the regulatory agency or the ARRL as the culprits. It is the violators that are at fault.

How many bad drivers out there have done dumb stunts or rude stuff and not been cited for it? No sense in getting worked up over this kind of behavior, it will just ruin your day.

I really have not found any obnoxious or rude radio behavior to be a big issue. I just tune away, switch bands or turn the radio off. If I ever run up against a local interference cause or a local drama creator that persists, it is easy enough to sniff them out and make a formal complaint. If you can actually point to the place of interference you will get better results and make life easier for the FCC to do their thing.

Just a humble opinion.

 
Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by VE3CUI on December 10, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
Well, I am not ashamed that I got my start in Ham radio in 1967, with a Christmas gift of a pair of walkie-talkies from my parents when I was 15 years old…

That one little taste of two-way radio started the whole ball rolling for me: a SWL receiver in 1969, & finally my Ham ticket in 1971.

I guess --- despite its many detractors to-day --- CB radio (or, as they call it here in Canada, the "General Radio Service") will always hold a warm spot in my heart here.
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by K9MHZ on December 10, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
I don't think there's any critique of starting out in CB, especially in the 70s when it was booming. The matter it seems, is what's happening in the present.
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by ONAIR on December 10, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
The CB craze is actually what got many young people interested in radio back in the '60s through '80s. Those "wide open" walkie talkies that allowed kids to hear their local ham radio operators, got many of them motivated to learn more about radio and get their ham tickets. It would be interesting to have a survey about how many current ham operators actually got their start on the citizens band!
 
Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by KJ6TSX on December 10, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
I enjoy CB once in a while it is like going to the dive bar down the street, dropping in once in a while is fun.
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by W4KVW on December 10, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
CB Radio still has it's place.I travel with my 40 Channel CB in my mobile along with a my ICOM 2820H with D-STAR & on several occasions avoided a several hour wait in traffic because I was able too find out about a road blockage ahead.I have never been able too do that with Amateur Radio even when I ran an ICOM 7000 in my mobile.I could listen on 11 meters but could not get the needed information like a route around accidents & other information.I don't leave the CB turned on but turn it on when there appears to be a delay & more times than not I get information I need pretty quickly & can turn it back to the OFF position.I find that there are plenty on Morons on the Amateur Bands just like the 11 meter band & I have the same options with either like change the frequency or turn either of them OFF. I have a lot of CB's (I collect them) & I still use them too talk with some locals from home & we have a great time with them.Seems that we have a lot of folks in the world that have an issue using those two controls but they sure know how too use their keyboards so they can complain about everything in the world that the rest of the world is doing wrong.I have been using CB Radio since 1965 & Amateur Radio since 1994 & when it comes to getting assistance in an Emergency the CB has rarely ever let me down.Maybe those complaining are doing something wrong or just maybe they are the problem & can't see past the end of their noses.It's the simple stuff that confuses these crybabies but they feel better after sharing a tear jerker with the rest of the world it appears. {:>)
 
Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by WA3SKN on December 10, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
No one has mentioned that you are comparing only to the class D portion of the Citezens Band. Nor that they are for two different purposes or services.
Interesting.

-Mike.
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by AC7CW on December 10, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
CB is great when traveling. The short range means you are getting road condition updates from nearby. Otherwise CB is horrible. I got my introduction to the criminal-trolling-psychopathic type of personality by listening to CB with a fullsize antenna when the sunspots were very favorable. It makes me ill that they are allowed to transmit worldwide when conditions are good...
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by K9MHZ on December 10, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
"I enjoy CB once in a while it is like going to the dive bar down the street, dropping in once in a while is fun."

That's funny.
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by N8FVJ on December 10, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
Ham radio is like CB today? No way. The ghetto talk on CB is not on ham radio. Many fine educated ham radio operators are on the ham bands.
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by NN2X on December 10, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
I started on CB, long before it was popular (1968 or so). I had an old Lafayette (HE 20 E), had crystals for Transmit, and VFO for the receive. I had a ground plane Radio Shack antenna. It was a start!

I wanted to talk farther, and met with a CBer in town and his father (K2JFJ) showed me Ham radio...And that was that...My CB...went to the attic, and off I was in Ham radio..

I stated before, Ham radio in the 1970's was a hard exam, and was well respected in the work environment, Although I had a BSEE, degree, and Frist class phone license, my first opportunity for work was all due to my Ham Ticket, My first employer said, that if anyone took time out and passed the ham ticket, can do the job (The one I applied for)...

Having said that...it was CB that started my path...

NN2X, TOM
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by W0MSN on December 10, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
When people ask me if ham radio is like CB radio? I usually say something like this. "CB radio is like one key on the piano. Ham radio is like the entire piano". That's about all the time a waste on it unless they ask more questions and show true interest.
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by VK3BL on December 11, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
Both have there place.

Like many, I started out with CB. First our 477MHz UHF CB, then our 27MHz HF CB. When I worked into America using a genuine 12 watts on 38 LSB, I was hooked on DXing.

A friend suggested I get my ham licence and lent me some gear, so I did and have been hooked ever since.

One thing I really like about Ham radio is the fact we have to use call signs. Somehow, by using publicly identifiable call signs, people seem to behave as they would in person. The same goes for this forum compared to other Internet forums, because we all seem to register with our call sign.

I actually have a friend doing a PhD on this very subject - the way people change when they use pseudonyms online.

That said, like many people, I've been through a lot in my life, and am more than happy to stand behind anything I've said in public. If someone takes offence to that, I try and find out why, and either apologise or work to find a middle ground.

On the other hand, this doesn't seem to happen on CB Radio. Anonymity seems to bring with it courage or stupidity that corrupts otherwise decent individuals. Even myself I have been guilty of poor behaviour on CB.

Therefore, I tend to gravitate towards Ham radio because it brings the best out in me, rather than the worst; we are all human after all, and we are all capable of less than courteous behaviour.

I guess one could liken CB radio to a rite of passage - for me, it was like my teenage years, when I was finding out who I was. Nowadays, I am more comfortable with the generally more cordial and professional nature of Ham Radio.

I'm glad they both exist. To me, whilst CB represents absolute 'freedom', Ham radio shows that only valuable freedom arises from constraint; through obeying the communities' rules, we are guaranteed a more cordial experience.
 
Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by K9CTB on December 11, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
Without enforcement, "CBers" have exactly the same "real estate" as amateurs. Listening to the popular bands for an hour will convince you. OTOH, enforcement would probably un-crowd the bands quite a bit. There's a huge caveat however. Whenever you ask the government to solve your problems, the outcome will never be good.
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by K4NUC on December 11, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
Some parts of the ham hobby are not much different from CB. Try using a frequency that a net has occupied for "years". Just like CB those guys aren't moving. We used to call those nets "coffee breaks " back then. Same thing.
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by AA4PB on December 11, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
If a bunch of people want to use a particular frequency on a regular basis and I want to call CQ on that frequency, common sense and common curtesy would suggest that I be the one to find a new frequency.

Ever tried to run a net with no specified frequency and the participants all have to search the whole 40M band to find it?
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by W4KVW on December 11, 2016 Mail this to a friend!

RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB Reply
by AA4PB on December 11, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
If a bunch of people want to use a particular frequency on a regular basis and I want to call CQ on that frequency, common sense and common curtesy would suggest that I be the one to find a new frequency.

Ever tried to run a net with no specified frequency and the participants all have to search the whole 40M band to find it?

Better question is have you actually heard anything on 99.9% of those Useless nets that was worth 2 cents? All they do is jam a bunch of frequencies daily & some times two or three times a day with weather reports,how their dog or cat is doing,or what time the mail ran this week.totally Useless BS like they have never heard of the Weather Channel? If I ever get so bored that I think I need a worthless net somebody please just shoot me so I don't end up in a Nursing Home.No body will admit what a waste of time & band space the nets are because they are so politically correct & don't want anyone's feelings hurt.The truth is some good medicine there you go now you have finally heard it for once in your life.Nets were made for FISH & not RADIOS so get off the air with all of the useless crap & stop wasting good band space on BS when there is DX looking for contacts.I hear some of the same morons & bad operating habits on Ham Radio on most all of the bands that I hear on the CB Radio & without having any enforcement the Ham Bands are less than one small step from being nothing more than a wide open spectrum & a license will be a long forgotten thing of the past.the FCC does not have enough Man Power too get out of it's own way much less make Amateur Radio much different than the 11 meter band which those idiots gave away & they started the entire problem in the 1st place.
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by AF6AU on December 11, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
To WA7SGS: I will remember your note on logging roads and the log truckers using CB.....

I have a 15 jeep wrangler, and have a dual band VHF yaesu in it all the time feeding a front fender mounted Comet SBB5. I added a second 3/8-24 HF mount in the rear that will also take a CB antenna or HF Hamsticks. So I will take one of 3 old late 70's cb sets I inherited when club trail running. Jeep and other off-road vehicle clubs still use cb's on their weekend club trail runs. I help these guys doing proper antenna installs and proper wiring... They ask about the Comet antenna, and I use it as a teaching moment by doing a quick QSO on WinSystem.

The FCC Ham tests scare many away, they want to learn about Jeeps and mechanical stuff, not radio. For them CB is a vehicle to vehicle tool for when there is zero cell service. They like me there, as the dual bander will usually make contacts where nothing else will make a contact.

I do laugh though, many Jeep guys will not read the instructions installing a ball mount, and will only drill a 1/2 inch hole for the 1/2 inch center stud. This shorts out the coax line when the stud nut is run down to the body metal. They will drill that 1/2 inch hole, but are not happy when told they need to open it with a 3/4 inch conduit punch to stop the short circuit.

So yes there is still a few decent users of CB, not many, but there are.
JML AF6AU
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by N1OIE on December 11, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
More CBer loathing wants to break to the surface ... And we wonder why our hobby is dying ... I guess the folks in the "ghetto" just don't see a value in it ... They may be right. Just sad.
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by N8FVJ on December 11, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
Nets? Ham radio on 75 meters at night was difficult to find an open frequency on SSB 15-20 years ago. Now a days nets are of no issue. Plenty of open band space exists on all bands now.
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by WA2E on December 12, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
Being a ham I've had the same experience when a CBer can't figure out why his radio doesn't work.

Mike
 
The violators are always at fault ... BUT  
by AA4MB on December 12, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
@ N6DMR

"I would not blame the regulatory agency or the ARRL as the culprits. It is the violators that are at fault."

Well, I'll simply add this: in my opinion, it's oddly coincidental that end of rigid enforcement of the radio waves has dovetailed with the foolishness that we hear on (mostly) HF voice nowadays. I too began my radio hobby on CB. In the early 70's, even CB was pretty highly regulated. What was it - omnidirectional antennas could be at 60 feet and no higher ... directional arrays were limited to 20 feet over the top of the roof? There were a few guys that lived in areas in which their neighbors didn't care - but I do remember a few getting hammered by the FCC and having to lower their antennas to the proper height. I can remember when 'Uncle Charlie' came to town in DF vans to do random checks. Or ... at least, the specter of the FCC doing that led to the rumors it was happening (never saw them myself). Regardless, there WAS enforcement and the penalties were stiff. Cause a neighbor TVI as a CBer and you could get into nasty trouble in those days. ARRL isn't a factor as far as I'm aware, but the FCC has simply given up on regulating CB and freeband from how it appears to me. And the hams that get slammed with big fines and court appearances are doing the same thing(s) again and again and warned by the FCC multiple times before anything substantive happens. I work in law enforcement and I can assure you that we also see a correlation with things like noise complaints. For something like loud music, we are of course not allowed to cite a violator on the first complaint - consequently, it frequently happens again and again until tempers flare and a fight breaks out.

Ham radio isn't much different than that - it's composed of people and if you give them free enough reign with little or no oversight, chaos and anarchy will eventually result. Are we there yet? Not in my opinion. But some of the behavior I hear on the air is appalling and I've noticed it spreading over to the CW bands as well. This signals to me that it isn't an age issue, as you don't have a much bigger population of us 'old guys' in ham radio than CW ops. It's simply because there are few or no consequences, in my opinion. My $0.02 worth for the day.
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by AA4MB on December 12, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
@ W4VKW

"Better question is have you actually heard anything on 99.9% of those Useless nets that was worth 2 cents? All they do is jam a bunch of frequencies daily & some times two or three times a day with weather reports,how their dog or cat is doing,or what time the mail ran this week.totally Useless BS like they have never heard of the Weather Channel? If I ever get so bored that I think I need a worthless net somebody please just shoot me so I don't end up in a Nursing Home.No body will admit what a waste of time & band space the nets are because they are so politically correct & don't want anyone's feelings hurt.The truth is some good medicine there you go now you have finally heard it for once in your life.Nets were made for FISH & not RADIOS so get off the air with all of the useless crap & stop wasting good band space on BS when there is DX looking for contacts.I hear some of the same morons & bad operating habits on Ham Radio on most all of the bands that I hear on the CB Radio & without having any enforcement the Ham Bands are less than one small step from being nothing more than a wide open spectrum & a license will be a long forgotten thing of the past.the FCC does not have enough Man Power too get out of it's own way much less make Amateur Radio much different than the 11 meter band which those idiots gave away & they started the entire problem in the 1st place."

Well, whether they're valid points or not, I'm glad you got all those many points of that off your chest. It was probably therapeutic. Consider this, though: are you trying to imply that ham radio is all about working DX? If the shoe were firmly fitted on the other foot, I can imagine some of these folks on these 'useless' nets talking about the weather, pets, antennas, etc., complaining about all of these guys that don't want to hold a conversation - or give a signal report other than '59' and rush off to the next hurried contact. (I don't have to imagine it - I've heard folks gripe about contesters and QSL chasers for eons now)

I think the DX operators worldwide aren't having many issues with nets on the high end of 75 meters at night - or with 40 meter ragchew nets in the daytime. And with propagation being what it is nowadays, the Amalgamated Microwave Oven Repair and Dog Grooming net on 14.2XX probably doesn't give them many issues, either. Just my guess.

:)

 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by ONAIR on December 12, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
With the next administration hoping to shrink government and decrease funding for Federal agencies, we can expect an even greater reduction in FCC enforcement activity.
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by W4KVW on December 12, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
I noticed that AA4MB did NOT mention a single thing good that anyone gets from a net because he could not think of even one.Like I said,nets are a useless waste of time,breath,& good band space.Nets are for fish & even JESUS knew that in the Bible & so many still have not figured it out? Some folks it appears are really slow learners& nobody on the net even mentioned it to them because they are just as slow. hehe {:>)
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by KD8DWO on December 12, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
Time for you to go lay down, before the van from the nursing home comes to pick you back up.. "73 OM, and have a Merry Chrismas!
 
Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by N5WBK on December 13, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
Being a former cb'er from the 70's and 80's I started working with a ham that was a ham about as long as I had been breathing. He told me he was going to get me off that children's band. He got me in a school here in Tulsa that a ham had stared. And I gather another cb friend to go also. We both got our novice,tech,and general tickets out of it. Never looked back or gave it a second thought about 11 meters.Been about 26 years now. He became my elmer and went sk a few years ago. Sure miss him.
 
Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by N1NGV on December 13, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
I started off as a CB'er in the mid 60's with the xmas walkie talkies given to my brother and I and eventually, the family has a TRC-X23 from Radio Shack. It was so much fun listening, talking with new people etc.

After an absence of many years I got into Amateur Radio the usual way I guess, no code tech and admiring the range and the clarity of the local repeaters. Fast forward a few years and I'm now an extra but there's just no room for any decent HF antennas here so I belong to a local club that has 24/7 keycard access to the club station.
 
Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by VA3WAO on December 13, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
Ham Radio today, is suffering what almost everything else in the world is going through, a general degrading of culture, or class. 50 years ago you would hardly hear someone swearing in a restaurant, but today, you will hear curse words thrown in as adjectives. As it has been stated in this post, Ham Radio Today is what CB Radio used to be and CB, well forget it, it's nothing but a mosh pit!

Society in general is degrading, we are not getting better, we are, getting worse! Why wouldn't Ham Radio follow? Sad state of affairs I say.
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by KC7MF on December 13, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
Lordy are some of us full of ourselves. We whine about CB folks while a goodly number of us consider:

"This is Kilowatt Mountain seven Missouri Florida, you are five nine Alpha Zulu, number 929,347" an interesting call."

While some CBers are out in the mountains breathing the mountain air we arrogant hams are finishing up 24 hours, sitting on our ample duffs, finishing up the "10 meter qrp, straight key, protestants only, wire antenna contest" and calling it "radio sport".

Now tonight I can spin the dial across all of the 20 meter band without hearing so much as a dimmer switch or aquarium heater and somebody above complains that there is a net on one frequency. I am puzzled by this. Some one of the brain trust, figuring that the bands are "too busy" complains that a whole boat load of people grab one little piece of frequency and keep to themselves leaving the entire rest of the spectrum....well....to him. Would he prefer that they all spread out and call CQ at the same time? And that would solve what again?

Judging from some of the comments so far I have to agree that the test is too easy. But I am more than certain that what I would add to the test, a little commons sense, common courtesy and mutual respect, are not at all what most people have in mind.

Oh I get it. If we all just knew code and could construct a multi-band radio from a pipe, a key from a coke can and a battery from a lemon and the left over pipe, that would solve everything.
 
Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by KE6TDT on December 14, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
You're worried FCC chairman Wheeler will sell off frequencies to pay down the national debt?

Since when have those in this government been concerned about budgets or paying off choking debt? They've spent tax dollars like drunken lottery winners for decades. I pretty sure the new crew coming on board is looking at bigger fish to fry in an effort to end this reckless spending and destructive costly punitive economic policies.
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by AA4MB on December 14, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
@ W4KVW

"I noticed that AA4MB did NOT mention a single thing good that anyone gets from a net because he could not think of even one."

Were I as confrontational and irrational as you, Clayton, I'd fire back with:

"I noticed that W4KVW did NOT mention a single thing good that anyone gets from DXing, because he could not think of even one."

Clayton, you must be a combination of the Amazing Kreskin and Karnak the Magnificent, since you purport to know what's going through anyone else's head or what I can or cannot "think of." But you never asked me (or anyone else) to justify nets. (Guess what, Karnak - I don't do nets OR DXing! LOL) You might want to re-read some of your own postings. You never asked anyone to justify anything - not that anyone would, just because you demanded it. I doubt they want to get into your 'nana nana, boo boo' frame of conversation.

The amusing thing about your non-arguments is that you seem to maybe think that Part 97 is full of rules which stipulate that amateur radio conversations must have a particular set of 'points' in order to fall into your dubious definition of 'worth.' I remember prohibitions vs. music and profanity - but for the life of me, Clayton I just don't remember seeing prohibitions against 'useless' (whatever your definition of that is) conversations. That's likely because it isn't in there.

Perhaps you should get a DS3 line, multiple telephone operators and a satellite TV channel of your own if you are going to appoint yourself as the arbiter on a case by case basis on what the rest of us should/shouldn't talk about on the air. Warning, though: you might get kind of busy and miss out on all the rest of the DXing you seem to have a hard time doing, due to all of these nets that sound as if they're cramping your style.

 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by KC7MF on December 15, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
@ W4KVW

What do people get from nets. Well once this year I was net controller when a boat in the middle of the ocean called MAYDAY. What he got was rescued.

On another occasion we stayed with the captain of a sinking boat until the Coast Guard got to him. What he got was invaluable.

Cities get prepared for emergencies.

Lonely people get a group of friends with whom they can speak.

New operators get a place to hone their skills.

People get a place where they can talk to unusual places and interesting people. Old radio buffs get a place to discuss their vintage gear and mentor new people.

So you see Sport... Nets are, well, pretty much what amateur radio is all about. That you can't see this speaks volumes about you. (Insert eyeroll here)
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by AA4MB on December 15, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
^ ^ ^
This :)
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by ZENKI on December 17, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
We all "radio amateurs" if we have a interest in radio, even the cb'ers What we really trying to distinguish is between a licensed and a unlicensed system of "amateur radio" or radio experimentation.

While most cb'ers seems to have a anarchic mentality with little interest in the technicalities of the hobby, many do become great technical hams.

My only objection to the many cb'ers that have flooded onto the ham bands is that they have arrogance about the weight that their many years on the CB band carries and hence makes them technical experts when they so technically ignorant on so many fronts.

A good example is these stupid hams who run CB amps on the amp bands and think that they know what they doing. They think that they are technically correct because they have been doing this stupid practice for 30 years. CB'ers seem to think that splatter is normal even on the ham bands when using their crap equipment.

Then there is the implied attitude that them coming from the CB band gives them the right to impose cb styles of operating practice onto the ham bands.

A good example was when the 10 meter band was open into the Pacific from my location. I was calling CQ on 28490 and a VK6 operator obviously a ex cb'er told me that I had to move off their call channel if he was going to speak to me. I politely ignored this OP and politely told him that the ham bands are internationally allocated and that there was never a SSB call channel on 10 meters for last 50 years that I have been a ham.

I monitored this frequency for a while and witnessed numerous fights between the old timers and the new generation of cb hams who think that they would like the idea of A chaos CALL channel with people calling and talking over each other. This is the Cb attitude trying to overrun the ham bands with delinquent and stupid practices that make no sense.

We wonder why the bands are dead because hams dont want to call CQ and then sit lazily on a cb like call channel. The cb'ers still have not figured out that it makes no sense for 1000 people to speak over each other on 1 channel but this exactly what these fools on 28490 want to put into practice. CB stupidity at its best.

CB'ers would be more welcome if they respected the technical foundations of ham radio rather than relying on their 30 years of ignorance being fools on the CB bands and wanting to stuff this chaos down other ham radio operators throats.
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by KC7MF on December 17, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
So you just decided to make a long post for the sole purpose of insulting people. Way to go sport. A little polite explaining goes a long way

And for the record. I am getting really tired of having to listen to how many years of experience someone has. That is rarely a good measure of their competence

Some people have one year if experience.

Some people have 50 years of experience.

Most of them have one year of experience 50 times.
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by W4KVW on December 18, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
@KC7ME,just FYI.If you are in any Emergency in a boat or not you do NOT need too tune around looking for a net so they can rescue you.Any frequency will do so it may save you some time not having too wait on those long winded stories about the dog chasing the squirrels or the cat maybe.If you go to a frequency with a net the boat will have long been sank to the bottom because they will want you to wait & be recognized by the net control station so everybody does not get out of order.If somebody misses their turn the entire net will be ruined & it will take weeks or months getting it all corrected.As I said,99.9% of nets are a total waste of good band space,time,& effort.Just about as boring as a contest which is another useless waste of that same band space,time,& effort & another reason too drop ARRL membership since they worship the contest Gods & net zeros.Have a Merry Christmas & now back to net control if we can wake them up.
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by KC7MF on December 18, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
Of course you have no clue what you are talking about. No surprise there. I suggest you google search 14.300.

Learn first. Then talk. It will be new but you may come to enjoy it.
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by W4KVW on December 19, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
KC7MF,It's obvious that you can't read or at least understand what you read.I said,99.9% so just maybe 14.300.00 may be the .1 % since something must fall in there in case you don't do math either.Glad I could once again assist you now back to net control who is obviously out of control.Maybe you hit your head falling off of a horse? LOL {:>)

Clayton
W4KVW
 
Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by MM0IMC on December 20, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
The main problem on this side of the pond is that quite a few people get the lowest level of licence, just to cover the fact they use their HF rig mostly on 27MHz!

Ofcom, RSCB and AROS can't or won't do a single thing about it. The RSCB are more interested in quantity, rather than quality. There are too many no so good buddies in ham radio over here who've lowered the quality of ham radio and turned it into another channel 19!

I envy you guys across with the pond with the FCC, ARRL and OO's whom do seem to be able to do their job!
 
Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by KE4ZHN on December 22, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
Tuning across the bands on a given weekend during a major contest reveals little if any difference between amateur radio and CB. There is just as much cussing, over modulation, splattering and chaos as there is on 11 meters except it's spread across multiple bands.
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by M0CRN on December 22, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
I started out as a B11 signaller in the army, and a few years after leaving the forces I discovered the wonders of 27mhz. Like many fellow amateurs, this spurred me on to greater things - and after first being a 'professional' radio operator, and then a 'pirate' operator, I finally became an 'amateur' operator. I Genuinely enjoyed my time working ssb on CB, and as far as I was concerned - all the swearing was done by operators on AM and FM. Even then - back in the 80's, you always encountered Ham operators on 27mhz, their operating style stood out like a sore thumb!

I can't say that I go along with the notion that the novice operators over here in the UK only take the test to get on 27mhz, where is the proof? In the old days the 'B' licence operators were the one's who were picked on the 'A' licence operators, and now its the M3 and M6 callsigns that are made scapegoats for all that is bad in ham radio. I was one of the very last to take the 12wpm to get my pink ticket for hf, but you get some 'M0' callsigns who took the later 5wpm, and then go on to complain about the novice operators - conveniently forgetting about the easy ride they had to obtain their own ticket! Some of the things I hear on hf these days is truly beyond belief, and it is far-worst than anything I ever encountered when working 26 or 27mhz ssb.
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by KB6QXM on December 22, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
With the "incentive licensing", there is very little between the knowledge of many of the new hams versus CB radio operators. Granted, there are many that are formally educated in technology that work in that industry, but I personally have experienced a newly minted technician class ask me what a repeater was.

Many of the new hams cannot solder a PL259 onto a piece of coax. Many cannot operate their rigs and forget about many of these new hams doing any home brewing.

With the new inclusion crowd and a an organization that will go unnamed, the next step will be to make amateur radio unlicensed or at least untested. Maybe call signs will be generated when you send in your fees to the FCC, just like CB radio did back in the day.

Now that the FCC does not enforce the ham bands with RDF vans anymore and the advent of all of these contests, ham radio is quickly becoming a free for all. RIP ham radio, especially in the next 20 years when the majority of the present ham population dies off.

73
 
Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by K4WRF on December 23, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
Years ago took driving trip to a meeting two days distant. Took 3 radios including AM/FM in dash, HF mobile and CB rig. Of all these, CB banter was the most entertaining. Equivalent of Walmart ppl on 11 meters.... All due apologies to Walmart. HI HI...
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by WA2ISE on December 23, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
I don't think the cell phone companies would want our HF bands. Not enough channel bandwidth. And long distance reach is not what they'd want. And 70cm is primarily a military and aviation allocation and hams secondary, and the military won't let the FCC sell it off.
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by MM0IMC on December 23, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
It's not all M3 or 2E0 whom are bad, but there is a hard core around here that are bad.

I speak to a number of M3 and 2E0's who are good operators. But unfortunately there are some brain fried individuals that are an embarrassment to the hobby, whom shouldn't be allowed anywhere near an amateur rig.

What's a dummy load? The fat lummox behind the microphone!

What's sideband? A variation of the gastric band for some of these useless articles!
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by KB6QXM on December 25, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
The only ham bands that would suffice for usage in commercial operations would be the 902-928 band and the 1.2 Ghz bands. Hams have almost zero concern for the loss of HF. There is very little commercial value for HF, even shortwave broadcasters are leaving HF. The only use for HF for shortwave broadcasters is to broadcast into 3rd world countries that have no infrastructure. Many shortwave broadcasters are now streaming.

In a few years OTA television in the US will be obsolete. It will be all streamed.

With the advent of all of the HOA's and CC&R's and the low adoption with the millennial and gen Z population, I can see a time within a couple of decades where HF will become a deserted wasteland.
 
Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by W8CWM on December 26, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
For those who think that we should have much more difficult test with code requirements, let's take it a step farther and require all operators to have to be retested every five years. This would eliminate all the older hams who aren't up to date with modern electronics and having hearing problems making it hard to read code then let's take it a step farther and say the test for extra should require you to design and build a side-band computer controlled radio.
This would make ham operators a very elite group of very few people, then the hobby could totally disappear completely. Instead of taking the time to complain about everyone else why don't we make sure our house is in order, then help other operators learn all about the hobby. Some of the worst offenders of polite radio are extras that have been licensed for years but have become old and bitter. I think this hobby has room for everybody and should be self policing as it once was.
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by ONAIR on December 26, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
But what about all the older hams who have developed memory issues? Many may not pass because of that.
 
Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by KK3OQ on December 28, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
I see a lot of CB mobile ants in the 4x4 off road community. Sure wish these people would just get 2 meter radios that are 50 watts.
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by ONAIR on December 28, 2016 Mail this to a friend!
KK3OO... Good point, but then they would need to get a ham ticket! With CB they can be off roading on 11 meters in 5 minutes.
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by KK3OQ on January 2, 2017 Mail this to a friend!
@K6AER
"The ARRL is no different than the New York Times. They just want to sell paper.
Adding hundred of thousand hams who have no want and desire to develop their skills in the hobby has not had the intended outcome everyone though it would have. VHF and UHF is mostly a wasteland. Some HF bands have become a cesspool of clicks and clusters of aberrant behavior. Have a contest and watch adult behavior go out the window for the weekend.
Discussing which ready made dipole to buy passes for a technical article. How many postings a day come into E-Ham asking for advice on a radio but the owner has not read the manual that came with the unit."

Correct, de KK3OQ
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by WZ7U on January 8, 2017 Mail this to a friend!
This again?
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by KOP on January 13, 2017 Mail this to a friend!
"this again?"
Both or either is better than neither.

~kop
 
Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by K5AJ on January 17, 2017 Mail this to a friend!
Hi,

Acknowledging that high power CB is highly illegal .....

CB'er have us beat when it comes to power output. I
met a CB'er in Oklahoma, years ago, who ran 10kw. He
framed and displayed his FCC citations on the wall
of his CB shack, much in the same way hams display
various awards.

I heard about a CBer in Tennessee who won some kind
of power contest, where he operated around 37kw.

Illegal as it is, CB linear amplifier makers have us beat,
with cheap high power low quality linears like the "Dave Made" and other strange named brands.

For what it's worth, my 5-watt CB radio paid for itself
many times, back during the Jimmy Carter 55mph speed
limit.
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by ONAIR on January 17, 2017 Mail this to a friend!
We might actually be seeing some resurgence on 11 meters, as I've noticed an increase in CB activity lately when I travel on business. I've even heard hams in 38 LSB! It might be a result of the deteriorating band conditions on HF.
 
RE: Comparing Ham Radio to CB  
by WZ7U on January 18, 2017 Mail this to a friend!
Good point sir
 
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