This is a very simple and reduced guide for people who know nothing about CB Radio, family of people who practice this hobby, everybody interested or starting in radio. Any way You can find more info on the spanish version. Go ahead and enjoy Radio!

Citizen Band (CB27, 11 meters Band or 27Mhz) is an special way into Ham Radio modalities, is the most popular Band because of It is not necessary to pass an exam to obtain license, besides equipments are very cheap and easy to use.

On CB we can contact with people around the world, from neighbours in my street to persons who are thousands of kilometers of you, people of all ages and society classes (like an politic, a lorry driver, a police man, a student...). You can talk, meet people and to do friends anywhere. Besides you can use your computer to contact they by radio, send him texts, files, photos... You could exchange correspondence by mail with these people, learn a little bit of electricity, geography, foreign languages, to do test and experiments to be better and better on Radio and in extreme or catastrophic cases you can help and safe lives!

How to Start

Basically we need a CB transceiver, a power supply and an antenna. We can have a Base station (at home), mobile (on a car, a boat, van...) and/or the most simple, portable (a Walkie talkie). If you like, you can construct yourself your antenna and transceiver or buy Kits to mount at home.

Here is an example of a tipical Base CB Station:
Better than hand Microphone +Usually 40 Channels and hand Microphone+  12v  DC for CB Transmitter + SWR and Power meter  +Vertical Antenna with radials

Desk Microphone   CB Transmiter          Power Supply          SWR Meter             Vertical Antenna  

How to operate your Radio Station

First one is to have all the equipment correctly connected, is very important to have antenna (never transmit if you have not antenna!), switch on your transceiver and look for a busy frequency or channel. Most part of CB transceivers have similar functions and operation.

Sometimes you will have a SWR meter incorporated, if it is does not exist, is good to use one external. It is important that you learn to use it correctly, because is very important not to have SWR problems to work 100% and keep OK your transceptor.

Usually you will have a meter or leds system to indicate the intensity of received signals. Is used to ask for Controls or RST (Radio and Santiago), you can give a Control as follows:
* Radio goes from 1 to 5 by quality of modulation (how do you read)
* Santiago goes from 1 to 9 by intensity of signal received

When there are two or three stations speaking, there are a QSO. Only speak a person at time, you must wait your opportunity, is used to leave a "blank", a free space between two comments to give opportunity to call if any station is listening our conversation and want to enter in. Is good to listen before to call, to know who is on the air, what is the theme of conversation, etc. To call is used to say: "BREAK", then wait permission

  CQ CQ CQ 11 m

Is good to listen veterans operators, you can learn a lot, they are very correct and kindly operating their radios. You must not use Radio for business, to speak about religion, or like a free telephone. After a good contact is possible that the other station ask you a QSL, this is a small card confirming QSO. You will exchange these cards by mail and is valid for example a simple postcard with info about contact, like date, time, frequency, RST, QRZ, name...

Legal Aspects

Spanish legal permission for CB are 40 channels, from 26.960 to 27.410 Mhz, with max. power of 4W for AM-FM and 12W for SSB (USB-LSB), only vertical antennas are permited. But is normal to have more power or frequencies because people want to have better contacts.


It is normal to have a call-sign to say and remember for your friends, for example "Sirio", "Charly 2", etc. For international contacts is used a QRZ formed with one a three numbers (number of your country, Spain is 30 Division), one a four letters (letters of our DX club, group or association) and finally a number (number of associate into the Club). For example Spanish member 1702 in Lima Oscar Group (Libertad de Ondas) will be: 30LO1702. You can see here a Countries List or Division numbers.

Important factors

Is important to know that in Radio communicates there are a big influence of geographic conditions, atmospherics, technics, etc. which can help to do better contacts or difficult they. Best conditions are a good ionospheric propagation, to have good position geographic (big altitude, for example in top of a mountain), good antennas...

CB equipment

Big power is not recommendable because It can cause a lot of interferences to other radio stations, neighbors, Television, telephones, PC´s and other things. Also we can be interfered by other Operators, engines, electric storms, etc. There are special technics and filters to train to solve this, and also a lot of accesories for our station like desktop amplificated microphones, antenna tunners, SWR/Power external meters, reception/transmition amplifiers, antennas (yagui beam, omnidirectional, etc).


On Radio Contacts is normal to use special words, codes and the "Phonetic Alfabet" to spell and understand foreign stations, or when communications are difficult. For example you have:

Copy: Receive
CQ: General Call, beaming all stations
DX: Long distance Contact
P.O. Box: For mail QSL Cards
Roger: OK, received (also 10-4 or QSL)
Whiskies: Wats of power
51: Greetings
73: Regards

Q CODE    (only most used)
QRA: Name of the operator
QRM: Noise, interference
QRP: Lower power
QRT: Stop to transmit
QRV: Waiting signal
QRX: Listen, do not transmit
QRZ: Name of the station
QSB: Fading, signals coming down
QSL: Received OK / Card to confirm contact
QSO: Contact
QTC: Message important to transmit
QTH: Place of the station

A: Alfa        J: Juliet        S: Sierra
B: Bravo      K: Kilo            T: Tango
C: Charly     L: Lima           U: Uniform
D: Delta      M: Mike         V: Víctor
E: Eco         N: November  W: Whisky
F: Foxtrot   O: Oscar        X: X-Ray
G: Golf        P: Papa           Y: Yankee
H: Hotel      Q: Quebec      Z: Zulú

26.285 USB DX call (CQ long distance)
26.840 LSB Packet-Radio (Digital communications, using PC)
27.185 AM Local Call (people on the road, lorry drivers, taxi, etc.)
27.295 FM APRS (Using PC)
27.315 FM DX call on CB
27.345 LSB DX call on CB
27.455 USB DX Call (usually in French or Spanish)
27.500 CW CQ using CW (also digital modes CW, PSK, RTTY on USB mode)
27.555 USB CQ DX Call -long distance- (mainly call in English)
27.700 USB SSTV mode (Slow Scan TV)

You have here a "Frequency List" and channels, but do not transmit over 28.000 because there are Amateur frequencies.

73 de 30LO1702 / 30MU1439 Op. Paco

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