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Old 08-13-2009
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Default CB vs 2-way radio?

When I was stationed in Arizona and would 4 wheel with my buddies on the weekends we used just plain 2-way radios bought from Wal-Mart. The only experince I have with CBs is from my childhood when my grandfather use them on long vacation trips. I don't know what the prices are like for CB systems, but now a days 2-way radios are cheap and reliable and have great range. As far as CBs I don't think I would want to install a CB permanently in my TJ. What is everyone elses opinion?
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Old 08-13-2009
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Well I am a Amateur Radio operator. Part of doing the HAM thing is emergency communications. Being in hurricane land I tend to think in those terms. 99.9% of the time the communication is for pleasure but at least in my case I want to make sure I can get help, or assist in getting help for someone else, when necessary.

I believe the 2 way radio that you are describing is the Family Radio Service, FRS. It is a FM low watt, no fixed external antenna service. The FCC is guarding this one pretty close since the CB got way out of hand years ago.

CB is good for one reason only. Lots of people have them, or at least did. So if you need help you are more likely to find someone. CB is High Frequency (HF) and that means that the radio signal CAN bounce high off the ionosphere and bounce back down hundreds of miles away. This could be very important if you are in a valley, or no one is near by to hear your calls for help.

FRS is short range, because it is in the Ultra High Frequency (UHF) range.

Of course most people like of cell phones and 911 for emergency's, right? Well that's fine if all the massive cellular phone infrastructure is intact, or even powered. Once the cell phone towers go down, your phone makes a nice game playing machine and a flash light.

Any Jeep that I have will have a HF radio in it.
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Old 08-13-2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spyder3969 View Post
When I was stationed in Arizona and would 4 wheel with my buddies on the weekends we used just plain 2-way radios bought from Wal-Mart. The only experince I have with CBs is from my childhood when my grandfather use them on long vacation trips. I don't know what the prices are like for CB systems, but now a days 2-way radios are cheap and reliable and have great range. As far as CBs I don't think I would want to install a CB permanently in my TJ. What is everyone elses opinion?
I also have 2- way radios, but I really want to install a CB into my jeep.
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Old 08-14-2009
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I just don't want to install somthing permanently that I won't use a whole lot. I figure that the 2-ways are just as efficient and more portable and I won't have to do an install.
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Old 09-23-2009
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We bring both when we go wheeling. I have a nice CB that unplugs in the back, so it is only in the Jeep when I go wheeling. Otherwise I keep it in the house so it won't get stolen.

Since we don't have a CB in the truck, we usually bring the hand helds for communicating when we are driving to where ever we are going.


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Old 11-12-2009
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Well even i have the radio and i am also planning to install it in my jeep.
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Old 01-05-2010
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TinsChick makes a good point on the theft...maybe I should change how mine is installed. I unfortunately don't have many others I wheel with that have CB's, but I bought mine for emergency's, since in the mountains of Colorado, at 13K feet, sometimes the phone works, other times not so much. But the CB now is just used for it's PA capabilities (Think "The Hangover" in the cop car!!) I do bring some walkie talkie's with as well...when I remember to charge them!
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Old 02-21-2012
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I would love to pick up a ham setup for my XJ... but would have to keep my CB as that is what all the local Jeepers use when they hit the trails.. that is the only reason I have the CB in my XJ.. I do like using it every once in a while when I am running the highway on trips.. when I find a trucker that actually still uses one... as most of them have now switched over to mobile Ham setups...
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Old 05-13-2014
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I just did a write up and segment on the FRS/GMRS radios.
Check out Episode 129 of the XJTalkshow (http://www.xjtalkshow.com/) for the Radio Comm Tech Segment.

Article copied from XJtalk.com.


FRS (Family Radio Service), GMRS (General Mobile Radio Service), and MURS (Multi-Use Radio Service) radios are a valid alternative to a CB radio. I will discuss MURS at a later date.

FRS/GMRS radios are typically found as a combination or multi-service radio, also sometimes known as "Bubblepack radios" due to their packaging.

These radios operate in the UHF frequency range, specifially in the 462 and 467 Mhz frequencies.

FRS:
No License required
1/2 watt
non-removeable antennas
no repeaters
Typical communication range: 1 mile +/- (longer communication is possible from hill top to hill top with no obstructions, 30 miles+.... not typical conditions)

GMRS:
License REQUIRED (85, good for 5 years, no test, covers immediate family)..... (For reference an Amateur radio license is 15, good for 10 yrs, fairly easy test, only covers individual, but many, many, many more frequencies available)
50 watts max (handhelds will have upto 5 watts. Commercial radios that can operate within the GMRS frequencies can be used if they are Part 95accepted. Not as commonly found as the handheld radios).
External antenna allowed (base or mobile)
Repeaters available that can extend normal use range (30-40 miles +/-)
Typical Communication range: handheld to handheld- 2miles +/-, mobile to mobile - 5 miles +/-)




These radios will can have 22 channels: (You do not have free range of the frequency, but set channels like a CB)
Channels 1-7 are shared (FRS and GMRS): GMRS limited to 5 watts on these channels.
Channels 8-14: FRS only
Channels 15-22: GMRS only
There are also "sub-channels" which use sub-audible tones that only the radios can hear to allow many users only one frequency but still be able to keep conversations seperate. Example: If your radio is set to channel 8-1, if gives off a sub-audible tone that only radios set to channel 8-1 will hear allowing only those radios on channel 8-1 to receive your transmission. You will not hear uses on any other sub-channel of channel 8. (8-2, 8-3, 8-4, etc).

Neither FRS, GMRS, or MURS radios can communicate with a CB radio so for this radio to be useful the individuals you are wanting to communicate with will also have to have this type of radio.

You are also not likely to see anywhere on the packaging that to use the GMRS frequencies you are required to have a license. This has led to mis-use of the frequencies by non-licensed individuals... also known as "Bubble pack pirates".

Links:
FRS:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Family_Radio_Service

http://www.fcc.gov/encyclopedia/fami...io-service-frs
GMRS:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/General..._Radio_Service

http://www.fcc.gov/encyclopedia/gene...o-service-gmrs
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