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Which CB Radio Channels To Use? Stick to These 15

CB radios are great. They’re one of the most affordable and effective ways to get going with amateur radio communication, and they have lots of advantages for preppers whether you are staying at home or on the road.

Baofeng HAM radio, walkie-talkies, flashlight and two chemlights
communication devices inside bug out bag: a Baofeng HAM radio, walkie-talkies, flashlight and two chemlights

For gathering information about a situation or just reaching out when you’re in trouble, nothing beats the speed, certainty, and convenience of a CB.

If you don’t know your way around the channels, you might feel like you are clicking that dial over and over again to no avail. But fear not, because I’m going to tell you about the essential CB channels you should know and use.

No matter what you’re doing and no matter what kind of situation you are in, as long as you’re powered up, you’ll be able to get in touch with the right people on these.

For Off-Roading: Channel 4, 27.005 MHz

If you’re off-roading, be it rock crawling, navigating muddy trails, or even on a big overland excursion, you’ll find that channel 4 is very commonly used for walkie-talkies and communicating between vehicles.

In larger off-road groups, it’s also used for leader vehicles to relay information to following vehicles. If you are near an area of heavy off-roading activity or an off-road park, you’ll probably want to stay off this one unless you are joining in.

For Skip: Channel 6, 27.025 MHz

This channel, humorously, is often referred to as the “Super Bowl” even though it has nothing to do with the football game of the same name. This channel is used by “skip-shooters,” CB users who are attempting long-distance conversations when conditions are right.

Accordingly, it’s good manners to stay off of here so you don’t interfere if that isn’t what you are doing, but if you need to get in touch with someone over a long distance, in an emergency or not, this is a good one to check.

For Emergencies and Traveler Assistance Only: Channel 9, 27.065 MHz

One of the most important channels you need to know, channel 9, is used only for emergencies and traveler assistance, nothing else.

This channel is protected by law and monitored by police, state troopers, and other first responders pretty much everywhere. If you’re in real trouble, go here first, and never, ever mess around on it.

When on Regional Roads: Channel 10, 27.075 MHz

Channel 10 is commonly used by truckers on regional roads in order to avoid clogging up other, more commonly used channels, or to just get some clear airwaves if you’re on a regional road near an interstate, which can get quite, let’s say, sporting at the best of times.

If you’re traveling via the same regional roads or you just live near one, this is a good channel to monitor for information from passersby.

For Marine and RV Use: Channel 13, 27.115 MHz

Sort of a catch-all channel for CB use. If you’re on a boat or traveling in an RV, this has become the commonly accepted channel to use. Definitely something you want to know if you’re an RV owner or if you live near a river or a large lake.

When Using Vintage Walkie-Talkies: Channel 14, 27.125 MHz

Channel 14 over the years has become associated with users of vintage walkie-talkies and other radio sets.

These older sets tend to be fiddly and not as reliable and capable as newer radios, so enthusiasts try to stick to channels with less traffic overall, and this one has become their unofficial home.

You can meet some cool, seasoned radio operators on this channel because they tend to be the only folks messing with these older sets, so do keep that in mind!

Also for Off-Roading: Channel 16, 27.155 MHz

Another common channel used by off-roaders, and for all the same reasons as channel 4 above.

If there’s lots of activity on one or the other, switch to the alternate and see if you can’t get some clear airwaves. Make sure you coordinate with your group or anyone else you are traveling with.

When Heading North or South: Channel 17, 27.165 MHz

One of the busiest and most used CB channels, channel 17 is populated by truckers and other professional drivers heading northbound or southbound by any road, though those traveling on regional roads use the alternates as mentioned previously.

Accordingly, if you’re heading north or south and want to pick up traffic updates, chatter, rumors, and other info, this is a good one to check right away. Be warned; there’s lots of gutter talk on these, especially near major cities.

When Heading East or West: Channel 19, 27.185 MHz

Channel 19 is used in the same way that channel 17 is, only for truckers and travelers that are heading east or west.

Make it a point to switch over as you navigate your own route so you’ll be in contact with people that are near you or passing you going in the other direction. This is a great way to avoid accidents, construction, and other delays that will slow you down!

Alternate for Regional Roads: Channel 21, 27.215 MHz

Another channel used for traveling on regional roads.

For SSB Calling: Channel 37, 27.375 MHz

If your CB radio supports single sideband capability, channel 37 is one of the most commonly used for this purpose.

For SSB and LSB Calling: Channel 38, 27.385 MHz

Channel 38 is also for SSB as well as LSB calling.

Also for SSB: Channel 39, 27.395 MHz

This is another commonly used SSB channel.

Yet Another SSB: Channel 40, 27.405 MHz

Channel 40 is yet another SSB channel, and a popular alternative to 38.

What About All of These Other Channels?

If you were paying attention, you probably noticed that there are a great many CB channels before and between where we started and 40. And yes, CB radios make use of 40 channels.

You are allowed to use any of the other channels between 1 and 40 for any legal purpose, but they don’t have a sort of agreed-upon purpose like the ones here.

If you need to find some quiet air when traveling in a convoy or when out hiking, you and your partner can hop over to any of them. It’s also a good idea to do so if you need to have a private conversation with someone that you met on the other, busier channels.

Ultimately, the choice is up to you, just make sure you let whoever you’re talking to know what channel or channels you plan to check before you switch over!

The post Which CB Radio Channels To Use? Stick to These 15 appeared first on Survival Sullivan.

By: Tom Marlowe
Title: Which CB Radio Channels To Use? Stick to These 15
Sourced From: www.survivalsullivan.com/common-cb-radio-channels/
Published Date: Sat, 30 Mar 2024 17:21:54 +0000


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