A base station is a static CB Radio setup. There are three components involved with creating a base station:
- Power supply
- CB Radio Station
They can be setup at home for personal use and the antennae can be wired up to the roof of the building for maximum clearance and signal strength. The benefit of a base station is there's enough ground plane for the signal to be transmitted extremely far rather than vehicle radios which are limited in range.
Vehicle Mounted Radio
Vehicle mounted CB radios are essential base station radios mounted to a car or truck. They are able to use while driving and can be wired directly to the vehicle electrics.
Radio Antennae: Mobile
There are so many different antennae and antennae types that it's extremely hard for a beginner to work out what to buy first. Luckily, this section can help you.
Starting with fibre glass antennae, these are coils of wire wrapped around a long, flexible rod of fibre glass. Their range can be up to 7 miles but that's really not that far. The good thing about them however, is that they are very durable and withstand a lot of abuse, perfect for 4x4 drivers.
Magnet antennae are a popular choice with people who want to do little installation work. You place it on the roof of your vehicle, connect it to your radio and boom! Working antenna without the hassle. The only problem is that it's not especially durable due to the thinness of the small metal rod that pokes out and the range is up about 7 miles.
Whip antennae are probably the best choice for supreme distance and partial durability. It's range is upwards of 10 miles (significantly upwards) and is very flexible against small bumps or brush due to it's whip-like reaction to contact. However, they are very big. 102 inches (249cm) is a lot of clearance needed on a vehicle. Therefore it is recommended this is only used in open wilderness or place without tree canopies.
Centre-loaded antennae are the best compromise between discreet (small) antennae and long range transmission. They have a thick steel base taking up 1/4 of the antenna with a tightly wound coil just above then unwraps into a medium-height thin steel rod. This setup allows for up to around a 10 mile range while not being too conspicuous and likely to take damage from relatively "low" hanging objects (branches, bridges). They are quite pricey though and if hit, they will sustain a lot of damage, even from a relatively little amount of force.
NGP (No Ground Plane)
No ground plane antennae are really the only choice for vehicles without (or with very little) metal casing/chassis. Normal antennae require a "ground plane" to operate as they do not transmit horizontally, instead signals are sent through the ground plane to then radiate out into the atmosphere. No ground plane antennae are perfect for boats as they are often made from fibre glass or plastic so the antenna will use the water instead to transmit the signals. In land vehicles, it actually uses the ground to transmit horizontally. Compared to normal antennae, these do not give the same performance but they are really mandatory if your vehicle has very little metal surface. These antennae also use the coax shield as the supplementary plane.
All of these antennae can be used a dual setup. Dual antennae allow for increased range (not double increase, but more likely to reach the max threshold of an individual antenna) which is perfect if you're using small antennae. It also can eliminate antenna "blind spots" where the signal is getting blocked from one antenna because of something in the way. They can however be annoying to setup. You also need a co-phased coax cable. Normal ones will not work.
Radio Antennae: Base Station
The base station types of antennae are very similar to the vehicle mounted ones in the sense that you can get fibre glass antennae, whip antennae, etc.
The most common and popular are the whip ones and they have extremely high clearance (well over 8ft). Some also come with ground plane mounts and extenders.