Thursday, July 3, 2014

SWR Meters For CB Radio

  There are so many different SWR Meters  available it can be hard to choose. You will have some that will cover CB Radio and others that will cover the various Ham Radio Bands. I have an old Lafayette SWR Power Meter for mobile radios and it still works very nice. I bought that back in 1977 if I remember right. I also have some different Radio Shack SWR Meters that look a little cheap, but do a nice job. My favorite SWR Meter for the 27Mhz band is made by Astatic and is a PDC 600. It has separate meters for the SWR, Modulation and Power. It has always done a nice job all these years. I bought that when I had my PDL II on my 40 foot tower back in the 70s. I always like it because it could read power up to 1000 watts. Of course I never had anything to run that much power and as you should know the legal limit of power according to the FCC is 4 watts AM and 12 Watts SSB. I did know some people years ago that were running 500 watts and more. I myself never needed that kind of power. I found it much more exciting to contact someone with 4 watts and let my antenna do the work.
  There are quite a few different SWR Meter Manufacturers for CB Radio. Most of them will work on 10 meters as well as 11 meters. Some of the popular brands are Astatic, Workman, Redman and Dosy. You can always use a SWR Meter made more for Ham Radio. Just make sure that it will work on the 27Mhz frequency. You will find that some of them can be a little expensive, but will do an excellent job. The other option is to buy something in the used category. Just remember to check out the seller so you don't get stuck with a boat anchor. In the Ham Radio category check out MFJ, Diamond, Daiwai, Jetstream as well as others. I run one of the MFJ large cross needle SWR Power Meters for my Ham radio Equipment and it functions very good.
  The letters SWR are for standing wave ratio. This is match between your antenna and coax cable. I would advise to keep the SWR 1.5 and below. The SWR meter also measures the reflected signal. In other words it measure the signal going out the antenna and what is reflected back down the antenna. If the SWR reading is too high a large signal will come back down the cable and into your radio. This can destroy the transmit and receive, resulting in the radio needing to be repaired. This can be very expensive by today's standards. So it is better to be safe than sorry.
  So I would advise to buy a good SWR Meter so you can always keep an eye on the reading and keep you equipment in good shape. Remember to check out the SWR Meters in the CB Radio variety as well as the Ham Radio variety.
  Thank You for reading and Have A Nice Day from Dan KC2YTI 73s.    

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