No, your eyes are not playing tricks on you! Manufactured in 1978, the Motorola System 500 Citizens Band (CB) mobile radio was supplied to Automotive Aftermarket Equipment distributors in the United States. The radio was manufactured at a Motorola facility in Seguin, Texas, USA.
Although it's popularity faded in the 1990's, Citizens' Band radio is, in many countries, a system of short-distance, non-exclusive use, radio communications between individuals on a selection of 40 channels within the 27MHz frequency range. In many countries, using a CB radio does not require a license, and is generaly used for personal communications - though, in most cases, no restrictions exist for business use.
Long before the advent of the (commercial and public) internet, CB was a popular means of "Social Networking": friends were made; hearts broken; house parties arranged and speeding fines averted. The sexiest sounding girl on CB, was in most cases, the biggest and ugliest when it came to "eyeballs" (face to face gatherings).
In the 1980's it was quite common to see cars with the characteristic 108 inch mobile whip antenna (sometimes with a plastic faux-orange stuck on the end). In South Africa, where I grew up, we were only allowed to operate on 19 of the 40 channels - many us learned which diode to cut, or which PCB track to cut, to "open" the radio (thus (illegaly) allowing the full 40 channels, or more).
Many of todays RF and Telecommunications engineers (including myself) started out in this industry by playing with CB Radios (i.e. that's when the radio bug bit them). Oh and sorry, before you get excited and start placing orders, Motorola no longer produces this radio.
|The Motorola System 500 CB Radio. |
Image © 2012 Motorola Solutions Inc. Legacy Archives Collection.