21 May 2017

European CB Radio Bandplan

The ECBF (European Citizen's Band Confederation) has launched a consultation regarding the possibility of a harmonised European CB Radio Bandplan:

"The European Federation of CB invites all CB radio users to participate in a public survey to develop a Band Plan for CB, within the 40 channels that recognize the CB Majority of CB legislations in Europe.

At the following address you can see the draft Band Plan on which work is begun and will be modified when the collection of surveys is finished. In principle, it will be active some months and periodically we will publish the results that are obtaining, for the knowledge of all.

Please spread this message among your groups, clubs and associations of Banda Ciudadana. It is very important that as many users as possible participate. Thank you all for your collaboration.

Currently the survey is available in Spanish and English.

To go to the survey in Spanish language , follow this link

To go to the survey in English language , follow this link"

   (Click to enlarge)

On the face of it this is a good idea but most countries already have their own long established 'bandplans' where certain channels are 'allocated' for certain uses. Indeed some European countries have enforced bandplans as part of their licencing agreements, so harmonising one single bandplan across the whole of the EU would be difficult if not impossible. 

There is of course the argument that bandplans have no place on CB radio and should be left to amateur radio. Afterall CB radio has muddled along nicely for decades with individual national and even local 'agreements' about the use of certain channels. There are lots of well established calling channels and local net channels which could be disrupted if people were expected to follow one EU bandplan.

For example in the UK it is widely accepted that 14 (27.125) is the AM calling channel, 19 (27.185) is the AM/FM mobile calling channel, 27 (27.275) is the SSB calling channel and 31 (27.315) is the FM DX calling channel. These channels of course all have different uses in different parts of the EU apart from channel 31 maybe, which does appear to be the centre of activity when it comes to FM DX-ing.

Other potential problems include the fact the data transmissions are very popular in some countries but almost never used in others so you cannot set aside channels for data use when data simply isn't used in some areas. The same goes for repeaters/internet links which are virtually unheard of in some countries and very widely used in others. 

Having said all that I do think it's an interesting exercise and I personally would at least like to see the results of the consultation so if you do have a view on this issue I strongly suggest that you take part by filling in the survey. In a few months time it may produce a bandplan worth considering but getting everyone to follow it may be an impossible task.....!

Maybe the way forward could be some sort of European-wide calling channel allocation for DX work (We already have 31 for FM DX) but leave it at that and don't take it to the point of a fully allocated bandplan which will probably be ignored by the vast majority of users anyway!

Anyway have your say here: CLICK