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Modifications to a 23 channel radio, illegal?

Discussion in 'General CB Services Discussion' started by Titan7, Nov 7, 2018.

  1. Titan7

    Titan7 New Member

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    I was have a conversation with a guy I know who was telling me it’s illegal to swap out a crystal in a 23 radio to basically substitute CH 1-4 for CH 36,37,38, and 40. I’m like what? Now I know there are some crazy and outdated laws out there but didn’t some mgfs offer to send in to convert 23 radios to 40 back in the day. How could it be illegal to transmit on legal CB frequencies on a CB radio. Having a hard time getting my head around this one.

    Anybody ever hear of this?


     

  2. StrangeBrew

    StrangeBrew Sr. Member

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    Any modifications to a CB are illegal if you intend to use it on the CB band. The designs are tested and approved by the FCC before being approved for sale, any changes to that design voids that approval. If the manufacturer did anything they probably had some type of FCC approval for the new design changes.

    Now if you're a ham and are modifying it to use on a ham band you can legally operate on that is another story.
     
  3. BJ radionut

    BJ radionut Supporting Member and 6m addict

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    By the "TRUE" nature of the rules...ANY modification to a FCC approved CB whether 23 or 40 channel is technically against the "Rules":whistle::D
    By the letter of the rules 23 channels radio's are not even allowed to be sold, because they do not conform spec-wise to the newer rules...
    Silly yes but true...

    RULE 9 - Equipment

    {A} You must use an FCC type accepted CB transmitter at your CB station.You can identify an FCC type accepted transmitter by the 'type acceptance' label placed on it by the manufacturer. You may examine a list of type-accepted equipment at any FCC Field Office or at FCC Headquarters. Use of a transmitter which is not FCC type-accepted voids your authority to operate the station.

    {B} You must not make, or have made, any internal modifications to a type-accepted CB transmitter. <*read Rule 25> Any internal modification to a type-accepted CB transmitter cancels the type-acceptance, and use of such a transmitter voids your authority to operate the station.

    RULE 25 - Modifications to Transmitters

    {A} You must not make or have any one else make any internal modification to your CB transmitter. .....
    (B) describes...allowable repairs using certified boards and repair parts

    {C} You must not operate a CB transmitter which has been modified by anyone in any way, including modification to operate on unauthorized frequencies or with illegal power.

    95.603(c) Each CB transmitter (a transmitter that operates or is intended to operate at a station authorized in the CB) must be certificated. No CB transmitter certificated pursuant to an application filed prior to September 10, 1976, shall be manufactured or marketed.:whistle::ROFLMAO::rolleyes:

    Of course these rules are followed to the max...You find 23 channel gear everywhere for sale..BUT! by rules...marketed means Not to be sold.:whistle::rolleyes::ROFLMAO:
    All the Best
    Gary
     
  4. kaos513

    kaos513 Well-Known Member

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    23 channel radios are obsolete so I'm sure the FCC wouldn't tell the difference.
     
  5. Titan7

    Titan7 New Member

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    Wow. I am a Ham, but I have no plans to convert the radio over to Ham Freqs. Just had a good old radio that wanted to use the higher legal CB channels for SSB. Guess that’s out of the question. Wow, still in shock over this one, lol.

    Thx
     
  6. Low_Boy

    Low_Boy Well-Known Member

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    Do it anyway. It will still be cleaner and have less splatter than any Connex or Galaxy that is sold legally.
     
  7. midnight special

    midnight special Well-Known Member

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    if you are wanting to use this as a ssb cb,, there is still some who use 16lsb mostly on sunday evenings and esspecially when skip is heavy,,,, a lot of unmodified radios being used this way,,,
     
  8. BJ radionut

    BJ radionut Supporting Member and 6m addict

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  9. Hurricane145

    Hurricane145 Active Member

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    I don't recall that they did and the modifications would probably be cost prohibitive to convert a 23 channel rig to the entire 40 channels and do a clean job of it i.e. no extra switches and complicated channel selection processes like the more common extra channel mods are these days.

    They did retrofit or redesign some rigs before they left the manufacturer as I recall rather than trash them to minimize losses.

    Some outlets may have told buyers of 23 channel rigs that there may be an upfitting offered in the future just to help clear out the 23 channel rigs as fast as possible while they can...Then get outta Dodge!!

    If up fitting them was offered at a very reasonable cost, just think of how many THOUSANDS of radios might be returned to any one manufacturer to take advantage of it! They might still not be caught up!:eek:
     
    #9 Hurricane145, Nov 17, 2018
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2018
  10. Hurricane145

    Hurricane145 Active Member

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    One problem is getting the crystal(s) that you would need to do it. Hardly anyone makes them anymore and they are made to order now from what I understand. Around $30 each or so I believe from what I have read.
    Still want to crystal up that old 5 channel Hallicrafters CB mobile? $300 please!!

    In 1969 Heathkit had a (potentially) 23 channel mobile rig the GW-14A for 109.95 wired with NO crystals.
    The 23 channel crystal pack wired jumped it up to a cost of $184.95.

    Best bet is to fall in love with a newer but still vintage-y 40 channel sideband rig and make the 23 channel one a shelf queen. I have an old Midland 13-880B and a Comstat 25B both in excellent condition that are shelf queens.
     
    #10 Hurricane145, Nov 17, 2018
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2018
  11. nomadradio

    nomadradio Analog Retentive

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    When the FCC changes the rules, and eliminates a particular class of radio they usually provide a year or more warning. That's what they did when the medium-wave AM marine radios were phased out. The VHF-FM marine radios took their place. If you see an out-of-date reference to making distress calls on 2182 kHz, that's the kind of radio you would have used for this.

    When the 40-channel expansion was announced, they immediately stopped approving any new 23-channel models for legal sale.

    They gave the industry a year (or maybe it was two?) before they could no longer sell a new 23-channel and still be legal.

    Just using a 23-channel radio, even if it isn't modified stopped being legal around 1981 or so IIRC.

    As for modifications, remember it's not legal to drive faster than the posted speed limit.

    One of my favorite historical figures would say "It's not what you do, it's what you get caught doing".

    73
     
    Dmans and Shadetree Mechanic like this.
  12. Hurricane145

    Hurricane145 Active Member

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    I think I remember that being discussed before around here and that it is not factual. It would of course be illegal to manufacture and market them as new but there isn't any reason that an older 23 channel rig cannot still be used and of course a great many of them are sold privately as used and maybe even a few new old stock at times.

    They were type accepted at the time they were manufactured/sold and that should be grandfathered if a problem at all. Chances are that spectral purity concerns were the same before and after the change.
    The older 23 channel radios are just a bit of a lesser radio in features than a new one but still can be usable and kept within specs for what it is. They had no features that are now illegal to use.
    I don't think they could make the zillions of them already out there at the time illegal to use expecting everyone to go out and buy a new one when the older model works just fine for their purposes. Especially if you had just bought it a short while ago. Just not practical and a great many may have never even known about it.
    Would the same apply to all the different 5 watt walkie talkies and older rigs that only have a few, maybe 3 or 5, crystal controlled channels too?
    They really can't just say "Okay, it's 40 channels or NOTHING now! And there was/is no reason to.
    The manufacturers and CB shops would like that though! Big bucks!!

    Pretty weak from a moral standpoint. I used to be a county corrections officer. The place was full (literally) of people that thought that way. In some smaller ways it doesn't matter as much I suppose but it does get carried way to far. Do the right thing.
     
    #12 Hurricane145, Nov 17, 2018
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2018
  13. hpssb

    hpssb Member

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    Just dropped a Kraco 23 channel base to tech in excellent physical condition but completely dead (no power getting through and a faint burned component smell from inside). Asked them to convert to at least 40 channels (oz call channel is 35 lsb so a 23 channel radio is useless down here) and would be nice to add another 40 channels up. Assuming whatever burned up is replaceable and hasn't burned things like the board or wiring loom too badly.

    We had a similar radio (bengal ssb) done by them a few years back. But they never documented how. Asked them to do one of their step by step picture posts on it for this radio, like what they did for my export drifter last month. Will post the link here when it's finished, but will only be able to give limited help directly as most of this stuff is way above my level of understanding.

    Loz!
     
    Shadetree Mechanic likes this.
  14. sunbulls

    sunbulls Well-Known Member

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    When was the last time someone was fined for talking on 38 with a 23 channel radio? That’s like rolling through a stop sign in the middle of the desert and you’re the only vehicle around for miles. Some silly rules are meant to be broken for sanity sake, and I refuse to feel guilty about a modified radio that has at least equal if not better specifications than any so called FCC approved radio that is sold misaligned with little quality control. Life is too short for such concerns. If I ever get a citation for that violation I'll frame it and put it in a place of honor, but I think I have a much better chance of winning the power ball and the mega-millions on the same day.
     

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