UHF is a critical piece of equipment in the 4WD world. They are a handy little tool for communicating with a spotter. Can be used to inform the convoy of up and coming hazards. Used to call for help in an emergency or breakdown. They can also make for a great deal of fun whilst travelling in convoy. I have even seen parents give walkabouts to children so they can stay in communication whilst they are off playing. If you find the channel you normally use has chatter, simply try another simplex channel near that number, until you find one that is clear.
Here’s a little information for you on selecting the correct UHF channel.
There are some channels that have been set aside strictly for certain purposes but any of the non-allocated simplex channels are generally fine to use.
- Channel 10 – 4WD – convoys, clubs and national parks (12 - 16 are also good)
- Channel 18 – Caravans & campers in convoy (19-21 are also good)
- Channel 40 - Highway
- Channels 1 to 8 and 41 to 48 - Repeater Channels Press the DUPLEX button on your radio to use any available repeaters
- Channels 22 & 23 - Data transmissions only (Excluding Packet)
- Channels 31 to 38 and 71 to 78 - Repeater inputs - Do not use these channels for simplex transmissions as you will interfere with conversations on channels 1 to 8 and 41 to 48
- Channel 5 & 35 - Emergency use only - Monitored by Volunteers, No general conversations are to take place on this channel
The Australian Government has legislated that channels 5 & 35 on the UHF CB Band are reserved for emergency use only
As at January 2007 the maximum penalties for the misuse of the legally allocated CB emergency channels are:
- For general misuse - if an individual 2 years imprisonment, otherwise $165,000 (a $220 on-the-spot fine can be issued in minor cases); or
- For interference to an Emergency call - if an individual 5 years imprisonment, otherwise $550,000