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Complete System Checklist

Posted by Pat Haggerty updated

The following is a checklist of all the components needed for a fully functioning mobile CB installation:

Required Components

  • CB Radio - Most new CB radios come with a microphone, mounting bracket and power cord, so you won’t need to buy those separately.
  • CB Antenna - Without an antenna, your radio is useless! Don’t forget this key component.
  • CB Antenna Mount - You’ll need a mount of some sort to attach the antenna to your vehicle. If you’ll be using a magnet, roof or trunk-lip antenna, you won’t need to worry about this as the antenna base doubles as the antenna mount.
  • Coax Cable - The cable that connects your radio and your antenna. If you’re using a magnet, roof or trunk-lip antenna, the coax is likely included with the antenna mount.
  • SWR Meter - An SWR meter is an essential tool used to properly adjust your antenna to your vehicle through a process called antenna tuning. Failing to tune your antenna can result in poor system performance and even permanent radio damage. We offer a number of extremely affordable SWR meters so you can order one alongside your other radio components. For more on antenna tuning and SWR meters, please refer to CB Antenna Tuning and SWR Explained.

Optional Components CB Antenna

  • Spring - Springs are installed between the mounting surface and the antenna and allow the antenna to bend at the base. They prevent damage to antenna, vehicle and mount in the event you catch the antenna on an obstruction while moving.
  • Antenna Quick Disconnects - Disconnects are installed between the mounting surface and the antenna and allow you to remove the antenna quickly without tools.
  • PA Horn - A number of CB models feature a public address mode that requires an external PA horn for use. A PA horn is essentially a glorified (usually weatherproof) speaker that connects to the CB and is mounted outside the vehicle.


Next, visit CB Radio Frequencies and Channels to learn more about where to legally operate your CB.


Pat Haggerty

About the Author

As the owner and operator of Right Channel Radios, Pat Haggerty has been helping customers find the best radio solutions since 2008. He is highly knowledgeable in all mobile radio options and setups, including CB radios, GMRS radios, and HAM radios. His wide library of how-to and help articles is frequently referred to as one of the best resources for CB radio installations and technical support online. When he's not assisting radio enthusiasts online or on the phone, you can find Pat enjoying all that Montana's trails have to offer on his skis, mountain bike or Land Cruiser.

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