How to make an indoor CB antenna

Written by adam quinn
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How to make an indoor CB antenna
Build an indoor antenna and monitor local CB channels from your home. (radio image by Allyson Ricketts from

A Citizen's Band radio is not exclusively a mobile communication device. You might talk to local CB operators -- or listen to truck driver conversations -- from the comfort of your home. An indoor CB antenna is sufficient for tuning to the 40 channels on the CB band. The single sideband function on your radio sometimes allows CB operators to join clubs operating on the upper channels in your region or across the country.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Speaker wire, 16- to 18-gauge, 27 feet
  • Coaxial cable, 50-ohm, 5 feet
  • Coaxial connector, PL-259, solderless
  • Ring terminal, solderless
  • Wire-stripping tool
  • Utility knife
  • Coaxial cable crimping tool
  • Soldering iron and solder
  • Electrical tape
  • Pliers
  • Small piece of twine

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  1. 1

    Separate the speaker wires. Cut five, 105-inch lengths of wire. Strip 1/2 inch of insulation from one end of each wire.

  2. 2

    Strip 1 inch of outer insulation from an end of the coaxial cable. Pull the braided sheath back over the cable. Remove 1/4 inch of plastic insulation, exposing the inner copper wire.

  3. 3

    Solder one 105-inch wire to the coaxial copper wire. Solder the remaining four lengths of wire to the braided sheath. Do not allow the copper wire connection to make contact with the braided sheath connections. Wrap electrical tape around the connections to protect the solder joints.

  4. 4

    Crimp the ring terminal to the free end of the 105-inch wire connected to the coaxial copper wire. Thread a piece of twine through the ring terminal.

  5. 5

    Crimp the coaxial connector to the free end of the coaxial cable. Plug it into the CB radio's external antenna jack.

  6. 6

    Hang the antenna from the ring-terminal twine. Allow the four radiating wires to hang down.

Tips and warnings

  • Use an SWR meter to tune the antenna, snipping the wires 1/8 inch at a time to achieve the proper resonance.

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