CB Radio Lingo – The Alphabet of Sayings (w/PDF)

Using a CB radio can be a lot of fun for beginners. The one way to help elevate your game is learning CB Radio Lingo. This helps you with effective communication.

Below is the alphabet for CB Radio Lingo.

You can also download a PDF of these sayings for free (here)

You may be interested in: Complete List of CB Radio Frequencies & The Full List of the CB 10 Codes

CB Radio Lingo from ABC

  • 10-4 Roger – Yes
  • 4 Wheelers’ Speeding Up – When you pull out to pass a slower vehicle, they speed up and you can't get by them. When you make an unsuccessful attempt to pass, you go back into the right lane and the automobile begins speeding up again.
  • 42 - Yes, or OK.
  • 42 driver - Keep it rolling and don't flip your truck into a ditch
  • 95th Street - Interstate 95.
  • 18 Wheeler - A tractor trailer.
  • 85th Street- Interstate 85.
  • Affirmative - Yes.
  • All Locked Up - Closed weigh station.
  • Anteater - Kenworth T-600 truck has a rather sloped hood. It is also named an aardvark.
  • Alligator - Tire debris on the road, often called a "gator," may be harmful if struck by your car, causing leaks in hoses, belts, radiators, vehicle body, and other components. If you hit a gator and it bounces up into you or another vehicle. These pieces are aptly named gators. Don't let it "bite you"! The small debris is called baby alligators. A collection of small pieces are called alligator bait. 
  • Back door – Look behind your truck, somebody who is behind you, like the police, or a motorcyclists traveling a lot faster than they should. A saying that you might hear is "Watch out- Smokey's at your back door." Which means "The a cop coming up behind you".
  • Bad ass – Very cool or very impressive
  • Bear – Cop
  • Back It Down - Slow down, partner. Reduce your speed as you are going a little too fast.
  • Backed Out Of It - This is often heard if a truck is trying to climb a large hill or mountain and cannot maintain their speed, they might have to downshift and move to the slow lane. For example, the Grapevine in California. You might hear "Backed out of it. Moving over to the slow lane."  
  • Back Row - This refers to the furthest or back row of the parking spaces in a rest area or tuck stop. You might hear "lot lizards". when the back row is brought up.
  • Bambi - Deer; could be alive or could be dead.
  • Base Station or Unit - CB radio or Ham Radio inside of a home or building that cannot be moved.
  • Bear - Highway patrol or a Police Officer
  • Bear Bait - A vehicle that is traveling above the speed limit that hides or protects other speeding vehicles.  
  • Bear Bite - A speeding ticket.
  • Bear Den or Bear Cave - A Police station or Highway Patrol headquarters.
  • Bear In The Air - An aircraft used by law enforcement. These planes might be utilized for traffic management as well as other functions such as radar.
  • Bear In The Bushes - A hiding police officer or a Highway Patrol who is not in plain sight trying to catch vehicles that are speeding.
  • Billy Big Rigger - A rather egotistical trucker who talks a lot about themselves and/or their truck. Also known as "supertrucker".
  • Bedbugger - Household moving company.
  • Big R - A Roadway truck.
  • Big Road - The highway or Interstate. Some Interstates have their own names due to their popularity.
  • Big Truck - An 18 wheeler or semi tractor trailer truck. 
  • Bird Dog - A radar detector.
  • Big Word - Before exiting a weight station, there is a bright lighted sign that says "OPEN" or "CLOSED". It might be tough to read the sign from a distance, but "CLOSED" is a more/larger word. If you hear someone say "big word is out", they are telling you that the station is closed.
  • Black Eye - A vehicle with a headlight out. "Driver has a black eye".
  • Bobtail - A semi-tractor trailer without a trailer.
  • Boogie - The highest gear or top gear of the vehicle transmission.
  • Boulevard - The Interstate.
  • Brake Check -There is a bunch of traffic ahead, and you'll need to slow down or come to a stop.
  • Break - To access a crowded radio channel, say "break" and the channel number, then begin talking.
  • Breaking Up - The radio signal is fading, weak, or cutting in and out.
  • Brush Your Teeth And Comb Your Hair - A highway patrol or police officer is radaring vehicles ahead so be on the lookout.
  • Bubba - A fun name that some drivers call each other drivers in a jokingly way. 
  • Bull Dog - A Mack truck.
  • Bull Frog - An ABF truck.
  • Bull Hauler - A livestock or cow hauler.
  • Bumper Sticker - A vehicle that is tailgating another vehicle. You might also hear this be called a "hitchhiker".
  • Bundled Out - A vehicle that is fully or over loaded or is at maximum capacity.
  • Buster Brown - UPS truck / driver.
  • Being cool on the stool – Everything going great so far, I am enjoying the drive.
  • Barnie Fife sitting on the get on, shot you in the gas hole – County cop on the highway entrance ramp pointing a radar gun at you as you go by.
  • Break 1-9 for a radio check – This means that you are looking to see how your truck is getting out and sounding. You will hear this saying often during the day.
  • Catch you on the flip flop - see you on your return trip back through this area
  • Chicken coop – The weight station. Sometimes simply called "the coop".
  • Chicken lights – The extra lights on a rig or trailer
  • Chicken Hauler or Chicken Truck - Can be referring to a tractor hauling chickens or to a fancy or deluxe truck with lots of lights, chrome, and other shiny accessories
  • Clean shot – No cops or highway patrol in sight
  • Comic Book – The driver’s log book
  • Cabbage - A steep hill grade in the state of Oregon.
  • Cabover - Cab-Over-the-Engine (COE) tractor
  • Cash Register - A tollbooth
  • Checking Ground Pressure - The weigh station scales are open. Also known as "running you across".
  • Comedian - The median that separates the lanes of opposing traffic. This could be paved, include trees/shrubs, or a divider
  • Container - An overseas container
  • Come-a-part Engine - A Cummins engine
  • Come Back - Please repeat transmission
  • Come On - Telling another driver that you hear them loud and clear. "Yeah driver, come on".
  • Commercial Company - A prostitute.
  • Convoy - A group of vehicles, could be cars or trucks traveling together.
  • Copy - The radio transmission is acknowledged/understood. "Copy that".
  • Cornflake - Consolidated Freightways truck
  • County Mountie - County police
  • Covered wagon - Trailer with sidewalls and tarp.
  • Crackerhead - Typically meant to insult someone
  • Crotch rocket - A fast motorcycle.
  • Diesel Bear – D.O.T. cop specializing in truck enforcement
  • Driver – a trucker or a name you might be called if other drivers do not know your CB handle.
  • Deadhead - A truck pulling an empty trailer.
  • Destruction - Road construction.
  • Diesel Car - A semi-tractor.
  • Diesel Cop - Commercial Vehicle enforcement officer.
  • Donkey - Look behind you. "Smokey on your donkey".
  • Do What? - I didn't hear and/or understand you. Please repeat your transmission.
  • Double Nickel - 55 mph.
  • Doubles - Double trailers.
  • Drawing Lines - Completing the log book
  • Driving Award - A speeding ticket.
  • Downstroke - Driving downhill
  • Dragon Wagon - A tow truck
  • Dragonfly - A vehicle with no or little power. For example, a truck that struggles to go uphill.
  • Dry Box or Dry Van - An unrefrigerated freight trailer. 
  • Evil Knievel - A motorcycle cop.
  • Eyeball - To see something.
  • Four wheeler – Any other vehicle with four wheels
  • Feeding The Bears - Paying a ticket (could be for speeding or something else)
  • Fingerprint - Unloading your trailer yourself.
  • Flip-Flop or Flip a Bitch - A U-turn or return trip.
  • FM - An AM/FM radio.
  • Four-Letter Word - Nobody wants to stop at the weigh station- that is why "OPEN" is considered a four-letter word in the trucking industry. When the weigh station is open it is a Four-Letter Word.  
  • Freight Shaker - A Freightliner truck.
  • Front Door - What is in front of you.
  • Full-Grown Bear - State Trooper / Highway Patrol.
  • Garbage Hauler - A farm produce trailer load such as vegetables, fruit or a produce hauler.
  • Gear Jammer - Someone who speeds up and slows down often
  • General Mess of Crap - A G.M.C. truck
  • Georgia Overdrive - Putting it into neutral on a downgrade.
  • Go-Go Juice - Diesel fuel.
  • Good Buddy - "10-4, good buddy" or "OK, good friend" back in the day. Burt Reynolds made it popular.
  • Good Neighbor - If you want to show appreciation to someone else. "Thanks, good neighbor".
  • Got My Nightgown On - A driver is in his/her sleeper and is getting ready to go to bed.
  • Go To Company - Without monopolizing a specific channel, you are asking another company driver to go to the company's designated channel to communicate or discuss corporate business or other issues
  • Go To The Harley - Go to Channel 1.
  • Got Your Ears On? - Are you listening?
  • Gouge On It - Peddle to the metal! They want you to go fast. 
  • Granny Lane - The slow lane on a highway or Interstate. 
  • Greasy - The road is icy or is very slippery.
  • Greasy Side Up - A vehicle that is upsidedown.
  • Green Stamps - Cash or money.
  • Grossed Out - The gross vehicle weight has been reached (typically at 80,000 lbs.) or the car is at its maximum carrying capacity.
  • Ground Pressure - The weight of the truck at the weigh station scale. "They are checking your ground pressure."
  • Gumball Machine - Patrol car lights.
  • Goin’ to the barn yard – Going to the company yard.
  • I’m 10 and on the side – I’m done talking & listening for help or what’s ahead in traffic.
  • I’m headed south on the Ol’ Double Nickel – On Hwy 55.
  • Hello, come in – I hear you load and clear
  • Hammer Down - Peddle to the metal
  • Hammer Lane - The fast lane or passing lane.
  • Hand - Term for a fellow worker. 
  • Handle (CB Handle) "What is your CB Handle?" They are asking you what your CB nickname is. Although not required, it is encouraged to have one
  • Happy Happy - Happy New Year!
  • Having "Shutter Trouble" - Having a hard time keeping your eyes open or staying awake. 
  • Ho Chi Minh Trail - California Highway 152. This highway has lots of accidents.  
  • Holler - Give me a call. "Give me a holler later."
  • Home 20 - A driver's hometown
  • Hood - Conventional tractor, not a cabover.
  • Hundred Dollar Lane, High Dollar Lane - Describing a traffic lane where trucks are not permitted to drive in- there can be very hefty fines for trucks that violate these lanes (usually the far left lane).
  • Just a gettin’ it  – Having a vehicle that is moving fast
  •  Jackpot - The lights on a Patrol Car
  • Key Down - When someone talks over someone else on a radio, typically happens when someone has a more powerful radio.
  • Key Up - The transmission on your CB radio using the transmit button on your microphone. "Key up your mic." 
  • In My Back Pocket - A location that you have already passed. "It's already in my back pocket."
  • In The Big Hole - Transmission is in the highest gear or top gear.
  • K-Whopper - Kenworth (KW) tractor.
  • Kojak With A Kodak - A Law enforcement officer is checking radar with a radar gun
  • Kojak with a Kodak at the such-and-such yard stick – A Law enforcement officer is checking radar with a radar gun at a particular mile marker.
  • Keep the rubber side down and the bugs off your glass. "I’ll see y’all on the flip side. I’m gone". 
  • Large car – A big tricked out fancy rig with a bunch of chrome, sleeper and other accessories.
  • Left Coast - The West Coast.
  • Local Information - If you need directions or having questions about a specific area you aren't familiar with, ask for "local information". 
  • Local Yokel - An officer from a small town, small county, or small city. 
  • Lollipop - The road reflector poles or marker poles with reflectors, usually found on the side or median of the highway.
  • Lot Lizard - A "women of the night" or a prostitute that seeks out truckers as potential customers at a rest area or truck stop. 
  • Lumper - Someone that will help load/unload trailers typically wanting cash in return. 
  • Male Buffalo - A male prostitute.
  • Mama Bear - A female law enforcement officer.
  • Mash Your Motor - Pedal to the metal! They want you to floor it!
  • Meat Wagon - An ambulance.
  • Merry Merry - Merry Christmas.
  • Motion Lotion - Diesel fuel.
  • Moving On - Heading down the road or on a different town
  • Mud Duck - A weak radio signal.
  • Negatory - Negative or no.
  • On The Side - On standby.
  • Parking Lot - An auto transporter.
  • Pay The Water Bill - Going to the bathroom.
  • Pickle Park - A rest area where a lot lizards (prostitutes) can frequently be found.
  • Pigtail - Tractor to trailer electrical connection.
  • Plain Wrapper - An unmarked police or highway patrol car. "Watch your back door, there's a plain red wrapper knockin."  
  • Plenty of Protection - Two meanings 1. it could mean that there are lots of law enforcement vehicles around or 2. it could be drivers telling you to go ahead and speed because other vehicles are speeding ahead of you offering protection.  
  • Pogo Stick - A flexible support beam holding the electrical connections to the tractor catwalk
  • Power up - Accelerate, drive faster.
  • Preeshaydit - I appreciate it.
  • Pumpkin - Refers to a Schneider truck, due to it's orange color.
  • Radio - A CB radio.
  • Radio check - How does my radio sound? Is my transmission clear?
  • Rambo - Someone that is talking real tough or aggressive on the radio, often times they cannot be identified or their location due to the anonymity of CB radio
  • Ratchet jaw - A person that talks for long periods of time staying keyed up so no one else gets a chance to talk.
  • Reading the mail - Listening to a CB radio without saying anything.
  • Reefer - Often refers to a refrigerated trailer used to transport temperature sensitive cargo
  • Rest-a-ree-a - Rest Area.
  • Road pizza - Roadkill.
  • Rockin' chair - A truck that is sandwiched between two other vehicles.
  • Roger - Yes; OK.
  • Roger beep - A feature on either the microphone or radio that causes a beep sound when the microphone is un-keyed.
  • Roller skate - A small car like a Ford Focus or Chevy Cobalt.
  • Rooster cruiser - Large, deluxe, possibly custom truck; a tractor featuring a lot of chrome, lighting and accessories.
  • Runnin'you across - The weigh station is active and is moving quickly.
  • Salt shaker - A maintenance vehicle that pours salt on the roadways in the winter months to help break up ice or keep from freezing
  • Sandbagging - Another way to describe someone who is listening to the radio but isn't speaking on it.
  • Sandbox - An escape ramp typically using sand to slow down vehicles.
  • Schneider eggs - The orange traffic cones in construction zones.
  • Seat cover - Describes either the driver or passenger of a four-wheeler
  • Sesame Street - Channel 19 on CB.
  • Shaky California - Oftentimes specifically talking about Los Angeles or San Francisco.
  • Shiny side up - Safe travels; drive safe; keeping the vehicle upright and not flipped over
  • Shooting you in the back - A warning that there is law enforcement or patrol using a radar gun coming up
  • Short short - A small amount of time.
  • Shutdown - Out of service due to the Department of Transit issuing a violation.
  • Sleeper creeper - A prostitute; also known as a lot lizard.
  • Skateboard - A flatbed.
  • Skins - Tires.
  • Smokin' scooter - Law enforcement officer patrolling on a motorcycle.
  • Smokin' the brakes - The brakes on the trailer are smoking from heavy use down a steep slope.
  • Smokey or Smokey Bear - law enforcement; often highway patrol.
  • Split - Where the road splits off into different directions.
  • Spy in the sky - Law enforcement aircraft.
  • Stagecoach - Tour bus.
  • Stand on it - Speed up; accelerate. Also known as "step on it"
  • Swinging - The vehicle is transporting meat.
  • South bound hammer down – Traveling south driving faster than the speed limit or going fast
  • Stay loaded – well wishes, make money
  • Taking pictures - A warning that law enforcement is using a radar gun ahead or a camera that captures photos of speeders
  • Thermos bottle - A tanker trailer.
  • Through the woods - Exiting the Interstate to travel on secondary roads.
  • Throwin' iron - Putting chains on the tires for a drive in snowy weather
  • Too many eggs in the basket - An overweight load.
  • Toothpicks - A load of lumber.
  • Travel agent - A dispatcher; sometimes referred to as a broker.
  • Triple digits - Over 100 miles per hour
  • TYA"Tune Your Antenna"- you radio signal is weak and transmission is not clear. 
  • Wind ‘er up and let ‘er go, c’mon – Pick up the pace.
  • Westbound, you’re good to bring it on back to the Granny lane –  You missed me, you can pull back in the slow lane in front of me.
  • Weight Cop – Department of Transportation officer 
  • Wipin’ Her Feet – Truck is slipping, sliding often heard through the rain
  • We got a northbound bear bait going past the 52 – There’s a car/four wheeler traveling at an excessive speed (15 + speed limit).
  •  VW - A Volvo-White tractor.
  • Wagon - A trailer.
  • Walked on you - Someone who talked over you by transmitting at the same time.
  • Wally world - A nickname for Wal-Mart. Could be referencing the store, distribution center, or a truck.
  • West Coast turnarounds - To keep awake for long periods of time and make fast cross-country transports, drugs or pills are used. This is unlawful and not advised.
  • Wiggle wagons - Refers to the trailers when a truck they are pulling two or three trailers.
  • You’re blowing my doors off – A rig going very fast.
  • Yard - A company terminal.
  • Yardstick - A mile marker located on the highway.

CB Radio Lingo: Courtesy 101 on the CB Radio

Conduct on the radio is guided by two principles: respect for users and respect for the CB channel.

  • Don't spend air time apologizing on a busy CB channel if you make a mistake. If the CB channel isn't busy, it's up to you. It takes time to learn CB Lingo
  • When two people are talking, they temporarily "own" the CB channel.
  • Watch the language. There will be a lot of people listening to you, so be careful to what you say. The overall opinion of a truck driver is not the best, so don't make it worse. Just watch you language.
  • Beware of Friendly Ladies. Keep an ear out for ladies you hear on the radio who are particularly kind. They aren't usually truck drivers, but they might be in another line of business (also known as lot lizards).
  • Scams. There are a lot of scams on the CB. Be wary of anyone who claims to need assistance or asks you to stop by the side of the road. What appears to be a demand for help may not be genuine.
  • Don’t Broadcast Certain Info. Don't disclose your freight-carrying plans to others, including its value and destination. This is a tried and true method of obtaining information in order to sabotage or steal the truck, trailer, and load while it's parked or even worse. Be careful.
  • More Trash Talk Around Big Cities. The trash talk is more frequent in bigger cities and at larger chain truck stops. The locals with base stations sometimes join in and increase the amount of filth on the CB.
  • NEVER deliberately key over someone else. That's not a nice thing to do. If two units break for one another, be patient before speaking yourself. Keep in mind that they may need to search for a CB microphone while traveling in a vehicle or avoid furniture on the way to a base station. Remember, the calling unit has the CB channel.
  • If you want to talk - you should expect to talk over someone. It is highly probable that your initial transmissions will unintentionally "walk over" someone else's if you want to talk on a CB channel that is in use. As a result, you must keep them brief. The term "break" is generally understood to be both a request for the CB channel and an apology for stepping on other people's toes. Try
  • If someone speaking to you gets "walked over" so that you can't understand the message, you basically have two options. You may respond to the person you were listening to, "10-9, you were stepped on," or you may figure out what the breaker wants before resuming your previous conversation. You should eventually figure out who the breaker is and what they want. If two people are talking and you wish to contribute a remark, it's most likely that you
  • What should you do if someone doesn't answer your breaks after two or three attempts? Stop and wait for a few minutes, several highway miles (or city blocks in mobile units) or longer. Others may be listening to their radios while you're waiting, so they don't want to hear the same break three times in a row.
  • In un-forseen circumstances, improvise. Take into account the opinions of others. Give people adequate access to the CB channel and avoid doing anything to upset other units.