I posted a query to the Walcott CB site, home of the Big Bill Combo, and they had a recommendation of this radio.
Stryker SR 440 HP 10 Meter Radio - Electronics Superstore WalcottCB.com
They said this radio would work on 10 meter HAM and CB frequencies. They also said it would work with my existing 4' firestick CB antenna. That would be nice in that it would just replace my existing radio and I could still talk to people on CB frequencies as well as 10 meter HAM
Yes, that is true for the most part. The CB band is 27 MHz and falls within the 11 Meter band, which is close enough in wavelength to the 10 Meter band that one antenna could be tuned as a compromise for both of those bands, although not ideally for either.
The 10 Meter band uses Single Side Band (SSB) for voice, which is a refinement of AM that focuses more power in less bandwidth. You can reach thousands of miles (though probably not with your Firestick antenna) on 10 Meter SSB. SSB is more difficult to tune than VHF FM, and the voice quality is much less than VHF FM. In the right solar conditions, you could work the world on 10 Meters, but unfortunately no one else in your trail group or 4WD club is likely to have a 10 Meter radio to talk to you.
Nothing wrong with 10 Meter radios at all for there intended purpose, but trail commo is not their intended purpose. I suspect that Walcott is trying to sell you one because that is the only ham-band radio they have.
but what about 2 meter HAM? Am I still missing out?
Yes! You would be missing out completely on the 2 Meter band, which is where 98.5% of all trail communications are going to be (and the small remainder is probably going to be on the 70 cm band). the 2 Meter (and 70 cm) band is ideal for trail commo because it uses FM for crystal-clear voice and still has enough power to go way beyond the largest trail or extended group on a long trail. If you are serious about 4WD trail communication (as opposed to just ham radio as a hobby to contact people far away), a 2 Meter radio is required.
It would be nice to talk to more people and I don't want to end up with three radios and six antennas on the FJ. That's kind of the electronic equivalent of a cat lady I think. :-)
LOL, there are dedicated hams who's cars and trucks look just like that.
Again, if you are serious about trail communication only (discounting other aspects of the hobby for the present) then you will have to commit to two radios and two antennas, a CB and a 2 Meter ham. In a perfect world, every serious off-road enthusiast would get their Technician-class license and a 2 Meter radio and we could completely ditch the vastly-inferior CB, but until that happens most of us are still going to want to keep a CB radio to communicate with the unenlightened masses and rednecks who still persist in using them.
Hope this is helpful RD and hasn't just confused you further.