Category Archives: Art

Paul’s rare and classic shortwave QSL cards

QSL collage

A couple months ago at my local ham radio club meeting (the NCDXCC), my buddy Paul Greaves (W4FC) mentioned that his passion for amateur radio DXing originated with shortwave broadcaster DXing. He told me:

“When I was a teen I could hardly wait to check the PO Box to see what treasures were awaiting me. After getting a QSL card many times there were many more mailings with program schedules and propaganda. I even got Chairman Mao’s little Red Book.”

Paul noted that he had quite a few SWL QSL cards, so naturally I asked if he’d share a few of his favorites with the SWLing Post. He kindly obliged.

Click on the images below to enlarge.


ABCRadioFront-001

ABCRadioBack-001


GhanaBroadcastingCorpOpenFront-001 GhanaBroadcastingCorpFront-001GhanaBroadcastingCorpBack-001


Radio4VEHFront-001 Radio4VEHBack-001


RadioAustriaFront-001 RadioAustriaBack-001


RadioBelizeFront-001RadioBelizeBack-001


RadioBerlinInternationalFront-001RadioBerlinInternationalBack-001


RadioBucharestFront-001 RadioBucharestBack-001


RadioBudapestFront-001RadioBudapestBack-001


RadioCairoFront-001 RadioCairoBack-001


RadioDenmarkFront-001 RadioDenmarkBack-001


RadioFinlandFront-001RadioFinlandBack-001


RadioKievFront-001 RadioKievBack-001


RadioNacionalDeEspanaFront-001 RadioNacionalDeEspanaBack-001


RadioSofiaFront-001 RadioSofiaBack-001


RadioSwedenFront-001 RadioSwedenBack-001


RadioTiranaFront-001 RadioTiranaBack-001


RadioVoiceOfTheGospelFront-001 RadioVoiceOfTheGospelBack-001


USStationBalboaFront-001 USStationBalboaBack-001


VaticanRadioFront-001 VaticanRadioBack-001


VoiceOfNigeriaFront-001 VoiceOfNigeriaBack-001


WWVHFront-001 WWVHBack-001


Wow–thank you so much for sharing these, Paul! What a beautiful QSL collection!

Post readers: If you also have some classic SWL QSL cards you’d like to share here on the SWLing Post, please contact me!

Radio 4 Doc: Learning to Listen

Atwater-Kent-DialLooking back through my notes this morning, I re-discovered this excellent documentary on the early days of radio listening; how radio changed the way we interacted with music and how we interacted with our radios.

(Source: BBC Radio 4)

As broadcasting took the world by storm in the 1920s, the radio quickly became the hub of many households. Entire families would huddle around their receiver, each person individually connected with their own headset.

But for this first generation of radio listeners, the flexible styles of listening that we habitually employ today were by no means innate – many sat silent and fully attentive, listening just as they would in a concert hall.

Historian Dominic Sandbrook charts how a new, more informal style of listening gradually evolved through the 1920s and 30s, by delving into the diaries of the Austrian musician Heinrich Schenker.

Schenker began to record what he heard on the radio within days of the inaugural broadcast from Austria’s first official station, Radio Wien. This rare and fascinating record, which spans just over a decade, offers tangible evidence of how new approaches to listening emerged over these formative years. We’ll follow Schenker’s journey as the radio shifts from being something that demanded his rapt attention, to eventually becoming an integrated part of his domestic life.

Click here to listen to the full documentary on Radio 4.

Vintage advert: The 1938 Bush S.W.45

Click to enlarge.

Click to enlarge.

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Christopher Brennen, who shares this retro advert (above) from Retropia.

I’m very curious what it must have been like to tune the Bush S.W.45. Seems the big selling feature was its ability to reliably tune closely-spaced stations. The ad claims:

“[T]he Teleflic comes to your assistance by giving you the equivalent of a dial 12 feet long, every station with its own number!”

I’m sure this was a brilliant innovation at the time.

I found this image of a fully-restored S.W.45 in an album by Photobucket user Retired2000:

Fully restored and working.

Indeed, he did an amazing job restoring this radio–check out the full album here.

I love the S.W.45’s dial. From a distance, the graphics almost look like sci-fi–like a panel on the star ship Enterprise.

Thanks again, Christopher!

Stuart Sizer: Heathkit designer, dad, and “bon vivant”

Heathkit-Drawings-2Two weeks ago, through a radio preservation group, I met the son of Heathkit product designer of the 1950s-70s, Stu Sizer––”stylist, artist, maker of models, bon vivant.” His son described the discovery of a few vintage Heathkit brochures, photos, and illustrations his father kept in his family’s basement shop, many of which had been scanned at some point.

Stu Sizer––”stylist, artist, maker of models, bon vivant”––was tasked with crafting Heathkit’s user-friendly and attractive exterior designs. For many years Sizer was Heathkit’s only product designer, and was therefore often busy. “He was a great dad,” his son told me, “but he spent a lot of time in the basement proof-building kits.”  He adds wryly, “Let that be a lesson to the hams of this world.”

Sizer’s son kindly shared with us the following scans and photos of his dad’s work, many of which are original drawings; the series concludes with some clippings featuring Sizer.

PC241116 PC241108 PC241107 PC241106 PC241099 Heathkit-Drawings-16 Heathkit-Drawings-15 Heathkit-Drawings-13 Heathkit-Drawings-12 Heathkit-Drawings-11 Heathkit-Drawings-10 Heathkit-Drawings-9 Heathkit-Drawings-8 Heathkit-Drawings-7 Heathkit-Drawings-6 Heathkit-Drawings-5 Heathkit-Drawings-4 Heathkit-Drawings-3 Heathkit-Drawings Heathkit-Advertisement

On Stuart Sizer

Heathkit-Stu Walter SizerHeathkit-Stu Walter Sizer-3Heathkit-Stu Walter Sizer-2

Alan Roe’s guide to music on shortwave

Shortwave-Music-Program-Schedule

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Richard Langley, for sharing Alan Roe’s excellent guide to music broadcasts on shortwave radio.

Alan Roe (who happens to be an avid SWLing Post reader!) has generously given me permission to post his guide here as a free (PDF) download. Thank you so much, Alan! I’ve already printed this guide and placed it with my WRTH and WWLG.

Click here to download Alan Roe’s guide to music on shortwave (PDF).