Hamvention Find: Rare Hallicrafters SX-11

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Yesterday, at the Dayton Hamvention Flea Market, a Hallicrafters SX-11 caught my eye. I don’t often see the SX-11 in such excellent shape. The seller wanted $500–quite steep for a flea market find.

Then I noticed a plaque on the side of the cabinet.

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This Hallicrafters SX-11 has been in the seller’s family since Bill Halligan himself gave it as a gift in the mid 1930s.

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This is what I love about the flea market–you never know what you’ll find.

Radio connection: English city named after Maine relay station

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Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Richard Cuff, who writes:

“Thought the blog might enjoy this…it’s actually longwave related more than SW, but I know you often include historical items in blog posts.”

Indeed I do, Richard! Thanks for sharing. Here’s an excerpt from the Bangor Daily News:

Former radio relay station in Houlton may lead to new connection to England

HOULTON, Maine — Rugby Radio Station, a radio transmission site in the United Kingdom that once had ties to this Aroostook County community as part of a transoceanic communications network in the 1930s, is being re-imagined as a new city in England that will be aptly named: Houlton.

Rugby Radio Station was a radio transmission facility near the town of Rugby, Warwickshire in England. From 1927 to 1957, Houlton served as a relay station for long-wave transoceanic transmissions between New York and London.

Located on the County Road, the Houlton site was decommissioned on Oct. 1, 1957. That property is home to Roger and Carol Hand.

James Scott, who is the director of planning and communication for Urban and Civic, a property development and investment company based in London, was in Houlton on April 29 to meet with town officials and local historians to get a better feel for the American community that will bear the namesake of the new development.

[…]The Rugby site, which will be renamed Houlton, is 1,100 acres and over the next 20 years it will be developed into 6,000 homes, three primary schools, one secondary school and 1 million square feet of commercial floor space.

“The radio station [in England] was in operation from 1926 until 2005,” Scott said. “The site is really interesting in that it is mainly open fields, with some very large buildings and 12 800-foot masts. It was a very emotive site for a lot of people, but it was not very well developed.”

The masts have all been torn down, but some of the buildings were preserved for historical purposes.

[…]In the early days of transoceanic transmissions, a crew of five individuals worked at the Houlton station from 5 a.m. to 8 p.m., according to a November 1957 article in Long Lines, a company magazine produced by employees of American Telephone and Telegraph. As demand for service increased, coverage was extended from 4 a.m. to midnight.

Houlton was chosen as the relay station because the signal could not reach all the way from England to New York directly. The local site did not have massive antennae reaching upward such as the location in England. Instead, the transmission lines here were placed horizontally and stretched for many miles.

By the mid-1930s, long-wave transmissions declined because of technological improvements in short-wave radios. The Houlton site was also used in the 1940s as a ship-to-shore service.

Read the full article, at the Bangor Daily News site.

Photo tour of the 2016 Dayton Hamvention Flea Market

Weather yesterday morning at the Dayton Hamvention was quite pleasant–cool and partly cloudy (the rain moved in by afternoon).

As I walked around the Hamvention Flea Market yesterday, I snapped a few photos. Here they are, in no particular order: DSC_4319 DSC_4322 DSC_4325 DSC_4324 DSC_4328 DSC_4331 DSC_4330IMG_20160520_075126938_HDR IMG_20160520_075121124_HDR IMG_20160520_074332811_HDR IMG_20160520_075341759 IMG_20160520_075329979 IMG_20160520_075159494_HDR IMG_20160520_075155113 IMG_20160520_075152645 IMG_20160520_075710997_HDR IMG_20160520_075615952 IMG_20160520_075612972 IMG_20160520_075421198 IMG_20160520_075409581 IMG_20160520_080045692_HDR IMG_20160520_075918036 IMG_20160520_075833970_HDR IMG_20160520_075805524_HDR IMG_20160520_075714430_HDR IMG_20160520_080615604 IMG_20160520_080608484_HDR IMG_20160520_080049374_HDR IMG_20160520_081227401 IMG_20160520_080858804 IMG_20160520_080756463_HDR IMG_20160520_081605030 IMG_20160520_081446494 IMG_20160520_081433518 IMG_20160520_081429333 IMG_20160520_081243730 IMG_20160520_081958207_HDR IMG_20160520_081954219 IMG_20160520_081712679 IMG_20160520_081707464_HDR IMG_20160520_081638710 IMG_20160520_082353651 IMG_20160520_082133630 IMG_20160520_082523096 IMG_20160520_082515865 IMG_20160520_082401932 IMG_20160520_082621244 IMG_20160520_082616116 IMG_20160520_082608481 IMG_20160520_082549817 IMG_20160520_082532180 IMG_20160520_082527070 IMG_20160520_083008664 IMG_20160520_082915263 IMG_20160520_082822600_HDR IMG_20160520_082753149 IMG_20160520_082638684 IMG_20160520_083114407_TOP IMG_20160520_083109994 IMG_20160520_083050444 IMG_20160520_083012704_TOP IMG_20160520_084820717 IMG_20160520_084814420 IMG_20160520_084434979_TOP IMG_20160520_084432287_HDR IMG_20160520_083441054 IMG_20160520_084916091 IMG_20160520_084837231_HDR IMG_20160520_084834039_HDR IMG_20160520_084829641_HDR IMG_20160520_084827204 IMG_20160520_084936474_HDR IMG_20160520_084933213_TOP IMG_20160520_084921682 IMG_20160520_091641178_HDR IMG_20160520_091307701 IMG_20160520_090914965_HDR IMG_20160520_091812984 IMG_20160520_091806073 IMG_20160520_091740687 IMG_20160520_091645628_HDR IMG_20160520_111743184 IMG_20160520_092821734_HDR IMG_20160520_091830009 IMG_20160520_111758227 IMG_20160520_111753608 IMG_20160520_162656634_HDR

The fellow who owns the military radio truck mobile unit (above) allowed me to take a few photos inside:IMG_20160520_162600670IMG_20160520_162545778IMG_20160520_162534748IMG_20160520_162631741IMG_20160520_162615428 IMG_20160520_162611742 IMG_20160520_162608672

I hope to post some photos of the inside exhibits tomorrow! Stay tuned!

National Defense Authorization Act passes House, now moves to Senate

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Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Richard Langley, who writes:

This just came to my attention. It seems that William McClellan (Mac) Thornberry, the Republican representative of Texas’s 13th congressional district and Chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, proposed an amendment to H.R.4909 — National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2017 that would revamp how the Voice of America, RFE/RL, Radio Free Asia, the Middle East Broadcasting Networks, etc. are managed:
https://www.congress.gov/amendment/114th-congress/house-amendment/1018/actions

Text of amendment is here:
http://amendments-rules.house.gov/amendments/GECv3517161723182318.pdf

It appears the amendment was accepted by the House and the House passed the amended H.R.4909 — National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2017 and it has moved on to the Senate:
https://www.congress.gov/bill/114th-congress/house-bill/4909

Central Alaska: Paul shares photos of his listening post

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Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Paul Walker, who writes:

You’ve posted shack photos before from other readers.

I guess this is a shack, so here’s mine. By the banks of the thawed and now flowing Yukon River.

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Paul braves some pretty cold weather in the winter to snag elusive DX from this very listening post in Galena, Alaska. He’s shared photos and a video of the frozen Yukon before–click here to check it out.

And, once again, thanks for sharing a little part of your world, Paul!