Monthly Archives: January 2024

“The Intercept Watch”

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Bill Meara who writes:

Thomas: I found this in an old radio magazine. SWLPost is on The Intercept Watch!

Radio. July 1934

73 Bill

How cool! Thank you for sharing, Bill!

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LRA 36 Shortwave Broadcasts: Temporarily Off The Air

Many thanks to SWLig Post contributor, Adrian Korol, who shares the following announcement from Horacio Nigro:

Dear Colleagues,

Alejandro Petrecca (Chief of the LRA1 Transmitter Plant) and Claudio García (technical operator of Radio Nacional El Bolsón and amateur radio operator with previous experience at LRA 36) finally arrived at Joint Antarctic Base Esperanza today. Their mission is to perform maintenance and optimization work on the audio chain, install a new console, and place the FM antenna and the tower that will be used for the new LRA 36 shortwave transmitter.

Upon arrival, they discovered that the output stage of the Collins HF 80 transmitter, which is used to transmit LRA 36 programs on 15476 kHz, was burned out. They also found that the tower sections for the shortwave antenna and the audio console had not yet arrived at the base.

LRA 36 broadcast regularly until January 13. Then, Juan Benavente, the architect of many if not all of LRA 36’s achievements in recent years, was unfairly recalled. With Benavente’s departure, the radio was left in the hands of unqualified people, which is evident by the fact that the transmitter burned out the day after Benavente returned.

The causes of the fire are being investigated, but it is possible that it was due to the incompetence of those who remained at the base. Juan and Nicole Valdebenito (operator) know the sequences necessary to start up the transmitter by heart, but this was not the case with those who came after them.

There are many issues surrounding this matter, but it would be very important to spread this news among colleagues around the world.

At this time, Petrecca and García are installing the FM antenna for local coverage.

It is estimated that the new Studio Console and audio distributor donated by Trialcom, thanks to a personal effort by Juan Benavente, will arrive at Joint Antarctic Base Esperanza by the end of next week.

The output board of the transmitter is also being sent to replace the burned one and keep it in operation during February.

If Juan Benavente had been coordinating, none of these situations would have occurred. Unfortunately, political favors promoted by the previous administration left LRA 36 abandoned in its most important mission, which is shortwave transmission.

JUAN BENAVENTE must return to LRA 36 as soon as possible to sustain the radio until the arrival of the donated new transmitter.

I estimate that if they agree and the planets align, we could resume LRA 36 shortwave broadcasts before the end of February.

Thank you for spreading the above information.

From Horacio Nigro, Montevideo, Uruguay

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Kyodo News Radiofax: Japan Navigational Warnings

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Carlos Latuff, who shares the Radiofax news report (above) from Kyodo News Agency and his amazing artwork (below) detailing the news and his Radiofax reception:

Carlos notes,

“One thing is certain. Anyone who follows Kyodo News via radiofax and, especially, the navigational warnings, never dies of boredom!”

No kidding, Carlos. That’s scary stuff for those making way through the Gulf of Aden.

Thank you for sharing!

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Don Moore’s Photo Album: Costa Rica (Part Two)

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Don Moore–noted author, traveler, and DXer–for the latest installment of his Photo Album guest post series:

Don Moore’s Photo Album: Costa Rica (Part Two)

by Don Moore

It’s been three months since the last time I put together one of these pieces because I was busy finishing my book, Tales of a Vagabond DXer [Note: SWLing Post Amazon affiliate link]. You may have seen the announcement about it here a few weeks ago. This series should appear more regularly in 2024 as I plan to concentrate on small writing projects for a while!

Back in August, we looked at five Costa Rican shortwave stations that I visited in 1990. This time I’m going to feature just one station, but a station with a very interesting story. My book has an updated and rewritten version of the article I wrote about it for Monitoring Times magazine in the early 1990s. But the book doesn’t have many photos as adding those significantly increases the price. So, here are the pictures and a little bit about the station.

This seven-and-a-half-watt transmitter was the first transmitter for TI4NRH, the first shortwave broadcast station in Latin America. It was built by Amando Céspedes Marín in Heredia, Costa Rica in 1928. Don Amando operated a small medium wave station and hoped that by using shortwave he could reach listeners in all of Costa Rica. Instead, he gained an audience all around the world. His little TI4NRH became one of the most popular radio stations for shortwave listeners throughout the 1930s until he shut it down at the beginning of World War Two. This portrait of Don Amando was made around that time.

I remembered reading about TI4NRH in an old-timer’s article, so while I was in Costa Rica I went to Heredia hoping to find someone who could tell me where the station had operated from. I wanted to get a picture of the building. Instead, I found that everything was still there in the dimly lit backroom of the family house. (The pictures are grainy as the room was very dark.) Don Amando had passed away in 1976 but his never-married daughter, Lydylia, still lived there and treated the room as a shrine to her departed father.

The Céspedes family house was on a side street a few blocks south of the main plaza in Heredia. The radio station was located in the middle section, behind the white door.

Plaque on the front door commemorating the building as the birthplace of radio in Costa Rica.

Financial support from listeners helped TI4NRH buy new transmitters and raise power. This 300-watt transmitter was the last one used.

Radio amateurs in the USA and Canada raised money to buy and ship this antenna tower to TI4NRH in the late 1930s.

Nothing was removed after the station closed down but the space became a storage room for the family. This is how it looked in June 1990.

The bottom of that original 7 ½ watt transmitter. Unfortunately, the photo came out very dark in the dimly lit room.

The walls were covered with yellowing 1930s amateur radio QSL cards.

This letter written by Arthur Kopf, an American working in the Panama Canal Zone, was the first report received by TI4NRH. That made it the first reception report ever written to a Latin American shortwave broadcast station.

Don Amando’s daughter Lydylia was the guardian of her father’s legacy.

A view showing the house and neighboring antenna tower.

TI4NRH was only a hobby for Don Amando. He made a living by operating a print shop and photography studio. With financial support from the Zenith Corporation, he published a monthly radio magazine (primarily in Spanish) for several years in the 1930s.

In 1928, Philadelphia DXer Charles Schroeder became the first North American DXer to log a Latin American SWBC station when he heard TI4NRH. He not only got a QSL for his reception, TI4NRH sent him a beautiful chair made out of Costa Rican tropical hard woods. The chair was sent in pieces with instructions for assembly and arrived in just twelve days. Mr. Schroeder passed away in 1956, but in 2005 I heard from Schroeder’s daughter, who still had the chair. She sent these photos.

Finding TI4NRH was like finding an unknown time capsule. It was one of the biggest highlights of both my DX career and my travels. And I always hoped to return. In the late 1990s I learned that Lydylia had passed away and that one of her nephews had moved into the house. Sometime around 2010 the antenna tower had become unsafe so the family had it torn down and sold for scrap. However, other than donating a few items to the city museum (something Lydylia had refused to do), the family continued to hold on to Don Amando’s legacy. In 2017, a group of Costa Rican radio amateurs visited the house and published their photos, which were much better than my old ones.

I would like to say that everything is still there for the next visiting DXers to see. But in looking for links to include in this piece I came across some very sad news. The house was demolished in July 2021. Apparently the next generation of the family (Don Amando’s great-grandchildren) had no interest in maintaining the old house and Costa Rica doesn’t have a good program to preserve historical sites. So the city of Heredia had the house torn down. The news article I found (which was very critical of the destruction) didn’t even know what had happened to the station memorabilia that had been in the house. So, unfortunately, this story does not have a happy ending.


To see the exact location of where TI4NRH was, open Google Maps and search for the following coordinates: 9.995550958984419, -84.11618361000325 then switch from map view to satellite view.

The main house was where the shiny tin roof is today (2024). Just to the right is another building with a red roof. That is where the wing with the station and the antenna tower were.

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Thank you, friends…

Thank you to all of the notes of support and kindness I’ve received during my mother’s Hospice care and after her passing.

Mom’s memorial service was yesterday; and while it was a somber day, it was brightened by this large, beautiful floral arrangement that arrived at the church where the service was held:

Here’s the message on the card that accompanied the arrangement:

This was truly kind and warmed all of our hearts.

Thank you so very much, friends. ~

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Paul Walker, Program Director: KSKO 89.5 FM McGrath, Alaska, USA and

Afternoon Host:       Hits 106 KLMI-FM Laramie, Wyoming, USA


KSKO on shortwave today, 59000khz at 2100UTC for an hour via Spaceline Bulgaria to Europe!


Thanks for the heads-up Paul!

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We love pets and maps

Hi all SWLing Post Community, FastRadioBurst 23 from the Imaginary Stations crew here letting you know that this week we present another installment of WDWD – Off the Map Radio. Programme 2 in the series will be going out to Europe via the services of Shortwave Gold on Sunday 28th January 2024 at 1000/1400 hrs UTC on 6160 kHz and then at 2100 UTC on 3975 kHz. Enjoy more journeys and tunes about locations and place names.

Then on early Monday 29th January 2024 we have KPET for all pet lovers out there at 0300 UTC on 9395 kHz via WRMI. We’ll have songs for your cat, dog and guinea pig alongside reviews of dry cat food, dog collars and hamster chews. It will be one exciting show so do tune in!

For more information on the shows please email [email protected] and check out our old shows here.

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