Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Frans Goddijn, who writes:
In the following video, I show a little loop antenna that I bought online from AliExpress:
On arrival one of the parts, the semi-transparant box with variable capacitor for antenna tuning turned out to be broken due to the bigger box having been thrown around in transit.
The seller promptly provided me with the necessary part (plus extra) for repairs.
Yesterday I repaired it and today I assembled the antenna and tested it a bit in the afternoon and early evening as soon as reception started to get well enough.
It’s a fun antenna, affordable too.
The video shows how effective the variable capacitor is.
Thank you, Frans. That is certainly a very affordable passive loop option. If you’re an urban QRPer, all the better. I should also mention, you have one of the nicest radio operating positions out there!
The international service of the Sri Lankan Sri Lanka Broadcasting Corporation (SLBC) recently doubled its Tamil Service airtime to two hours, on 873 kHz AM (medium wave) from Puttalam transmitter. The new schedule is 0130-0330 UTC (7.00 am to 9.00 am IST). This is partly in response to individual efforts of listeners, many in the southern part of India, in Bengaluru. Introducing this change, Colombo International Radio also announced that shortly they are going to use DRM on 1548 kHz! This will be done by is using the old transmitter of Deutsche Welle located in the north of Sri Lanka at Trincomalee. The Sri Lankan public broadcaster has started airing the DRM announcement:
The publicity for the new DRM service is in full swing. See video:
On the occasion of Czech Radio’s centenary, we asked our listeners to let us know where they heard our special programme on that day in order to map Radio Prague International’s broadcast reach today. Here are at least some of the many letters and photos which you have sent us. Thank you to all our loyal fans.
George Jolly, who was listening to our special programme over the internet, wrote from Houston, Texas:
“Thank you so much for the special program today celebrating your 100 years of radio. If I were not so far away, I would surely visit you on Saturday. It means a lot to me that you continue the tradition of the ‘radio magazine’. Hearing the opera excerpt and other recordings from the past was wonderful!
“I love old music and old technology like radio, and I love that you are keeping their spirit alive and new again for today’s world. I am so grateful to celebrate your centenary with you from afar.”
Another listener from the United States is Timothy Marecki, who wrote us from New Port Richey in Florida: Continue reading →
I started this series several months ago with pictures of Ecos del Torbes and other stations in San Cristóbal, Venezuela. This time I want to take you to the other places I visited on that trip to Andean Venezuela in January 1995.
When I started DXing in the early 1970s, Venezuelans were the most commonly heard Latin American shortwave stations. The 90- and 60-meter bands were full of them and there were more than a few to be heard in the 49- and even 31-meter bands. But the Venezuelans began abandoning shortwave before other countries in the region and by the late 1970s their numbers had been considerably thinned. Only a handful remained in the early 1990s.
This radio dial [click to enlarge] goes back to a time when Latin American stations were found all over the radio bands.
One of the last Venezuelan stations to leave shortwave in the 1990s was Radio Valera in the busy commercial city of Valera.
For decades, Radio Valera was one of the best heard and most consistent Venezuelan stations on 60 meters. Roque Torres Aguilar, waving on the left side, was station manager at the time of my visit.
I’ve found listings in DX publications for their 4840 kHz frequency as far back as 1946.
I was given this 59th anniversary key chain when I visited Radio Valera in January 1995. So the station must have begun around 1935.
Station studio in 1995.
A second shortwave station in the state of Trujillo was Radio Trujillo in the nearby town of the same name. Broadcasting on 3295 kHz, they were one of the easier catches in the 90-meter band in the early 1970s but were gone by the late 1970s. Continue reading →
Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Bill Tilford, who shares the following press release:
WBCQ’s Radio Angela, which began broadcasting a little over a year ago, was a bold experiment in quality programming. It carried world music (including the last Greek music on shortwave after Greece itself stopped broadcasting on the SW bands), great literature read aloud, new music releases by independent artists, some of the best vintage music on any radio band, science and comedy. It avoided the political and religious programming about which so many shortwave listeners love to complain but which are also the bread and butter that keep most private shortwave stations alive. The production standards were frequently nearly public radio quality even when not sourced from public radio. We also brought several new voices from around the world onto the shortwave bands who had never been there before.
It was known from day one that its long term success would depend upon attracting an adequate amount of both listener contributions and program buyers outside of regular core hours.
Critically and artistically, Radio Angela was a great success, and many thanks to all who gave us public and/or private support of any kind. Financially, however, this has not proven to be viable. The airtime buyers didn’t come, and neither did enough donors. Consequently, Radio Angela’s last transmission as Radio Angela will be May 31 (June 1 0200-0412 UTC).
Some individual programs are likely to continue in some form on the WBCQ grid, my own individual flagship programs (From the Isle of Music and Uncle Bill’s Melting Pot) will be going on hiatus for a least a month, possibly longer, on both 5130 and 7490, and my other shows will be discontinued altogether. This is a purely financial matter, and if we could find a nice wealthy philanthropist who loves shortwave, perhaps this wouldn’t need to happen.
This is hardly the first quality venture on radio or TV to end this way – Radio Angela had more weekly broadcasts than the original Outer Limits television series to name but one example, and the roads of radio generally are littered with the corpses of worthy broadcasting concepts and stillborn projects. My thanks to Angela and Allan Weiner for going out on a limb and backing the project, to all the content providers for their hard work and excellence, to the technical staff, some of whom are no longer with us, and to those of you who cared that we were on the air.
Those who lament the religious and political programming that keep private shortwave stations alive are welcome to consider us a case study in what is likely to happen without those dollars. I obviously lack the right answer, but I have learned a great deal about the right questions.
Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Dan Robinson, who writes:
Not a false alarm this time — one of the most striking appearances of a classic shortwave receiver was in Battle of the Bulge, the 1960’s movie about the great battle between German and U.S. forces during World War II, lasting five weeks between the end of 1944 and beginning of 1945. This movie had some of the biggest stars of the time, including Henry Fonda, Robert Ryan, Telly Savalas, and Charles Bronson. Robert Shaw played the German commander of the offensive in the Ardennes and scenes in his command trailer showed a beautiful Hallicrafters SX-28/A which audiences are led to believe was both a transmitter and a receiver.
In this scene, the radio is shown as Shaw is chewed out by his superior in the trailer for not making more progress on the battlefield.
The SX-28 is one of the most amazing radios Hallicrafters made. Thanks for sharing this, Dan!
BBC Radio 4 begins information campaign to transition listeners from Long Wave
The BBC has begun an information campaign to help transition listeners of Radio 4 Long Wave (LW) to alternative BBC platforms.
This follows the announcement in May 2022 that the BBC is to stop scheduling separate content for Radio 4 LW in anticipation of the closure of the LW platform, owned and operated by a third party, which is coming to the end of its life as a technology.
Radio 4 LW is starting to run targeted on air trails from today, giving listeners plenty of advance notice of the coming changes.
All programmes on Radio 4 LW – Shipping Forecast, Daily Service, Yesterday in Parliament and Test Match Special – will continue to be available on other BBC platforms.
Digital listening has grown significantly over the past decade as the range of alternatives has become easier to switch to, and listeners are increasingly accessing content elsewhere on the BBC. The audiences for Radio 4 LW are small, but we know there are some who still tune in on LW for their favourite programmes.
The BBC is working with key organisations so that specific audiences will be notified how they can switch to other BBC platforms to hear programmes between now and the end of Radio 4 LW separate scheduling in March 2024.
The Shipping Forecast will cease to be broadcast four times a day, and will instead be available via the Radio 4 FM simulcast twice a day (weekdays) and three times a day (weekends) as well as on DAB and BBC Sounds.
It will also continue to be broadcast via HM Coastguard’s channels. Whilst modern technology and new methods means the Shipping Forecast is no longer integral to mariners, the BBC has been working closely with the Maritime and Coastguard Agency and the Met Office to ensure seafarers have adequate advance notice of the changes taking place next year and can prepare accordingly.
The Daily Service and the longer version of Yesterday in Parliament will also continue on LW until March 2024 and will then be available on BBC Radio 4 Extra and BBC Sounds.
Yesterday in Parliament will still be broadcast on the Today programme on Radio 4 FM/DAB.
Test Match Special is already available uninterrupted on Radio 5 Sports Extra and BBC Sounds where listeners will continue to be able to access it digitally. All scheduled cricket matches on Radio 4 LW will still be broadcast this summer, for the final time. Radio 4 LW listeners will be reminded where they can hear the cricket across the BBC going forward.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and KHKA, CBS 1500,
unveiled Hawaii’s first Primary Entry Point (PEP) emergency broadcast
facility today. The KHKA facility, located at Kahauiki Village, joins
FEMA’s National Public Warning System (NPWS), which provides critical
information to the public before, during, and after emergency incidents
The NPWS emergency broadcast facility, part of the Integrated Public
Alert and Warning System (IPAWS), includes improved operational
capabilities for up to two months, expanded broadcast capacity,
emergency power generation, and other resilient protective measures for
all types of hazardous events, increasing KHKA’s ability to continue
broadcasting during emergencies.
In the event of a disaster, trained staff can operate the emergency
facilities for several weeks to keep KHKA on air to broadcast messages
from the local, state, and federal governments, as well as community
– – –
FEMA Unveils Disaster-Resistant Broadcast Studio in Hawaii KHNL-TV Honolulu, HI
As the official start of hurricane season approaches on June 1, federal
and local emergency officials introduced a critical tool Wednesday to
keep the public informed in the event of a disaster.
FEMA unveiled a brand new emergency broadcast radio studio that sits on
the grounds of Kahauiki village near Keehi Lagoon.
The facility features a full media setup designed to keep transmitting
communications through any type of threat.
“Everything from tsunamis to earthquakes to tornadoes to hurricanes,”
said FEMA national public warning system manager Manny Centeno.
– – –
Prepared for Anything: Hawaii’s Emergency Broadcast Studio KHON-TV Honolulu, HI
A new facility on Oahu is already relaying information to help recovery
efforts in Guam, even though Hawaii is almost 4,000 miles away.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency gave a tour of their new
emergency broadcast studio on Wednesday, May 24; but the hope is that
locals never need to use it.
The footprint of the studio itself is small, but it is quite a tank. It
is engineered to keep broadcasting before, during and after natural
emergencies like hurricanes and tsunamis. The station is even made to
withstand man-made catastrophes.
“This thing is designed to protect against high-altitude electromagnetic
pulse, EMP. So, this is EMP protected. it is also chemical, biological,
radiological and nuclear protected,” said FEMA National Public Warning
System project manager Manny Centeno.
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