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500kc in Europe 1972-1974

Here's an amazing recording made by R/O Arthur Goodnow.  Listen to the amazing QRM, astounding notes and the famous calls, all narrated by OM Goodnow.  QSP via David Ring's outstanding Web site at:

http://mikea.ath.cx/www.n1ea.coastalradio.org.uk/

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9MB - Malaysia listen
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9MG - Penang Radio, Malaysia listen
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9VG25 - Malaysia


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9WW - Miri Radio, Malaysia listen
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CBV - Cuba listen
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CLA - Havana Radio, Cuba

CLA was one of our favorite stations.  We'd listen to him all the time and imagine the op sitting beneath a single bare light bulb, smoking a stogie and using a bunch of 1950s equipment just like the 1950s cars on the streets of Havana.  Listen to this recording of his wheel and note that it has a spot of defective keying - just the kind of defect that a punched paper tape with worn out holes would produce.  Maybe our mind picture of CLA was correct! 

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GBTT - RMS Queen Mary

In this wonderful recording made by R/O Arthur Goodnow in 1967 RMS QUEEN MARY/GBTT may be heard in costact with ships and coast stations on the MF band as she departs New York for her last eastbound passage across the Atlantic.  Hear GBTT say "wow" when he hears how many QTC WSC has on the hook.  Before taking them, GBTT sends a SVC message of thanks to the staff of WSC then says "shoot" and WSC starts sending the stack of messages.  As OM Goodnow says, the exchange shows "the practiced precision and indescribable elan of that distinguishes expert manual telegraphy".  Hear also SS UNITED STATES/KJEH send greetings.  This, brothers and sisters, is how it was done by the best of them.  QSP via David Ring's outstanding Web site at:

http://mikea.ath.cx/www.n1ea.coastalradio.org.uk/

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GKB - Portishead Radio, UK

How could Portishead Radio ever go dark?

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GLD - DDD/SOS Sent From Landsend Radio/GLDR/O André CORDIER provided this recording of DDD SOS DDD de GLD which he made in 1989 while on board the tanker Fina Italie/FNVT listen
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HF CQ Markers

Many famous calls can be heard here including KOK, KFS, WNU, WPA, KLC, KPH, ZLP, WCC, CFH... Recorded in the 1980s by R/O Joe Prewitt.  QSP via David Ring's outstanding Web site at:

http://mikea.ath.cx/www.n1ea.coastalradio.org.uk/

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HLG - Seoul Radio, Korea

Still keeping the faith today!

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HLW - Seoul Radio, Korea

Still keeping the faith today!

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HPP - Panama Intelmar Radio, Panama listen
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HSA - Bangcock Radio, Thailand

Traffic list, sounds hand sent.

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KFS - San Francisco Radio, USA

Here's the snappy wheel of KFS on 17Mc. Note that the call is given as KFS/A which designated the original KFS frequencies. KFS/B designated the former KTK frequencies after they were absorbed into the KFS system. There was an intermediate time when both calls were used. We have a transmitter switching panel showing both KFS and KTK. It's in service at our operating position 6.

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KOK - Los Angeles Radio, USA

KOK announces and sends the traffic list. QSP via David Ring's outstanding Web site at:

http://mikea.ath.cx/www.n1ea.coastalradio.org.uk/

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KPH - San Francisco Radio, USA

Here's a unique stereo recording made by ace KPH operator Rick Wahl, "FW".  At the time this recording was made KPH also controlled sister station WCC on Cape Cod.  During this hand sent CQ, FW had the WCC receiver tuned to KPH ans the KPH receiver tuned to WCC.  Who says radio ops don't know how to have fun?

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KPH - San Francisco Radio, USA

Here's a stereo recording of Rick Wahl, "FW", sending traffic to J4SC.  Check out the great yooping note on his transmitter.  Note also FWs flawless keying and how he adroitly handles the breaks form J4SC and patiently waits until he finally QSLs.  With a check of 45/43 the message represented real "revenue for the company" as KPH station managers used to say.

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KPH - San Francisco Radio, USAListen as KPH Senior Morse Operator Ray Smith (RC) stands watch on 16Mc working ships.  Note the poor fists, poor signals and interference ray has to deal with.  But he copies every message with consummate skill - even when they're not in English!  Ray Writes:   "As best I as I can recollect the recording was made in the mid 70s at the height of the Viet Nam war, when one could easily line up 20 to 30 vessels for QSOs and not have time enough usually to satisfy all their needs before it was time to send another traffic list [two hours later]. This was done on the "swing shift" 4PM to midnight, optimum time  for 16 megs up until 11PM or so when sigs from the far east  began to fade out and still too early to receive dx sigs on the 6 & 8 mhz  bands.  The receiver was probably an AR88 or perhaps an HRO500 or the Collins 51J.  As you know when propagation is good it doesn't matter too much what receiver you have. And also bear in mind we had the fishbone antennas which were still in relatively good shape, and aimed directly at the South China Sea or at Tokyo. We didn't have an antenna aimed at Saigon but we did have a Manila antenna which worked quite well for our needs. All in all it was a great time to be a coastal station telegrapher. 73 de RC" listen
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KPH/KFS Recorded in the South China SeaKPH and KFS signals as recorded in the South China Sea by MREO Don Dishinger aboard MV SEALAND DEFENDER/KGJB on 21 September 1986.   Special thanks to Gregory DeMascio, sound engineer at KWMR, for his help with this recording. listen
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KPH/WCC - San Francisco Radio/Cape Cod Radio, USA

Here's Rick Wahl again, now working Arctic Wolf/P3PG6.  This time FW is working the ship via WCC which KPH controlled at the time.  Note the brisk operating style.  It's all business in the commercial service with no room for chit-chat.

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KSM - San Francisco Radio, USA working KXCH on MF

This recording, made on July 25, 2009, begins with the KSM traffic list going out on 426kc and HF.  SS JEREMIAH O'BRIEN/KXCH (with Denice "DA" Stoops at the key) calls on 500 with QTC.  KSM (with Richard "RD" Dillman at the key) says UP 425/426 with 425kc being the ship's working frequency and 426kc the KSM working frequency.  After the ZAL DA says she needs a few more minutes to complete the message.  While he waits, RD enters the contact in the log and re-starts the KSM wheel on HF.  After a few minutes DA calls back with QTC 10 (!) at which time RD realizes he has his work cut out for him.

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KSM San Francisco Radio, USA working NTTH and KKUI

On 21 November 2009 USS CASSIN YOUNG/NTTH contacted KSM on 12Mc with newly restored gear in its radio room.  Signals were good and QTC1 was copied from NTTH.  But in the middle of the exchange SS AMERICAN VICTORY/KKUI also called.  For the first time in who knows how many years there was actual QRM on the 12Mc calling frequency.  KKUI was asked to stand by.  KSM later contacted KKUI.  The op on board asked that their working frequencies be relayed to NTTH for a ship-to-ship contact but by that time NTTH was UNRAISE.

This recording was very kindly made available by OM Todd Morgan.

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LGW/LGB/LGJ/LGX - Rogaland Radio, Norway

Traffic list announcement.

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PKX - Jakarta Radio, Indonesia listen
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PPR - Casimiro De Abreu Radio, Brazil listen
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RJS - Vladivostok Radio

Calling QATQ.  No Joy.  Something interesting tuning up in the background.

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SOS Transmission from "Gibson Girl"The "Gibson Girl" (SCR-578) was US Army Air Force hand cranked life boat transmitter that automatically sent SOS and the auto alarm signal on 500kc.  A manual pushbutton key was also available although it would have been difficult to crank and key ar the same time. This recording is of an actual Gibson Girl transmitter made recently by Jim Mandaville and generously made available for posting here.  The transmission is in MCW.  The receiver used was a RAK-7 with the regeneration set just below oscillation so the pure MCW tone may be heard. listen
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Spark Transmission RecreationIn this recording made in 1970 and 1985 we hear giants of the early radio days recreate the sounds and the procedures of the time when spark was king.  Thorn Mays, Commander Frank Johnstone and Frank Geisel all appear on this narrated recording.  Get out your mill and copy along.   Special thanks to Gregory DeMascio, sound engineer at KWMR, for his help with this recording. listen
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UAI3 - Unknown, Russia/USSR

CQ Wheel.  Nice sharp keying.

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UAI3 - Working traffic

CQ wheel, then calling ship with QRU?  Ship apparently gave QSS as we hear UAI3 sending -...- meaning UP to the working frequency.

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VRX60 - Hongkong Radio, China listen
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WNU - Slidell Radio, USA

See the Historic Coast Stations section of this Web site for photos of WNU in its glory days.

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WOOH - SS MARINE ELECTRIC SOS

Hear the actual autoalarm signal and the SOS message as SS MARINE ELECTRIC/WOOH tells all within hearing range that the vessel is down by the gead and they're preparing to abandon ship.  Coast Guard station NMF Boston answers the call.  QSP via David Ring's outstanding Web site at:

http://mikea.ath.cx/www.n1ea.coastalradio.org.uk/

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WSL - Amagansett Radio, USAHear WSL announce the closure of operations.  See the Radio Archaeology section of this Web site for photos of how the WSL transmitting site looks today.   QSP via David Ring's outstanding Web site at:       http://mikea.ath.cx/www.n1ea.coastalradio.org.uk/ listen
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XFM - Manzanillo, Colima Radio, Mexico

This has GOT to be the slowest wheel on record!

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XSQ - Guangzhou Radio, China listen
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XSV - Tianjin Radio, China listen
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XSW - Kaohsiung Radio, Taiwan listen
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ZLO - Irirangi Radio, New Zealand listen
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ZRQ - South Africa listen
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ZSC - Cape Town Radio, South Africa listen
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ZSJ - Cape Town Radio, South Africa listen
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