My subscription to Life expired, but I still have a subscription to Mad.

Wednesday, January 20, 2021

BZ, CL, LUA


Conditions were excellent last night and I added three navigational beacons to the log.

CL on 207 kHz from Charlo, New Brunswick, Canada, transmitting 1000 watts, 544 miles to the north-northeast at 0615 UTC.

LUA on 245 kHz from Luray (Luray Caverns), Virginia, transmitting 25 watts, 355 miles to the southwest at 0557 UTC.

BZ on 407 kHz from Statesboro (Bulloch), Georgia, transmitting 25 watts, 797 miles to the south-southwest at 0522 UTC.

The three were received with my ICOM IC-R8600 receiver and 128-foot Loop on Ground antenna.

Monday, January 18, 2021

WAZX and WLCO


Added two new stations to the log.

WAZX on 1550 kHz transmitting 50,000 watts from Smyra, Georgia, 833 miles to the southwest. Logged on January 9 at 0100Z.

WLCO on 1530 kHz transmitting 5,000 watts from Lapeer, Michigan, 537 miles to the west-northwest. Logged on January 12 at 0225Z.

Received both with my ICOM IC-R8600 receiver and ICOM AH-7000 discone antenna.

Longwave conditions have been very good to excellent lately, but I have not heard anything new.

Monday, January 4, 2021

WTIC's IBOC and WWCO's absence

Before turning in last night, I tuned the AM band to hear what I could hear and came up with a couple of surprises.

WTIC on 1080 kHz, 50,000 watts, 13 miles line-of-sight from my home, seems to have turned off its IBOC, which made reception on 1070 and 1090 kHz difficult, if not impossible. I noticed this when I turned to 1070 and could actually hear stations without having to use my receiver's filters to tune out WTIC's IBOC. I checked again this morning and the IBOC was still off, but it had returned when I checked again this afternoon. It was nice while it lasted.

Tuning further up the band, I noticed that 1240 kHz was absent WWCO's signal (1000 watts, 7 miles from my home). I cannot receive anything but WWCO on 1240 when it is on the air, but last night, there was a cacophony of stations on 1240 typical for a graveyard channel.

I decided to forgo sleep and take advantage of this rare opportunity and try to identify something. Briefly, WFTN popped up for identification – a new one for the log. (WFTN transmits 1000 watts from Franklin, New Hampshire, 142 miles to the north-northeast.)

I hung around for about 15 minutes more until WWCO came back to life and dominated 1240.

Receiver: ICOM IC-R8600, Antenna: 128-ft Loop on Ground (LoG)

WTIC's IBOC'd signal extends from 1065 to 1095 kHz!

Saturday, January 2, 2021

New Year, New Logging


WCPH ran 2-hour tests during the early mornings of December 26 and January 2. I missed the December 26 test, but did catch the January 2 test for about ten minutes. Here is my log for the test.

0155 EST Alarm clock sounds

0156 EST Power up receiver. 

0156 EST Hear WHKW religious talk, a station in the mud playing music and some sweep tones. Discount sweep tones as some kind of anomaly because test was not supposed to start until 0200 EST.

0200 EST sweep tones

0202 EST Morse code too weak to decipher followed by clear code “WCPH WCPH”

0203 EST sequence of 5 or 6 tones rising in pitch

0204 EST Morse code too weak to decipher

0206 EST sweep tones

0207 EST slow Morse code “V V V … WCPH WCPH WCPH”

0209 EST sweep tones (strong enough to see on waterfall display)

0210 EST Morse code “V V V  V V V  D I (sic) WCPH WCPH…”

0211 EST Back to bed

Receiver: ICOM IC-R8600

Antenna: 128-ft Loop on Ground (LoG)

Location: Wolcott, CT, USA – 761 miles to WCPH transmitting 1000 watts from Etowah, Tennessee. Not a new state on AM, but a new station on AM – first new one in 2021!

UPDATE: I learned that the test started one hour earlier than originally scheduled, so the sweep tones I heard (and discounted) at 0156 EST were actually part of the test.

Monday, December 28, 2020

WSTL in the Seekonk River

Monitoring 1220 kHz, I logged two new ones, WGNY which I mentioned in my previous post and a Spanish language station that I was unable to identify. 

Radio-Locator listed a few Spanish stations on 1220, but none of them matched up with what I heard. 

I did record about 20 minutes of the station's audio with my IC-R8600 and I finally had time to listen to the recording looking for clues to identify the station. I clearly heard “Providence” mentioned by the female announcer, so I checked Radio-Locator for 1220 kHz activity in Providence, Rhode Island and WSTL was listed as a “Tropical” format station rather than “Spanish.” Listening to the entire recording confirmed that the station was indeed WSTL transmitting 1,000 watts, 82 miles to the east-northeast.

Radio: ICOM IC-R8600
Antenna: 128-ft LoG