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Re: Conalrad (was Re: Oldest Non-Comm in Boston)

At 06:55 PM 6/7/98 -0400, you wrote:
>Somehow, this string has reminded me of the old Conelrad days.  During that
>time, I, in my youth, and as an avid DXer, wondered about those intriguing
>640 and 1240 frequencies.
>In teh Boston area, there was nothing on 620, 630, 640, 650, 0r 660, so that
>would have been no problem.  Near 1240kHz, there was WESX (home of Slim
>Pickens) on 1230, nothing on 1220, and nithing on 1240 or 1250.
>Given that 640 was a clear channel, where power up to 50,000 watts waas
>authorized, and 1240 was a graveyard channel, where no more than 1,000 were
>authorized, how much power would Conelrad stations have had?
Stations were allowed to use their regular TXs. At the time. there was no
remote control and the engineer on duty was expected to slip a different
crystal into the oscillator and put the station back on the air. Stations
that operated directionally were expected to switch to ND, and there may
have been some limit on power--maybe 5 kW or 10. Of course, the antenna
tuning would have been all screwed up and I can imagine that, without
complete retuning, a lot of TXs could not stand running for very long at a
frequency substantially different from the normal one. Under emergency
conditions, there was no time for retuning.

In New York's Capital district, where I was in the early to mid 50s (the
heyday of Conelrad), only one station that I visited had a special TX just
for Conelrad. That was WTRY. Even WGY, which had a truly ancient TX, did not
have a special Conelrad TX, although perhaps they kept the auxilliary ready
to go on 640. WTRY had a main 5 kw, an auxiliary 1 kW (the old main), and a
Conelrad TX which was apparently built by the engimneering staff. The
Conelrad TX was good for maybe 800W. or so I was told. Neither WROW, WXKW,
nor WPTR had an auxiliary. I think WOKO and WABY had auxiliaries (also the
former main TXs) but the engineers on duty didn't mention that the
auxiliaries were set up for the Conelrad frequency, which for WOKO and WABY
would have been 1240.

- -------------------------------
Dan Strassberg (Note: Address is CASE SENSITIVE!)
ALL _LOWER_ CASE!!!--> dan.strassberg@worldnet.att.net
(617) 558-4205; Fax (617) 928-4205