WFPB Can Be Heard Clearly North Of Boston

Laurence Glavin
Sat Jan 8 13:05:21 EST 2005

U-Mass Boston's AM repeater, WFPB-AM 1170 in Orleans, MA usually
has very little signal north of Boston.  It's a directional station
that currently protects WDIS (as in dismal) in Norfolk.
(When the 1170 in Orleans went on the air, at about the
time Carly Simon was writing "You're So Vain",  there was 
no 1170 in Norfolk...why was it directional in the first place then?)
Anyway, at this very minute, 12:55 pm est 01/08/05, WFPB
is quite audible north of Boston.  I first noticed it this
morning while checking my radio that displays relative 
signal strength, and that picks up AMs from all directions.
It overwhelmed WDIS.  Then I checked the portable GE radio that
neverytheless is NOT a super-radio but is very fine indeed...
I use it to listen to LTAR (LTAR alert: tomorrow at 11:00 AM
on WJIB;  next Sunday at 8:00 am on WJTO) this unit is 
directional, so when I point it SW, WDIS comes in fairly well
over WFPB;  but usually when I point it SE, WDIS weakens (even more)
and WFPB can be heard faintly...this morning WFBP came it very
well, something that never happens to WBUR-AM 1240.
I suppose this is because AM 1240 is on the south-facing coast;
WFPB is at the north-facing coast.  I frequently ride the
Cape Cod bicycle trail from Harwich to Orleans, and you go right
by the AM 1170/FM 104.7 towers on the right with the Bay on your left.
Can a directional station "accidentally" go NDA, or
might they be doing something with one tower so they're
using the other in non-directinal mode?   Inquiring minds
wish to know.

Laurence Glavin
Methuen, MA

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