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Old 09-16-2011, 09:56 PM
 
Location: Chandler, AZ
5,744 posts, read 4,818,915 times
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Most of the 50,000 watt stations on the AM dial cover 30+ states after dark, but living in LA, the one flamethrower that comes in every single night from 1,000 miles away is KOA/Denver, at 850 AM.

I used to be able to listen to WLS/Chuicago (AM 890) until KDXU/St. George, Utah came along many years ago.
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Old 09-16-2011, 11:30 PM
 
Location: Metromess
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You make a good point. It isn't that the AM stations (even weaker ones) can't be heard for long distances. It is rather that there are too many on each frequency interfering with each other. A directional antenna helps separate them. Many radios can simply be moved around to achieve this in order to reorient their ferrite bar internal antennas.
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Old 09-16-2011, 11:54 PM
 
Location: Looking over your shoulder
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^^ You provide a good point catman. I remember a number of years ago; I used the cubical quad antenna (designed for CB radios back then) and connected my general coverage receiver to it. I was amazed at not only the side rejection of AM stations when turning the rotor and redirecting the antenna but also the “back” rejection of unwanted signals from other stations operating on or near the same frequency.

I was always interested in building my own homebrew quad antenna for just AM DX listening back then. If made simple enough and lightweight one could even turn it with a small tv rotor.

No matter how good the radio itself is, the antenna makes all the difference in picking up distant stations and rejecting noise.

With the use of the cubical quad I was able to pickup “electrical static” interference from two different directions. After a little work, I was able to isolate each of those locations and causes and reported it to the local power company engineer. Giving him enough detailed information about the problem, he was able to replace a large power transformer about a mile away and the other source of interference was a faulty or loose hardware on a high voltage power line about a third of a mile away.

Good antennas make a big difference.
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Old 09-17-2011, 02:09 PM
 
Location: Metromess
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Cubical quads are great, but one doesn't see many of them around here because it's too stormy and windy. I have lots of electrical noise here too, but there is so much old wiring in my (old) neighborhood that it goes with the territory.

I fondly remember moving my old Sony CRF-5100 "Earth-Orbiter" (along the lines of a Zenith Trans-Oceanic) around so as to null out some AM broadcast stations in order to listen to others. I still have it, and it still works! I bought it new in 1971 for $425 (a LOT of money then!). Except for perceptible drift on sideband reception, a great receiver.
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Old 09-17-2011, 02:12 PM
 
Location: southwestern USA
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Living here is South Florida the AM radio reception is not great.

Growing up in Wisconsin, we used the pull in Denver and even some real clear nights LA stations.
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Old 09-17-2011, 09:37 PM
 
Location: Looking over your shoulder
28,343 posts, read 24,951,138 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by catman View Post
Cubical quads are great, but one doesn't see many of them around here because it's too stormy and windy. I have lots of electrical noise here too, but there is so much old wiring in my (old) neighborhood that it goes with the territory.

I fondly remember moving my old Sony CRF-5100 "Earth-Orbiter" (along the lines of a Zenith Trans-Oceanic) around so as to null out some AM broadcast stations in order to listen to others. I still have it, and it still works! I bought it new in 1971 for $425 (a LOT of money then!). Except for perceptible drift on sideband reception, a great receiver.
That was a great radio Sony made. Have you seen the price of them now? scary!

I had a Hallicrafters S-108 back in the early 60's. It was a nice radio back then for being a tube type. I had a few others after that but it was my first one that I bought with money earned as a kid working during the summer. DXing the AM band was fun and interesting.
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Old 09-17-2011, 11:29 PM
 
Location: southwestern USA
1,744 posts, read 1,516,643 times
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I am still a baseball fan----but as a kid I would slip the transistor radio under the pillow at night, and listen to the great announcers around the country.

In s.e. Wisconsin we could get Jack Buck and Harry Caray in St. Louis, Ernie Harwell in Detroit, Bob Prince in Pittsburgh, Harry Kallas in Philadelphia, Herb Carnel in Minneapolis, and Marty Brenneman in Cincinnati.

It was fun going around the dial and listen to them paint a picture-----yeah cable tv is great----but for the true enjoyment and imagination long live the transistor radio.

The only problem being, if you fell asleep, the radio ran all night at times, forcing you to cough up for new batteries.
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Old 09-17-2011, 11:57 PM
 
Location: Metromess
11,798 posts, read 20,262,415 times
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I never fell asleep with my transistor radio on. It was always too interesting. Of course, that was before talk radio came along.

AksarbeN: No, I haven't seen the prices of the Sony Earth Orbiters lately. Maybe I'd better have a look! BTW, I still have the Lafayette HE-40 receiver that I got for graduating from high school in 1964. I had a lot of fun with it, although it had low sensitivity about 12 Mhz, having a simple design similar to the Hallicrafters S-120.
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Old 09-21-2011, 06:38 PM
 
15,478 posts, read 18,791,317 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marv101 View Post
Most of the 50,000 watt stations on the AM dial cover 30+ states after dark, but living in LA, the one flamethrower that comes in every single night from 1,000 miles away is KOA/Denver, at 850 AM.

I used to be able to listen to WLS/Chuicago (AM 890) until KDXU/St. George, Utah came along many years ago.
Agreed! KOA refers to itself at times as the 50,000 watt blowtorch. Sure is too!
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Old 09-22-2011, 01:38 AM
 
Location: Metromess
11,798 posts, read 20,262,415 times
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It is indeed. WBAP 820 in the DFW area is another. I can hear it 300 miles away during daylight hours!
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