Sunday, August 30, 2015

Something old and something new

The last few days have been interesting in a number of ways. Activity levels from the sun have been creating very volatile conditions, particularly on shortwave with signals quickly fading out from very strong to nothing in no time at all. Tonight, for example, Cupid Radio was blasting away on 6281 one minute and then he was gone the next.

MW seems a little more stable than in recent weeks, although perhaps the new loop antenna at this side is working the magic. It certainly seems to be helping with reception in the early morning, and there was a nice surprise on Wednesday when I heard Calipso on 1620 kHz. It's been a good while since I heard him on the air as he's been taking a more cautions approach in recent months. While it was good to hear this well-established pirate on the air again, it was also equally refreshing to catch a new name, for me anyway, later in the day when hearing Baantje on the same frequency.

Here's the lowdown with my recent logs:

Saturday, August 29, 2015
1665          1859         Matrix 35333 music programme
1636          1907         Keizer en Kezierin 35333 music programme
1648          2010         Moby Dick 45444 music programme
1656          2013         Malibu 25222-35333 music programme
1620          2109         Barones 35333-45444 music programme
1655          2139         Witte Raaf 35333-45444 music programme
1638          2307         Monte Carlo 45444 qsoing
1638          2314         Calimero 55444 qsoing
1630          2323         Monte Carlo 45444 qsoing

Friday, August 28, 2015
1656          2008         Mustang 54444
1638          2009         Armada 45444-55544 music programme
1646          2029         Zwarte Bizon 45434 qsoing
1645          2032         Blauwe Reiger 35333-44444 qsoing
1646          2036         Mustang 55444 qsoing
1624          2054         Boogschutter 25222 qsoing
1638          2105         Calimero 55544 music programme
1645          2111         Armada 45434 qsoing
1665          2120         Polkaman 35333
1645          2128         Noordzee 44333 qsoing

Thursday, August 27, 2015
1620          2237         Spakenburg 45333-45444 music programme
1625          2259         Jeneverstoker 34333 asking for report
1636          2333         Pandora 45434 report for Stoker

Wednesday, August 26, 2015
1620          0445         Calipso 25222-45454 music programme
1640          1908         Veronica 35222-45333 music programme
1631          1909         Marksramer (Friesland) 35232 music programme
1620          1917         Baantje 35232-35333 music programme
1539          2031         Energy FM 33433
1620          2053         Saporro 45333 report for Baantje
1633          2106         Barcelona 44444-55444 music programme
1638          2108         Calimero 55444 music programme


Observations

  • There has been plenty of static knocking around on MW in the last few days with thunderstorms around Europe playing their part. Matrix was breaking through the noise tonight (Saturday) really well with his low-power transmitter, as was Malibu. And it was good to catch Witte Raaf for the first time in ages, and a pleasure to have Barones accompanying me on 1620 as I update the blog
  • As I mentioned, I was also listening to SW tonight and it was a surprise to catch Desperado on 6265 kHz a couple of weeks after I heard him on 1606 and 1611 kHz on MW. It was his first time on SW and he was on air all evening with just 35 watts and an impressive signal
  • On Friday evening there was an entertaining qso started off by a powerhouse signal from Mustang. It's been a while since I heard the distinguished voice of the Zwaaaaaaaaaarte Bizon, who always makes me smile with his iconic ID. Also involved in the qso was Boogschutter. A few months ago there was a station using this name together with a robotic voice, but they are two different stations. This one was considerably weaker, although perfectly audible here, and seemingly running far less power. It was another new name for me. Here's how the stations qsoing were coming across the North Sea:



  • Spakenburg has returned to the air recently after a break. He's using a different vertical antenna now to when he was previously on air, although he's often experimenting with new designs. He tells me this one has a bad swr but is nevertheless working well. In fact he received a report from Italy on Thursday night with a sinpo of 55555. The signal was pretty good here too:

  • Baantje is not a regular on MW and it was the first time I had heard him when catching his signal on 1620 on Wednesday evening. The static crashes were quite heavy that night, so reception was disturbed, but his low-power signal was doing pretty well. When he closed down he had a chat to Saporro, who was coming in a little bit stronger, in fact perhaps the best I have heard him. He was trying out a new transmitter, and it gets a thumbs-up from here!


  • Some months ago internet station Energy was getting regular relays on 1476 kHz. What appears to be the same transmitter popped up on 1539 on Wednesday evening. The frequency is nowhere near as clear and there was plenty of mixing going on with other signals but the strength was pretty good. It would be great if whoever is responsible for these relays were to come on air with some programmes

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