Thursday, September 29, 2016

The return of Radio Delta

The Dutch pirate MW scene in the 1970s was very different to what we have now. If you think there's lot of stations on air these days, there were even more back then. And you could hear plenty of international programmes with all sorts of music, particularly rock, regularly taking the band by storm.

Radio Johnny Walker was one of the big names and, like many stations of the day, he could be found on 1.3 MHz. Another that could often be heard around this area of the band was Radio Delta from Elburg. They later found their way on to shortwave, where they were last heard nine years ago. But it all started out on MW, although they haven't been heard on the band since the late 1970s. Until now.

Last Friday night (September 23) at just before 2300 UTC a signal appeared on 1650 kHz. Reception here in the UK was fair, with peaks up to a sinpo reading of 35333. There were no announcements, just non-stop music. But, nearly 40 years since they were last on the band, this was the first test transmission from Delta. 

On Monday and Tuesday night there were more tests on the frequency - and these are in preparation for programmes with plenty of chat and English music, harking back to the days when Delta first started out. Transmitter power at the moment is around 150 watts into a 60-metre longwire antenna, but there are plans to increase the output to ensure a good signal into Europe.

These are exciting times . . . the Dutch MW pirate scene could really do with another station catering for an international audience. Roll on the day when programmes start for real.

10 comments:

  1. Was there another Delta - Ruurlo box number?

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  2. That's right. There was Delta with PO Box 65 in Ruurlo and Delta with PO Box 41 in Elburg. Delta Ruurlo is still on air on MW and SW but with a different name these days.

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  3. I listened to this station only once in 1993 on 48 mb. Then my reception report was ignored, unlike Radio Delta from Ruurlo. Have this Radio Delta email address to send the recording of that broadcast?

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  4. Is Orang Utan still out there? Used to be a regular on 6206, I think.

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  5. I can always forward your recording, no problem. I haven't heard Orang Utan for some years but I always enjoyed listening to him on 6206. I visited him back in 1993 I think it was...

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  6. So here is the recording from the past https://yadi.sk/d/YRccuJxzvuDJ6
    I heard it on my first communication receiver in Eastern Europe of Russia.

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  7. I think Borderhunter was my favourite from the Lowlands. Is he still active, David?

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  8. Mr Borderhunter does pop up every now and again on 48 metres, 76 metres and last summer on MW. Still that same thumping signal it was in the 1990s

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  9. First heard him spring 1996 on a Tuesday night/Wednesday morning. Great signal and a very listenable programme, similar to many stations of that era.

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  10. Good times. I remember listening to many many late night broadcasts on 76 metres during that era when conditions were so good.

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