MW Free Radio

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Busy end to the month

While Sunday and Monday were much quieter on the MW here than Saturday had been, Tuesday night was very busy. There seemed to be a bit of a nosedive in propagation at around 2000 UTC, but signals picked up again a couple of hours later.

Although I was unable to hear anything during the daytime, I entertained myself listening to the SDR at Twente and to various Dutch pirate signals. There was a nice qso during the early afternoon between Havanna, Sterrenboog, Noordzee, Utopia and Johan. 

I've heard Sterrenboog on my own receivers only once here in England, so it was nice to hear him again even if it was on the SDR. I wondered, however, given his transmitter had been on, if he might flick the switch again during the evening, which would give me a chance to hear him properly. And, sure enough, he did just that and put a decent signal into my location. He was qsoing with Brandaris and Bizon, and I made some recordings, which you can hear below.

Regular readers of the blog might well have seen the list I put together in the first days of 2017 detailing all the stations I heard during 2016. There were 167 in total.

January leaves me with the impression it has been a busy month for the Dutch MW operators, so I thought I'd count up the stations heard. And, incredibly, with just one month of the year gone, I've logged 101 pirates. I reckon three of those have used two names, which brings us down to 98 individual operators. Some feat for just one month. 

Although the rest of the year will see many of these stations logged many more times, I reckon hearing over 200 stations is certainly possible for 2017, which indicates the AM pirate scene is thriving. At a time when the Dutch authorities are cracking down on the hobby and many operators are getting older, this amount of activity is a real positive for the future of the Dutch pirate scene. Long may it continue!

It was particularly pleasing to catch Skywire with a good signal on Tuesday evening. In fact, reception of the station was the best I have ever had. As you can hear from the recording, his 80 watts was doing particularly well. I heard Arizona for the first time in a long while, and Charlie Brown from Twente is a new addition to the band.

Here are the logs for the last few days:

Tuesday, January 31, 2017
1620       1639       Sterrenboog 25222-35333 asking for report
1645       1648       Digitaal 35443-45444 report for Sterrenboog
1630       1649       Rodester 45444 report for Sterrenboog
1643       1701       Charlie Brown 25322 qsoing
1630       1717       Noordzee 35333 qsoing
1640       1728       Brugwachter 45444 qsoing
1645       1744       Batavier 34333 testing with wire antenna then coil
1635       1745       Nachtzwerver weak signal qsoing
1661       1804       Arizona weak signal qsoing
1634       1831       Blauwe Panda weak signal qsoing
1646       1835       Skywire 25332-35333 music programme
1620       1921       Brandaris 35333-45444 asking for report
1623       1930       Bizon 35333-45444 report for Brandaris
1611       1941       Zwarte Boer 23322-34333 music programme

1630       1941       Marianne 44444-55444 music programme
1655       1942       Batavier 35333 report for Brandaris
1640       2027       Batavier weak signal
1660       2217       Batavier 34433 music programme
1614       2219       Monaco 24222-35333 report for Marianne
1645       2219       Monte Carlo 35333 report for Marianne
1633       2237       Barcelona 45434-55444 qsoing
1620       2245       Monte Carlo 44444 qsoing

Monday, January 30, 2017
1642       0944       Noordzee weak signal. Testing, also on 1636 and 1630
1645       1631       Digitaal 25442 calling for qso
1650       1636       Digitaal 25442 calling for qso

Sunday, January 29, 2017
1647       1856       Witte Tornado 44444 music programme
1620       1857       Weduwe 45434-55444 music programme
1611       1936       Jonge Boer 23422 music programme
1635       1949       Yogi Bear en Einstein 45434

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