...The radios we'll always remember

 The cavalcade of entry-level Ham and SWL radios continues with the addition of Allied - Knight Kit!  
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Two Teens, a Ham Radio, and Operation Deep Freeze

A bit of Ham Radio history that deserves to be remembered
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1963 FCC Film

with FCC Chairman Newton N. Minow
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"The Old Days of Ham Radio"

G3OJV perspective from the other end of DX
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"THE HAM'S WIDE WORLD"

1960s ARRL Promotional Film


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"Good Morning Vietnam!"

Army Specialist Pat Sajak on AFVN
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The Armed Forces Radio and Television Service

featuring Gary Owens - "The Music Guy" show from 1967


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General Information
Posted: 04/27/2022
Created By: Robert Nickels (W9RAN)
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SOLVED: The Mystery of the Knight Kit T-400!

former Knight Kit engineer tells "the rest of the story"  You started with a 400 watt CW transmitter using a 7034/4X150A final at a cost of $395.00.The SSB generator kit was an additional $69.95.The AM modulator kit was an additional $24.95.The Speech amplifier kit was $9.95.A 3 inch monitor scope kit was $37.95.A kit to add 6 meters was $7.50.It was rated at 400 watts input on CW and AM, and at 600 watts PEP input on SSB.What was not to like about...  READ MORE
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Other nets and on-air events
Posted: 04/26/2022
Created By: Robert Nickels (W9RAN)
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Monitoring The Airwaves During Ukrainian Conflict

Using Shortwave and WebSDRs Web-based Software Defined Radios (SDR) have exploded in popularity in recent years. SDRs located in Ukraine give you the ability to monitor the airwaves from the middle of potential military action. As of this writing, there are still WebSDRs active within Ukraine. However, there have been warnings about what running a SDR available to the Internet could mean for Ukrainian citizens as at least on...  READ MORE
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Site Information
Posted: 04/17/2022
Created By: Robert Nickels (W9RAN)
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New feature on this site: "Looking Back"

Ham radio and related history The newest feature on this site is called “Looking Back” - where you will find articles of a general historical nature about ham radio and related fields.   The first is a look at the Boy Scout RADIO Merit Badge over the years.   Did you earn the   RADIO MERIT BADGE ?...  READ MORE
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About our members
Posted: 04/09/2022
Created By: Robert Nickels (W9RAN)
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Harry N9CQX joins our Blog Staff

Chicago Radio (and related) Memories Long time radio listener, historian, and Chicagoland radio guru Harry N9CQX will be contributing to a new Blog on this site.   Many area hams know Harry the net manager for the Midwest Classic Radio Net and a frequent AM operator but with decades of radio collecting experience and having grown up in Chicago as a kid who was fascinated with radio, he's got a lot of stories to tell and interest...  READ MORE
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About our members
Posted: 03/28/2022
Created By: Robert Nickels (W9RAN)
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KI8BQ, Silent Key

Best friend to midwest AMers has passed Gary Martin KI8BQ, pictured here with Mike N8ECR(SK) at one of his annual AM BBQ-swap get-togethers, sadly became a silent key on March 26, 2022.    He will be missed by everyone who has enjoyed his hospitality and heard his friendly voice on the AM nets.  ObituaryGary V. Martin age 78 of Sturgis, Michigan passed away Saturday afternoon, March 26, 2022 at his home. He was born ...  READ MORE
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Other nets and on-air events
Posted: 03/17/2022
Created By: Robert Nickels (W9RAN)
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Vatican Radio joins Shortwave broadcasting to Ukraine

as reported by SWL STATION I0-5639 Vatican Radio has decided to intensify, starting from March 21, shortwave broadcasts to Russia and Ukraine. The decision was made with the aim of "better responding, in this moment in which war is raging, to our mission: to bring hope, the words of the Pope and the reading of facts through the light of the Gospel to the whole world" as it comes. reported in the communiqué of the Holy See broadcast...  READ MORE
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Site Information
Posted: 03/17/2022
Created By: Robert Nickels (W9RAN)
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"What's New?"

a new section on this website Remember the thrill when a new Allied catalog would arrive in the mail?    Or the monthly “New Products” columns in the ham and electronics magazines where we got the first glimpse of a new product?Now we've got a place for New Product news and information on the DX-60.net website:    WHAT'S NEW?   Check it out often!...  READ MORE
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Other nets and on-air events
Posted: 03/15/2022
Created By: Robert Nickels (W9RAN)
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SHORTWAVES FOR FREEDOM (Fund raiser)

Crowdfunded shortwave broadcasting to Russia and Ukraine Because the parent agency of VOA and Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, the U.S. Agency for Global Media, apparently has decided not to air such transmissions on shortwave (unlike the BBC).    Since their programs are in the public domain,  the group Shortwaves for Freedom plans to air them live and on tape delay by purchasing air time on commercial shortwave stations in the United St...  READ MORE
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Other nets and on-air events
Posted: 03/09/2022
Created By: Robert Nickels (W9RAN)
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Technologies old and new keep Ukrainians in touch with the world

A March 9 article in “The Economist” describes how “Technologies old and new keep Ukrainians in touch with the world”.   Unfortunately it's paywalled but they do provide a map showing the coverage area of the newly restarted BBC service.   During the Cold War,  shortwave radio was a vital piece of equipment for anyone wanting to stay ahead of the censors and so it is once again in t...  READ MORE
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Other nets and on-air events
Posted: 03/04/2022
Created By: Robert Nickels (W9RAN)
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BBC re-institutes Shortwave Service for Ukraine

Per CQ Newsroom:he British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) is reviving its European shortwave service in order to provide news and information to listeners in Ukraine who may be cut off from internet service but have access to portable shortwave receivers. According to the New York Times, the BBC decided to reinstate its shortwave broadcasts to Europe following Russia's attack on Kyiv's main r...  READ MORE

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Welcome to the Shack
Posted: 05/11/2022
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A Peek at the Hayseed Hamfest Collection

Here we see a part of the collection of mostly entry-level shortwave and ham receivers owned by Tom WBØDVM of Cedar Rapids, Iowa.    Many will recognize Tom even without his trademark Hayseed Hamfest t-shirt and can-cap cap,  so daughter Denise aka "Dee Dee" does the honors.   By the way she is KBØLMH, which we're told stands for "Little Miss Hayseed".Ne...  READ MORE

Monitoring Post
Posted: 05/09/2022
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Did you hear KC2XIO?

A strange yet familiar-sounding voice appeared on 13.56 MHz in 1971...can you identify who and what it was? Your browser does not support the audio tag.First - the "who"....This is the voice of Jane Barbe, which was familiar to everyone from the many recordings she made for the telephone systems around the world.   Of course it would be natural to hire the most talented voice actres...  READ MORE

Tech Library
Posted: 05/05/2022
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Triad transformer archive

In an era when many legacy companies seem to have forgotten their legacy, or have been bought out and remnants of their vintage past have been scrubbed from their websites, it's nice to see a company that does just the opposite.Triad Transformers has been around since 1943 and embraces its past, as a supplier that powered everything from  Leo Fender's guitar amplifiers to the Apollo missions....  READ MORE

What's New?
Posted: 05/05/2022
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UNI-T UT210E Mini Digital Clamp Meter Handheld RMS AC/DC Resistance Capacitance Tester

Digital meters aren't new nor are they quite "dime a dozen" but when you can guy one for under five bucks right off the rack, why get excited about one for $50?    One reason:  "non contact DC current measurement"!The UNI-T UT210E does all the usual things you'd expect from a handheld meter in this class: AC DC Current measurement Resistance measurement LCD backlight ...  READ MORE

Monitoring Post
Posted: 04/29/2022
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Monitoring the start of the Viet Nam War?

As reported by radio historian Terry O. on the Black Radios Facebook group:"R-388 HF receiver at a listening post in Phu Bai, Vietnam. This photo is probably from 1963, shortly before the company was re-designated as the 1st Radio Company. According to Lonnie Long and Gary Blackburn in "Unlikely Warriors", this is the company that on August 2, 1964 issued the CRITIC after intercepting an encrypted...  READ MORE

Looking Back
Posted: 04/26/2022
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The Knight Kit T-60 Transmitter

As the Novice ham license was closing on it's 10th anniversary and the number of new hams was growing as fast as the rockets taking off from Cape Caneveral,  the engineers at Allied Radio's Knight Kit division knew it was time for a replacement for the "T-50" which had only been given the official designator if "83YX255".    Of course no one called it a "T-50" until there was a...  READ MORE

Heat up the iron
Posted: 04/24/2022
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Build a Z-Match Tuner - You'll like it!

     Many hams still use manual antenna tuners  for impedance matching at HF.   Most current manual tuners are T-Network types, great for impedance-matching, but as high-pass filters, harmonic attenuation may be inadequate.   As modern transmitters have low-pass filter networks in the output, most guys don’t need an antenna tuner for harmonic reduction...  READ MORE

Tech Library
Posted: 04/22/2022
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Popular Electronics

The daddy-of-em-all!  The magazine we all looked forward to showing up at the corner drugstore, the best way to spend allowance money that didn't need a spoon or a straw!     The home of Carl and Jerry,  Hank Bennet's SWL column, Herb Brier's Novice column and those photos of our fellow hams that we examined most carefully and compared their WAS totals with glee or di...  READ MORE

Tech Library
Posted: 04/21/2022
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73 Magazine online

Raise your hand if "73" was your favorite ham magazine in the 60s and 70s....oh boy, that looks like...everyone!Wayne Green, seasoned editor of CQ Magazine, struck out on his own and regaled readers with his opinions on everything from UFOs to world cuisine, but boring...he was not!   Whether it was his devils advocacy vs. the ARRL,  pioneering new modes of operation or technologies...  READ MORE

Tech Library
Posted: 04/21/2022
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Ham Radio Magazine

Ham Radio was an amateur radio magazine founded in 1968 and the first issue appeared in February of that year. In1990 it was announced that Ham Radio had been sold to the publishers of CQ Amateur Radio. The June 1990 issue of Ham Radio was the 268th and final issue published where subscribers were told of the sale and that they would receive CQ in the future.  Ham Radio had many good techn...  READ MORE

Monitoring Post
Posted: 04/21/2022
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"The Rebirth of HF"

Every ham or SWL knows the HF bands are a lot emptier than they once were.    But that could be changing, although the new signals (which are now called "waveforms") may be quite different than what we remember.This webinar explains why the "lost art" of HF is not only still relevant, but has been making a comeback in recent years, particularly in the area of both local and global c...  READ MORE

Brass Pounding
Posted: 04/20/2022
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New $25 keyer kit

Another cool project kit from 4STATEQRP - a keyer and paddle you build yourself!   And it's only $25:Speed: 5 to 50 WPM, adjustable    Standby Current: Less than 1 microamp     Paddle tension and spacing fully adjustable     Low Part Count: Only 19 total electrical components     LED Keying Monitor  &nbs...  READ MORE

Brass Pounding
Posted: 04/18/2022
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Preppcomm MMX and DMX CW Transceivers

Here's something you don't find every day - a truly unique product offering that is aimed at the least experienced hams - those who don't know Morse.     PREPPCOMM MORSE CODE TRANSCEIVERIt's a QRP CW rig with a really good decoder, which makes working CW the equivalent of texting.  Their taglline "Morse Code for the rest of us" pretty much sums up what the product is all a...  READ MORE

Looking Back
Posted: 04/17/2022
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The Boy Scout Radio Merit Badge

The development of the Radio Merit Badge over the years is quite fascinating. The original merit badge was titled the Wireless Merit Badge and was introduced in 1918.   The requirements have changed quite a lot over the years as radio evolved.  For example, 1922 requirements included being able to receive Morse Code at 10 words per minute. The 1930 Radio Merit Badge lowered the requ...  READ MORE

Welcome to the Shack
Posted: 04/11/2022
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W7UVR/M

 Spring is here and the open road beckons!   Hop into the 1955 Mercury Station Wagon mobile operated by Leander Smith W7UVR and we'll go for a ride....or maybe not, because the passenger seat is full of radio equipment.   And we're not talking about a rig under the dash either....Perhaps the most exotic and well equipped mobile hamshack of all time, these photos of the W7U...  READ MORE

Monitoring Post
Posted: 04/09/2022
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The Shortwave Collective

A friend used to say "First, you have to start out".   For many starting out in radio, the first project is a crystal set, which is the simplest type of radio that you can make, and you can make it out of simple materials, often that you have on hand or can easily be scrounged.A group of women calling themselves "The Shortwave Collective" have raised the act of making and exploring what ...  READ MORE

On the workbench
Posted: 04/09/2022
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Beauty is in the Eye of the Beholder

Many  radio collectors have become "picky", or to put it a more politically correct way,  we have "narrowed the focus of our interests to only the finest specimens"...But we are fortunate to have the luxury of a wide range of specimens to choose from, with hamfests within driving distance many weekends,  eBay and other online markets, a wide range of email reflectors and the popular...  READ MORE

Fone Forum
Posted: 04/09/2022
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Who invented controlled carrier modulation?

As is often the case, this article by I.A. Mitchell caught my eye as I was looking at a 1935 copy of RADIO magazine for a different reason.   What's this - controlled carrier modulation in the 30s?    Mr. Mitchell is credited with having developed the first "workable solution" that "involves no important compromises" - of a way to cut down the carrier input during periods ...  READ MORE

Welcome to the Shack
Posted: 04/03/2022
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K7UGA - Barry Goldwater's shack

Barrry Morris Goldwater was born in Phoenix in what was then the Arizona Territory, where he helped manage his family's department store. Upon the U.S. entry into WWII Goldwater received a reserve commission in the United States Army Air Force. He trained as a pilot and was assigned to the Ferry Command, a newly formed unit that flew aircraft and supplies to war zones worldwide. After the war, Gol...  READ MORE

On the workbench
Posted: 03/29/2022
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"A lifetime of enjoyment and mental stimulation"

The term "Elmer" came into use after I was licensed but most of us had one or more mentors...in my case it was Pete and Johnny, but "Elmer" is a good generic  reference that we all understand.     In Brad NB9M's case, his friend and mentor Roger W9BZ certainly fills the "Elmer" role well:"I was born a Buckeye and first licensed as W8QEG from Columbus, Ohio in 1953.  &...  READ MORE