Wednesday, August 25, 2010

6NA Narrogin WA 918 kHz QSL


It was a pleasant surprise to hear 6NA Narrogin WA on 918 khz for the first time during the exceptional reception conditions on the 27th June 1986 via the FRG7 and 30 metre longwire antenna at Sandbaai.

I received a friendly QSL letter from Radio Technician Peter Brown who kindly responded to my reception report.


The checkered Bunbury lighthouse was built in 1959. The original lighthouse was subsequently attached to the top of the 10 metre base extension which was constructed in 1971 (Photograph Wikimedia Commons).

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

6GE Geraldton WA 1008 kHz QSL


It was a pleasant surprise to hear 6GE Geraldton WA on 1008 khz for the first time during the exceptional reception conditions on the 27th June 1986 via the FRG7 and 30 metre longwire antenna at Sandbaai.

I received a QSL letter from General Manager Lyle J. Harris who kindly verified to my reception report.


Coronation Beach, just north of Geraldton WA, is a popular windsurfing location (Photograph Wikimedia Commons).

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

2CH Sydney NSW 1170 kHz QSL




It was a pleasant surprise to hear 2CH Sydney on 1170 khz for the first time (A South African First) during the exceptional reception conditions on the 25th June 1986 via the FRG7 and 30 metre longwire antenna at Sandbaai.

I received a QSL card, letter, bumper stickers and promo pamphlet from Network Chief Engineer Alan Liddelow who kindly responded to my reception report.


The 2CH "9 O'Clock Specials" promo pamphlet for August 1986.

One of the old 2CH antenna towers at Ermington, New South Wales (Photograph Wikimedia Commons).

The old 2CH transmitter building and antenna towers at Ermington New South Wales (Photograph Wikimedia Commons).

Saturday, August 14, 2010

5PI Port Pirie SA 1044 kHz QSL




It was a pleasant surprise to hear 5PI Port Pirie for the first time on the 25th June 1986 via the FRG7 and 30 metre longwire antenna at Sandbaai.

I received a QSL card, letter and bumper stickers from Chief Engineer Richard Kruger who kindly responded to my reception report. Richard added that in the 4 and a half years that he had been with the station, this was the first report received from the Continent of Africa - a reflection of superb reception conditions experienced at an ideal coastal location!

The station changed their callsign to 5CS in 1987.


The former Port Pirie railway station. The impressive Victorian pavilion-style building was built in 1902 and is now a museum (Photograph Wikimedia Commons).

Thursday, August 12, 2010

KRGV Weslaco TX 1290 kHz QSL



It was a pleasant surprise to hear KRGV Weslaco TX on 1290 kHz on the 25th June 1986 via the FRG7 and 30 metre longwire antenna at Sandbaai. The music request phone-in programme was heard until fade out at 0645 hours UTC that morning - the latest that I managed to hear a mediumwave radio station from the U.S.A. at the time.

I received the friendly and informative QSL letter with a station sticker from Chief Engineer Lawson Campbell who kindly responded to my reception report.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

6IX Perth WA 1080 kHz QSL




It was a pleasant surprise to hear 6IX Perth for the first time on the 24th June 1986 via the FRG7 and 30 metre longwire antenna at Sandbaai. The 2 kw signal was received with consistent good peaks that evening.

I received the above QSL letter and microphone stickers from Chief Engineer Alan D'Mello who kindly responded to my reception report.

Friday, August 6, 2010

NEW ZEALAND 4ZB Dunedin 1044 kHz QSL


The sensational appearance of 4ZB Dunedin, New Zealand on 1044 kHz on the 25th and 26th June 1986 via the FRG7 and a modest 30 metre longwire antenna at Sandbaai, South Africa, was a remarkable and rare occurrence.

To the best of my knowledge New Zealand has not been logged on the mediumwave band in South Africa since.



The 4ZB envelope with the enclosed QSL card was received in response to my reception report and was a cause for great celebration!

Audio Clip



The recording was made at 1724 UTC on the 25th June 1986 and included a "time check" announced as "five and a half away from the 5:30 news" as well as a promo for "Replay Radio".

Polar Absorption

The proximity of the signal path to the South Pole would help explain the rare appearance of a New Zealand mediumwave station in South Africa.

Google Earth Image showing the 10 646 km great circle path between Dunedin, New Zealand and Sandbaai, South Africa.

Polar absorption seems to reduce the ability of signals from the more southerly latitudes to reach here. It would appear that quiet ionospheric conditions with very low A/K indices are essential in order to receive dx signals from the south east part of Australia and New Zealand.

My guess is that the zero sunspot count with the quiet geomagnetic field on the 25th and 26th June 1986 would have contributed greatly to the reception of 4ZB.

Google Earth Image showing the ZB 1044 kHz 122 metre antenna mast at Highcliff to the east above Dunedin (Click onto the image for a high resolution).

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

WAME Charlotte NC 1480 kHz QSL


It was a pleasant surprise to hear WAME on 1480 kHz for the first time (A South African First) on the 4th June 1986 via the FRG7 and 30 metre longwire antenna at Pinelands.

I received the above QSL letter from Chief Engineer Fred Roberts who kindly responded to my reception report. Fred indicated that this was their first report from South Africa and quite possibly the most distant.

After many call sign and ownership changes, the station is now operating as WGFY 1480 Radio Disney, presently owned by the ABC.