The Spectrum Monitor — October, 2014


Bear Hunting: Tracking Russian Air Force Flights via CW and SSB
By Tony Roper

When Tony Roper talks about bear hunting, he’s not referring to tracking furry creatures around the countryside using sophisticated radio devices as aides. He’s referring to monitoring the Russian Air Force Strategic Bomber networks on HF. The Bear networks use both CW and USB for communication; CW is Duplex with ground stations on one frequency and the aircraft on another; while in USB mode, the networks are simplex. Tony shows you when, how and where to find these bears of the air.

Free-to-Air C and Ku-band Satellite Signals in North America
By Ken Reitz KS4ZR

As the current solar cycle continues its fade and international shortwave broadcasters continue chiseling away at their budgets and on-air schedules, wouldn’t it be great to have a radio that picks up the latest English broadcasts from around the world in full fidelity audio, without fading, static and other atmospheric problems and cost less than $200 with no monthly fees or Internet connection? And, what if this same system could tune in dozens more TV and radio signals? That’s the advantage of Free-to-Air C and Ku-band satellite monitoring in North America.

The Summer of ’42 Radio
By Rich Post KB8TAD

Rich Post had promised a fellow ham, to whom he owed several favors, that he would look at an old radio that he would like to have working again. Rich had just opened the front door as two friends were carrying a small console radio up the sidewalk to his house when he glimpsed the back of the cabinet and immediately recognized the Philco from a distance. “It’s a Summer of ’42 special,” he yelled out. The radio was a Philco model A-361, first sold in April 1942. His friends understandably looked a bit puzzled at his comment, so he proceeded to explain the history behind the set’s existence.

Pirate Radio Superlatives
By Andrew Yoder

Over the years, radio listeners have asked Andrew, “Who was the first pirate?” or, “Who was the first pirate to broadcast from a ship?” Unlike Major League Baseball, which has kept meticulous records for more than a century, pirate radio is a largely empty record book, with few dots to connect. But this article isn’t cast in bronze, like the plaques at the Baseball Hall of Fame. It’s more like the senior superlatives from your old high school yearbook. Andrew has been researching old loggings, newsletters, magazines, and books for information and here are a few of the things he’s found.

The Spectrum Monitor is available in PDF format which can be read on any desktop, laptop, iPad®, Kindle® Fire, or other device capable of opening a PDF file.  Annual subscription (12 issues, beginning with the January 2014 issue) is $24. Individual monthly issues are available for $3 each.

Ken Reitz, KS4ZR, is publisher and managing editor of The Spectrum Monitor. Contact him at [email protected].

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