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Halah
Aug 31, 2003

Stupid mouth shut

StarkRavingMad posted:

Good idea on the grounding, I didn't really think of it. I'll be sure to splice part of it down to a water pipe or something.

Also, which works better: running a long line around the house, or doing loops around a windowframe? Or a combo of both?
Outside is better. Back in the home ownership days I tossed a wire out the window and up over the roof. You can also run one to the top of a tree if it's convenient. Depending on what your gutters are made of, you can even use them as part of your antenna.

I'm going to have to go back to looping around the window soon, but I do it on the outside and tuck it into the siding (being on the third floor is nice for reception). And make sure your water pipe is copper well into the ground. PVC won't help (again, don't know if I need to say that.)

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AstroZamboni
Mar 8, 2007

Smoothing the Ice on Europa since 1997!

Halah posted:

Outside is better. Back in the home ownership days I tossed a wire out the window and up over the roof. You can also run one to the top of a tree if it's convenient. Depending on what your gutters are made of, you can even use them as part of your antenna.

I'm going to have to go back to looping around the window soon, but I do it on the outside and tuck it into the siding (being on the third floor is nice for reception). And make sure your water pipe is copper well into the ground. PVC won't help (again, don't know if I need to say that.)

Right now I have a wire wrapped around the outside of my window. I have a copper hose faucet right beneath my window and I ground it to that. My window faces east-southeast, making it perfect for picking up Cuba, but not so great for receiving Asian stations.

Acrolos
Mar 29, 2004



I need to dig my shortwave radio out of the closet to get in on the fun. I received it as a gift from a Ham radio loving uncle when I was really young, but I never paid much attention to it. Everytime I've ever messed with it, I've had a hard time hearing anything that unusual, however.

AstroZamboni
Mar 8, 2007

Smoothing the Ice on Europa since 1997!

solorca posted:

I need to dig my shortwave radio out of the closet to get in on the fun. I received it as a gift from a Ham radio loving uncle when I was really young, but I never paid much attention to it. Everytime I've ever messed with it, I've had a hard time hearing anything that unusual, however.

It takes patience, and knowing where to look. What bands/frequencies does the receiver cover?

Halah
Aug 31, 2003

Stupid mouth shut

AstroZamboni posted:

Right now I have a wire wrapped around the outside of my window. I have a copper hose faucet right beneath my window and I ground it to that. My window faces east-southeast, making it perfect for picking up Cuba, but not so great for receiving Asian stations.
Can you email me? halah34@gmail

AstroZamboni
Mar 8, 2007

Smoothing the Ice on Europa since 1997!

Halah posted:

Can you email me? halah34@gmail

You can e-mail me at philipmcabacus4 at gmail dot com.

AstroZamboni
Mar 8, 2007

Smoothing the Ice on Europa since 1997!

You sir are a gentleman and a scholar and are the living embodiment of ten kinds of awesome.

I and all of my kind salute you, and when the Zamboni revolution comes you will be made prime minister of Arizona!

hoju22
May 3, 2006

Easy. You just don't lead 'em so much.

So I got 100 feet of 18 gauge speaker wire since it was only 8 bucks. It sounds like my next step is to run this in loops around one of my window frames? I live on the second floor of 3 story apartment building so running it out a window or anything like that is out of the question. Or would it be better to tun it around the ceiling of a room? Also, I'm assuming stripping a few inches of insulation off the ends of the wire and wrapping it around the basic antenna of the handheld is good a good enough way to connect the longwire?

Sorry for all the questions, I've tried googleing up some stuff and only learned the very basics of longwire antennas. Long and high are good, and stay from metal objects that carry generate RF interference, which is probably impossible in my situation.

killabyte
Feb 11, 2004
Blue Horeshoe Loves Anacot Steel

Well, I bought a 7600GR a few months ago and even imported the Sony Active Antenna from Japan. I live in an apartment so a longwire antenna is impossible. Has anyone had any luck finding anything interesting on the air in California? It seems like I am in the wrong time zone for this stuff.

AstroZamboni
Mar 8, 2007

Smoothing the Ice on Europa since 1997!

killabyte posted:

Well, I bought a 7600GR a few months ago and even imported the Sony Active Antenna from Japan. I live in an apartment so a longwire antenna is impossible. Has anyone had any luck finding anything interesting on the air in California? It seems like I am in the wrong time zone for this stuff.

Trying to find SW stuff from California is probably no harder than trying from Arizona (where I'm located) so here's some advice.

Find schedules/frequencies for prominent international broadcasts. Around sunset and into the night you should be well placed for picking up a lot of asian broadcasts. ou can probably also pick up Cuba pretty easily.

Orient your active antenna towards the west and try to pick up Cherry Ripe, which is the Far East version of MI6's "Lincolnshire Poacher" number station broadcast from guam. You'll need to practice tuning upper sideband, but it'll be worth it. Very likely the coolest number station you'll be able to reach and easiest around 7 PM (local time).

Around the same time of day, try to pull in Voice of Korea. That'll put some ahir on your rear end.

Halah
Aug 31, 2003

Stupid mouth shut

hoju22 posted:

So I got 100 feet of 18 gauge speaker wire since it was only 8 bucks. It sounds like my next step is to run this in loops around one of my window frames? I live on the second floor of 3 story apartment building so running it out a window or anything like that is out of the question. Or would it be better to tun it around the ceiling of a room? Also, I'm assuming stripping a few inches of insulation off the ends of the wire and wrapping it around the basic antenna of the handheld is good a good enough way to connect the longwire?

Sorry for all the questions, I've tried googleing up some stuff and only learned the very basics of longwire antennas. Long and high are good, and stay from metal objects that carry generate RF interference, which is probably impossible in my situation.
I'd run it around your window. On the outside if possible.

quote:

Also, I'm assuming stripping a few inches of insulation off the ends of the wire and wrapping it around the basic antenna of the handheld is good a good enough way to connect the longwire?
If I understand this correctly, you mean wrapping the end of some bare wire around the end of an antenna that comes with your radio? That will work, yes. A better way, if your radio has a connection for an external antenna, would be to connect the wire to something that can plug in to your radio's external antenna jack.

Halah fucked around with this message at Jun 13, 2007 around 05:03

AstroZamboni
Mar 8, 2007

Smoothing the Ice on Europa since 1997!

Halah posted:

If I understand this correctly, you mean wrapping the end of some bare wire around the end of an antenna that comes with your radio? That will work, yes. A better way, if your radio has a connection for an external antenna, would be to connect the wire to something that can plug in to your radio's external antenna jack.

Do this.

You can get 1/8 inch phone plug connectors at Radio Shack for a buck or two, and wire up your wire to that. That will disconnect the whip antenna when you plug it in (which is probably an amplified antenna) and allow you to just use the long wire in its place. You'll get better reception and selectivity that way.

Edit: Here's a link for a 1/8 inch phone plug connector.

AstroZamboni fucked around with this message at Jun 13, 2007 around 05:16

hoju22
May 3, 2006

Easy. You just don't lead 'em so much.

My little handset doesn't have any external jacks on it at all, so that's the only method I'm left with sadly. Thanks for the answers.

I have a feeling this new obsession is going to burn a hole through my wallet and leave me with 3 and a half to 4 radios in various states of disrepair.

AstroZamboni
Mar 8, 2007

Smoothing the Ice on Europa since 1997!

hoju22 posted:

I have a feeling this new obsession is going to burn a hole through my wallet and leave me with 3 and a half to 4 radios in various states of disrepair.

Welcome to the club, my work here is done.

Halah
Aug 31, 2003

Stupid mouth shut

AstroZamboni posted:

Welcome to the club, my work here is done.
And god damnit Radio Havana is hilarious tonight. Edit: I'm listening on 6060.

Halah fucked around with this message at Jun 13, 2007 around 05:49

hoju22
May 3, 2006

Easy. You just don't lead 'em so much.

AstroZamboni posted:

Welcome to the club, my work here is done.

I was hooked when I found myself listening to something in French this morning, while falling asleep and interpreting his speech into god knows what in my dreams. It was like being really stoned.

blugu64
Jul 17, 2006

Do you realize that fluoridation is the most monstrously conceived and dangerous communist plot we have ever had to face?

Didn't get a chance to go outside and listen tonight. Though I did discover my apartment complex has a gazebo with power outlets and plenty of trees to wire up with my 75ft long wire.

Also over the weekend I bought this so I can tune in SSB, and use it as a transmitter when I get my general upgrade:


Can't wait to get it outside and try it out!


hoju22 posted:

I have a feeling this new obsession is going to burn a hole through my wallet and leave me with 3 and a half to 4 radios in various states of disrepair.

Get your favorite late night drink, a few radios, and Coast to Coast AM. You'll never have more fun in the middle of the night.

blugu64 fucked around with this message at Jun 13, 2007 around 07:08

Ogrish
Mar 21, 2004
what's in the box?

I picked up the Degen 1103 off of ebay after the last number station thread for $90 on ebay. I wasn't going to spend over $100 on something that might not hold my interest, so it fit the budget. I actually like it BETTER than the E5 for my first SW radio, the large display screen makes more sense to me not knowing anything about stations, as it gives a visual representation of the frequency I am tuning instead of just a number. The volume control is the only thing I find irritating (no standalone volume button, you hit a volume button then use the tuning dial to change volume).

Shastao
Jan 10, 2006


I have a question, is there any sort of modification I could do to say allow me to use my car's antenna for mobile shortwave reception without having to break out a huge conspicuous antenna? Alligator clips or something?

AstroZamboni
Mar 8, 2007

Smoothing the Ice on Europa since 1997!

Shastao posted:

I have a question, is there any sort of modification I could do to say allow me to use my car's antenna for mobile shortwave reception without having to break out a huge conspicuous antenna? Alligator clips or something?

Mobile SW reception from a car is...nigh impossible. I've tried, oh lord have I tried. Reception is tricky enough, and you tend to have to orient your radio and antenna in a way that it receives best and interference doesn't affect it as much.

Unfortunately, while driving in a car, not only are you constantly re-orienting the radio and antenna, you're also driving amongst people using FM transmitter iPod adapters which cause ungodly interference. Not so much on strong local stations, but while trying to DX they can throw off a lot of RF noise (which is entirely the point, I guess).

If anyone has found a way to successfully shortwave-ify a car, please chime in. I'd love to hear it.

blugu64
Jul 17, 2006

Do you realize that fluoridation is the most monstrously conceived and dangerous communist plot we have ever had to face?

AstroZamboni posted:

Mobile SW reception from a car is...nigh impossible. I've tried, oh lord have I tried. Reception is tricky enough, and you tend to have to orient your radio and antenna in a way that it receives best and interference doesn't affect it as much.

Unfortunately, while driving in a car, not only are you constantly re-orienting the radio and antenna, you're also driving amongst people using FM transmitter iPod adapters which cause ungodly interference. Not so much on strong local stations, but while trying to DX they can throw off a lot of RF noise (which is entirely the point, I guess).

If anyone has found a way to successfully shortwave-ify a car, please chime in. I'd love to hear it.

I did some googling around and it turns out Sony made a few head units with shortwave reception in mind.
http://www.monitoringtimes.com/html/mtrevujun06.pdf

blugu64 fucked around with this message at Jun 13, 2007 around 17:52

foobar
Jul 6, 2002



Brand-new E5 user here, and I have 2 questions:

1. When I use SSB on this radio, is that the same as listening to USB and LSB? If so, how do I know which one I'm listening to?

2. If I string the wire antenna that came with the radio outside my windowframes, how do I ground it?

Thanks for the help! Really enjoying this thread.

blugu64
Jul 17, 2006

Do you realize that fluoridation is the most monstrously conceived and dangerous communist plot we have ever had to face?

foobar posted:

Brand-new E5 user here, and I have 2 questions:

1. When I use SSB on this radio, is that the same as listening to USB and LSB? If so, how do I know which one I'm listening to?

2. If I string the wire antenna that came with the radio outside my windowframes, how do I ground it?

Thanks for the help! Really enjoying this thread.

Yes, SSB is referroing to using either the upper half of the wavelength (USB), or the lower half (LSB). I'm not familliar with the E5 enough to tell you how it tells you if you are using USB or LSB, but I'd assume it would say USB or LSB on the LCD, or the switch you use to select SSB mode.

AstroZamboni
Mar 8, 2007

Smoothing the Ice on Europa since 1997!

blugu64 posted:

Yes, SSB is referroing to using either the upper half of the wavelength (USB), or the lower half (LSB). I'm not familliar with the E5 enough to tell you how it tells you if you are using USB or LSB, but I'd assume it would say USB or LSB on the LCD, or the switch you use to select SSB mode.

It just says SSB on the display, but there is a fine tning knob on the right side for tuning between USB and LSB. WHere the knob is positioned can let you know whether the signal is USB/LSB.

foobar
Jul 6, 2002



Cool, thanks for the clarification.

DarkSol
May 18, 2006

Gee, I wish we had one of them doomsday machines.

I'm buying an E5 this Friday after I get paid! You people, making me spend money on kick rear end hobbies that I really am extremely interested in.

I'll let you all know how it works out once I get it and give it a spin!

hudibrastic
Aug 20, 2003



DarkSol posted:

I'm buying an E5 this Friday after I get paid! You people, making me spend money on kick rear end hobbies that I really am extremely interested in.

I'll let you all know how it works out once I get it and give it a spin!

Lots of Eton love here, which is great. But don't count out Sony, they've been making portable radios for 50 years. The 7600GR is a great radio and if you can find a ICF-2010 (produced from 1985-2003) at a good price, snatch it up. I've never used a 2010, but many guys swear that it's the best portable radio ever made.

Now please excuse me, I have to go try to trick the wife into letting me buy an E1XM...

blugu64
Jul 17, 2006

Do you realize that fluoridation is the most monstrously conceived and dangerous communist plot we have ever had to face?

hudibrastic posted:

Now please excuse me, I have to go try to trick the wife into letting me buy an E1XM...

Good luck! I'd up-play the XM part (for picnics!) and downplay the 'shortwave' part. Unless of course you've got a cool wife

AstroZamboni
Mar 8, 2007

Smoothing the Ice on Europa since 1997!

hudibrastic posted:

Lots of Eton love here, which is great. But don't count out Sony, they've been making portable radios for 50 years. The 7600GR is a great radio and if you can find a ICF-2010 (produced from 1985-2003) at a good price, snatch it up. I've never used a 2010, but many guys swear that it's the best portable radio ever made.

Now please excuse me, I have to go try to trick the wife into letting me buy an E1XM...

If you get, it, be sure to give us a full review. Those things are hella sexy. I just wish they had an internal ferrite rod...

DarkSol
May 18, 2006

Gee, I wish we had one of them doomsday machines.

hudibrastic posted:

Lots of Eton love here, which is great. But don't count out Sony, they've been making portable radios for 50 years. The 7600GR is a great radio and if you can find a ICF-2010 (produced from 1985-2003) at a good price, snatch it up. I've never used a 2010, but many guys swear that it's the best portable radio ever made.

Now please excuse me, I have to go try to trick the wife into letting me buy an E1XM...

So which do you suggest? The Sony or the Eton? I had a Grundig way way back in the day, but it wasn't that great. (It was rather inexpensive.)

I obviously don't want to spend $500 on an E1. (Although it does look rather hot.)

AstroZamboni
Mar 8, 2007

Smoothing the Ice on Europa since 1997!

DarkSol posted:

So which do you suggest? The Sony or the Eton? I had a Grundig way way back in the day, but it wasn't that great. (It was rather inexpensive.)

I obviously don't want to spend $500 on an E1. (Although it does look rather hot.)

Between the higher-end sony portables and the Eton E5 (which is only around 150, unlike the E1) there are really more similarities than differences. It boils down to reading up on the features and prices and deciding which one works best for your needs.

DarkSol
May 18, 2006

Gee, I wish we had one of them doomsday machines.

AstroZamboni posted:

Between the higher-end sony portables and the Eton E5 (which is only around 150, unlike the E1) there are really more similarities than differences. It boils down to reading up on the features and prices and deciding which one works best for your needs.

What sucks is that I can't find these radios on Sony's webpage, unless I'm totally overlooking where. So, comparing them is nigh impossible.

Curly Shuffle
May 31, 2001

If not US, then Mexico.

Because of this thread, I received delivery of an Eton E5 yesterday. I stayed up way past my bedtime last night listening to Taiwan, China, Moscow, Cuba, Voice of America, the Netherlands, and some armed forces radio on SSB. I'm going to try to find the previously mentioned Coast to Coast on shortwave tonight, since my local AM affiliates have crummy reception. Thanks for the thread.

hudibrastic
Aug 20, 2003



DarkSol posted:

What sucks is that I can't find these radios on Sony's webpage, unless I'm totally overlooking where. So, comparing them is nigh impossible.

I dug around and found it: http://www.sonystyle.com/webapp/wcs...categoryId=3720

It's kind of cool of Sony to have shortwaves on the same website as their computers, HDTVs, Blu-ray players, PS3s, etc. Kickin' it old-school, yo.

(Listening to Japanese music right now on 5960, NHK.)

AstroZamboni
Mar 8, 2007

Smoothing the Ice on Europa since 1997!

Curly Shuffle posted:

Because of this thread, I received delivery of an Eton E5 yesterday. I stayed up way past my bedtime last night listening to Taiwan, China, Moscow, Cuba, Voice of America, the Netherlands, and some armed forces radio on SSB. I'm going to try to find the previously mentioned Coast to Coast on shortwave tonight, since my local AM affiliates have crummy reception. Thanks for the thread.

You will enjoy many sleepless nights, and the days after these sleepless nights you will rue the day this thread came to be. Welcome to the party!

Jesus, can we get a roll call of everyone who bought a radio because they were inspired by this thread? Be sure to post what radio you bought and how much you spent on it. I want to add stats on monetary drain caused by this thread to the OP.

Halah
Aug 31, 2003

Stupid mouth shut

AstroZamboni posted:


Jesus, can we get a roll call of everyone who bought a radio because they were inspired by this thread? Be sure to post what radio you bought and how much you spent on it. I want to add stats on monetary drain caused by this thread to the OP.
I have an old Grundig and the half-century-old Hallicrafter I posted about earlier, but I bought an E5 for $150 to upgrade my reception. Can't say I complain about the upgrade.

blugu64
Jul 17, 2006

Do you realize that fluoridation is the most monstrously conceived and dangerous communist plot we have ever had to face?

AstroZamboni posted:

You will enjoy many sleepless nights, and the days after these sleepless nights you will rue the day this thread came to be. Welcome to the party!

Jesus, can we get a roll call of everyone who bought a radio because they were inspired by this thread? Be sure to post what radio you bought and how much you spent on it. I want to add stats on monetary drain caused by this thread to the OP.

You should be asking for a commission

foobar
Jul 6, 2002



AstroZamboni posted:

You will enjoy many sleepless nights, and the days after these sleepless nights you will rue the day this thread came to be. Welcome to the party!

Jesus, can we get a roll call of everyone who bought a radio because they were inspired by this thread? Be sure to post what radio you bought and how much you spent on it. I want to add stats on monetary drain caused by this thread to the OP.

I bought the Grundig G5 (which is essentially the Eton E5) from Radio Shack for $150 specifically as a result of this thread. Now I'm shopping for antennas since I live in an apartment, but I'm having a hard time finding one with the 1/8" jack connector. They all seem to have PL259 or BNC connectors, which I assume are standard on desktop radios.

Sir Bobert Fishbone
Jan 16, 2006

Beebort


I blew $89.90 on the Kaito KA1103 and antenna. Good thing my birthday was last week and I had a little (very little) bit of money to spend.

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Horace
Apr 17, 2007

Gone Skiin'



It was a BBC radio programme about number stations that turned me onto the Conet project earlier this year. I hear lots of love for the Swedish Rhapsody, but none for "Gong Station Chimes" (D1, 7). If those distorted bells could leave me feeling so cold after hearing them on a documentary at 11am, I'd hate to hear them in the middle of the night in a darkened room.

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