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Author Topic: What bands for Drake SW-4A?  (Read 1552 times)
N7IOH
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Posts: 123




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« on: April 15, 2016, 05:00:12 PM »

I have a Drake SW-4A that I would like to use to listen to AM English broadcasts.  In playing with it, it seems that some of the bands that came with it are about useless here in Arizona for what I want.  I am interested in changing out some of the crystals to get bands that are more useful for me.  Which of these bands should I change and to what?  These are what I have that I have.  5.950 - 6.550 MHz   6.950 - 7.550 MHz   9.450 - 10.050 MHz   11.450 - 12.050 MHz   14.950 - 15.450 MHz   17.450 - 18.050 MHz   21.450 - 22.050 MHz   25.450 - 26.050 MHz. 

Thanks, Al, n7ioh
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WW7KE
Member

Posts: 308




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« Reply #1 on: April 15, 2016, 10:47:55 PM »

I have a Drake SW-4A that I would like to use to listen to AM English broadcasts.  In playing with it, it seems that some of the bands that came with it are about useless here in Arizona for what I want.  I am interested in changing out some of the crystals to get bands that are more useful for me.  Which of these bands should I change and to what?  These are what I have that I have.  5.950 - 6.550 MHz   6.950 - 7.550 MHz   9.450 - 10.050 MHz   11.450 - 12.050 MHz   14.950 - 15.450 MHz   17.450 - 18.050 MHz   21.450 - 22.050 MHz   25.450 - 26.050 MHz. 

Thanks, Al, n7ioh

Those are most of the shortwave broadcast bands (49, 41, 31, 25, 19, 16, 13, and 11 meters, respectively).  There aren't many English-language broadcasters left compared to 20+ years ago, but there still are some.  Australia and New Zealand are still easily heard in our part of the world.  So are China and (if you want a good laugh) North Korea.

I would change the following:
49 meters:  5750-6350
41 meters:  7150-7750

I would add the following if you have room:
60 meters:  4750-5350
22 meters:  13550-14150

11 meters is expendable with decreasing sunspots, unless you want to monitor CB.  If that's the case, change it to 26950-27550.

If you're not hearing anything, check your antenna unless the radio went south.  I'm also in Arizona and can hear at least something on an indoor antenna in Mesa.  Outdoor, of course, is better, HOA willing.  Wink  Grin
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WA8ZTZ
Member

Posts: 97




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« Reply #2 on: April 16, 2016, 11:18:01 AM »

You should be hearing stations on those frequencies.  See if you can hear WWV on 10 and 15 Mcs.  If not, you may have an antenna or receiver problem.

Nowadays, there aren't as many English language broadcasts aimed at North America as in the past.  The end of the Cold War, budget constraints, and the internet have driven many of the broadcasters off the air.

Try Radio Australia on 9580 @ 1100 - 1600,  Radio Ukraine on 11580 @2330 (relay via WRMI, should be loud and clear),  Radio Habana Cuba on 5040, 6000, 6165, 11880 @ various times, schedule changes but they always seem to be on. Times given are GMT. Generally, freqs above the 25 meter band are better daytime and 25 meters and below are useful at night.

You may want to obtain a copy of  The Worldwide Listening Guide or WRTH (both available from Universal Radio and other dealers) for complete listings of freqs and times.
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WW7KE
Member

Posts: 308




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« Reply #3 on: April 16, 2016, 06:04:34 PM »

You may want to obtain a copy of  The Worldwide Listening Guide or WRTH (both available from Universal Radio and other dealers) for complete listings of freqs and times.

No need to buy anything.  Use this link:  http://www.short-wave.info/index.php
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K9RZZ
Member

Posts: 16




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« Reply #4 on: April 19, 2016, 06:54:05 PM »

There isn't a whole lot of "English to North America" anymore, but there is SOME. I don't have any schedules handy, but in the evenings look for Radio Australia and Radio New Zealand on 15Mhz and 17Mhz. They are quite loud and in the clear here in the midwest. North Korea can be heard on 15,180khz in English in the evenings. Lake afternoon, look for All India Radio on 11,670khz, Radio Romania, Voice of Greece some where around 9,860khz or something like that. There's some Voice of America relays out there too.  

I  might pull the  21.450 - 22.050 MHz and  25.450 - 26.050 MHz and add 60 meters (5 Mhz) and 120 meters (3Mhz) simply because there are some popular US broadcasters on there in English with some good programming in the evenings that you might be missing since they don't broadcast on the higher bands. They have some rock music shows as well as some good talk programming. For example, the owner of WBCQ on 5,130khz in Maine is a ham and he opens the transmission with live talk, some of which get's a little long winded, but he's told some great stories about him building the station and radio in general.  Wink
« Last Edit: April 19, 2016, 07:01:30 PM by K9RZZ » Logged
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