eHam

eHam Forums => SWL (Shortwave Listening) => Topic started by: ONAIR on November 16, 2011, 03:39:33 PM



Title: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: ONAIR on November 16, 2011, 03:39:33 PM
  Mine was a Starlite A-120 (Hallicrafters S-120 clone).  What wonderful memories that radio brings back.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: W3LK on November 16, 2011, 04:02:56 PM
Mine was a Philco desktop with a couple of SW bands (this was in the mid-50s). My two favorites were Radio Moscow and HCJB (the first Christian SW station) out of Quito, Ecuador.

FYI, the engineers at HCJB invented the cubical quad antenna. It was created because the high voltage at the ends of the elements on their beam antennas literally melted the ends of the elements.

73,

Lon - W3LK
Naugatuck, Connecticut


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: AE4RV on November 16, 2011, 04:42:51 PM
My older brother had a Panasonic RF2200 http://www.universal-radio.com/catalog/portable/rf2200.html

Mine was a thoroughly mediocre desktop model from Radio Shack, the DX-100 http://www.dxing.com/rx/dx100.htm

Oh how I loved that thing.

I'm glad eHam started an SWL forum.

73, Geoff


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KE4YOG on November 16, 2011, 04:44:38 PM
Mine was a boom box with shortwaves added as a after thought probably. I cant remember the make but it was a nice radio. I think it had 5 SW bands. Radio Moscow, Deustche Welle, Radio Netherlands were my favorite. I still have a Radio Shack dx394 on the bedside table. I have a 300 foot long wire antenna. It covers am and ssb up to 30 MHZ. It is still used at times to listen to Radion Netherlands.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: AE4RV on November 16, 2011, 04:54:02 PM
"Radio Moscow, Deustche Welle, Radio Netherlands were my favorite."

Yeah, mine, too. I also enjoyed, less often, ship to shore radiotelephone, decoding press RTTY (mostly from Cuba unfortunately, not much press wireless on HF by the time I got to the scene), airliners on international routes, pirate stations just below 40M. Good times.

I'm REAL sorry that I never got my CW skills up to snuff back when there was potentially interesting maritime traffic.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KC0KEK on November 16, 2011, 06:34:31 PM
A Realistic DX-66. I graduated to a Uniden CR-2021 and then a Bearcat DX-1000.

The Icom R70 came out when I was a kid. I finally bought one last year, and it's everything the everyone said it was.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: WD5GWY on November 16, 2011, 07:27:02 PM
My first "real" shortwave radio was a Hallicrafters SX-96 that I paid $25 for from
a TV shop that I worked part time in. The radio had to be repaired, and I also had
to clean out the storeroom in the back of the shop as part of the deal.
  In this part of Texas we have a monthly flea market called "First Monday".
When I cleaned out the storeroom, I got to haul off all the old tv's, radios and
small appliances. I repaired as many of those as I could and sold them at First Monday and more than made back what I paid for the SX-96. This was in 1966.
If I could go back and get some of the old tv's and radios that I sold or ended up dumping, I could have a LOT of money now. Several I remember are collector items now.
 At some point in time the SX-96 got traded or sold, don't remember which(getting old
is a PIA sometimes). And eventually, after my first son was born, I got another Hallicrafters receiver, an SX-100. Also, got a Heathkit DX-60 transmitter and some other gear for RTTY reception. I got my Novice License then too. But, at some point
(probably to raise money for bills) the SX-100 went away.
  Recently, I was at the Belton Texas Hamfest (is held twice a year) and found an
SX-100b, that had been fully restored and looks better than new! And works great.
That one, is not getting away from me. (might even be buried with me when the time
comes.)
james
WD5GWY
 


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: AJ4EV on November 17, 2011, 04:05:44 AM
The Knight kit "Ocean Hopper" from the early sixties.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: SWMAN on November 17, 2011, 04:05:59 AM
 My first was a Hallicrafters S-120
My uncle gave it to me for Christmas in 1964 when I was 11 years old. I thought that was the greatest radio and gift I ever had. 73 Jim. W5JJG


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: AD1DX on November 17, 2011, 07:44:20 AM
Radio Shack DX-160


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: AD4U on November 17, 2011, 08:29:17 AM
A Philco model 38-2 AM-SW console radio (0.5 - 22 MHz) that I inherited when my grand dad died in 1958.  Listening to SW broadcasts and HAMs on AM (almost no SSB back then) is what got me interested in becoming a HAM.  At ten years of age, I also spent a lot of time listening to the growling hetrodynes and thought they were aircraft engines.  I spent a lot of time hoping to hear the pilot say something.

I had a great time "designing" and installing all kinds of antennas for that radio.  Of course I had no idea as to what I was doing or why.  

That 1938 model Philco console radio still has a prominent place in my den.  It also out performs ANY broadcast AM receiver that I own.  With a 100 foot long wire I can routinely listen to AM broadcast stations over 150 miles distant in the daytime.  I can often hear WSB on 750 KHz in Atlanta, GA in the middle of the day.  Atlanta is 230 miles away.  Try that with any "modern" AM broadcast radio.

Dick  AD4U


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: WA6MJE on November 17, 2011, 10:18:38 AM
I am not sure mine had a name.  It was the early 50's.  I was in grade school. We had a cabinet type radio with a 78 rpm record player underneath two hinged walnut lids on the top, the radio on the left, the record player on the right.  Below was the single "hi fi" speaker as stereo had not yet been invented. This was just before TV, so listening to the radio was the family entertainment, and this fine piece of furniture was the center of attention in the living room.  The radio then was AM broadcast, FM was not yet invented. But, interestingly, in addition to the AM Broadcast, there were four or five other bands. All five were shown on the glass display, one on top of the other, as the needle indicator moved from side to side. There was a band switch that selected each of the five bands. No one in the family was interested in the bands other than AM broadcast but me. For fun I would switch to the other bands and dial across them and listen.  I remember I found the Los Angeles Police department frequency, and would often listen to the dispatcher send urgent messages to the patrol cars. I would listen to that for hours. I heard foreign radio broadcasts, and I think Voice of America.  All this was done with a short wire antenna stapled to the inside of the wooden cabinet.  I was hooked. When I showed up in high school, I found the "radio club" where I learned about what I had been playing with.  I got my novice, technician and general before I graduated from high school. 


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KG6YV on November 17, 2011, 11:27:50 AM
Mine was an Allied Super regen.  I think it was the Span Master.  Worked well.  Now I play with
a Heathkit GR81 which was the absolute BEST ever regenerative receiver.  It has an isolation transformer
so you can't get zapped by the chassis and is super sensitive and stable. 

So I am nostalgic, I have several modern Ham transceivers and an ICOM R71A but I like the GR81.

Greg


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: N5RWJ on November 17, 2011, 01:25:34 PM
Mine was a Barlow & wadley, build in south Africa.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KD6KWZ on November 18, 2011, 12:11:28 AM
My first SW radio was a Hallicrafters S-201A. Got it for my 10th birthday, I still even have it. Not very sensitive.
I got into SWL & Ham studying in 1973. Suspots were crummy as it was then, so I never even heard WWV on 25
MHz, back when they still transmitted there. Almost nothing on 15 meters then, and nothing picked up on 10
meters. I did hear VOA, Radio Nederland, BBC, Radio Peking, Radio Moscow (hard to miss when they used like 15
transmitting frequencies).

An OM, Mr. Wright, Extra Class, DXCC, etc. helped me with my Scouting Radio Merit Badge. He mentioned he was
on the air for 3 days straight after the 1947 Texas City explosion, working radio traffic. I should have taken the
Technician Exam back then. He also showed me that reducing an SSB signal strength with a simple pot (there's
no gain control on the S-120A), while using the BFO, I could copy SSB. My S-120A manual just said to turn on
the BFO, but nothing said about the signal strength.

The front end still got overloaded by strong SSB signals, to the point I could not copy them, even with my longwire
antenna disconnected! I also did AM BCB DX, experimenting with external tuned loops to boost the signal.

Yes, my RS HTX-10 receive section will run circles around the S-120A on sensitivity & ability to tune in SSB clearly,
at least for 10 meters, but there's still some nostalgia there.

I later was given a CB, and a scanner, but that's another story.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: 2E0OZI on November 18, 2011, 12:35:31 PM
My grandparents had a radiogramme from the 50s that had 2 or 3 bands SW and the large glass display had "Moscow" and "London" on it and that was pretty exciting. Later Dad let me use a transistor portable with 3 bands, but it wasn't until many years later at about 30 years old that I was given a FRG7700 as a birthday present and that was what really hooked me - RNW, VoA, Radio Moscow, RFPI, WWCR, and many others in probably the last great blooming of shortwave in the 90s. Also listened to 11.175 usb all the time  ;D  hams, utilities, airliners, and decoded faxes. Great fun and to be honest far more fun than my 40 Aussie channels of CB base station with a 5/8 vertical (even though I was a CB DXer).

I still listen a fair bit....


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: AJ8MH on November 18, 2011, 02:37:25 PM
My first short-wave radio was a Hallicrafters SX-140.  Unfortunately, it was a ham band only receiver (I was close to getting my Novice License), but short-wave broadcasters did occupy parts of 40 meters in the early 60’s.  I can remember listening to “The Lion Sleeps Tonight” on a morning show coming out of Africa.

My second receiver was an SX-130.  See http://webpages.charter.net/aj8mh-radio/todayphoto.html for pictures of these.  Yes, they still work.

I’d probably listen to more SW broadcasters if the formats changed.  Seems to be a lot of nut cases on the airwaves these days.  I'm surprised we don’t have an outlet here in the U.P. of Michigan promoting Bigfoot (Sasquatch), and our underground alien spaceport…


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KE4VVF on November 18, 2011, 09:06:53 PM
Hallicrafters SX-99
Beautiful radio.  Needs a good antenna and it will tune very well.

Now I use my IC-746 and a G5RV antenna.  The Hallicrafters is still on my desk.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: 2E0OZI on November 19, 2011, 02:18:44 AM
A great moment for me when when I first heard Arnie Coro from Cuba and then later Glenn Hauser WOR. And I bought the "Passport" book a few years running what a great book that was!


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: N1NQC on November 19, 2011, 04:11:08 AM
Hey all,
First rig used an old 1930's RCA AM b'cast/ 6- 12 Mhz tube rcvr. First rig BOUGHT a Halli S-120a.

K


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: MIKE882 on November 19, 2011, 05:46:26 AM
Hi,
  Mine was a Lafayette HA-63 had a lot of fun with it!
Mike


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: W8AD on November 20, 2011, 12:45:35 PM
The first SWL receivers I WANTED, but never got, in 1949-50 was the original Hallicrafters S-38 or Zenith Transoceananic (sp). I drooled over the radios in the Aliied Radio catalog at the time while sitting in 8th grade study hall. Finally got my class B ham ticket in 1950 and got a National NC-33 for both ham and SWL. My buddy had a National NC-57 which was much better but I couldn't afford it. Later got a Hammarlund HQ-129X which was very good for me then. Those were nostalgic days to be sure.

Don, W8AD


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: W9KDX on November 21, 2011, 06:05:55 PM
My very first was a table top wooden rig from my grandmother.  I alternated between baseball and the BBC.  Then I graduated to stealing my Dad's Transoceanic (still have it) and when I was in college I got a Hallicrafters SX-25 (still have that as well).  I must have purchased and sold 15 different radios over the years.  Glad I kept the good ones.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: AD6KA on November 21, 2011, 10:28:52 PM
The first one I LISTENED to was a 1937 Phicol console,
model 37-650. (That radio cost $100 new in 1937, big bucks)
It was in my grandfather's attic when I was 8 years
old and I spent hours listening to SWL BC stations.
It sits here in the shack. Hasn't been powered up
in 40 years.

The first one I OWNED was a National NC-183D receiver.
It was my dad's and he let me have it after he was
no longer interested. I left it at home when I went off
to college and my folks gave it to the Goodwill.
Boy, was I pi***d.

The first SW receiver I BOUGHT was a Kenwood R-1000.
Actually, a pretty nice radio and I have kicked myself
a hundred times for selling it. I used the money to buy
an R-2000, but still wish I had the R-1000.

73, Ken  AD6KA/5R8GQ


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: MAGNUM257 on November 22, 2011, 04:33:17 AM
Mine was a Sears Silvertone portable radio. AM, FM, and 3 SW bands. I was nine years old when I "borrowed" it from my dad, who used it to listen to the Phillies games. I would take it to bed at night and listen to the "strange" noises, foreign music and news, military traffic and ham radio operators in the area, until i fell asleep. Mom would come in and turn it off.

I still have it.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: AA4HA on November 22, 2011, 03:43:42 PM
I am not sure mine had a name.  It was the early 50's.  I was in grade school. We had a cabinet type radio with a 78 rpm record player underneath two hinged walnut lids on the top, the radio on the left, the record player on the right.  Below was the single "hi fi" speaker as stereo had not yet been invented. This was just before TV, so listening to the radio was the family entertainment, and this fine piece of furniture was the center of attention in the living room.  The radio then was AM broadcast, FM was not yet invented. But, interestingly, in addition to the AM Broadcast, there were four or five other bands. All five were shown on the glass display, one on top of the other, as the needle indicator moved from side to side. There was a band switch that selected each of the five bands. No one in the family was interested in the bands other than AM broadcast but me. For fun I would switch to the other bands and dial across them and listen.  I remember I found the Los Angeles Police department frequency, and would often listen to the dispatcher send urgent messages to the patrol cars. I would listen to that for hours. I heard foreign radio broadcasts, and I think Voice of America.  All this was done with a short wire antenna stapled to the inside of the wooden cabinet.  I was hooked. When I showed up in high school, I found the "radio club" where I learned about what I had been playing with.  I got my novice, technician and general before I graduated from high school. 

If it had sort of off white, ivory push buttons for band selection and maybe a green tuning eye it could have been a Telefunken console. Those were great radios and I recall that several West and East German models followed the same scheme.

There could have even been a fine tune function on the main tuning knob. The names of cites and countries were inked onto the back of the glass. The radio would sound fantastic, even with broadcast band stations. With an outdoor antenna it would be a killer.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: K5WLR on November 25, 2011, 03:44:33 PM
Well, back in 1966, when the SAT was accomplished on stone tablets and dinosaurs ruled the earth, my parents gave me a phonograph with a radio that included shortwave bands. Got to listen to shortwave broadcasts. Then my friend Greg sold me his old Knightkit Star Roamer when he purchased a Realistic DX-150. The Star Roamer was kind of deaf (10 uv sensitivity) but I got to hear more shortwave bands. Then I got my own DX-150 and I was off to the races!!!!

BTW, I have a Star Roamer and a DX-160 down in the basement!

;D


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: AE6ZW on November 26, 2011, 03:29:06 PM
mine was SONY ICF-6500  in 1980's , it was good radio, since then I went through several shortwave radios ,  now I have TECSUN PL-660


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: K0YQ on November 28, 2011, 03:00:51 PM
Panasonic RF-2800 as a kid in 1978.  Changed my life...


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KG4NEL on November 28, 2011, 10:04:44 PM
Mine's really the newest? Not surprised, I guess  :D

Grundig YB-400, in '98ish. I had been "DXing" on my dad's Sherwood receiver from the '70s for a couple months before that, but that was "my" first receiver.



Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KB3H on December 01, 2011, 06:38:50 AM
Knight-Kit "Star Roamer"
Still works after 46 years!
73 John


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: K7KB on December 01, 2011, 03:45:32 PM
National NC-173 general coverage receiver. Great radio and along with many of you is what led me down the road to Amateur Radio. I still have many of my old SWL cards from the late 60's, early 70's. Probably many of those stations have long since closed their doors.

John K7KB


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KK4AXX on December 03, 2011, 11:02:45 AM
My first was a little Coby CX-CB12.  Basically worthless until I clipped a long wire on to the expandable antenna.  Now I use my IC-751.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: N2UGB on December 04, 2011, 02:39:46 AM
My first was a Sears or Monkey Ward table top given to me by my parents for Christmas back in the mid 1950's. The following year I purchased a S-38 with paper-boy route savings. Electrical bandspread, wow! Shared a bedroom with my kid brother. Even he remembers the low sounds coming from my Trimm headset late nights. Mostly BC station listening. QSL cards taped to the bedroom wall. My folks were concerned that the FBI would be breaking down the front door after I started receiving mail from Radio Moscow. It was the Joe McCarthy era.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: K4LIX on December 07, 2011, 05:30:54 AM
In the late 40's and early 50's, my dad was a motorcycle cop and he had a SX-43 on his bedside table so he could monitor the police dispatcher on 30 MC or so.  When he wasn't home, I would tune the SW freqs and the ham bands - later on he got a transceiver for his bedside radio and I got the SX-43 and that along with a Viking Adventurer I built, was my first ham station in 1959.  Wish I could find some of the pictures that my folks took of my ham activities back then.  73 de Jim K4LIX, near Panama City, FL.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: N8YX on December 09, 2011, 11:48:33 AM
Radio Shack DX-160

+1.

Got it as a Christmas present during my sophomore year of high school. Wanted the -300 but family funds were a little tight at the time.

Eventually I got hold of a -302. Decent SWBC rig but not so good for Ute (RTTY/TOR) monitoring, so it was traded off.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: M5AEO on December 09, 2011, 12:54:02 PM
My first RX was a Russian: a Vega 206 (I think).  It was terribly exciting to receive it as a Christmas gift when I was 8 years old.  I think it had 6 SW bands and MW and LW. The dial was marked in Metres rather than Khz, and it was totally useless for finding out which frequency you were actually listening to, as it was so far out!

My first 'real' radio was, of course, the Yaesu FRG-7; I need say no more.

Jonathan.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: WB9CTP on December 09, 2011, 03:53:23 PM
Heathkit GR 91.  I'm sure I did a crummy job building it as a 12 year old but my
local TV repairman help get it going.  OK for beginner SWL but I also had to
use it as my first ham receiver and it was deaf !  Lucky I made any contacts
at all..but that's all the $$ I had until a year or two later when I got a Lafayette
HE-30 and thought I was in heaven !

Ron Ross
WB9CTP


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KB0XR on December 11, 2011, 07:42:46 AM
Hallicrafters S 38DB that my Dad bought me at the Navy Exchange in Alameda, CA.  1957 I think.  Still have it on a shelf in the garage.  Electrolytics dried up years ago.  Also had a giant console that I rescued from my uncles attic.  Think it was a Zenith?


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: JAHAM2BE on December 13, 2011, 02:18:53 AM
A Realistic DX-66.
That was my first receiver as well. At the time, as an unsuspecting young lad, I had hoped to use it to listen to 40m CW, and was disappointed that it had no BFO. I discovered at some point that my Radio Shack "ten-in-one" kit had an AM transmitter circuit that, to my surprise, worked as an off-board BFO for my DX-66 - the AM transmitter was probably beating with signals in the presumably 455 kHz IF. However, the set had no close-in selectivity to speak of, and the whole CW sub-band was covered in a ridiculously small portion of the dial.

Now that I know a thing or two about receiver design (my homebrew, single-signal, general coverage superhet is slowly taking shape), I'd be interested in seeing the schematic for that DX-66 to see just how much (or little) IF filtering and image rejection it actually incorporated.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KG5UN on December 19, 2011, 04:38:41 PM
Mine was the Radio Shack kit, the little red and clear plastic bread-bord style kit they sold, back around 1978 or so. I had been coveting my Uncle's SX-100 and feeling pity he gave me an old Halllicrafters S-41G that was rescued from the junk. I used that S-41G untill I left for basic training in 1981, and yes, I did end up in the signal corps!


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: WW3QB on December 20, 2011, 07:16:08 PM
I got a hand-me-down Hallicrafters S-120 around 1968. It was satisfactory for a child’s first radio, but its price ($69.95, over $500 in today’s dollars) was really too high to be a child’s gift. In 1972 I got a BC-342 which was so much better than the S-120. The BC-342 later became my Novice receiver.  The BFO (not really) on the S-120 was too difficult for a child to use. I have another S-120 now (sentimental fool) and I still find the BFO nearly impossible to use. The BC-342 did not receive above 18 MHz, but the S-120 was so deaf above that it might as well not cover it either.  

Most of my listening on the S-120 was to the New York Marine Operator. I cannot remember what the frequency was but I think it was below 3 MHz.

Edit: The S-120 was transformerless AC/DC powered with no polarized plug. It's amazing we survived our childhoods.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: W1AEX on December 21, 2011, 09:05:23 AM
My first shortwave receiver was a Christmas present from my parents. They found a "Utica 4 Band Receptor" on the used bargain table at the local Lafayette Radio store in my home town. It resembled the Hallicrafters S-120 and was apparently identical to the Globe 65-320 according to a description at Universal Radio:

http://www.universal-radio.com/used/sold200.html

http://uticacommunicationscb.homestead.com/files/utica_FM4_Band.jpg

It was certainly nothing special but it opened my eyes wide as I tuned across Radio Moscow, Radio Sweden (with Gwen making announcements in English), and HCJB. I had about 40 feet of wire scraps hooked together and strung out my window to a nearby tree. I must have caught a good part of the solar cycle back in the 60's because there were tons of stations to listen to. Coincidentally, just like WW3QB in the preceding post, I liked listening to the New York Marine Operator somewhere between 2 - 3 MHz as the fishing boats offshore made their calls back to the mainland.

I ended up selling that little receiver back in the 80's for 20 bucks. I took 5 bucks of that 20 bucks and bought a Navy RBC-1 (which cost the Navy +$2000 back in the 40's) at the same flea market. The guy who was selling the RBC-1 didn't want to carry it and the accompanying power supply back to his car. As it turned out, a friend was looking for a working RBC-1 and I traded it to him for a Hammurlund SP-600 JX-14 that still runs great today after the usual re-capping project. It still amuses me that the little Utica 4 Band Receptor somehow sort of transformed into a Hammurlund SP-600 as the years ticked by.

Rob W1AEX


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KU2US on December 21, 2011, 09:37:35 PM
My first radio was a Yaesu FRG-7.. Top of the line at the time. Got it brand new when they first came out. This rig was fantastic, and still is . Wadley Loop was the state of the art and I bagged many a rare one with this great classic. Great for MW broadcast band also. I had to get a part time job just to save up for one, on top of my full time job, but worth it. Loved the propaganda from Radio Moscow and Radio Sofia..I still SWL, but QSL cards are a thing of the past-SOB!  :'(


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: K0JEG on December 25, 2011, 11:40:37 AM
Heathkit GR-54, built by my grandfather. He gave it to me after I spent most of a week-long visit to Fla listening to it. I'll have to ask dad if he still has it stored (I'm sure he does, but won't remember where).


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: N9LCD on December 25, 2011, 12:50:16 PM
Either one of two Zenith's -- a 50's vintage TransOceanic or a late 30's vintage console.  I was always sneaking around, trying to find-out what was out there above the BCB.  I remember by father trying to tune-in Sputnik on the Zenith console except I don't think it tuned above 20 MHz.

The first SW radio I bought was an R-390A.  After a long list of mostly "surplus" receivers, it's still a 390-A, this one Motorola-built!

N9LCD



Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: K3WEC on December 25, 2011, 08:30:41 PM
Kenwood R-600.... still use it.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: N4OI on December 29, 2011, 06:09:09 AM
My first shortwave radio was a National NC-60B (a.k.a. NC 60 Special).  Those five tubes received my first introduction to the Gospel message via HCJB  broadcasts, as well as the best cold war propaganda ever!  Unfortunately, I sold it when going away to school...  I bought a Realistic DX-150B with the first paycheck from my first full-time job.  I still have that second receiver and recently retrieved it from the attic.  Having procured a digital scope and signal generator for a different project,  I treated it to a full renovation and alignment.  That one is now prominently positioned in my shack, near my Drake R8 and Yaseau FT-920! 

Great memories....

73 ES GOD BLESS U ES URS DE KEN N4OI  ;D


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KK4DUZ on December 29, 2011, 02:26:15 PM
I was given an old Zenith Transoceanic as a young teen. It had a handle and a lid that formed a case when secured. Slightly mysterious and very cool! I loved the glow of the tubes. My imagination ran wild when listening.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: K3ANG on December 29, 2011, 05:02:50 PM
Allied Span Master from 1959.  My dad built it when I was 7 years old.  Originally in the kitchen, it 'moved' to my bed room.  I cut my SW teeth on that thing.  Not the greatest, but it opened another world to me.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: WD4CHP on January 01, 2012, 03:23:04 PM
Knight Kit Ocean Hopper from the 50's.

I still have it.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: N0FPE on January 02, 2012, 11:51:30 AM
I had 2   Hammerlund HQ-110 and a realistic DX-100    those were the good old days


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: W8GP on January 08, 2012, 08:17:41 AM
Knight Ocean Hopper,1968, the best worst receiver I ever owned!
                     73, Greg


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: K5TVC on January 13, 2012, 10:56:40 AM
Knight Kit Space Spanner


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: N9DG on January 14, 2012, 06:52:51 AM
Realistic DX-160. I'm surprised that there aren't more who started with one of these. A dog of a performer by just about any measure, but it was all that I could afford back in the late 70's. I even was planing on using it with a homebrew QRP TX. That never happened, got the Atlas RX-110 TX-110L a couple years later instead. The RX-110 was a much better RX all around.

Today a Ten Tec RX-320 or a Softrock kit with a PC would run circles around the DX-160, and cost less in inflation adjusted $'s to boot.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: WB9YCJ on January 15, 2012, 10:10:13 PM
Heathkit GR-81 regen that I eventually used as my first Ham receiver with my newly acquired Eico 720 Tx.  Age 16 - little to no money but amazing how one can get money when they really want something !  Later moved up to a Heathkit HR-10 reciever.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KQ6Q on January 19, 2012, 12:57:45 PM
Knight Ocean Hopper, built in 1956 ! next was a BC-455, then an HRO Sr.
First heard hams on 40m AM on my parents living room Bendix Radio-Phono console with 12" dynamic speaker, push-pull 6V6 audio, and loctal tubes in the FM part of the receiver!


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KG4YMC on January 21, 2012, 08:27:54 PM
Mine was an Eico 711 space ranger communications reciver. They had cool names back then. Remember making several wiring errors, was a kid way back then . I think I had two of the bands switched on the wafer switch.  My dad taught electronics and had a guy that I guess was electronics geek in his night class, He had aligned the radio with wwv. and other radios had it dead on . Remember ssb, even heard  barry goldwater on onetime. pirate station favorite was catching the top ten on wnyc. new york radio . catching some ssb of aircraft, even some short tranmission miltary stuff, seem to come in at odd places between  broadcast bands. numbers  stations . I remember as a kid I knew all the foreign captials . propaganda of mao   on radio china. religious pirate staation s   on 40meters. One guy would blow a shofar, sounds pretty legit , then start in on replaceing the liberty  statue with the anti christ, statue . Used to be a guy on the old marine band that would give weather reports to ships at sea . way before weathe channel . I sold it regret., got dx440 . still have, but use mostly for fm now .memories  kg4ymc terry .


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KB8GRO on January 22, 2012, 08:57:57 PM
Old Zenith Table Radio with shortwave, made in 1936, I got the info from Zenith. 

Grundig Satellit 750
Drake SW1
Drake SSR-1
Realistic DX160
Radio Shack DX 398
Realistic SW100


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KR4BD on January 27, 2012, 09:45:27 AM
My first SW radio was a Knight-Kit Star Roamer.  I saved my lawn mowing money and bought the kit in 1964 for the princely sum of $39.95 plus postage!  It was the first kit I ever built.  I was 16 years old at the time and had little experience with a soldering iron, but the thing lit up and worked the first time I plugged it in!  Used it for many years until I got my ham license in 1975 and then became exposed to a whole new level of radios. 

Radio, in general, has been a great ride for me!  Lots of fantastic memories.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: VK2FAK on January 27, 2012, 03:48:29 PM
Hi all...

Well I started out with a  CENTURY-21 radio .  and I still have it here right in front of me ..hihi.

Its more or less similar electronics as the SSR-1 and the cct that came with it was actually of the SSR-1 ...go figure.

It stopped working for a while until last year, I decided to find out why...it turned out to be nothing more than a dry solder joint in the Power supply area.....and works now like it did back then....

John


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: NT9E on January 30, 2012, 11:28:35 AM
1969
I listened to the thrill of Shortwave Radio on a borrowed Hallicrafters S-38E. I got my Novice ticket 1 year later.

Dave NT9E


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KE6WNH on January 30, 2012, 06:04:33 PM
Strange as it may sound, mine was a Japanese-built Conion Technisonic TC-555 which I bought in 1986... it was actually a huge AM/FM boom box with 2 SW bands which covered 1.8 to about 22 mhz. I could tune in WWV pretty easily, but even I didn't have a steady enough hand to tune that old analog dial to any of the international broadcasters.

I especially remember hearing the old "chugga-chugga-beep-beep" of the SSTV rigs hams had back then on 80 and 40m.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: WA9LB on February 06, 2012, 07:06:04 PM
Drake 2B.
It had such a great sound. Also used a Drake TR4 for quite a few years. My elmer had a basement full of old gear that he bought, sold, bartered and gave away. Loads of Drake and Hallicrafters.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KE4GNK on February 09, 2012, 03:00:01 PM
First 'real' SW radio I had was an old RCA Radio Direction Finder with a blown power supply. All tubes, no real band=pread function.
 
My dad and I built a new AC supply on the old chassis, got it working, and used it for BCB listening for years.  It was fairly deaf, had a lousy BFO that I finally modified to have an adjustable frequency..  

Gave it away when I left home.  Now have an old HQ-180 to keep the shack warm...


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KJ4RWH on February 14, 2012, 05:21:26 AM
My father gave me a Halicrafters S-120 when I was six (1962) I used to listen to the RTTY thinking I was hearing Russian spies passing encoded messages. Ofcourse I would tune in any shortwave conversation I ran across and especially loved the static crashes when a summer storm was on the horizon.  8) good times for a little boy....


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: NNILRADIO on February 19, 2012, 09:17:42 PM
Allied Radio 100 North Western Avenue Chicago, gosh I'll never forget that address....  Allied's Knight kit Ocean Hopper regen receiver kit.  I made my first ham radio contact from my very own ham shack with this and a home brew transmitter from ARRL's "How to be(come?) a Radio Amateur book(let)".   I even wound a honey comb coil for it.  All in the fall of 1958...  Wish I still had both today.
73,
John, W9JGO


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: N6OIL on February 19, 2012, 10:43:22 PM
My first was a Telefunken console unit.
Just like this one.
http://www.retroaudiolab.com/pictures/telefunken.jpg


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: WA2DTW on February 22, 2012, 07:47:53 AM
Hallicrafters S22R, given to me by W2BXW, my "Elmer", when I was 11 years old.  This was the height of the cold war, with all of its propaganda and counter-propaganda.   Listened very frequently to 75 meter AM.  Listened to NSS and NAM to get my code speed up.   






Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KQ6EA on February 26, 2012, 08:58:41 PM
Knight Kit Star Roamer. Had a ball building it in grade school, and was amazed at all the stuff I could hear.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: K4LIX on February 27, 2012, 04:17:37 PM
It was a Hallicrafters SX-43 that belonged to my dad, he was a deputy sheriff in the late 1940's and he would leave it on the sheriff dispatch freq somewhere around 32 MC and I would use it for SWLing and got in so much trouble so many times that by about the third grade, he gave me the receiver.  Later on, I got a Hammarlund HQ-100AC and then a Hallicrafters SX-110, the one with the slide rule dial.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: K3CXG on February 29, 2012, 11:55:20 AM
I started out SWLing back in the early 1960’s.  My first receiver was an old floor-model furniture radio labeled “Midwest”.  It covered AM, FM and three shortwave bands from 3.0 to 28.0 mcs.  Never heard anything on FM, but AM and the SW’s worked pretty well.  I think I heard just about all of the big SW broadcasters back then, and QSL’ed as many as possible.  I actually heard my name announced on Radio Switzerland’s DX mailbag program – way cool!  Then I started utility DXing, logging military, coastal, aeronautical, whatever.  Other receivers between 1960 and 1974:

Heathkit GR-64 – yes, I built it, and got the local Heathkit store to align it.  Worked ok.
Hammarlund HQ-145 – nice!
Hammarlund HQ-180 – owned 3 over time; would just about kill to have one back.

No activity between 1974 and 1979,  but got back into the hobby with a Panasonic RF-2900, another one of my favorites.  After it died, I picked up a Sangean ATS-803A, which I still use today, mostly listening on 150 – 530 khz for non-directional beacons (NDBs) and experimental 500 khz stations.  Not a bad radio.  Most of my radio time these days is spent on the ham bands, but one of these days, I’ll hook up a longwire to my FT-817 and see how it receives the longwave frequencies.

73, Mike K3CXG
Dashboard DX Society


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: WA1KWA on March 02, 2012, 05:51:30 PM
Lots of Hallicrafters on here. I'll join in: first receiver was a Hallicrafters SX-110.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: K7KBN on March 02, 2012, 09:14:14 PM
Hallicrafters SX-99 (Thanx K7BRW!)


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: W0NTS on March 05, 2012, 03:41:28 AM
My first was a Hallicrafters S-38B. I purchased it new in 1952.  Dennis L. hoffman  W0NTS


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: N2CVE on March 09, 2012, 08:32:22 AM
A brand new, out of the box Lafayette HA-350.

Jim


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KB7AIL on March 14, 2012, 04:39:25 AM
Two at the same time:

Hallicrafters S-38C
Some sort of Japanese portable radio with AM-FM-SW.

The Hallicrafters was a gift from "Mr. Z" the neighborhood electronics whiz.  At the time (67-8), some of the new tunes were 'broken in' on AFRTS and VOA.  Great to hear the new songs first!

My listening taste was broken in when I was 7 years old.  I was quite sick and needed to be in bed all of the time.  My Dad brought the family 'big wood radio' into my bedroom and I was free to listen to it whenever.  So, I kind of slept in the day and listened to the radio at night.  I developed a love for MW DX that has lasted.  SWL has kind of slowed down and NA is becoming less and less a target for international broadcasters but the mystery of MW propagation is still there!


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: WA7KPK on March 19, 2012, 01:50:31 PM
A second-hand National NC-57 that I got for Christmas, 1965. The bandspread didn't work and there was an entire section of the dial (something like 28-54 MC) that as far as I can tell didn't do anything. I didn't care. I loved that radio. I used it as my primary receiver when I got my Novice license three years later and was still listening to it well into the 1980s.

I remember my sixth grade teacher letting me display a couple of the QSL cards I got during those first few months of shortwave listening on the bulletin board, including HCJB and Swiss Radio International.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: NK6Q on March 22, 2012, 07:34:08 AM
My first "real" receiver was a National NC-183D.  What a beaut!!

Like a previous entrant, I also got mine from a TV/Radio Repair shop in NE New Jersey.  I was working for the owner part-time during the summer and the NC was just basking in the back of the shop window.

I sure can't remember what I paid for it and its matching speaker, but WHAT A RIG!! It worked perfectly.  I remember listening to Radio BBC, Radio Moscow, and Radio China.  It was a super Novice receiver; I couldn't have asked for better.

Sometimes I get the itch to try locating and buying one, but I think I'll just keep it in as a memory of a 15 year-old kid some 45 years ago.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: VE2ITZ on March 27, 2012, 07:03:56 PM
Of what i recall, (Since i was only about 4 years old) It was a Nordmende Globetraveller. It wasnt really mine, but it was through this that I first got a taste to listen to all them weird whisles late at night laying besides my dad in his room. Wonderful memories!



Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: W8ADQ on April 18, 2012, 11:20:32 AM
My first experience with shortwave was a Capehart five tube two band table radio.  No RF stage, just a 12BE6 trying its best not to load down the RF input tuned circuit.  It worked surprisingly well for as simple as it was.  I actually miss the thing.   :)

73
Jack KK4HZP


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: N0MKC on April 19, 2012, 07:49:02 AM
A Hallicrafters Sky Buddy - spent many hours with it & a pair of headphones...  Acquired it second-hand in 1966, lost it in '71 due to some rather regrettable circumstances (but that's another story), and have missed it ever since.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: N3HAM on April 19, 2012, 05:15:29 PM
A KnightKit StarRoamer I built in '63. Had to work with Dad on the weekends in his electrical business to pay for it. He worked two jobs to keep us going. Loved the Old Man and the radio. He may be gone now God love him, but the radio is still here, and the Little Kid comes back every time I fire it up. I know somewhere he smiles too.    Jerry.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KF6HCD on April 20, 2012, 05:25:47 PM
In 1974, a cousin gifted me a Hallicrafters SX-62A. I was 11.

The tuning string was broken and shredded and wrapped around the tuning wheels. It took me a week of trial and error to replace it with some monofilament fishing line.

It was tough, but it was a great learning experience. The radio never failed me for 20 years. Then a roommate stole it and hit the road.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: WD4CHP on April 22, 2012, 03:52:34 PM
My first SW receiver was one that my music teacher gave me. She wanted to use the cabnet to make a curio cabnet out it.

You know the kind. On/Off volumn, Tuning, band switch and another couple if you lost a knob.

I had a basement bedroom and used the window frame for an antenna.

Bare chassis and no ground. I was lucky.

My next one was a Knight kit ocean hopper.

I still have it but needs work.

I still have all the extra coils.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: N8JAX on April 29, 2012, 07:08:51 AM
My first SW radio was a Knightkit R100A which I built in 1966 when I was about 22. I used it quite a bit while studying for my novice exam. Basically, I lost interest in it it and got into (gasp) CB. I sold it to an Uncle of mine who at the time,  was also into 11 meters. He used it, I was told, to listen to amateur radio. Many years after he passed away, his widow called me and said the radio was just sitting around gathering dust. She gave it back to me and I cleaned it up a bit. Today, it sits in my present shack and I still use it to listen to world wide shortwave and ham operator's. It doesn't have the all the bell's and whistle's of today's rigs. But there is still something to be said about spinning a dial on a 3 gang variable tuner and bandspread dial, while the tubes glow and station's pop and crackle through the phones. This is why some of us still hold on to our boat anchor radio's because they represent older technology that still work in today's world.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: WA4JEA on April 29, 2012, 10:23:50 AM
Realistic DX-150... and I still have one in the shack just for fun!

73,

James WA4JEA (was WD8PGP back in 1978 when I got the DX-150)



Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: W4HLN on May 01, 2012, 04:29:52 PM
Montgomery Wards Airline Model 62-207 1935 original and still has the warranty and price tag hanging from the cord. My grandmother and Grandfather bought it new...Its still here and still works fine!

Not my radio but this is it...Mine is in much better shape!

http://antiqueradios.com/gallery/d/68331-2/La+France+Dial+new+knobs.jpg


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: WX4O on May 02, 2012, 07:19:56 PM
Mine was an unremembered brand of regen. radio. It actually worked pretty well. This was in... 1957?


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KD5KFL on May 05, 2012, 09:43:21 AM
Hudson Superheterodyne. Art Deco defined.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KA1VF on May 08, 2012, 08:21:35 AM
The first SW radio that I used was my parent's Zenith with the round dial face and the wooden cabinet.

The first SW radio that I bought was a National SW-54 from a Ham who worked with my older brother.
 


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KC7NRY on May 08, 2012, 08:01:31 PM
 MIne was a non-desript Montgomery Wards AAll Band, with Weather and Aircraft....listening to SFO airport as a 10 year old....SW was completely deaf. Dreamed and schemed but never really had another one until I was fortunate enough to find a new in box Philips DC-777. Living in Yuma AZ, there was precious little to listen to other than three radio stations. This was the heady time before y2k, with Brother Stair and other survivalist stations talking about famine and gov't confiscating our freedoms...but also Folk Tales form Radio new Zealand, Pyongyand Radio telling me how bad I was and listening to Radio Deutsche Welle, hoping to learn German...then I sold my SUburban (The DC-777 was a single DIN car stereo) and was then able to find a DX-394 from a Ham, KK4TL. I still owe him $$ for this radio. I had it at work and my boss pulled it off the shelf and it sort of still works...wish I knew how to fix it....Trying to quiet the QRM on a PCR-100 and just bought a dual slinky antenna...wish me luck!
 KC7NRY DE Walt


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: K0SBV on May 11, 2012, 08:16:07 AM
Mine was a Hallicrafters S-20R that I bought with newspaper delviery money back in 1958.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KA3NXN on May 11, 2012, 03:22:18 PM
I don't even remember the model, but it was an old Telefunken portable that I got from good will back in the early 70's. It had retracting tape antennas and ran off batteries, but it was a tube rig. What memories!!!


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: HAMMYGUY on May 17, 2012, 12:53:47 PM
My very first was a Lafayette "Expor-air".  A pile of crap regenerative that was a joke of radio.  But I didn't know any better and even used it for some ham contacts.  Lucky I didn't get killed the first time I hooked a ground wire to it.  I found out real quickly about hot chassis's and what a bad idea they are.  I soon graduated to a Hallicrafters S-85 to use with my Ameco AC-1T.  THAT was a very cool setup. 


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: GABRESEVEN on June 04, 2012, 03:48:55 PM
My first general coverage HF receiver was a Realistic DX-160, with 50 feet or wire for an antenna. I still have the DX-160 and it still works as good as the day it came out of the box...

I use it to monitor WWVH here in Hawaii where I live now...


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: K9MOV on June 06, 2012, 07:30:53 PM
BC-454 and BC-455. They were $2.95 each in the 50's
K9MOV


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: K5TED on June 09, 2012, 11:32:44 AM
1968 - an S-38 that was presented to me by the TV/Radio repair guy across the street from my house when I was in 4th grade, mainly to keep me out of his hair.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: FORMER_KE7EZ on June 10, 2012, 01:07:55 PM
My first sw radio was a home brewed super regen for 80 meters, using a #  30 tube, hand wound coils, headphones and thrown out batteries from the  local telephone office.  This was circa 1947, helpeed with my history in HS, as he was a ham with a 2 letter call sign from back in  the '30's
Dutch K7DUT


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KC2HCY on June 11, 2012, 06:56:27 AM
A Knight Kit span Master, two tube regen receiver, way back in the early 1960's. Remember Radio Moscow, Voice of the Andes, Radio Budapest, VOA, BBC. It was very interesting hearing different stations put a different slant on what was then headlines. May Day was a very big event on Radio Moscow, never mentioned on VOA. BBC had to my memory, the straightest news cast.
Those were wonderful listening days.

 


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KB4WEC on June 12, 2012, 05:17:03 AM
Mine was an Allied Super regen.  I think it was the Span Master.  Worked well.  Now I play with
a Heathkit GR81 which was the absolute BEST ever regenerative receiver.  It has an isolation transformer
so you can't get zapped by the chassis and is super sensitive and stable. 

So I am nostalgic, I have several modern Ham transceivers and an ICOM R71A but I like the GR81.

Greg
Greg, great to read your post, I have the exact same first rig, and still have it. Got 2 new tubes at Orlando,a nd all caps to rebuild it. Also just bought a GR81 about two monts ago, works great, need to recap it..
neat to hear someone who had the same two regen sets!
73 KB4WEC


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KC6RCM on March 11, 2014, 11:08:52 AM
An AFCO... sparked the interest.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: N6BIZ on March 12, 2014, 01:28:50 PM
KNIGHT KIT SPAN MASTER


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: ZL2MC on March 13, 2014, 01:17:11 PM
When I was bout 9 or 10 yo a Ham friend of my Dad's modified an "Ivalek" crystal set to get the 49m and 31m bands which were really hopping in Europe in the mid 50's. I think the reason for the modification was to get me out of Fred's shack! Then for my 11th birthday Dad bought me a govt. surplus Marconi R1475. Magic!


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KE7TMA on March 18, 2014, 04:27:37 PM
When I was a kid I played around with my buddy's dad's Transoceanic.  I had never been exposed to shortwave before, and it was captivating.

Later on, when I started to get into the scanner hobby, I bought an Icom IC-R3 which has AM reception on HF.  It was not very sensitive or selective, but with a decent antenna I could pull lots of stuff in.

Now I usually listen with my KX3, which has just about everything I want in a radio.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KD8IIC on March 18, 2014, 10:28:53 PM
 Best ever is always whatever I used first for anything I've experienced in life. The first ever actual radio to tune other than AM or FM broadcast was a Norelco Electronics Trainer. My father got it for me as a gift for raising my mathematics grade during elementary school. It was a breadboard arrangement using spring loaded clips to secure the components.
 Dad and I built one or two rudimentary devices with it. But the absolute best was the Trawler Band Radio one could assemble.As soon as it was finished I had it in the attic bedroom of mine, hooked to a wire as long as the house's attic ceiling and promptly was receiving Radio Havana. WOW, what a thrill it was indeed!Don't recall a single kit being made on that trainer after that.
 Next favorite has to be the old second hand Hallicrafters S-53 with which I showed dad how it worked. He wasn't into radios as such, him being a fledgling private pilot, but he was always interested in what the kid was up to.That S-53 was a fun rig to learn with. I listened to New York Radio's terminal forecasts. I still remember the guy's voice on that, he sounded exactly like the police dispatcher on the Blue's Brothers movie, remember?  :)


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KB0XR on March 19, 2014, 07:24:11 AM
Hallicrafters S38DB my folks bought me at the Navy exchange in Alameda California in 1958.  It's on a shelf out in the garage right now.  Filter cap has long since dried up and missing a couple of knobs.  I sure had fun with it til 1960 when my mother bought me  a Hallicrafters SX 110.  That one fell off the bench in my garage and exploded into pieces.

I have modern shack now but still miss the old stuff.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: HFCRUSR on March 19, 2014, 08:36:08 AM
Hallicrafters S38DB my folks bought me at the Navy exchange in Alameda California in 1958.  It's on a shelf out in the garage right now.  Filter cap has long since dried up and missing a couple of knobs.  I sure had fun with it til 1960 when my mother bought me  a Hallicrafters SX 110.  That one fell off the bench in my garage and exploded into pieces.

I have modern shack now but still miss the old stuff.
Fix her up and get her on a wire :) you just happened to post your S-38 in, of all posts in this thread-post#38 :D
far as this lifelong radio geek, I first got a good sense of SWL on my grandma's Grundig Majestic console that was running off a TV aereal on her roof.
My 1st official SW radio is  my '64 Zenith Royal 3000-1 that my uncle Joe gave to me. It still runs great. I kept it in the living room till last month. It now sets at bedside and occupies one of the terminals on the Delta-4 to the 75' on my roof-and does very well on that big wire for what it is. Zero imaging/overload on HF. I'm a lucky guy to have it.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: W5CEM on March 21, 2014, 08:48:00 PM
Realistic DX-160!  I don't have a clue what happened to it. 





Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: F4GFT on March 30, 2014, 06:52:30 AM
Sony ICF-SW7600D. Even by today's standards a very respectable radio.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: N2LXM on March 30, 2014, 09:26:29 AM
I started out with a BC-455( 6-9.1 KC) Command set, then on to a National NC-57B, sold it to help pay for my next receiver. After High School an Hammarlund SP-600-JX. Now I am using a Radio Shack DX-394( nice for its presets), R-390/urr, and a Collins 75S-3C fully filtered out. Each has its strong points. I have gotten a National NC-57B and NC-57M, there are waiting to be will be restored and given a place on my operating desk when done. Still a lot to listen to out there. Enjoy some of our home grown Short Wave station. take a listen a 7.490Mhz. Good and Funny stuff.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: WA8QNN on April 02, 2014, 04:52:45 PM
A Hallicrafters s-108 was my first sw receiver. Boy that was a cool rcvr.

Larry WA8QNN


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: K4PIH on April 03, 2014, 06:26:56 AM
Hallicrafters S40-B. I also had an Allied/Knight kit Super regen Span Master that my Uncle had started to build but didn't finish and re-gifted it to me. Man that thing was a mess but my dad helped me fix unk's mistakes and replace some of the parts that unk had "misplaced" with suitable subs. Wish I had that thing back, it was hot!

We had some converted ARC-3 and ARC-5 surplus gear in the home shack.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: RAYLAIB on April 05, 2014, 11:29:32 AM
1st - Heathkit regen with rotary dial.  2nd - Lafayette Star Roamer.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: K7HZN on April 11, 2014, 04:37:14 PM
Hallcrafters S-53A that I ordered from the Sears catalog 60 of so years ago. It still sits on the desk in my hamshack.   


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KA9HXD on April 12, 2014, 09:49:47 AM
In grade school back in the 60's I saved up lawn mowing money and eventually bought and built a Heathkit GR-64. It worked when I finished and I learned a lot in the process. Not a stellar performer by any measure. I had a long wire antenna from a previous crystal set kit. The ground was a piece of re-rod I beat into the ground along with a wire run to the well pipe. Those were the golden years of SW broadcast. I even set it up out in a tent during backyard camp outs in the summertime. I used to listen to local hams around the state on round table 75 meters AM on Sunday mornings. Built headphones out of old transistor radio speakers stuffed into hearing protectors. Great fun! Moved up to SB series receiver in high school. First ham rig was a HTX -100.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: HFCRUSR on April 12, 2014, 10:44:49 AM
In grade school back in the 60's I saved up lawn mowing money and eventually bought and built a Heathkit GR-64. It worked when I finished and I learned a lot in the process. Not a stellar performer by any measure. I had a long wire antenna from a previous crystal set kit. The ground was a piece of re-rod I beat into the ground along with a wire run to the well pipe. Those were the golden years of SW broadcast. I even set it up out in a tent during backyard camp outs in the summertime. I used to listen to local hams around the state on round table 75 meters AM on Sunday mornings. Built headphones out of old transistor radio speakers stuffed into hearing protectors. Great fun! Moved up to SB series receiver in high school. First ham rig was a HTX -100.
This is cool^^^


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: N1DVJ on April 15, 2014, 07:51:01 AM
I was given (loaned) a Realistic DX-160 but I didn't really get into it.  Later I bought a DX-300.  It was the 'engineering sample' at Tandy and the thing was fantastic.  Oh, it had it's problems.  Difficult to set up and align.  And if you aligned it with battery power, on AC it could oscillate in the IF.  If you aligned it on AC, then on battery power it was weak.  I ended up doing a number of mods to it, most actually made it to the Radio Shack repair shops.  One that didn't was I pulled the power feed to the IF and put in a 78L05 regulator.  Then realigned on AC and the thing was sweet. 

I regret selling that radio to this day...

Use a WinRadio G305e now.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: N8AUC on April 15, 2014, 08:37:35 AM
The first receiver that I could get my hands on that would receive SW, was an old portable radio that belonged to my mother. It received AM, FM, and 4-12 MHz SW. The dial was really cool looking. Slide rule tuning, but the numbers for each band were a different color on a black background. AM was red, SW was white, and FM was blue. It said "Admiral - Eleven Transistor" on the front. Couldn't hear a thing during the day on it, but at night I could hear foreign SWBC on it.
 
The first SW receiver that was MINE, was an old Hallicrafters S-120. Deaf as a post above 15 MHz, but on the lower freqs it received well, or so I thought. Used it to copy code on the Novice bands when I was studying for my first license. It was pretty decent for AM broadcast DXing as well.

AM broadcast DXing was always fun too. I had an old tube type RCA Victor clock radio next to my bed. I can remember lying in bed at night when I was about 12, and tuning down to the bottom end of the band, where I could hear a station broadcasting Montreal Expos baseball games in French. Later I found out that is was really a station in Montreal on 550 KHz I think.

Now, I use my Yaesu FT-857D to receive SW when I have the time to just listen around.
But the glow of those old tube receivers in my bedroom as a kid, listening to voices from faraway places, on cold snowy winter nights in Cleveland, was pure magic.

73 de N8AUC
Eric


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: N1DVJ on April 15, 2014, 08:48:11 AM
Well, if it's just using...  My grandmother had an old radio that I don't even remember what the name was.  It's like Bill Cosby talking about the old radio he listened to as a kid.  187 knobs and only two worked, the off-on volume control and the tuning knob. 

Later in college my girlfriends parents had an old Reed-Eisemann like that.  I always loved that radio, but I don't recall it ever working.  I don't know that they ever even plugged it in.  But it was just neat standing there in their living room...


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: VE3GNU on April 15, 2014, 01:23:10 PM
Built the Heathkit GR 54 all tube model in '69---earned a goodly number of BC QSL cards, and when achieving my Amateur Radio license---experience my first Amateur Radio contacts with it---with the help of a borrowed Heathkit DX 40 transmitter.  Now, looking back, and realizing the sophisticated equipment at hand, a pretty crude but fun experience worth all the way----


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: WA7SGS on April 20, 2014, 09:23:19 PM
A Philips L4XO5T.  It was their first transistor multiband radio, made in 1960.  I got mine from a great-uncle in 1967 and it lasted until 1975, when it was stolen in Seattle.  In 2012 I found one in good shape on eBay and have it back after a fashion!

My best AM DX with it was picking up a station from San Antonio in November 1973.  Two months later I was on my way down there for USAF basic training at Lackland AFB.

The batteries would last half a year under regular play.  Sound quality was good.

I would include a pix but this website is too poor to allow members to download them from their own computer.  Look it up on your own!

Rick


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: K0OD on April 21, 2014, 05:29:31 AM
Quote
would include a pix but this website is too poor to allow members to download them from their own computer.  Look it up on your own!

You can easily link to a picture as I have here, or post your picture in a photo site and link to that. Is this the model?
(http://www.radioatticarchives.com/images/p/Philips_L4X05T_Campos.jpg)



Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: WA7SGS on April 21, 2014, 09:42:49 AM
Quote
would include a pix but this website is too poor to allow members to download them from their own computer.  Look it up on your own!

You can easily link to a picture as I have here, or post your picture in a photo site and link to that. Is this the model?
(http://www.radioatticarchives.com/images/p/Philips_L4X05T_Campos.jpg)



That's the exact site pix I had and it was the only pix I ever found but the radio is not in as good a shape as mine is, which is why I wanted to post the pix from my computer.  I had not bothered to save a link from 2012 when I was looking to buy one.  As for Photobuckets and such I never use them.  Never had a reason to do so.  Most sites I am on seem to allow for posting a pix straight from the computer.  The ones that don't won't be getting any from me.

Rick 


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KJ4DHI on May 14, 2014, 04:03:50 PM
My first was a National SW54. I paid $10 for it in 1955. I see them from time to time on ebay. I don't know why I don't hit the buy it now button. I guess I have a hard time justifying paying $60 for one when I paid $10 for the first one.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: HFCRUSR on May 14, 2014, 05:01:06 PM
My first was a National SW54. I paid $10 for it in 1955. I see them from time to time on ebay. I don't know why I don't hit the buy it now button. I guess I have a hard time justifying paying $60 for one when I paid $10 for the first one.
1. It's a cool old receiver that would bring back some nice memories for you.
2.With inflation, the $10 you paid in '55 for the 1st one would now cost you about $88, so, if you bought one now @ $60, it would be like buying the 1st one in '55 for $7. So you'd actually be getting a better deal ;D
3. It's always a neat thing to have your 1st receiver as part of your collection (if you have a collection)


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: K1FPV on May 28, 2014, 10:34:28 AM
My first Receiver was an old Knight Kit Span Master regenerative receiver! I bought it around 1960 or 1961 and built it myself with the good instructions supplied with it. After using it a while I got the Short-Wave Listeners call WPE1EJL then issued by "Popular Electronics". I had SWL cards printed and began sending them out. I got many cards in return from stations like Radio Moscow, BBC, HCJB and a number of amateurs. One happened to be local and he eventually got me hooked on Ham Radio. Now 50+ years later, I still SWL and ham both! Great hobbies!


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KB2HSH on June 03, 2014, 05:40:25 AM
A $12.95 Radio Shack "Science Fair" kit/toy.

VERY CRUDE, but was STILL capable of VOA, BBC World Service, HCJB, Radio Moscow, Deutsche Welle, NPK, Radio Australia, and the rest of the "big SW" stations in the mid 1980's.  It was fascinating that a TOY...a literal TOY could bring me the world with only a 50' piece of wire for an antenna. 

I used this RX at an ex-girldfriend's house even after earning my Novice in 1988.

Great memories!

John KB2HSH
Springbrook, NY


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: N0SYA on June 04, 2014, 07:03:50 PM
Hmm, first I ever used as a mere youth was a Phillips console from ww2 - the kind with the gigantic speaker, then one of those solid state portable ones with the fold out map of the globe and time zones and whatnot my dad had. Wwv was strong and I wondered what it must be like to have a job telling the time over the radio all day. Decades later I saw a Halli sx110 for sale and snapped it up. Worked fine but when the air conditioning or furnace came on the conversations drifted. Then around '89 an mint R70 was offered in a local HAM newsletter and I snapped that up. Had all kinds since then. Today I run a mint 761 with mods pending (6KHz am xtal filter, rearrangement of the ssb filters, better am demod) and an sx28 and nc46 both in need of restos. Swl is fun.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: WB6RXG on June 05, 2014, 04:39:20 PM
The year was 1973 and the receiver was a Graymark 511 3 tube regen kit.  It came with three coils for different bands and I ordered 2 more for additional bands.

I built it in a High School electronics class.  It took a couple of weeks at an hour a day to get it done.  Unfortunately, it didn't work.  I went through the assembly instruction a few time checking to see if I missed a step.  I also looked at the schematic checking each connection with the receiver to see if something was there that wasn't covered in the instructions.

The teacher could teach theory but didn't have any troubleshooting skills.  He told me that if I didn't get it working the best grade I could expect on it was a "C" and that if he ordered the teachers guide/troubleshooting guide which would result in a "B" if I then got the receiver working.  I gave up and asked to teacher to order the troubleshooting guide.

A couple of weeks later the big envelope arrived with the teachers guide/troubleshooting guide.  I opened the envelope and removed the contents.  The very first page said in very big letters "NOTICE - ERROR IN SCHEMATIC AND ASSEMBLY MANUAL".  It turned out that there was no connection between the two halves of the 12AT7.  One half was the detector and the other half was the preamp for the audio amplifier.  I soldered in the jumper, plugged the receiver in and it came to life.

I also got my "A".

I used that receiver until I bought a HEATHKIT HW-101 in 1976 and got my novice license. I never did figure out how to receive CW or SSB with it.  I understand now that if I had played with the regen control a little bit, right around the squeal point, it would have worked.  I got rid of the Graymark, but like everything else from my youth I wish I had kept it.

73,
Stuart
WB6RXG


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: WB9NFD on June 15, 2014, 06:55:01 AM
Heathkit GR91.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: W4KYR on June 16, 2014, 07:05:31 AM
Telefunken Portable Radio . It looked like this

(http://members.tripod.com/cheryldrake_1/sitebuildercontent/sitebuilderpictures/telyellow.jpg)



Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: VK2NZA on August 02, 2014, 05:36:23 PM
My fathers early 1960's National 11 transistor AM/& 3 shortwave bands got me hooked, until in 1967 our family moved to the US for my fathers 4 year diplomatic posting in Washington DC. I obtained a paper route in Somerset Maryland and mowed lawns for neighbours whose kids got pocket money anyhow. (I didn't). with 4 months saved earnings I purchased a Sears multiband radio but on the way home passed a Radio Shack store in Rockvlle MD and spotted a new DX 150. Well I was besotted by the array of tuning tailoring knobs plus electrical bandspread. Sears graciously allowed the return of the still boxed up portable and I shot down to pickup a new DX 150. My father begrudgingly allowed me to put up  300 ohm ladderline multiple dipoles in the attic pinned to the bearers and feed out of a louvre to my basement bedroom on the condition that I remove them later. With the addition of a Heathkit Q multiplier/notch filter and a preamplifier i had knobs galore to twist and play with. I learned a lot!   I had a huge amount of fun with that receiver and soon had a large collection of QSL cards from around the world.  A previous posters comment of receiving mail from Communist countries during the Cold War era reminded me of the regular mail I received from Peking, Moscow, Prague, Sofia Bulgaria, East Germany Cuba and Nth Korea and the paranoia of the cold war.  I had my mail directed to the New Zealand Embassy in Observatory Circle Washington DC and Dad would bring it home. I often wondered if there was a NSA or CIA man assigned to determine the significance of so much Soviet block communication with its Vietnam war ally, little New Zealand ! Hi Hi.
Later a succession of more sophisticated receivers followed , Hallicrafters SX-130, Drake SW4, Hammarlund HQ100A,  but I would say the purchase of an Icom R71A shortly after the model was released showed me the a truly excellent DX chaser with accurate readout and brilliant sensitivity.
Now living on a 300 acre property in Far Northern NSW, Australia with a shack full of the latest gear and antennas I could only have dreamed of back then  I remember that DX 150 fondly (for all its faults) and believe I had more fun back in the sixty's when the airwaves were crammed with International Broadcasters compared with the age of the Internet for communication. I still have the original Icom R71a with extra filters!
Thanks to previous posters I do enjoy reading and relating to your memories and experiences!
   regards Ross VK2NZA


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: W7ASA on August 03, 2014, 08:24:11 PM
So many memories!

About 1960-something, my friend Mark R. and I would tune around with his father's Zenith Transoceanic, with the push buttons around the perimeter of the dial escutcheon. In early mornings, we'd wake-up and run to listen to Radio Japan signing on. We occasionally heard what sounded like horses galloping (HF weather fax without BFO) and WWV along with some other broadcasters. Later, his parents bought him a Lafayette 'Explor-Air' regen kit that we built together.  

(http://www.relic-tronics.com/images/Lafayette%20Explor-Air%20pair%201.jpg)

"Ours" looked JUST like the one on the right.

I remember his father coming out while we were building it, having a look at the haywired parts placements and etc. and saying: "I've seen spiders that didn't have legs THAT long!".  We had NO idea that he was hinting that shortwave radios should use minimal lead lengths for best performance; as a general rule. Mark was the brains of our team, and I'm not certain what I contributed, but I did learn a lot.

Eventually, he moved on to a better receiver and I bought the Explor-Air from him using lawn mower money. My neighbor gave me a GREAT set of WW II high impedance pilot's headphones and I strung wire all over our 2 storied house:

Radio Moscow,  Radio Peking, Radio Nederland, Radio RSA from the Republic of South Africa form whom I received a 'Learn to Speak Afrikaans' LP record and book! I was probably the only 9 year old in my school with a file at the FBI for receiving so much foreign propaganda, like 'Soviet Life' magazines, ChiCom propaganda and etc. Being PROUDLY born in England, the BBC was always top of the heap with me. Of course, I didn't remember much about England, because I was born at a very young age.  ;-)

I was STILL heavily into SWL when I reached high school and it was suggested that I get my ham license.  At first, I was not interested, having too much fun listening. Eventually I moved on to better equipment when I became a ham, (well... that was the idea, anyway) but I STILL love and old regen and frankly the glow of tubes, headset and regen whine: pure magic to me still.



73 de Ray
W7ASA ..._  ._



Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: WA8ZTZ on August 08, 2014, 01:40:46 PM
Built the Heathkit GR 54 all tube model in '69---

Also built a Heath GR-54...about 1968 IIRC.  Used it with an Ameco 2M converter...converted 144-148 mcs to 7 -11 mcs.  Had an Ameco TX62 for a transmitter feeding a halo through a Dow Key relay.  The set up worked great on 2 AM back in the day  :).  Gave the GR-54 to my cousin  about 1983.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: VE9DAN on August 09, 2014, 05:22:00 AM
My first receiver was a 1968 TRIO 9R-59 complete with big knobs, and a wide dial.
I don't recall it being too good for SSB.
Radio Havana Cuba DX Club was a great program, as were others from Sophia, London, and Berne.
Great memories!


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KK5DR on August 10, 2014, 02:58:08 PM
I was in the 7th grade. My dad was a junk collector, went to the landfill weekly to look for "good stuff" as he called (yes, they would let the public come in and take stuff out back then). He found an old Panasonic receiver (don't recall the model), it didn't work. Me, being a tinkerer with intense interest in all things electrical, I opened it up and found a broken wire from the battery holder. This wire also fed power from the AC mains power supply to the receiver. Fixing the wire got the unit going again.
The radio had several bands some of which were 80,41,40,21,20,11,10,6mtrs & FM broadcast bands. It was AM/FM only.
Next I attached a long wire to the telescopic antenna and strung it out my bedroom window and up a big tree there. I spent many hours listening to hams, truckers, CAP, and broadcasts on HF.
I thought about how cool it would be to do what these folks were doing.
I was a novice back when I was in the 5th grade, and CW seemed to come easy to me back then, so I would listen in on the CW sections also, deciphering the code as if it was covert messages in WW2. My novice ticket had lapsed a few years earlier and my family didn't have money to buy me any radio gear to transmit on. Besides, I had other priorities at that age.
I recall that doing SWL light the spark in me to one day get a ham ticket and keep at it till I could do what those cool guy were doing.
Now, I do just that.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KX4OM on August 17, 2014, 06:45:20 PM
Hammarlund SP-400 Super Pro. It was also my Novice receiver in 1960. My 7175 kilocycles crystal in the Heathkit DX-20 shared the frequency with Radio Moscow at night. Twinlead 40m folded dipole at 15' suspended from the eaves of the house to a bamboo pole. That super Pro was a real beast. The separate power supply weighed about 70 pounds. The SP-600 that I was gifted by my XYL's uncle Bob, WB4MHG (SK) was a portable receiver in comparison.

Ted, KX4OM


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KB0RDL on August 18, 2014, 05:18:45 AM
Mine was a National NC-60.  It looked sophisticated for the time (1960) but it was a very basic shortwave receiver with a VFO for listening to sideband.  It cost about $100.  I knew nothing about radio when I bought it but learned the basics in short order.  I had it for about 10 years.  I have an ICOM R75 Now.

Laird Wilcox, kb0rdl


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: W2MR on August 25, 2014, 11:26:29 AM
My dad borrowed a Hallicrafters S-40B receiver from my uncle. Later he bought me my very own Hallicrafters Sx-25.   


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: WA2ISE on September 04, 2014, 12:45:40 PM
I had a console pull 5 or 6 octal tube SW set, with a power transformer.  The sort sold just before WW2.  I'd receive the big flamethrowers like the station from South Africa, with the chirping bird or such just before the top of the hour.  This around the early 70's. 


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: K5WLR on September 04, 2014, 01:22:18 PM
Well, back in 1966, when the SAT was accomplished on stone tablets and dinosaurs ruled the earth, my parents gave me a phonograph with a radio that included shortwave bands. Got to listen to shortwave broadcasts. Then my friend Greg sold me his old Knightkit Star Roamer when he purchased a Realistic DX-150. The Star Roamer was kind of deaf (10 uv sensitivity) but I got to hear more shortwave bands. Then I got my own DX-150 and I was off to the races!!!!

BTW, I have a Star Roamer and a DX-160 down in the basement!

;D

Well, the Star Roamer and the DX-160 are now out of the basement and hooked up in the ham shack/bedroom. The old Star Roamer might have been deaf, but it sure does pull the AM stations in. Too bad the pickings are so slim these days. The DX-160 has to have the most generous S meter in the world... it pins on just about every signal. Sure does look nice, though!

Just having fun reminiscing.....  :)

73!

Will Rogers
K5WLR
Almost 40 years of hamming and just getting started!


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: N3WAK on September 04, 2014, 02:28:36 PM
Will:  Good for you setting up those old rigs again!  I'm with you!  I'm all for the nostalgia factor, too. Those rigs of our youth just sound better than ever.

73, Tony


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: K5WLR on September 04, 2014, 02:48:08 PM
Will:  Good for you setting up those old rigs again!  I'm with you!  I'm all for the nostalgia factor, too. Those rigs of our youth just sound better than ever.

73, Tony

Thanks, Tony. You should see my HR-10B, HW-16, DX-60B, Drake 2B, and SB303/SB401 rigs... lots of nostalgia there.

73!

Will
K5WLR


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: K4JPN on September 14, 2014, 04:21:53 AM
My first radio was a one tube battery powered regenerative, that K1EII helped me build for Boy Scout Radio Merit Badge in 1960.  I heard Radio Moscow announce the U2 spy plane being shot down on it.  I could pick up hams and SW stations and I was hooked.   I later in 1960 built on my own a Knight Kit Span Master, I heard all sorts of SW signals and hams.  This led to getting my license as KN1VKW at 15 years old in 1962.  Later in 1962 I passed my General and became K1VKW.  All this I owe to that simple 1 tube regenerative receiver.  :)  K4JPN


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: K5NOK on September 14, 2014, 03:09:12 PM
At age 13, I found an old tube AM broadcast radio receiver in the attic. It had an antenna post in the back and I hooked up a piece of wire from it to my curtain rod. I was fascinated that I could hear stations all over the US at night from Houston.
I graduated on to a Realistic DX 160 and heard Radio Moscow, Radio ROK, HCJB and many others. I also strayed into the  ham bands and heard guys talking about their Drakes, Collins and Yaesu radios.
I was hooked on pulling signals out of the air with just a piece of copper. Unfortunately, it was 30 years before I became a ham.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: K1ZJH on September 15, 2014, 10:14:51 AM
Lafayette KT-200 (HE-10 kit version) around 1960 or 1961. Moved up to a HR-10 when I got the novice license. For nostalgia, I recently picked up a HE-10 and even a HE-30 to relive those early days... time sure gives us rose colored glasses when viewing the past.  I can't imagine what young novices went through to make contacts back in those days with such horrible ham rigs.

Pete


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: K1FPV on September 15, 2014, 02:32:10 PM
I started with the Knight Kit Span Master, later graduated to a Knight Kit R-55 and eventually used a T-60 with it as a novice. I still use the Span Master from time to time. I have since bought a used HE-10 and KT-320 for nostalgia sake and restored them. Real radios that glow in the dark!   ;)

Bill/K1FPV


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KD8UEI on September 16, 2014, 12:51:56 PM
My first somewhat serious shortwave receiver was the Radio Shack Realistic DX-100. By today's standards, it was nothing to write home about. Through the years, I've had many radios that included SW bands on them, many as an afterthought, but my favorite SW radio was the Grundig Yacht Boy 400. Most recently, I have the Tecsun PL-660.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: ONAIR on September 17, 2014, 06:22:31 PM
Remember getting a battery powered pegboard electronics kit from Lafayette Radio.  One project on it was a one tube AM receiver, with coils for either the BCB or SW bands!  To my surprise (after throwing a long wire antenna out my window), Radio Australia came barreling in!!  Still remember hearing that bird they played at the beginning of their broadcasts.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: N0PQK on September 17, 2014, 06:41:38 PM
Hallicrafters SX-140 (Here is a picture listed below that I found on the internet.)

http://n4trb.com/DaytonHamvention2007/images/dayton_0105_hallicrafters_sx_140.jpg


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: M5AEO on September 18, 2014, 02:27:58 PM
My first shortwave set was a Russian Vega portable.  It had about 8 shortwave bands and a terrible pointer type frequency readout that was actually marked in Metres.  At that time Radio Moscow only read out their frequencies in metres anyway!  I heard my letter read on Moscow Mailbag when I was about 10 years old, what a thrill!   My first 'real' radio was the Yaesu FRG-7, which was great: I could get the frequency to within about 10Khz then!  I owned several receivers over the years, and always regretted selling the old 'Frog', but last Christmas my XYL managed to get me and old FRG-7!, so I'm back to where I started!

Jonathan, M5AEO, London.



Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: K7QQH on October 01, 2014, 04:48:12 PM
My first one - at the tender age of 10 while living in Livingston, Montana was an old Zenith TransOceanic (I don't remember the model, but it was about a '46-'50 vintage). My dad bought it from a guy at a gas station for five bucks, and he was VERY supportive of my becoming an SWL (the year was 1956). Got my Novice ticket as KN7NID in Hermiston, Oregon in 1959 at age 13 (the required code speed to pass the exam was 5 WPM).

After getting the Novice ticket, I "moved up" to the venerable National NC-60. Wow! I now had a radio to copy CW, and with a homebrew transmitter (built on a cake pan chassis), I was chasing the airwaves on 80 and 40 meters with the few crystals I could scrounge up from my kid-ham pals! Life was good!

Oh, such pleasant memories...

73's to all, and CW forever,

Roger C.
K7QQH


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: WB6NGC on October 02, 2014, 08:26:35 AM
Echophone EC-1A


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: N3AZH on October 04, 2014, 12:31:34 AM
My first SW was a Lloyd's multiband portable a neighbor gave me in 1973. It was pretty crappy but it got the ball rolling. My favorite receiver was a National NC-183D I got in the 80's which was restored to like new condition. It had killer audio. Now (besides my ham rig) I have a Hallicrafters s-108 and a Hammarlund HQ-129x by no means Cadillac rigs, they glow like real radios do ;) Mostly these days I use them for MW and 75 meter AM. Also I have to mention I built one of those Radio Shack "science fair" regens back in the 70's. Used to have a killer SWL/Ute Qsl collection but that was sadly lost in a household disaster in 2005, along with many other treasures. :P


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: WA4HBK on October 07, 2014, 04:29:10 PM
Zenith Transoceanic.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: W8IFI on October 09, 2014, 10:22:27 PM
My first radio in the early fifty's was a big council job that someone had  removed the cabinet. So I had a chassis, speaker and could play it. I remember cold winter nights when I would climb up the attic stairway (and it was cold!!) into the attic and take some wire I found and string the wires around the rafters to see what I could pick up. (mom used to store apples near the stairs and I can still smell them) . We had an oil forced air heating system. At Christmas I would place the radio near the air ducts in the basement and beautiful Christmas music would filter in every room in the house. There was great Christmas music from Germany, Slovakia, Switzerland, Britain, Hungary,
Holland, Italy,and Scandinavia. Last Christmas I couldn't fin a European station playing the music. Later I built a Knight Kit Space Spanner with and old soldering Iron. We were poor and couldn't afford the frivolity of a soldering gun.
Warm memories never the less.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: WB2TQC on October 13, 2014, 06:22:41 PM
First time I listened to Shortwave was on an old console model radio that my dad picked up off the street. He wanted the console for something. I took the tubes to be tested and replaced two bad ones. I took the innards out and placed it in a small box. It didn't have a glass face so I really never knew what Frequency I was on but the first station that caught my attention was the Time Station from Ottawa Canada. CHU. I used to listen to it for a long time even though all it did was beep at me.  :) The Bartender in the Bar my Father frequented sold me my second Radio. An Old Lafayette HE-15. Went from there to an Old National and then a Hallicrafters S-108. Many years later I purchased and still have a Hallicrafters SX-110. I loved being an SWL. When Popular Electronics formed a SWL Club I applied for membership and received call letters WPE2LPQ. Still remember it like it was yesterday.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: WA8UEG on October 18, 2014, 02:34:24 PM
Knight Kit Span Master, also 1st kit I built. It stills sits on the top shelf in my shack and I turn it on every couple of months. Ist Super Het was a Hallicrafters S119 Sky Buddy and it sits next to the Span Master and listened to every couple of months also.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: K2TGI on October 19, 2014, 10:22:21 AM
Ours was a Knightkit Spanmaster my Dad and I built, we thought we were in heaven
listening to all the stations . . . .


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: W9ALD on October 20, 2014, 07:56:14 AM
As a kid growing up in Southern Minnesota whose father ran a Cities Service gas station and later when Cities Service was was bought out by Gulf Oil I had a front row seat to what then was a common marketing practice.  The reduced price item unrelated to fuel for your car.  Most of the time it was a piece of glassware of some sort.  I remember a wooden handled brown glass root beer mug with western theme items printed on the surface ... cowboy boots, branding irons and the like.

One summer the item was a three band radio!  AM & FM plus SW.  It had two speakers on the front for the stereo FM and the cool telescoping antenna.  While I helped out pumping gas as a very young boy, dad was not about to give one of those away.  You had to earn it and get a fill of gas.  I had been mowing my grandparents lawn all summere and at $.50 a week it didn't add up too fast, especially when you had an addiction to Mountain Dew at $.10 a bottle.  Well the big day finally arrived, I had the money all saved up, but alas, I had nothing that burned gasoline and certainly did not have anything I could drive in and fill up with.  But, Grandpa Clyde had an idea.  He lived about half a mile from the gas station and told me to be at his house at 9:00 a.m.  He filled the mower with gas and sent me on my way to dad's gas station and the waiting fuel pumps and MY Ross three band radio.  Clyde got in his '61 Ford Galaxie and beat me there and was waiting by the pop machine when I drove over the alarm bell hose  Dad promptly ran out only to find me on the riding mower.  "Fill it up please ... and I think I would like one of those three band radios you are offering with a fill of gasoline!  Clyde bought the soda pop for us all that day.

Like most of SWLers of that era we listened to Radio Moscow, HCJB Voice of the Andies, Radio Habana, The BBC World Service, The Voice of America Breakfast Show, Daybreak Africa and the list goes on and on.

Now, I am not the sharpest tack in the box.  I did not go through the rebellious teen years even though I was a teen once upon a time.  And I enjoyed the company of older folks (read W.W. I Vets) more than kids my own age.    I seem to have been always paying more attention to world events than the local news and gossip.  AND it only took me about a month to figure out how the SW radio I fell asleep listening to every night in my bed would wind up on my dresser turned off in the morning!

I am afraid that little ride on a lawnmower cost me more than the $.13 for gasoline and $6.95 for the radio.  Batteries were not cheap!


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: W2JUV on October 29, 2014, 09:24:59 AM
Hallicrafters S-38E, birthday gift in 1959


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KI6ASP on November 10, 2014, 01:44:02 PM
I had a Zenith 1000 Trans Oceanic.  It had a really good BC band receiver.  Wished it had a BFO.  Eventually bought a few Sony's but the best of my lot was an IC-R70 and NRD525.  I still have the 1000 and will restore it when I retire. 


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: IZ5PQT on November 15, 2014, 01:17:51 PM
Mine was the double-conversion super featured in the 1958 ARRL handbook, which I built
with a number of simplifications. At the time I used to listen to the 80 and 40 m bands.
(http://www.televideo.ws/shared/1958_super.jpg)


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: K4JPN on November 16, 2014, 05:25:17 AM
A one tube regenerative radio, built for the radio merit badge in Boy Scouts, I could here strong s/w stations like the BBC, Radio Moscow and the VOA broadcasts, this was followed by a Knight Kit Span Master where I first heard ham radio operators way back in 1960. 


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: AF6AU on November 17, 2014, 12:00:55 PM
I was ~4 years old (1958), and my parents has a "Wards Airline" big wood box Hi-Fi record player + AM-FM and 2 shortwave bands (3-18MHz). I remember listening to the "Funny sounding words" I heard from the forign broadcasters. I heard my first CW and rember that, as without any BFO all I heard was thumps and hiss. Some CW rigs had AC hum, and so I could hear CW as thumps modulated with 120 hertz hum and hiss in-between.

My first REAL shortwave, a Hammarlund Red letter HQ-129X (1970 when I bought it for $25) , and I still have it, and it works better today than then, with select tubes and a decent alignment.

Back in '58 I remember VOA playing a lot of Sousa marches.

Such memories.
JML
AF6AU




Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: N9SWA on November 17, 2014, 06:57:13 PM
Sony icf 2010 just bought a Tucson 880 nice radio still miss my 2010.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: WB5X on November 25, 2014, 02:57:11 PM
The first radio that I purchased was an Allied Star Roamer in about 1966.  My first shortwave radio that I used was a Motorola R-390.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: N5LB on November 27, 2014, 05:17:25 PM
Hallicrafters S-108, that I still have in the closet.  My parents gave it to me for Christmas when I was 14; an paid Sear $6/month for a long time.  It became the receiver for my WN5ORM station.  I added a Heathkit Q Multiplier that helped because in the mid 60's there were a lot of SWL stations. 

A lot of SWL QSL's from the S-108.  Plus, it could heat my bedroom in the winter.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: N1NQC on November 29, 2014, 02:09:15 AM
Hey All,

First rcvr was an unknown model number RCA 1930's  tube set .It was my dad's and he  used it  to "track" WW II on a big map w/ flag pins . It originally came in a cabinet w/ a phonograph but had long since been mounted to a board. My brothers  and I copied  Scotland yard two way AM  comms and a  German  b'cast on a very  short ant in my basement.I was  hooked  !  But I was around 8 years old and  fairly quickly trashed it by fooling with it.

 First "real" rcvr was a Hallicrafters S-120a transistor .In short order  I   had a 75 ft N-S antenna and 125 ft E-W antenna on a knife switch. A VERY good set up for a 9 or 10 year old kid, MUCH dx on b'cast band and SW.

I have a S-120a now, but it's not my original one  . It needs  some alignment/ refurb work.

First home brew rvcrs were crystal sets, some of which got SW by "accident".

de N1NQC


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KK9H on December 08, 2014, 01:36:35 PM
My first shortwave radio was a Knightkit Ocean Hopper built in 1960 which was a super regenerative receiver that used plug in coils for the different bands it covered. I remember learing where the 49, 31 and 25 meter bands were by memorizing which coil to use and where on the tuning dial to look for these bands. The tuning dial was simply calibrated from 0 to 100 so I used the various WWV and CHU stations to help me locate where I was. I had a 75 foot wire stretched out to a tree in the back yard and I remember staying up into the early hours of the morning listening to that radio. I would regularly listen to HCJB, Radio Moscow, Radio Havana, Radio Peking, Radio Australia and the BBC. Later I was given a Knightkit Star Roamer for Christmas and after carefully putting it together, I was in heaven because it became much easier to find all these stations. Popular Electronics magazine had a "Shortwave Monitor Station" certificate that you could send in for where they would issue a special WPE identifier, mine was WPE9IGS and I still have my certificate. Those were fun times and it is so unfortunate that practically all those stations are no longer on the air any more.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: W2JUV on December 13, 2014, 02:57:19 PM
Hallicrafters S38E, circa 1959


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: W7WQ on December 20, 2014, 06:49:03 AM
Mine was a Toshiba portable that my parents gave me for Christmas when I was 10 or 12, I don't recall exactly.  I would listen the  guys on 40 and 75 meter A.M.   They was starting to slowly go away in the early to mid sixties but still a good number on that mode.  I would listen to foreign broadcasters before the send money for salvation took over the bands.  Anyway, that little Toshiba got me interested in ham radio.  I didn't know any hams so again the bank of Mom and Dad got me a Knight kit code practice oscillator and a 33rpm LP with morse on it and I taught myself code and theory.  Two things no longer required.  I started out with a general class license in 1968 and have been on the air ever since.  As an aside,  my niece had a boyfriend who owned an old Hallicrafters S38 receiver that needed to be re-strung.  I fixed the tuning and worked a DXCC in about a month with it using one of my Drake T4XB's.  I worked a bunch of SSB stations with it too...just takes a little finesse with the BFO. 


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: W8AEP on December 22, 2014, 08:09:41 AM
Allied Space Spanner. Built it myself when i was 12 years old. I learned a lot and heard a lot of DX. I had a lot of fun with that radio.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: K4PIH on December 23, 2014, 06:00:07 AM
.  A previous posters comment of receiving mail from Communist countries during the Cold War era reminded me of the regular mail I received from Peking, Moscow, Prague, Sofia Bulgaria, East Germany Cuba and Nth Korea and the paranoia of the cold war.  I had my mail directed to the New Zealand Embassy in Observatory Circle Washington DC and Dad would bring it home. I often wondered if there was a NSA or CIA man assigned to determine the significance of so much Soviet block communication with its Vietnam war ally, little New Zealand ! Hi Hi..

Yes I was a rabid SWL'er as well. Joined the Air Force and had all my QSL's forwarded to my first duty location. Man those QSL cards from Moscow, Havan, Prague, caused a big stir when they arrived on a US military base that trained radio intercept operators!


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: WB5EAT on December 24, 2014, 10:27:00 AM
I had an old surplus Belmont BC348 receiver and strung up some wire . I spent many happy hours trying to
 understand every strange sound that came out of the speaker . Actual shortwave broadcast were the door
 to better understand the world and they were priceless .


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KE0XQ on December 24, 2014, 02:10:19 PM
Mine was a Hallicrafters S-38B.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KE0NW on December 29, 2014, 05:17:00 PM
I had a few different 1930's console radios with shortwave but my first real shortwave receiver was a Howard A-450 which is still in the shack in working order.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: K7WCB on January 29, 2015, 04:45:08 PM
I just purchased my first, a $20.00 special from an internet shopping site named after a big river in S. America. It is a Kaito KA-321 that sips electrons by means of 2 AA's. I received it yesterday and listened to my first SW broadcasts last night, mostly Radio Havana. I bought the radio as a pocket AM/FM for when I'm hiking and camping in the woods. I was going to buy an AM/FM with a hand crank/weatherband/flashlight but my FT-60r handles the weather bands and I already have a flashlight. I thought the SW stuff would be a neat bonus, and it is. I've got my general ticket but never really listened to HF, other than CW when I built a Rockmite on 40 to try kit building. I work on learning CW from time to time but can't seem to stay with it yet. I've been a VHF guy but I'm migrating around the bands now. I'm glad that there is a SWL forum on here where I can glean some info from. I'd like to get my hands on an older tube radio, working or not and press it into service. The ones I've seen are already restored and are out my budget or total basket cases. The right one will present itself one of these days.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: AA4PB on January 29, 2015, 05:30:38 PM
The first one that I actually owned was a Knight Ocean Hopper.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: ZL2MC on February 18, 2015, 11:27:04 PM
I was about 8 years old when my Ham neighbour invited me round to his shack. I was amazed at all the foreign languages. He later gave me a crystal set modified to receive the European 49m band which was jumping in the 1950's cold war era - loud and clear in the evenings. Eddy Startz on the Radio Nederland's "Happy Station" on Sunday Mornings - easily received in Essex, England.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KD8ZXU on April 03, 2015, 05:46:49 PM
A RINCAN.
Still have it. Tubes and all.
http://webpages.charter.net/magpie03/rincan.png
Mitch
KD8ZXU


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KC8MWG on July 11, 2015, 05:27:14 PM
First one I ever OWNED was a Knight "Star Roamer" I bought off one of my classmates in high school, around 1987 or 1988. Paid $5 for it. I still have it but it needs some repairs (most likely filter caps in the power circuit, as it has a bad hum).

First one I ever LISTENED to was a German-made console from the early 1960's that my grandparents had bought when my mom was a kid. My grandmother gave it to me but I don't have room for it so it is being stored in my dad's heated and insulated pole barn. It has long-wave, several short-wave bands, plus AM broadcast, FM stereo, and a phonograph.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: K8JD on July 23, 2015, 02:57:51 PM
First SW receiver was a Hallicrafters  S-38d, got for XMAS 1957 when I was 12 years old. Later i got a used Heath QF1 and added it for more selectivity


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: WD6GLA on July 25, 2015, 10:26:13 PM
I first started listening to SW on a Montgomery Wards Airline console radio my folks had back in the early 60's .  Then a Knightkit Space Spanner regen , and then on to a Hallicrafters SX 110 . What memories and what fun !   


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: AC2NZ on July 27, 2015, 01:44:38 PM
My first was the guts from an old Philco 40-180 console radio; the radio chassis, an electromagnetic speaker, and the Wave Magnet antenna, which looked like a car muffler made out of cardboard with wooden ends. (Apparently my grandfather had broken up the cabinet for firewood one winter.) It covered MW and two shortwave bands - I think up to about 18 MHz. I heard a LOT with that set-up and got a good many countries QSLed. I used to tune in Radio Australia in the 25 mb every morning before school. Got that on Easter weekend, 1957.

A few years later I built a Lafayette KT-320 receiver (same as the HE-30) and I've never looked back.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: K4JK on July 28, 2015, 08:33:51 AM
Sangean ATS 803A   :)


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: K9HKS on August 09, 2015, 12:31:53 PM
Mine was a Atwater Kent radio that had 20 meters on it.  Am of course!


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: AF6LJ on August 09, 2015, 12:52:52 PM
Since you asked...
(http://www.ohio.edu/people/postr/bapix/RS_GlobePatrol.JPG)
The one that came after that was made by the Northern Radio Company in 1943.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: SM0AOM on August 09, 2015, 01:47:44 PM
My first receiver at age 9 was a pre-war table radio from AGA-Baltic which had 2 SW-bands, mechanical bandspread and an RF stage.
A much better receiver than the usual table radio. After listening to SW broadcasts for some months I discovered the strange sounds of A1 Morse signals.

After confering with a business acquaintance of my father that was a radio amateur, a BFO was jury-rigged. This also enabled SSB by (very) careful tuning. I got "hooked" instantly and began writing reception reports to Nordic amateurs.

In good time before my 14th birthday, which was the earliest age allowed to take the Novice test, I had also built a dedicated 2-tube 80/40m superheterodyne inspired by the Jones Super-Gainer for listening to on-air code practice, and learned to master 12 WPM.

A great many receivers have since passed through the shack...

73/
Karl-Arne
SM0AOM




Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: NQ4T on August 09, 2015, 03:29:40 PM
While not my first Shortwave radio; I seem to recall discovering it on a Montgomery Ward/Airline GEN-3999A that belonged to my grandmother.

Years later, I received a Radio Shack multi-band radio that resembled a GE Superradio. A couple years later I wanted something smaller, so about the time I was 11 I got some small Gerrad radio. I don't remember the model number of it; but it wasn't ever that great of a radio...typical sub-$100 AM/FM/SW portable of the mid-90's.

Years later, sometime around late 2001; I bought a Radio Shack DX-398 on an impulse. This was my first serious radio and I didn't have any clue how good it was till I got it home and looked it up; finding out it was a highly-regarded rebranded Sangean. This radio served as my radio for a couple of years; at least till BPL got flipped on and made the radio 100% useless. I wound up selling it.

Last year I discovered BPL had died...and was anxious to get back in to SWL. I wound up getting an RTL-SDR for budget concerns plus I was attracted to it's flexibility. That was fun for a while; but I quickly found out how horrible the 8-bit ADC was for AM signals in general. I had planed on getting a Tecsun unit...since I couldn't afford a new ATS-909X. Last week while walking around a hamfest; I saw an original ATS-909 for $30. I *almost* jumped on it; but I didn't.

I wound up bringing home an ICom 725...wanting to take advantage of my general ticket. Having general coverage for Rx...I don't know if it's any better than the ATS-909..but I do know it's *a lot* better than the RTL-SDR w/ upconverter could ever be and I've enjoyed flipping around shortwave when I'm not working bands.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: IZ5PQT on August 14, 2015, 05:18:24 AM
Mine was a military surplus BC-652a, which covered 2-6 Mhz in two bands. I got it around 1970 and it was quite good for dxing on the tropical bands. To increase selectivity (the IF was 910 khz) I made a simple filter using two quartz crystals. I regret very much having sold it. Then I got a Grundig Satellit 210, which still I have. Good for international bands but not as good as the 652a for tropical dxing.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: N8FVJ on September 17, 2015, 08:24:00 AM
Allied Knight Span Master. Not a Drake R8, but hey..... at 13 years of age I was broke.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: JAYMOT on September 18, 2015, 04:33:31 AM
My first shortwave-capable radio was a Realistic multiband that I got for Christmas in the early '70s. Its tuning was so coarse that I never really got much on its SW band (there was only one, something like 5-20MHz or so.) At the time, I was more interested in trying to pick up public service stations (police & fire) which I didn't hear a lot of either. It worked fine for AM and FM broadcast though.

My first real shortwave receiver was a Zenith TransOceanic in the 600 series (slide-rule dial) purchased from a friend I met on CB radio (don't laugh!  :D ) in the late 70s when I was in college. I had hours of fun with it, listening to Radio Netherlands' Happy Station, BBC's program These Musical Isles, and others. I got my only two QSLs with that radio: Radio Egypt and Voice of Free China, the latter which included a note written by their broadcaster at the time, Jade Lim, answering some questions I had about one of her shows which was about Taekwando which I had never heard of. IIRC she even sent me a picture of her. She was cross-eyed. :)

I sold the Tranny to a good friend of mine in the early '80s after I bought a Kenwood R-1000 from Amateur Radio Supply in Seattle, trying to get him into shortwave listening.

Good times.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: GM1FLQ on September 22, 2015, 02:28:21 PM
It was an RCA AR8506-B.....an ex ships rack mount receiver of 1940s vintage. I can remember the blue front panel and the 2 big chrome rack handles. I was only about 9 or 10 years old and it cost me several weeks pocket money allowance. When I got it home I ran a long wire out through the loft and never went to bed that night as I sat up listening to hams from all over. My father helped me build a nice wooden cabinet for it I think more to stop me poking around the back and getting zapped.
It was the least expensive radio I ever owned but the one I gained the most pleasure from.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: VE3LYX on September 24, 2015, 04:31:15 AM
A homebuilt 12ax7 regen. Still have several regens runningin my shack and home. Still love them. A couple will outperform modern rigs as far as sensitivity and work quite well. So well in fact I have no idea why anyone would bother with a superhet or direct conversion.Less performance , imaging problems, more parts and no fun. I'll take a good working regen anyday. And yes I use them on air.
don VE3LYX


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: AC7CW on September 24, 2015, 05:18:52 AM
My dad had an AM/FM/SW tube console radio. I was about 5yo, couldn't find a station once, had background hiss coming out of the speaker so I asked my dad what that was? He told me those were the "short waves". Still don't know if he was joking or what. The first SW I owned was a RAL tube regenerative Navy unit built in 1939. Great for CW, not so much for anything else as I recall.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: WB0CJB on September 24, 2015, 07:05:36 PM
My dad brought home a 3 tube SW radio kit (similar to the one in W7ASA'S picture) from Burstein Applebee in Kansas City one night. As I always helped him fix our B&W TV I also helped him build it with the understanding I could listen to it. As I never could get interested in anything he thought it was just a passing interest. I listened to that radio for countless hours and he realized he found something that lit a fire in me. One weekend while I was in bed with the flu he brought home a Realistic DX-150. For a few hours I forgot I was sick. For the next 2 or 3 years I listened to the marine, CB, shortwave, and ham bands. Each time I listened to the hams I wanted to know what they were saying on the CW frequencies.

A good friend from school found out I was trying to learn morse code. Steve introduced me to the PHD ARA in Liberty Missouri where we got our novice licenses through their novice class. The DX-150 receiver I used with a DX-60B transmitter and I made many contacts with that set up. Eventually the receiver, transmitter, VFO and HR-10B receiver found new homes and to this day I wish I could locate my original rig and VFO and relive the good old days.

WB0CJB


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: K0BT on September 24, 2015, 07:56:07 PM
Like many others, I started with a Hallicrafters S-38A.  It taught me a few lessons about grounding and the shock hazard of the All American Five design.  It was fine for late night BCB listening but mine was pretty much worthless on the higher frequencies.  I have two very clean S-38B models out in the shop that I bought for the nostalgia value and I might restore them one day just to see how well one can actually work on HF.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: K3WVU on September 25, 2015, 06:43:02 PM
Heathkit GR-81 regen. 140 Khz-18 mhz.  Had a lot of fun with it, and it was a really sensitive receiver for the money.  Wish I still had it.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: K6AER on September 28, 2015, 09:43:36 PM
National NC-60

I was eight and my grandfather was K6AER, Frank Martin.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: ZL2MC on November 20, 2015, 11:48:22 AM
I was about eight yo when a ham friend of my Dads modified a crystal set to get the 49m band. Europe in the early 60's was buzzing in the late afternoon onwards with all sorts of stuff - music, religious, entertainment and a lot of propaganda - Radio Moscow, VoA and Radio Free Europe all trying to outdo/outjam each other. For my eleventh birthday I got a ex-govt Marconi R1475 which started my lifetime in radio!

New boy on the block, my first post on this net. 73 to all.
Martin ZL2MC Palmerston North, New Zealand.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: AC7DX on November 29, 2015, 01:45:16 PM
Hallicrafters S40B and Heathkit AT1 xmitter at 14 years old..cool old days


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: WB4SPT on November 29, 2015, 04:57:44 PM
Heath GR64.  Needed a safecrackers touch for tuning that thing.  But, it did get me a bunch of QSL cards from all over.  It was around 1969 at that peak.  China set me enough printed propaganda that it scared my parents.  Pictures of dead us marines on trucks; talk of "imperialist running dogs", "capitalist pigs"; and more.  How the world has changed.  I traveled to both China and Hanoi just last month.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KQ6EA on November 29, 2015, 05:13:15 PM
I worked a station in the soviet union in 1967, and got so much "50 Years - 1917~1967" propaganda my Mom was afraid the FBI would come calling!


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: PY5WHO on November 30, 2015, 05:14:16 PM
My very first shortwave radio was a small portable 2 band Sanyo made in Brazil. It was given to me as a Christmas present in 1973. It covered 49m to 25m and it performed very well. I used to keep it on for most part of the day as long as the batteries lasted and soon it started to wear out, for I used the bandswitch all the time changing from MW to SW. I also messed with its circuit a lot trying to fix it without any clue, therefore ruining it.
Eventually, it went dead the day I dropped it accidentally in the toilet bowl. But it sure gave me lots of fun listening to music on my favorite AM station, rooting for my favorite soccer team and sometimes trying to figure out international transmissions such as the BBC World Service in English and those Number Stations. My next were old tube radios also made in Brazil that had been in my family for a long time. I still have one of them which used to be my father's radio since he was single.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: AB3LW on December 17, 2015, 04:48:18 PM
My first was a radio shack little perf box kit in 1970, I think it was like 8 bucks. I had fun with those little red box kits.

That was followed by a Heathkit.

I miss the old days!


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: N8FVJ on January 22, 2016, 07:52:14 PM
BC-348. Good radio. I was 15. Now 66 years of age.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: K4PDM on February 03, 2016, 02:54:57 AM
I wish I could remember my first.

It was a solid state portable--I was born in 1958--that belonged to my mom. It had a couple of shortwave bands and I would sit at the kitchen table every night, tuning up and down those two bands, writing what I heard in a notebook.

Not long after I got my own portable with four shortwave bands. It still was not a very good radio, coming from a local store and being one of the now-forgotten Japanese brands, but I wish I could recapture the fun I had with it.

If anyone could point me in the direction of some pictures I could browse to perhaps see these old portables from the sixties, I would be grateful.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: WZ7U on February 14, 2016, 09:45:53 AM
If anyone could point me in the direction of some pictures I could browse to perhaps see these old portables from the sixties, I would be grateful.

Do what I do when I want to remember the toys of days past. Use the images feature on google by typing in the subject then touch the images tab.

Enjoy the reminiscing


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: ONAIR on February 14, 2016, 10:29:54 PM
Heath GR64.  Needed a safecrackers touch for tuning that thing.  But, it did get me a bunch of QSL cards from all over.  It was around 1969 at that peak.  China set me enough printed propaganda that it scared my parents.  Pictures of dead us marines on trucks; talk of "imperialist running dogs", "capitalist pigs"; and more.  How the world has changed.  I traveled to both China and Hanoi just last month.
  Remember all of that propaganda that Radio Havana Cuba used to transmit about us in the 1960s?  Now we becoming their pals!


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KQ4YA on February 16, 2016, 03:06:55 AM
I had a Hallicrafters SX-99 that I ordered used from the Allied catalog. The SX-99 drifted like a boat in a fast river - I had to keep one hand on the key and the other on the bandspread. I wanted an SX-100 and couldn't afford one. So when I stumbled across an SX-100 at a hamfest a few years ago I purchased it. Now it sits in the shack along with my modern equipment. It just flat looks like a radio, unlike some modern stuff.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: NK7Z on February 16, 2016, 03:46:03 AM
Homebrew Super regenerative rig.  Would shock hell out of you if you forgot to kill the B+ and tried to change coils...  Used a dual tube of some kind, and my Dad and I built it.  I used to SWL with it...  What fun that was...  SWLing nowadays is boring...


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: WA2ISE on February 17, 2016, 03:19:21 PM
Had some pos octal 5 tube superhet radio a neighbor threw out.  Long gone.  I do remember getting big gun stations from South Africa and such on it. 


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KG4YMC on February 18, 2016, 09:53:45 AM
 mine was  eico  711 space ranger.  remember building it . making about 7 wiring mistakes. hey, I was a kid. lol. guy in dads electronic class tuned ut up . and it was dead on wwv on l5 and ten . great radio made the mistake of  selling it . still got  sangeion dx440  use to hear reds games on wlw down here . stil works great.  stations. ?  number stations. first  hearing  ssb and useing  bfo.  propaganda stations  .  even heard berry goldwater on ham  bands . he was working a call in net to say hi to him .  this was way before got liscense in 2003. great menories.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KQ2N on February 18, 2016, 10:55:54 AM
Knight Kit Star Roamer - still got it, it still works!  I was probably in the 9th grade when I got it (1n the 1960s), couldn't wait to get home from school for a few nights to put it together.  I still have pride in that radio!


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KU4F on February 22, 2016, 12:05:39 PM
Knight Kit Star Roamer. 4 tube super het mid sixty's
Ku4f


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KK5DR on February 23, 2016, 03:18:59 AM
I found an old Panasonic portable world band radio with SSB, and the 6 meter band on it, in the land fill. It had a loose wire in the power supply which I fixed. I listened to hams on 6 many times. Also 80m. I didn't care about BC listening, I was interested in what the hams were talking about.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: NG0K on March 07, 2016, 06:09:08 PM
My first real SW radio was a Sony CRF-5100 Earth Orbiter that my dad purchased.  We didn't have it long. He traded it for a new scanner.  That started my interest in scanning which I still enjoy.

Doug NG0K


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: N5PG on March 13, 2016, 10:53:46 AM
1961, British ww2 surplus R109T.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: N9LCD on March 21, 2016, 11:43:00 AM
My mother's Zenith TransOceanic and a Zenith (naturally) console radio.

While in grammar school, I used to sneak around and try to see what I could hear beyond 1600 (KHz).

The only trouble was I always got caught messing with the radios because I forgot "how" to reset them.

Seriously, I remember my Father trying to tune Sputnik's HF signal on the Zenith console set.  Unfortunately being pre WW II, it didn't tune above 20 MHz.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: WB8VLC on April 07, 2016, 07:47:23 PM
 Browning model 35 with the Tobe tuner, MW TO something like 18 MHZ early 1930's metal crackle finish cabinet, switchable BFO  for cw reception.

My next Swl was a Philco 1935 floor model with the cats eye tuning meter, similar coverage as the Browning and the Philco still works to this day.

Beautiful mahogany cabinet and enough audio from the massive speaker to be heard a block away with the house doors and windows closed.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: RAHOBIT on May 24, 2016, 06:08:45 AM
Well I go back a long way. Ready? First was a Cromwell valve radio ~ 1958. Couple of years later got a National Panasonic R-205JB 8 transistor. Lost interest until around 1980 got a National R-1400. Couple of years later a Sony ICF-2001D. Around 1985 a Yaesu FRG-7. Sold in 1991 always regretted. Did my SWL on the 2001D. Also bought a Sony ICF-7600D, later a 7600G and a SW-100 all great radios for travelling. Three years ago I bought my two dream radios - a Drake R8B and a JRC NRD-535D. I have several other radios I've acquired like the Tecsun PL-660, Panasonic DR-22 and an old Barlow Wadley XCR-30 still works perfectly.


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KC2QYM on May 24, 2016, 09:14:08 AM
Yes siree Bob.... I remember that old crystal radio set with the gum eraser, safety pin, germanium diode, etc.  Yes that was my first radio set...used to listen to the AT&T New York Marine operator transmitting on about 1700 Khz using a 200 foot wire strung up from my second floor location up to the top of the adjoining sixth story roof.  That wire pulled everything in at the same time including stations beyond my local listening area so signals came in over another.  Used to experiment by shifting the wire while walking around my building's roof with the crystal set to alter what could be pulled in.  Sorry, that may not qualify as an SWL radio or even as a real radio but the excitement still resonates with me... 


Title: RE: What was your first shortwave radio?
Post by: KT4HX on May 25, 2016, 11:46:22 PM
In 1969 I got a Ross 1915-N AM/FM/SW portable radio for my birthday.  I had never fiddled with shortwave and started finding all kinds of stuff.  The first QSL I ever got was for a reception report using that radio.  It was a commemorative QSL for the opening of the new Radio Nederlands relay on Bonaire that year.  Such great memories with the little radio.  It only covered 4 to 12 MCs, but I found plenty to listen to night after night.  I eventually had a Knight Star Roamer, then a Realistic DX-150A.  Then onward and upward.  But those days and those old receivers were great fun.