They're all gone now On that sad day in another event took place. We made it our life's work to honor the men and women of wireless by restoring that wireless giant. One year and one minute later the giant's voice once again spanned the oceas as we picked up the thread and kept the faith with our colleagues of the air. This is a global and local event. Hundreds of listeners around the world will be waiting with their earphones on, waiting for the signals of the great station to once again arc over the dome of the Earth to their receivers. You can be with us in person!
Dozens of people will join us at the RCA receiving station in the Point Reyes National Seashore to watch as the signals are transmitted by hand using vintage telegraph keys. A guest operating position will be available so bring your key and 'phones or use ours and operate K6KPH. No license required! So if you're an ex-commercial op who never became a ham here's your chance to sling some Morse again.
This year we will have our custom made endorsement stamp available to add that special touch to your ticket. Time: Doors open at pm pdt, first transmission pm pdt gmt 13 July. None of this would have been possible without the trust and vision of the Point Reyes National Seashore. The only reason these facilities were spared the bulldozer that visited all the others is that they are on park land. And the only reason they have been restored to operation is that the PRNS staff understood their importance and trusted the MRHS to restore them to life.
KPH ops on duty at Marshall.
There are lots of details in the photo including the land line telegraph sounder to the left, chattering out messages from Bolinas and San Francisco in American Morse. Yep, the operators had to be bilingual in Morse. But if course it's the IP receivers that draw the eye of the True Believer. Mills in the Philippine Islands below.
It used a single tube as the detector although provision was made for the use of an external crystal detector. Note the external two step audio amplifier connected to the right of each receiver in the KPH photo. This allowed excellent headphone volume as well as the ability to use a horn speaker.
For years we mooned over these receivers, hoping to add one to our collection. We wanted one for two reasons: for display to visitors and so we could experience what it was like to operate one of these receivers, so different from a modern receiver or even a 70 year old receiver from WWII.
We suppose there's something to the saying that all things come to those who wait because an IPA receiver recently became available. The A model incorporates the two step audio amplifier in the receiver cabinet.
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The receiver on offer was expensive but in superb condition. So, after much discussion, we decided to make the purchase. When the receiver arrived, MRHS members gathered with great reverence to observe its careful unpacking. It was everything we hoped it would be. Luckily, one of our number, Steve Sparks, has an IP He is also a radio historian and a gifted radio diagnostician.
He took charge of the slow and careful process of bringing the receiver to operational status.
One of the first orders of business, after checking the tubes all RCA, by the way , was to select the correct grid leak resistor for stable operation. We don't know why but for some reason we found it astounding to see that a resistor manufacturer of the s had enough of a sense of humor to produce these as promotional items. They must be rare as chicken lips. Anyway, we had never seen any before. After the hilarity died down we returned to work.
Life giving voltages were applied to the proper terminals.
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The tubes grew warm. The earphones came alive. The receiver was in great shape, requiring only a little tweaking and a bit of a steep learning curve on our part. Then it came time to attach an antenna to see what we could hear. The tuning range of the receiver is to meters 38kc to 1Mc. Our targets were the non-directional beacons at the local airports. We used a selective voltmeter to assure that signals could be heard on the hastily strung up wire antenna the Marconi T antenna overloaded the receiver. Then we tuned for those signals on the IPA.
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Bob Dildine tunes the selective voltmeter while Steve Sparks manipulates the controls of the. It was old guys working with old radio gear at an old receive site on a foggy day at Point Reyes. How much better can it get? Well, we guess it got maybe even a little better when we placed the IPA on a special table to had made just for it and placed the horn speaker on top. Not just any horn speaker, mind, but the exact same make and model horn speaker we see in photos of KPH at Marshall.
The IPA on its custom made table, with horn speaker, in the main hall of the receive site at Point Reyes. Now, how about the reception of some signals in the MF marine band? Our plan is to tune the receiver to the KSM kc signal to demonstrate it to visitors. But alas, as noted above, our MF transmit antenna is on the ground. Here are some notes from Steve Sparks on the work we did on the receiver:.
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