Monday, December 11, 2017

KAAY's New Transmitter

(A bit late, due to my extremely busy schedule, but better late than fault entirely. bs)

"I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving, now it is time to start posting again.  The new 50kw transmitter was still in the crate when I visited there in September.  There is an engineering firm from Baton Rouge that will be installing the new transmitter.  Read on another FB page about a month ago that their firm would be there soon to install it.  That company also completed the ground work on the towers.  A new ventilation system was also installed upstairs to keep the transmitter climate controlled.  The building originally didn't have a/c, the heat and humidity would eat the new transmitter up within two years without it.  Remember reading stories about how the old RCA kept the building warm on very cold days and nights.  
The other transmitter is a 5kw backup transmitter, it was sent from an affiliate in Dallas to get the station back on the air a few years ago when water from the roof leak destroyed the one in the workshop area.  The Harris 50kw transmitter installed in the early 80's will be used as a backup.  That is the one with the blue cover in the previous post.  The new transmitter is approximately the same size as the 5kw in the pic and will be placed right next to it."
Thank you, Doug...keep up the good work!
We appreciate those who go to the trouble of contributing; things have been somewhat slow at The Mighty 1090 KAAY Blog and I think we've pretty much tapped out what is out there.  Who knows, there may be someone out there, sifting through their oddball tapes and finding some "new" audio, or finding a shoebox full of memorabilia that they'd be willing to share.
(I know there is more stuff out there, but I have had a hard time convincing people of donating samples for the blog....)
Nonetheless, as bits and pieces surface, we will continue to share them here.  Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, November 13, 2017

Recent Pictures From Doug Virden

"Saw this on top of the console where Clyde did Beaker Street.  This was a very big football rivalry when Arkansas was in the Southwest Conference.  Even had a bet between KAAY and WOAI one year, unfortunately Arkansas came out on the losing end of that bet.

The console used to sit in front of the old RCA, it has since been moved in front of the Harris Transmitter which has been there since 1980.  The new transmitter is still in the crate and I will post a pic of it for the next post and give an update on it."

Thanks, Doug.  I remember when the console was in front of the old RCA back when I visited back in April 2012.  Wish I had all those notebooks there, too.  I wonder if any of the old station logs have been thrown away, too?

Thank you for sharing, Doug, we'll be looking for more coming our way!

Bud S. (

Friday, November 10, 2017

Comments From Cuba, From Antonio Diaz

In fact I didn't remember anyone been jailed for listen to radio stations from USA but if the police or any communist official got you doing that you end up been marked as a gusano (dissident).I'm a living example of that I was thrown out of university of Havana in 1980,they found out that I was an underground music fan and was listening Beaker Street every night in my house and finally I had to head north to America.
---Antonio Diaz
on More Cuban Comments

It's very exciting to know that people from Cuba took the time to send letters to the staff of KAAY, I'm Cuban and by that time 1973 I was a diehard listener of the station, Beaker Street was my favorite program I didn't miss them , each night I used to turn on my radio on 1090 khz from 1971 when I first discovered the station until September 27 1977 that beaker street wasn't on the air and never again I had the chance to hear BS I still don't know what happened, anyway I still keep those memories as my fondest, there's no doubt about it KAAY was the best station I've ever heard in my life.
---Antonio Diaz
on Long DX Letter From Cuba

Friday, November 3, 2017

Tower Pictures

Took some pics of the towers and you will notice fencing around each tower as well as where the guy wires connect to the insulators on the ground.  It was raining off and on the day I was there so I didn't get close up to the towers.

Once again, Doug, thank you for the pictures and the update!

Bud s. (

Friday, October 27, 2017

More Transmitter Pictures

Here are pics from the outside of the KAAY transmitter building.  Included pics from the back and front of the building.  Notice the dumpster out front.  It was there when I took the picture just after the property was bushhogged about six months ago.  With a wet summer it has really grown back.  The cattle guard gate has been replaced by a sliding gate.

Thank you, Doug!  Y'all stay tuned for more!  Bud S. (

Monday, October 23, 2017


From Russell Wells' post on Facebook:

1968 trade publication advert. "You can't spell Arkansas without the K."

Thank you, Russell!

Bud S. (

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

More Transmitter Pics

From Doug Virden:

"Let's not forget the reason I was able to visit the KAAY transmitter building, the reason being was to pick up a remnant from the old RCA transmitter for Bud.  I  ended up taking a meter and some tubes which I sent Bud a few weeks ago.  I  got to take me home a meter and some tubes too.  I will let Bud do the honors of posting what he received, here are pics of mine."

Thank you, Doug!  I believe the Per Cent meter referenced modulation;  The tubes are part of an RF deck, and are 813 power tubes mounted in hefty ceramic bases.  Here is a vintage advertisement:

A great many Amateur Radio operators used these in home-built amplifiers for 160 meters (the Ham band just above the AM broadcast band, 1800 to 2000 kHz) and ran them for about 1,000 watts, reliably, for years.  They are tough tubes, able to take lots of abuse.

I will have to look around, I think I had a schematic for the old RCA transmitter somewhere, by the time I post my tubes and 12.5 kilovolt meter Doug sent me, I hope to have data on where they were in the RF chain.

Thanks again, Doug!

Bud S. (

Friday, October 6, 2017

Jerry Sims, The 2nd "Sonny Martin"

Here is a picture, shared by Doug Virden, on the KAAY-Mighty 1090 Facebook page....

I heard Jerry when I was 9 years old; when Jerry came through Mobile on a sales trip to Florida for his last employer (Hank's Fine Furniture), he stopped in Mobile and we had supper.  We calculated the years and, by gosh, we came to the same conclusion!  And he was so young back then!  later, I was able to make a trip to Little Rock in April 2012 (see other posts to this topic) and we had a great time!  Then, in August that same year, we lost Jerry.  He was doing what he loved: playing softball.  He collapsed on the field in extreme heat conditions and never regained consciousness...

...and a year later, in the same month, I almost died from heat stoke.  Two things ran through my mind: is this how Jerry went? and, what will my family do?  Fortunately, I recovered and have harped on safety re: heat-related injuries for all these years afterward.

Rest easy, Jerry, I'll see you in heaven....

Bud S. (

Thursday, September 28, 2017

Doug Virden Visits The KAAY Transmitter Site

"Had an unexpected opportunity to visit the KAAY transmitter building last week and here is a great starter pic with the 7th Street sign.  Ever since Bud and David B. Treadway (and don't forget Jerry Sims, too! bs) had a picture with it, I really wanted one too.  The reason I got to go out there was to pick up something from the old RCA transmitter that had been dismantled to put up the new 50KW transmitter.  I ended up taking something from the old RCA home with me too.  It will be included in another post."

That's a good picture, Doug!  Keep 'em coming!

Bud S. (