Monday, October 12, 2009

Another Mini-Broadcaster Checks In!

Mike Wolstein said...

In re my old buddy Ron Henselman's great story about the Knight Kit Broadcaster:

I did the same exact thing, in 1968, when I was 19; but on FM! During my high school days, when I was 15, I built that same little blue "Knight Broadcaster". I tried a long wire but still got only 100 to 150 feet of range.

In 1968 I found a schematic for a tube-type FM transmitter in Radio-TV Experimenter magazine (I loved White's Radio Log!). I built it, and the fidelity was amazing! So much better than AM. It had a pretty good range, maybe 100 yds., but that wasn't quite good enough for this seasoned pro broadcaster. ;-). I connected the output, via RG-8, to my CB antenna on the roof of our building. I found that a CB antenna is great for FM! I had no idea how far my signal was going, so I made a 2-hour reel-to-reel tape of myself doing a radio show, complete with "commercials", rock and roll (lots of Fab Four!)and some locally-oriented announcements. Very professional! I took my little GE transistor radio and went walking around the neighborhood.

I finally started getting noisy about 1/4 mile away. I saw some friends of mine sitting on a porch and gave them a show. They were totally blown away. They couldn't figure out how I was doing that; they didn't know about tape. I did a daily show after school for a little while, but not many of the kids were paying attention. That ended my radio broadcast career.

73 Mike (Chicago area)

1 comment:

  1. What a great story! So many of us thought we could be broadcasters because we knew about electronics, but then the reality of not being able to provide programming which would attract listeners was suddenly obvious. Mike actually has a voice which would sound good on a 50,000 watt station.

    Ron Henselman