Thursday, 28 April 2022

Crystal Radio Listening Event

Do you have a crystal radio, homebrew or otherwise? If so and you haven't used it for awhile, here's a great opportunity to try it out again!

Facebook's Crystal Radio DX Contest Group ran a DX contest back in January but participation was fairly limited. After polling the group, it seemed that more members were interested in 'just listening' rather than competing in a contest. With this in mind along with the propagation moving into summer-like conditions, the upcoming non-contest Crystal Radio Listening Event two-night activity will take place on May 13 & 14th (Friday & Saturday). With virtually no rules and no category restrictions, it is hoped that more crystal radio users will be encouraged to enter by listening and reporting to the group what they were able to hear. 

If you are already a group member, please join in the discussion before, during and after the event and don't forget to post your log ... even if you heard just one station! As well, please indicate what you were using with a short description of your receiver and antenna. If you can include a photo, even better! Your participation will hopefully motivate others and generate more interest in crystal radio building and usage. If you are not a member of the group, new members are always welcome!

The only real 'rule' for this event is that your system must be a traditional 'passive' crystal receiver  ... that is, no amplification of the signal can take place. Other than that, your receiver can be as simple or as complex as you like.

For non-members, your log and description can be sent to my mailbox indicated at the bottom. Please feel free to post a link to this blog to anyone or any group that you feel may have interest in participating. If you have further questions please ask in the comment section below or in the group chat. 

I hope you are able to participate in the May listening event.


KD4HSH said...

Great idea whether for funzies or a contest. But cannot participate at my QTH. Only 40 foot antenna oriented just about the worst possible way AND I am about mid-way between 4 & 5 Kw AM TX just 0.9 and 1.6 miles away! I say if you have a reasonable location, don't squander the opportunity to try your hand at passive detector receiver operation. I've heard only a few out-of-town stations on my Heathkit CR-1 crystal set. And I have listened to the local stations on a home built magnetic detector!

Anonymous said...

Great advice. I think I’ll deploy my CR-1 rather than the big rig for this two night affair. The CR-1 is a great little double-tuned receiver…very capable, with over 50 different stations heard here on mine. You will be surprised at how much a couple of inline traps will knock down those loud pests. I’d urge you to fire it up and submit a log, even if just a few stations!

N1NQC said...

Hi Everyone,

First time posting over here.A 50 year user/ builder of crystal sets.In the past I had 660/46 “Dx” class rigs but no more outdoor antennas at this QTH anymore.

Using small indoor end fed square wire, on SW it’s not very good ,even on factory built external balanced ant super het .It’s poor on the same set
on BCB .

Home brew loop much better
on my other rig that has Ferrite bar.LOTS of BCB dx on that rig.

Indoor antenna only got one SW lash up crystal set station ( Cuba) .

A number of things on the bench, may try the lash SW xtal out in the park on 30 ft vertical.No SW spotter set available, so probably I will have to guess by which meter band through crude dial calibration.

Trying to get back up into radio, but really tough without the long wire.

Other sites have very low to near zero interest in crystal, simple home brew stuff and other small projects that I like .

I will give it a whirl here.

Steve ,I have really enjoyed your website efforts over the years and have referenced
newbies to over the years.

73’s de N1NQC

N1NQC said...

Also forgot, (O.T.) , Have done much listening from 2 kc up to 530 Kc.

N1NQC said...

Steve McDonald said...

Hi Kevin and thanks for the info. I think a crystal radio SW log from the field would be just great, if the wx co-operates. A spotter radio would really help for sure but shouldn’t be a deal breaker. Maybe get a bit of an idea of where you are listening from some of the blowtorches that you know for sure and go from there.

I’m pleased to hear that my web stuff has been of interest to you … I had a suspicion that someone was looking at it!

Good luck if you go portable!

N1NQC said...

Hey Steve.

We have a small park right across from my apt.

I USED to go on some very serious far away Dxpeditions back in the day, but not so much anymore ( for a few reasons).

But an early evening of SW crystal should be ok. I only can go Sat night , but Wx should be OK.

OT but I have had good experience (in the past) on whistler / natural radio on 7 Kc, lightning “tracking “ from 2 Kc up through HF , LW beacon Dx, LW bcast dx , transatlantic dx 530Kc and up . Also tropical SW dx, utility stations, etc, etc on HF. Former op on 7 Mc up to 902 and 1290 Mc. Former pt 15 AM BCB.


Anonymous said...

Hey All .

On Heath CR-1 with crystal earphones in series and 500 K bleed pot, temporary 50 ft basement antenna and 25 ft counter poise.

1700 Z:
590 WEZE good.
680 WRKO good.
850 WEEI loud.
A few misc Spanish stations in upper band, un I’d, most fair or faint.
1600 WUNR good.

Shortwave effort to follow tomorrow night.

It was fun to actually play around with the Heath, which is normally boxed up.

de K

N1NQC said...

Hey All.

Quick session today, 1700Z. Rig: Heath CR-1,with series crystal earphone and 500K audio bleed pot, 50ft temporary basement antenna, with 25ft counter poise.

590 WEZE religious ,good.
680 WRKO, talk, good.
740 WJIB easy listening music, good .
850 WEEI sports, loud.
Two Spanish stations in upper band ,un id ,fair to weak.
1600 WUNR Spanish , good.

It was fun to fire up the Heath, which usually is in storage.

I will set up shortwave crystal set outside tomorrow night.

de K

Douglass Allen said...

Hey guys, My 110' horizontal wire at 55' with 65' downlead to crystal radio came down in a wind storm earlier this spring. My first effort on
Thursday to get it back up was unsuccessful, so I'm not able to participate, but will be ready later this summer. Hope everyone had fun and contributes a post about your activity.
Doug k4ly
Inman, SC