50 years ago on the farm.

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The wire was from an old open wire telephone system that was no longer in use. I'd brought several hundred feet home to use as an outdoor antenna for a crystal radio I'd built. After scroungin around a mite I found two sections of 2" upset tubing from an old oil well. Each section was 20' long and in good shape. I drilled a couple holes in the ground and set each pipe at the opposite ends of the antenna location. An old camshaft with the fiber timing gear worked well for one end of the wire. The Camshaft dropped into the top of the pipe and had the gear at the very top. I tied the antenna wire on the gear and pulled it tight up at the house where I used an insulatior on it. Another wire was attached to the "open wire" and ran into the house. The antenna was up about 18' in the air and was a tremendous idea for those little weak signal crystal sets.

I hooked up the first one and with headphones on--started scanning the broadcast spectrum. Boy--talk about reception!!! I could hear dozens of radion stations-all with any electrical power!

I think my most favorite station was WBAP in Dallas/Fort Worth, TX. I also listened to WWL in New Orleans, La and XERF in Del Rio, TX. I hung the headphones on my bedpost and just lett'r rip! Why not, it didn't cost anything to have it on-no parts to wear out.

About 50 years have passed since those "good old days". The antenna is long gone as is the house where I grew up. I've "grow'd up" a mite since then and have progressed [?] to the point of earning the coveted Extra Class Ham Radion license about 20 years ago. With all the solid state electronice and computer'd ham radios I find myself now reverting back to those old days when it was really a thrill to build something simple and have it to work so well.

I'll be "puttin up" another outside wire antenna shortly to power another homemade crystal radio. I wonder if I can still receive signals as strong as before? Old hoot. KA9JYN/E Matt.24:44

-- old hoot gibson (oldhoot@shawneelink.net), May 30, 2003


TYPO----"all WITHOUT any electrical power" it should read. Oatmeal boxes made good coil forms. For anybody wantin to know how to build one there are schmetics online showin how to do it. "Low Tech" is the name of the game and these little dudes can be built without buyin anything if you can scrounge a mite. old hoot. Matt.24:44

-- old hoot (oldhootgibson@shawneelink.net), May 30, 2003.

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