There is some really good reference material and links below. Hang on to them. Ok?
I’m really excited to announce that after talking to Kaito I have picked up their product line for my store. This Kaito KA1103 is a great high performance compact radio. Here are a few things you can do with a sideband capable shortwave that you can’t with anything else.
First of all this is a great AM/FM radio. The Internal Ferrite bar Antenna will pull in AM stations from states away. I routinely pull in Colorado stations out here in California. It will outperform your car radio all day long. Now on to the shortwave stuff!
You can tune into the local fellas or depending on the propagation, ham radio operators around the world. For instance:
20 meter band 14000 kHz to 14350 khz upper sideband:
The 20 meter band is where you might listen to a ham radio operator on the otherside of the world or a sailor talking about the weather and fishing conditions on the Sea of Cortez. Click here for a link to cruising nets.
40 meter band 7000 kHz to 7300 kHz lower sideband:
I usually hear the local ham radio guys on this one or even fellas just a few states away. It depends on the solar weather and propagation. But if local or semi-local news and keeping your fingers on the pulse of a local or regional emergency is what you want, this would be the band.
Citizen band or CB radio:
If you tune into Channel 19 or 27.185 mhz USB, you would be listening to highway traffic on the open calling channel.
Channel 9 or 27.065 mhz USB is for emergency calls. For more information you can click here.
Anybody recall watching the movie “The Perfect Storm”? When they pulled that printout from the machine on the wall, it warned them of the coming storm. That was a weather fax. You can tune into that broadcast on your KAITO.
Out here offshore of California I tune into Point Reyes call sign NMC from 7400 kHz and below its LSB and above its USB. What’s cool is, you can download an app to your tablet or smart phone that will decipher the fax you are hearing over the radio. It will draw a weather map on the screen of your device and let you know wind, wave height, barometric pressure, etc. You can receive this signal for several hundred miles. You can get the full list of fax stations that NOAA has here.
BBC, RADIO HAVANA CUBA, RADIO NEW ZEALAND, RADIO AUSTRALIA!
Just to name a few.
Remember: Search lower frequencies and bands at night, higher frequencies during the day time.
Here is a handy website for seeing what there is to listen to depending on the time of day. Remember you have to tune higher than 1700 kHz to get into the shortwave bands that are powerful enough to reach the USA.
Click here for the short wave schedule. Save this page. It’s great for telling you what you’ve tuned into if it’s in a foreign language.
Ok this is fun! Picture this. A country puts up a shortwave radio station that can reach around the world. They then set up a time of day where there is a mysterious voice that comes on the radio and recites a string of numbers that nobody can decipher nor understand. This is code. For what agent in what country nobody knows. This method has been used to run covert agents since before the Cold War.
I have personally heard the “Spanish Lady” a number of times.
For a taste of these “stations,” I have yet another link for you here.
This is just a little taste of the world a shortwave radio can bring to your door. I hope you are intrigued as I am. Bookmark this page.
Here is another suggestion: Make yourself some notecards, so in an emergency you know where you can turn to for the latest information. When everybody else has a cell phone that is no better than a brick, you’ll be the one “in the know.”