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What Does the Fox Say? Goodbye...

Covers all of Northern Lower Michigan (from Ludington to Tawas northward), as well as the Straits Area and Soo Region.
CK-722
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Re: What Does the Fox Say? Goodbye...

Post by CK-722 » Sun Mar 01, 2020 5:49 pm

I once lived about a mile from an FM tower. The station used to sign off the air at Midnight. But you could hear the carrier after sign off, sometimes for a few hours. The Night man said that he usually left the exciter on, as the switch was in another room, until he went home. He demonstrated over the air that audio modulated the exciter and it went out over the air, and could be used for limited coverage in an emergency. I have heard stations using just the exciter while doing transmitter maintenance, as far as 15 miles away or so. They usually did it on Sunday Mornings. The telescoping antenna orientation was a little finicky compared to full power, but it came in with little noise in the correct position.


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Deleted User 4520

Re: What Does the Fox Say? Goodbye...

Post by Deleted User 4520 » Thu Mar 05, 2020 5:42 pm

I don't listen to FM in the car much but it's kinda sad 92.5 is gone. At least they played a LOT of 80's which I liked. Explains why I get nothing but static on the preset when I was trying to find something decent.



tipo'mitt2
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Re: What Does the Fox Say? Goodbye...

Post by tipo'mitt2 » Fri Mar 06, 2020 12:25 pm

One of the more odd decisions made in regards to "The Fox" was the bright idea of having Traverse City Beach Bums baseball broadcast over BOTH signals for their first season or two. (That was independent league, VERY minor league ball, folks) Never quite understood that one. Does anyone happen to know off-hand where 92.5 WAIR was based out of when it was a stand-alone? I want to say Petoskey...



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TC Talks
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Re: What Does the Fox Say? Goodbye...

Post by TC Talks » Fri Mar 06, 2020 12:30 pm

WAIR had studios in Petoskey in 1988.


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CK-722
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Re: What Does the Fox Say? Goodbye...

Post by CK-722 » Fri Mar 06, 2020 1:07 pm

TC Talks wrote:
Fri Mar 06, 2020 12:30 pm
WAIR had studios in Petoskey in 1988.
They also had an on channel booster, WAIR-FM1 which was 1000 watts maximum ERP DA from a 5 element Yagi, Horizontal as I recall. It was mounted on the studio building. Rick Stone started the station.

The problem with boosters is that radio waves are COHERENT, meaning that they have a single phase instead of random phase like incoherent light (except lasers, which are coherent). That makes them create interference fringes where the signals are about equal. Ideally, a booster is located in a location which receives a very weak measured signal from the actual station. With boosters, less power is often more effective than more power, limited to low signal areas in valleys, shorelines, or behind hills. WWRM/WKPK used to have a 1 watt translator on the Perry Davis Hotel, with two separate 5 element Yagis, one Horizontal and one Vertical. It was very close to the WAIR-FM1 booster location. It was on 100.9 until the East Jordan station, now WQHN, came on the air. The 1 watt signal did amazingly well, and of course, had no fringes.


Is THAT where they got the idea for the 486-SX?

Same (x, y, z), different (t)

Your bullet missed my trial balloon.

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TC Talks
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Re: What Does the Fox Say? Goodbye...

Post by TC Talks » Fri Mar 06, 2020 2:00 pm

CK-722 wrote:
Fri Mar 06, 2020 1:07 pm
TC Talks wrote:
Fri Mar 06, 2020 12:30 pm
WAIR had studios in Petoskey in 1988.
They also had an on channel booster, WAIR-FM1 which was 1000 watts maximum ERP DA from a 5 element Yagi, Horizontal as I recall. It was mounted on the studio building. Rick Stone started the station.

The problem with boosters is that radio waves are COHERENT, meaning that they have a single phase instead of random phase like incoherent light (except lasers, which are coherent). That makes them create interference fringes where the signals are about equal. Ideally, a booster is located in a location which receives a very weak measured signal from the actual station. With boosters, less power is often more effective than more power, limited to low signal areas in valleys, shorelines, or behind hills. WWRM/WKPK used to have a 1 watt translator on the Perry Davis Hotel, with two separate 5 element Yagis, one Horizontal and one Vertical. It was very close to the WAIR-FM1 booster location. It was on 100.9 until the East Jordan station, now WQHN, came on the air. The 1 watt signal did amazingly well, and of course, had no fringes.
Given how antiquated the facilities are for this station, did Rick buy them used? They seem older than 1987.


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Re: What Does the Fox Say? Goodbye...

Post by Deleted User 12047 » Fri Mar 06, 2020 2:59 pm

tipo'mitt2 wrote:
Fri Mar 06, 2020 12:25 pm
One of the more odd decisions made in regards to "The Fox" was the bright idea of having Traverse City Beach Bums baseball broadcast over BOTH signals for their first season or two. (That was independent league, VERY minor league ball, folks) Never quite understood that one.
I believe that was a money decision. The team needed some sort of media to sell sponsorships, and paid the station (I think a lot of money) to air and produce the games.



CK-722
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Re: What Does the Fox Say? Goodbye...

Post by CK-722 » Fri Mar 06, 2020 3:16 pm

A lot of owners use preowned equipment. If you have good engineers, they can fix nearly everything, restoring everything to like new, and just replace what needs to be replaced.

The booster antenna on the 322 Bay St. Studios was near the corner of the alley that runs between the buildings off of Howard St. and Shoppers Lane as I recall. Should have taken pictures. There was a picture on a brochure for the Perry Davis Hotel that showed the WKPK translator, W265AA, antennas near Bay and Lewis St.
Last edited by CK-722 on Fri Mar 06, 2020 3:44 pm, edited 1 time in total.


Is THAT where they got the idea for the 486-SX?

Same (x, y, z), different (t)

Your bullet missed my trial balloon.

RTN Price. Not guaranteed. As of 12:30, 157.71 Down 0.22.

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TC Talks
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Re: What Does the Fox Say? Goodbye...

Post by TC Talks » Fri Mar 06, 2020 3:43 pm

The problem? The power consumption is unsustainable and many new features that you expect from FM can't be implemented.

The transmitter would need to be replaced.


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CK-722
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Re: What Does the Fox Say? Goodbye...

Post by CK-722 » Fri Mar 06, 2020 3:54 pm

TC Talks wrote:
Fri Mar 06, 2020 3:43 pm
The problem? The power consumption is unsustainable and many new features that you expect from FM can't be implemented.

The transmitter would need to be replaced.
There are ways of reducing power consumption. More bays, reduce licensed ERP. WAVC recently reduced licensed power.

Atlanta has no other radio stations, so it's difficult to remove under First Local Service without fancy footwork.

It's a difficult but not an impossible situation.


Is THAT where they got the idea for the 486-SX?

Same (x, y, z), different (t)

Your bullet missed my trial balloon.

RTN Price. Not guaranteed. As of 12:30, 157.71 Down 0.22.

Artificial Intelligence is a Child that needs a Parent to guide it through.

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TC Talks
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Re: What Does the Fox Say? Goodbye...

Post by TC Talks » Fri Mar 06, 2020 4:12 pm

CK-722 wrote:
Fri Mar 06, 2020 3:54 pm
TC Talks wrote:
Fri Mar 06, 2020 3:43 pm
The problem? The power consumption is unsustainable and many new features that you expect from FM can't be implemented.

The transmitter would need to be replaced.
There are ways of reducing power consumption. More bays, reduce licensed ERP. WAVC recently reduced licensed power.

Atlanta has no other radio stations, so it's difficult to remove under First Local Service without fancy footwork.

It's a difficult but not an impossible situation.
Again, more cost for a bleak return.


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MWmetalhead
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Re: What Does the Fox Say? Goodbye...

Post by MWmetalhead » Fri Mar 06, 2020 6:43 pm

I think the station needs to be moved and reduced to a C2 or C3. Either focus on the Straits & Petoskey or focus on Alpena.

Let's not forget, either, that non-comms (if the station were to change to non-comm status) only need to deliver a 60 dBu to the city of license.


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bmw
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Re: What Does the Fox Say? Goodbye...

Post by bmw » Fri Mar 06, 2020 6:55 pm

Why CAN'T a station with that big a footprint sell advertising to both Alpena and Petoskey? Is it a logistics issue? Signal not quite strong enough issue? Too big an area to serve without focus on one area alienating listeners from the other? Just curious (as a non-radio person).



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Re: What Does the Fox Say? Goodbye...

Post by MWmetalhead » Fri Mar 06, 2020 7:07 pm

Come to think of it, Rock 105 sells to both places. I doubt they have boots on the ground in Alpena, though. There are probably one or two local businesses aware of the station's popularity (it is simulcast on a dinky third-party translator at 103.7 FM there), so they choose to buy ad time. My guess if those businesses called Rock 105 as opposed to the other way around, but I could be wrong.

The problem with WFDX is most of its 100,000 watts are concentrated on the wrong side of the mitt. Yes, the 60 dBu contour theoretically reaches the Little Traverse Bay region, but terrain is an issue. The signal is much weaker than about a dozen other FM stations (counting commercial + non-commercial). The co-owned translator at 100.5 FM in Petoskey can only be used to rebroadcast WFDX as a commercial station if WFDX continues to deliver at least a predicted 60 dBu signal to Petoskey, which from the Mont - Otsego county line requires 100,000 watts of juice!

Rock 105.1, its 103.7 translator in Alpena, and 95.5 Glen Arbor use only 65,250 watts of total power, and with that power, they get a great signal in all of the major population centers of the north.

92.5's 100,000 watt signal is shitty in Traverse City, shitty in Cadillac, hit-or-miss in the Charlevoix and Petoskey region, and is just OK in the straits. Add to that the fact 92.5's technical facilities are likely in some state of disrepair, and it's just not a terribly attractive proposition. Is there money to be made in Alpena? Perhaps 92.5 could help one of the existing broadcasters in that market if it's purchased at a super cheap price.


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bmw
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Re: What Does the Fox Say? Goodbye...

Post by bmw » Fri Mar 06, 2020 11:27 pm

Maybe someone could snatch up both 92.5 and 105.5 (WBMI) for cheap and do some kind of simulcast on both frequencies.



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