We seek to understand and document all radio transmissions, legal and otherwise, as part of the radio listening hobby. We do not encourage any radio operations contrary to regulations. Always consult with the appropriate authorities if you have questions concerning what is permissable in your locale.

Author Topic: Question from a new guy (pirates on AM, FM)  (Read 2014 times)

Offline scott123

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 11
    • View Profile
Question from a new guy (pirates on AM, FM)
« on: February 09, 2014, 1623 UTC »
Hello, just getting into pirate radio so please forgive me if there's an obvious answer to this. I just picked up my first pirate broadcast last night on 6.925 and it was a lot easier than I thought (portable shortwave, wire antenna). Came in loud and clear.

What I'm wondering is how common are pirate broadcasts on the MW band (and for that matter, FM), how hard is it to find them? Would love to find some on AM and FM. I don't have any fancy antennas or anything, but I do have a Sangean PR-D5 which is an excellent AM Dxer. Thanks for any info/tips ...

« Last Edit: February 09, 2014, 1631 UTC by scott123 »

Offline Beerus Maximus

  • Administrator
  • DX Legend
  • *****
  • Posts: 1140
  • Boston, Massachusetts
  • hold my beer and watch this
    • View Profile
    • Beerus' 30 Below Site
    • Email
Re: Question from a new guy
« Reply #1 on: February 09, 2014, 1634 UTC »
As for MW and FM pirates, a lot of it will depend on where you are. Here in the Boston area, FM pirates are easy to find. They generally cater to an urban and often ethnic audience. As such, it's not quite Pump Up The Volume style pirate radio. Some of them operate quite openly, with high power and good studios. I believe the last mayor of Boston (just left office) even appeared on one or two of these stations to talk about community issues.

Likewise, on MW there are quite a few pirates at the top of the dial (1600-1710) and these almost universally are ethnic and not in English. Usually Spanish or Creole (Hatian). Some of them are really local and are not likely to be heard very far away. However, a few hobby pirates can be heard here from time to time. Both the "Big Q" and Undercover Radio have shown up around 1710-1720 KHz in recent times and have been widely heard around the country.

Here is a list (not updated since 2008) of stations operating in my area, just to give you an idea:

http://www.bamlog.com/bostonlp.htm
« Last Edit: February 09, 2014, 1639 UTC by Beerus Maximus »
# Genetically engineered sentient sausage & undisputed inventor of the end-fed dipole
# Listening from Boston's North Shore
# KiwiSDR, NetSDR, RSP2, Airspy HF+, TS-590, IC-7410
# eQSL to beerusmaximus@gmail.com

Offline scott123

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 11
    • View Profile
Re: Question from a new guy (pirates on AM, FM)
« Reply #2 on: February 09, 2014, 1657 UTC »
Thanks, that's really good info. I will be trying to find some more as well as on shortwave. Become a recent obsession of mine :)

Offline Beerus Maximus

  • Administrator
  • DX Legend
  • *****
  • Posts: 1140
  • Boston, Massachusetts
  • hold my beer and watch this
    • View Profile
    • Beerus' 30 Below Site
    • Email
Re: Question from a new guy (pirates on AM, FM)
« Reply #3 on: February 09, 2014, 1850 UTC »
When shortwave pirates are on, they are usually logged to the Loggings -> Shortwave Pirate section within minutes. Our IRC channel is always active as well and if you hang out there you'll find out when pirates are on virtually instantly.
# Genetically engineered sentient sausage & undisputed inventor of the end-fed dipole
# Listening from Boston's North Shore
# KiwiSDR, NetSDR, RSP2, Airspy HF+, TS-590, IC-7410
# eQSL to beerusmaximus@gmail.com

Offline scott123

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 11
    • View Profile
Re: Question from a new guy (pirates on AM, FM)
« Reply #4 on: February 09, 2014, 1914 UTC »
When shortwave pirates are on, they are usually logged to the Loggings -> Shortwave Pirate section within minutes. Our IRC channel is always active as well and if you hang out there you'll find out when pirates are on virtually instantly.

Thanks I tried to go to the IRC chat section, but I can't get into any of the rooms. I downloaded the JAVA (which it told me to do), but it's denying "privileges" ...

I click on yes to "accept the risk" and run the application. Then I get "error" see details:

Missing required Permissions manifest attribute in main jar:
http://www.starchat.net/chat/jirc_nss.zip

I think this has more to do with Java? than you guys. But have no idea how to fix the problem ... any ideas?

Offline Beerus Maximus

  • Administrator
  • DX Legend
  • *****
  • Posts: 1140
  • Boston, Massachusetts
  • hold my beer and watch this
    • View Profile
    • Beerus' 30 Below Site
    • Email
Re: Question from a new guy (pirates on AM, FM)
« Reply #5 on: February 09, 2014, 1949 UTC »
It sounds like you are going to the starchat web page and launching their Javachat applet. There's a better option. When you are logged into the HFU (as you are now) there is a link at the top of the page that says "Try the #pirateradio IRC chat". Click that, accept (or change) your nickname, and it will dump you right into the channel. It works very well. Note that this link only shows up when you are logged in.

# Genetically engineered sentient sausage & undisputed inventor of the end-fed dipole
# Listening from Boston's North Shore
# KiwiSDR, NetSDR, RSP2, Airspy HF+, TS-590, IC-7410
# eQSL to beerusmaximus@gmail.com

Offline refmo

  • DX Legend
  • ******
  • Posts: 5485
  • Central Kentucky
    • View Profile
Re: Question from a new guy (pirates on AM, FM)
« Reply #6 on: February 10, 2014, 0203 UTC »
Yes, the "Click here for the Pirate Radio IRC Chat Java Client" link will not work with the latest version of Java (released last month).
There are some free IRC clients out there.  Firefox also has a plug-in for Chatzilla that works well.
central Kentucky
Please eQSL to refmorefmo[at]yahoo[dot]com
Radios: Afedri AFE822x, Airspy HF+, Kenwood TS450, Kenwood TS590SG, Tecsun PL880, Panasonic RF-2200
Antennas: Flag, Wellbrook ALA1530LN Loop, Loop Skywire

Offline DimBulb

  • Global Moderator
  • DX Legend
  • *****
  • Posts: 1884
  • New Hampshire
    • View Profile
    • Email
Re: Question from a new guy (pirates on AM, FM)
« Reply #7 on: February 10, 2014, 0244 UTC »
Just tried the HFU "Try the #pirateradio IRC chat" link with the latest IE and Firefox using Java 10.51.2.13 which I installed recently.

Both seem to work OK (running Windows 7)

Update: Sorry refmo, haven't tried that link...
« Last Edit: February 10, 2014, 1626 UTC by DimBulb »
Location: New Hampshire  eMail: dimbulb999@gmail.com

Offline refmo

  • DX Legend
  • ******
  • Posts: 5485
  • Central Kentucky
    • View Profile
Re: Question from a new guy (pirates on AM, FM)
« Reply #8 on: February 10, 2014, 0323 UTC »
Hmmm, wonder why it doesn't work for me.  I may have a security setting that requires a manifest.
I have not tried IE, only Firefox, and am using Windows7.
Here is the error I get:

Missing Application-Name manifest attribute for: http://www.starchat.net/chat/jirc_nss.zip
Java Plug-in 10.51.2.13
Using JRE version 1.7.0_51-b13 Java HotSpot(TM) Client VM

update: 
Dimbulb, the link you mention does work (the mibbit link).
The link with the java problem is located below that link, just above the Twitter link.
« Last Edit: February 10, 2014, 0328 UTC by refmo »
central Kentucky
Please eQSL to refmorefmo[at]yahoo[dot]com
Radios: Afedri AFE822x, Airspy HF+, Kenwood TS450, Kenwood TS590SG, Tecsun PL880, Panasonic RF-2200
Antennas: Flag, Wellbrook ALA1530LN Loop, Loop Skywire

Offline DimBulb

  • Global Moderator
  • DX Legend
  • *****
  • Posts: 1884
  • New Hampshire
    • View Profile
    • Email
Re: Question from a new guy (pirates on AM, FM)
« Reply #9 on: February 28, 2014, 2057 UTC »
I found the solution to the "IRC Chat Java Client" not working while working on another similar problem with Web SDR apps not working.  It seems that Java has given up trying to deal with security problems and in the latest Java versions you have to put the URL in the Java "Site Exception List" by hand.

- Run Java Control Panel ("Configure Java" via Windows Start)
- Go to Security Tab and pick "Edit Site List"
- Add http://www.starchat.net     (needs the http://)

Then try again and answer OK to all the messages...
Location: New Hampshire  eMail: dimbulb999@gmail.com

Offline refmo

  • DX Legend
  • ******
  • Posts: 5485
  • Central Kentucky
    • View Profile
Re: Question from a new guy (pirates on AM, FM)
« Reply #10 on: March 01, 2014, 0211 UTC »
Thanks Dimbulb!  works nicely.
On my computer, I went to Control Panel-->Java-->Security-->Edit Site List, and put in the address as you specified.  No problems now.
central Kentucky
Please eQSL to refmorefmo[at]yahoo[dot]com
Radios: Afedri AFE822x, Airspy HF+, Kenwood TS450, Kenwood TS590SG, Tecsun PL880, Panasonic RF-2200
Antennas: Flag, Wellbrook ALA1530LN Loop, Loop Skywire