PA3CLQ's Leuke Linken Nr. 432
Museum Ship CW
Earlier today I was taking a tour of the submarine (now museum ship) USS Albacore in Portsmouth, New Hampshire.
I heard some QRS CW and followed it to the radio room (actually a tiny radio hutch) where an endless recording played CW at about 9 WPM.
of the code read "NSS ACK?" Inside the radio room was some 1970s
vintage radio gear (i.e., the standard shipborne receiver with a big gray know
for each digit of the frequency).
I wonder if anyone in SKCC ever served on this ship or worked at the NSS shore station.
73, Brian, KD6NRP/1
Never worked or even visited there, but as a young ham back in the early sixties, while I did homework after school, I'd often have a receiver on in the background, tuned to NSS - sending seemingly endless strings of Vs and Id's:
" V V V de NSS NSS NSS V V V de NSS NSS NSS..."
Indelible memories :-)
73 Chris NW6V
To improve my cw, I'd listen to maritime traffic on HF.
port permissions and occasionally descriptions of cargo or destinations --
boring but PERFECT cw.
During the late 50s in Wisconsin, I first listened to HF with an old cathedral top BC/SW receiver.
NSS was the only signal that came through loud enough - with enough repetitions - for me to fully copy.
Lack of a BFO was no obstacle; the airwaves were full of heterodynes in those days.
now, when I'm absentmindedly doodling during code practice, I catch myself
sending that VVV DE NSS NSS W W W VVV. Good memories.
Gary, K9ZMD Ridgefield, WA
Thanks for the memories. I spent 27 years in the navy nuclear submarine service.
All my boats were nucs.
Albacore was a landmark development in design of submarines – the first of the “tear drop shape” hulls.
This shape resulted in much less noise generation, particularly at high speeds.
We were stationed at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard 1983-1985 (Repair Officer at the yard).
Not sure what receiver you were looking at but sounds like the famous old R-1051; very wide spread installation in our USN ships in the 70s and 80s.
Not a bad rx but I much prefer the old dinosaur R-390.
(I would be interested in comments from some of you other navy guys out there on your preference between the R1051 and R390)
Dave, W1DV (Capt, USN, Ret.)
I looked up the R-1051 and it looks very similar to what I saw on the USS Albacore.
When I visited the USS Midway in 2011, I saw multiple racks full of R-1051 or similar receivers.
I am somewhat surprised at your comments regarding the performance of the R-1501.
I assumed that these expense MIL-SPEC rigs had exceptional receive performance.
73, Brian, KD6NRP/1
I agree with Dave and liked the R-390 better.
even owned one for awhile.
R-390 vs R-1051
For CW R-390 had better selectivity and more adjustable filtering.
At .1 hz it did give you a ringing tone so you had to tweak it a little.
I also believe when maintenance was done correctly it had better sensitivity.
All but one of the ships I was on had an R-390 mounted on the CW console.
Some had an R-1051 mounted next to it.
R-1051 was our work horse for multi-channel broadcast and voice circuits.
Pain in the A(^)% when you had to run through a list of frequencies to check for an open channel or doing Quality Control checks on 80 different frequencies. Having to turn all those separate knobs for the individual digits.
R-1051 was also the receiver used in the AN/WRC-1 Radio Transmitter/Receiver set.
This was the largest 100 watt radio I ever used.
73, Jim Bassett, W1RO-ARRL Nevada Section Traffic Manager, Life Member gobig.Isagenix.com
We had two R390s at K2USA (Army MARS at Fort Monmouth, NJ) when I was assigned there in '64-'65.
One was used for CW with a BC-610, the other for RTTY.
Can't compare it to the R-1051 as I've never seen one or served on a ship.
But the R-390 was an outstanding receiver especially in those days.
We had several studios full of S-Lines as well, but the R-390 was the real workhorse on MARS circuits.
No doubt a typo, but that should be .1 KC as .1hz would be a very very narrow filter, indeed.
Even at .1 KC, a functioning filter that narrow was a marvel.
Good catch. .1 KC because we didn't have KHz on any radios back then. HI HI
Jim Bassett, W1RO-ARRL Nevada Section Traffic Manager, Life Member gobig.Isagenix.com
Here on the WW2 Sub USS COD SS-224, we have two RAL/RAK pairs, a
TCS-12 combo and a couple of RBOs.
There is also some late WW2 VHF/UHF xtal controlled transceivers that were used for talking directly with carrier planes when doing Dumbo (lifeguard) duty.
73 - Bill KA8VIT
I concur with the others, Brian -- many thanks for the memories.
Oh how I used to enjoy listening to CW traffic on the marine frequencies!
I sure miss that era of shortwave radio listening, including the shortwave broadcasts of the 60s and 70s.
thing I DO NOT miss is LORAN on 160 meters... and you think the "Woodpecker"
and other OTH radar emissions are bad! :)
And regarding military receivers, I had the good fortune of using a U.S. Navy surplus RBC-6 (I think that was its numerical designation -- or was it a 4?) as a Novice.
(It's the large receiver on the right-hand side of the B/W photo of my 1970 WN9EBE Novice station on QRZ.)
was fabulous, and literally built like a battleship.
You know, with all the interesting, truly innovative, and technologically advanced digital modes of today, we CW operators -- especially SKCC ops! -- can take great pride in keeping Morse code alive and well on the shortwave radio bands.
and gentlemen, please keep up the good work -- and have fun while doing it!
~73~ es ZUT, Chip W9EBE
73, your Editor PA3CLQ
My simple website about Gigantic DF-Antennas
Part 1 "DF-Antenna Wullenweber Array"
Part 2 "DF-Antenna USSR Variants"
Part 3 "DF-Antenna USA Variant"
Next Part 4 "USSR OTHRA DUGA 1,2 & 3" at: