So this is a long long time coming update from me here at NECRAT. What better way to welcome in 2017, then with a whole plethora of new pictures? How many new? 81 to be exact!
This is a accumulation of 4 months of getting pictures here and there, along with a trip over the weekend to update some long needed pictures.
It all started in September, with the construction of the WTMU-LP translator in Needham, which would become the primary signal for NBC Boston as WBTS-LD.
As well as a visit to a tower in Webster to see a LPTV that launched as a Providence market signal rimshot
September also got us a shot of the new WLAS-LP, the third station in the Boston 102.9 LPFM “tri-plex”
October got us up to the Hancock tower for some work, and gave us the shot of the transmitters on the 61st floor there. It also got us into the old WBZ-WCVB analog combiner room, where the new WBTS-LD transmitter now sits.
As well as the funky new antenna at Webster’s WGFP 940.
November brought some contract work for NECRAT (You do know we do contract work, right? More information is coming)
We installed one of many new AM on FM translators, this one for WVNE.
Plus thanks to our good friend Vic Michaels, we got into WGAO 88.3 at Dean College.
In the first week of January, I went to Springfield to pick up a couple of Springfield Fire Alarm boxes that were being sold off, and did a quick round trip to see the new translators for 104.5 //1490 WSPR
and 100.1 //1250 WACM.
Then comes this past weekend, where I took a leisurely 8 hour drive to visit all the new FM translators and LPFMs I could do in one day.
Starting with the two new LPFMs in Essex County, WHAV-LP and WGUA-LP
Plus those got us a couple of good new views of the new WXRV Aux/IBOC antennas.
And some new AM on FM translators like 95.1 in Lowell.
102.1 in Framingham
And 101.3 in Milford, complete with sunset tour from our friend Doug!
And the round trip was an excuse to finally photograph a number of the WXRV boosters. We got antenna pictures of 3 of the 5 boosters.
And we finish off the trip with a couple of donated pictures from our friend Steve Conti of WTBR-FM in our home neck of the woods, Pittsfield, MA.
As always, the complete list of updates can be found at the top of this page!
So let’s say you were driving down a country road in Herkimer County, NY, and you come across a giant TV antenna on a telephone pole, next to the road, in a field. Strange right? Well it’s not some conspiracy theorists’ dream. It’s an actual analog TV translator.
W04AE serves Herkimer as a relay of WTEN out of Albany.
This late summer trip was a good excuse for us to update a rather neat little corner of New York. Not quite Albany, not quite Utica, the stations of the Mohawk Valley serve the “tri-city” area of Johnstown, Gloversville, and Amsterdam. A total of six AMs serve
Three in Johnstown/Gloversville
and WFNY 1440.
WFNY’s translator is not located here, but rather up on a hill north of Gloversville, along with an LPTV (Co-Owned with WFNY), and WNGG 90.9
Amsterdam has two AMs
Amsterdam also has one large TV tower with FM side mounted to it.
Plus one of New York’s newer AM’s, that had a little controversial startup with the FCC rejecting the original license application.
This update also includes the Herkimer County Community College station WVHC…
And of course, a complete update to the Stewart’s Shops page from a summer of Western New York travel!
This is one of those updates, that I would call NIFTY. I got to see some towers that have long long been on my list to visit, as well as visit some family sites.
But the first visit I did was actually back in March. Doug Kehrig has been a close friend of mine for many years, and we both have been trying to find some time to get together to see the little AM he engineers, WMRC. (See, Doug is a transmitter engineer for WHDH-TV, just like I am for WFXT, so both our schedules are quite busy).
Anywhos, we got a chance to finally merge off work so I could see his station. I have a full 15 photo gallery of the station on the page. (Linked above)
Then this month (April, 2016), was my annual “field trip” to Allentown, PA to the Spring Melt fire convention, which includes a free day for tower gathering. This year, I got two days in.
The first day I got out to Carlisle, PA to see the six radio stations there. See Carlisle is a special place to me. My Aunt Marge (Marjorie Ann Fitzpatrick January 01,1934 – November 12,2011) lived here for all of my life, and had been inviting me to come down for many years. Unfortunately, I was never able to make it down, and she passed in a tragic car accident on November 12th. So this year, I corrected that wrong, and visited her grave, as well as saw her old houses.
Anyways, it gave me a chance to visit all the Carlisle radio stations, including the one at Dickinson College, where she was a professor.
After visiting this historic and beautiful town, I headed south to see the towers of York, Lancaster. (Plus some of the prettiest country you’ll ever see.).
While down there, I had to go to Millersville to see the college station at Millersville University, where family of mine graduated.
After leaving Lancaster, I had a ton of daylight left, and decided to polish off two more sites from my list that I’ve always wanted to visit. The first was just outside of Hanover. The hill where WGTY Gettysburg, and WYCR York-Hanover both site. What a surprise it was to find WYCR’s very old RCA Batwing still mounted up the hill!
Plus across the street was an old AT&T Longlines tower.
See the whole Carlisle set here, and the whole Lancaster-York-Hanover set here.
After leaving that area in Pennsylvania, the plan was to go to Elizabethtown to get a picture of 106.7 , licensed to Hershey. I was surprised when I came upon the tower of WWKL 93.5, while taking the back roads up there!
On my way back home from Pennsylvania, I decided to polish off a few more sites in the New York City area that I have never been to.
The first is one that I didn’t realize was as close to the highway as it is. The monster signal of WAWZ in Zarepath. Back when I started the website, a gentleman sent me some old pictures of it, with the caption. “I couldn’t find the way up”. Well thanks to Google Earth, I was able to find this easy to get to site.
From there I headed to West Orange, to visit the WNSH 94.7 site, which also is home to WFMU 91.1, as well as the backups for several other NYC Stations, AND one TV station as well, WNYJ-TV.
On my way there, I was quite surprised to see a big beefy self supporting tower about a mile and half up the road , I wasn’t expecting. After photographing it in good detail, I learned it is home to a massive NYC TV backup site.
Leaving there, I visited the WWRL 1600 site to update my pictures of there and got a picture (not fantastic but ok) of the new WEPN towers. Along the way, however, I stopped and added another very prominent AM site to my list. The big 570 WMCA/ 820 WNYC site. As an added unexpected bonus, I got a shot of the new One World Trade center behind them.
I also corrected one huge omission from my site. This is an important one too. Scott Fybush, of Fybush Media/Fybush.com has documented on his excellent site, this tower with very detailed history. Really he has explained it in much more detail than I could ever do! I am talking, of course, of the Armstrong tower in Alpine, NJ.
The tower is used by two FM broadcasters. WPLJ maintains a Shively backup on the tower, and WFDU has their primary antenna here.
On the way out of here, I stopped by Nyack College to grab a quick photo of WNYK, then stopped in Danbury on my way home.
I had never made it up to the WXCI site. (Sorry Oz!). This time, I walked past the gate up the short hill, and grabbed a few photos of this rather interesting tower.
I also made one final stop, while in Danbury, to get a shot of the WDBY-FM1 Booster.
So you can see this is quite an update, and I hope you enjoy it.
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So there are some sites, that for various reasons, we may never get to, and are somewhat difficult to photograph without having someone in the know. So when my long time friend Mike Pelczarski took a ski trip to Mt. Snow, I couldn’t resist asking him to grab a shot of WTHK. Now mind you, he’s not a tower photo nut like me, but clearly, he knew where to aim!
Took a long long time, but finally, I have been able to get some much needed updates done to my website!
And it happens to be one of the biggest and recent changes to happen around here! Of course, I am talking about the brand new WCTK Cat Country 98.1 and WNBH 1340 towers in New Bedford.
This update, which comprised of two days of travel got to see the next three steps of the giant “Bull” upgrade, The new 101.7 antenna.
The replacement antenna for WWBB to deal with rooftop RFR issues…
And the replacement antenna for WCIB, to deal with downward signal issues.
This update also got three brand new LPFMs, one of which was on the air in Rhode Island.
A new antenna/tower at Concord High School.
A LPTV that simulcasts an NBC O&O out of New Hampshire…
A new backup antenna for WBRU
And a first time look at the one AM never shown on NECRAT prior.
We also got to see an antenna make a rare “re-appearance” on NECRAT! This one is one we’ve featured for many many years on this site. It has been relocated to Rhode Island from Worcester.
Yes, the “WAAF Kegs” are now the “WVEI-FM Aux Kegs”
As always a complete list of updates sits on the link above.
After reading this week’s Northeast Radio Watch by Scott Fybush, he mentioned where WMYF in Portsmouth, NH is off the air, due to the loss of their site. It got me thinking of other stations, that existed when this site (NECRAT) had started but have since gone off the air. (In most cases the licenses were deleted, and a few of these towers are gone).
WCKL 560 Catskill, NY…
WCKL 560 Catskill. Well it could qualify. Running illegally elsewhere.
WALE 990 Greenville, RI…
WALE 990 Greenville, RI. The long troubled tale came to an end in 2014.
WDCR 1340 Hanover, NH…
WDCR’s green and white colors make it quite unique. However the station is no longer.
WDIS 1170 Norfolk, MA…
A recent entry, WDIS 1170 lost their license due to their building being condemned.
WNEK-FM 105.1 Springfield, MA…
WNEK-FM 105.1, Western New England University’s radio station went through several frequency changes. License was not renewed.
WNMH 91.5 Northfield, MA…
WNMH at Northfield-Mount Hermon University. Several reports the station was still operating after the license was deleted. They now have a CP for a new LPFM.
WNYP-LP 98.7 Ripley, NY…
WNYP-LP 98.7. The state of New York’s LPFM at the barrier toll plaza going into PA on I-90. (Although the license had it several miles off). Rest In Peace WNYP-LP!
WPEP 1570 Taunton, MA…
WPEP Taunton, MA, signed off when another station north of Boston upgraded in power. The towers would be upgraded in later years as the new home for WVBF, Steve Callahan’s radio station in Taunton.
WPNI 1430 Amherst, MA…
WPNI Amherst. Another Brian Dodge tale. The station lost one of the towers a few years ago.
WPUT 1510 Brewster, NY…
WPUT 1510 Putnam, NY. A rimshotter to many larger markets, WPUT went silent in 2014.
WRAN-LP 100.1 Randolph, VT…
WRAN-LP 100.1 Randolph, VT. Owned by the state of Vermont, “ran” from the 102.1 tower.
WRJI 91.5 East Greenwich, RI…
WRJI 91.5 East Greenwich, RI. The Providence based Spanish FM, that ran as a pirate for close to a year after the license was deleted from the FCC.
WNHV 910 White River Junction, VT…
WNHV 910 White River Junction. The 2nd AM station in this market to go silent in less than five years. (WDCR, above, the other).
WWTA 88.5 Marion, MA…
WWTA 88.5 at Tabor Academy in Marion, MA, recently “upgraded” their signal, and in less than four years later, returned their license.