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FRS History 1980-1989

1982

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1981 had been a very good year and 1982 already spread its wings.

Antenna troubles & Argentina
During the early part of the January transmission, FRS-Holland was received in the U.S.A, quite exceptional knowing this happened after 09.00 GMT, a time when chances of being received across the Atlantic are virtually nil. On Saturday January 31st, one day before the 5th Sunday transmission together with E.M.R., it was discovered that two of the ropes which were permanently hanging on the location since a few months, were pulled out of the trees. In the darkness one new piece of rope was thrown into a tree and the following morning the FRS people were unsuccessful in getting the missing rope on the right place. Therefore only one aerial could be hung up and thus 6250 remained silent that Sunday. Also QSL NorbertScheel_21-02-1982_50in February FRS-Holland was only on 41 metres. It was a cold sunny day and conditions apperared to be excellent. Nobody could imagine that it was a kind of historical day in the life of the station because the surprise came a few weeks later when Peter V. received a package of mail containing reception reports for the February broadcast. When opening the package he couldn't believe his eyes when he saw a letter/report from as far away as Argentina.

“It's hard to describe how you feel at such moment. It was like a dream and I just couldn't believe it. January already proved much was possible under these superb propagation conditions but let's be honest, this surpassed our wildest expectations. The distance was approx. 10,000 kilometres and our actual output was 10,0000 ... milliwatts. One milliwatt for each kilometre!” FRSH letter_Argentina-MardelPlata_Febr1982_500

Programme changes
Programme-wise there were a number of changes in the first eight months of 1982. Chris stopped presenting the German Service for the time being but afterwards it turned out that his January 1982 Show was the last one he did for FRS-Holland. However: he became co-presenter of the ILLS, together with Peter V. George Strong was taking over the German Service as from March 1982 onwards. We asked him to recall a few memories from the period he worked for FRS-Holland Through the years he remained a faithful listener of the FRS programmes on SW. And: he would again surface on the station many, many years later….

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During the 3rd Sunday of March 1982 problems arose with the 48 mb transmitter and for a long time FRSH would only be broadcasting on 7315 kHz within the 41 mb range. Very stimulating for the deejay crew was the good news which was brought by the German KDKC magazine, a German news bulletin very popular because of its comprehensive news coverage of the SW free radio scene. FRSH was chosen as the number 1 SW hobby pirate by its readers.KDKC poppoll_March1982_1 KDKC poppoll_March1982_2A great success after just 20 months of broadcasting which was sadly overshadowed by the fact Joop ter Zee announced he was going to leave FRS-Holland. Joop was involved with the station right from the very beginning and played an important role as the main responsible person for all those freaky and well-produced jingles still being popular nowadays among many of FRS-Holland's 'senior' listeners.

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Long skip, Listenersclub
During the April broadcast FRS was forced to leave 7315 because Radio Woodstock, a Scottish station, used 7315 too. This was, to say the least, strange knowing FRS already continuously used 7315 since January 1981. However, FRS still got a 7325 x-tal and so most of the broadcast took place on this channel. Coincident or not, just like May 1981, the May 1982 broadcast was aired on a 4th Sunday, this time for internal organizational reasons
. How difficult it sometimes was to get the aerials properly in the trees was proved by the fact work was finished only 2 minutes before the planned commencement on May 23rd. For the second time in succession 7325 had to be used, this time it was caused by a teleprinter. One week later the second 5th Sunday 1982 broadcast went by without incidents. June 20th could have been one of those normal 3rd Sundays, however a strange skip long-shortphenomenon called long skip surfaced making things rather confusing. It was in fact the very first time FRS-Holland experienced the effects of such strange conditions: a relatively low number of letters but on the other hand reports from remote countries as far away as Italy and Finland! For many faithful FRS listeners reception was impossible simply because they were living within the so called dead zone, an area which was skipped by the signal’s sky wave. Particularly in the summer period long skip conditions could greatly affecting a broadcast witness the fact that FRS could hardly be received in the Netherlands during the July 18th transmission. One thing may not be forgotten: it was June 1982 when the FRS Listenersclub was officially founded. Main idea behind this club was informing dedicated FRS listeners in detail about FRS by means of a monthly magazine entitled FRS Goes DX. Also the offshore scene and short wave free radio scene were covered in the mag. Through the years FRS Goes DX developed into a good-looking and very informative and up-to-date magazine, read by people spread around the world. July 1982, saw George Strong's farewell show only after having presented the German Show for only five months. Michael was his successor being the 3rd presenter of the German Service within two years.

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The fact that FRS-Holland was responsible for putting out its own programmes could result in funny, strange, unexpected but also risky situations as already having put forward earlier in this story. Hear P.V.'s story how he got out of a very tricky situation August 15th 1982 ....

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The reason for the curiosity of the police could be simply explained: they found my car unlocked on that rather strange spot near the road. Because of the hurry we were in, both FRS people forgot to lock Peter's car.

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Joop ter Zee returns
Very positive was the return of mainstay Joop ter Zee in August. He had been responsible for the FRS Golden Show and started with a brand new programme
called Sounds Alternative. Joop explains a few things ....... (two audio cuts: JtZee about his return & extracts first Sounds Alternatives August 15th 1982).

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August 29th saw no 5th Sunday broadcast because of the happenings two weels earlier. Peter V. felt it was better to keep the station silent for a few weeks… The 3rd Sunday September 1982 broadcast had to be cancelled. When arriving in the wood to erect the aerials on Saturday evening at 19.30, much too our surprise we were in the middle of a party going on, organised by Bobby Speed's younger brother. Most of the partygoers planned to sleep at the location, so it was goodbye 3rd Sunday. One week later on Sunday September 26th the transmission took place in the pouring rain. Already on Saturday evening the aerial was erected and all transmitting gear was left behind on the secret location….in the pouring rain because later that evening and the entire night it was raining cats and dogs. As a result Peter had quite some difficulties in tuning up the rig properly that Sunday morning: the tx had become a little wet. Although Peter was convinced that the tx wasn’t tuned up properly, the opposite was the case witness a call from Barry Stephens receiving 7315 kHz with a superb signal that morning! The following programme schedule, which would remain unchanged till October 1983, was to be heard:  

09.54

Station-opening  

10.02

German Service

Michael

10.30

Free Radio Spot   

11.00

English Service

Barry Stephens 

11.30 

FRS Goes DX   

Peter Verbruggen

12.00

Musical Express

Fred van Es 

12.30

Int. Listener’s Letter Show

Chris & Peter

13.15

Sounds Alternatives

Joop ter Zee

14.00

Close Down

New 40W rigs, pop poll
Sunday
October 17th and 31st saw good conditions and passed by without serious problems. Although…there was always ‘something’ which happened in those days and perhaps that is just making operations on a secret location very exciting! On the 3rd October Sunday,
FRS had to switch to 7310 because of utility on 7315 and 7325. For the two hour 5th Sunday broadcast on October 31st no less than 50 letters were received. Sounds Alternative was repeated because two weeks earlier Radio Tirana Int. using 7310 was causing interference after 13:00 CET. The 48 mb rig was about to be put back in service in October but the inverter converting the car battery’s 12V into 320v HT failed to start up. Talking of car batteries: a brand new & heavy 320 Amps car battery was achieved to power the 10W rigs as from October 31st onwards. In this way there wouldn’t be any more problems with car batteries going flat by the end of a broadcast. In the mean time two new 40W transmitters were obtained by FRS-Holland. Both were former E.M.R. transmitters which had almost never been used because Barry Stephens had always been very satisfied with his 10W transmitters. It was the idea to use at least one of these rigs in the New Year. In November FRS News, an UK free radio magazine published the results of an pop poll and FRS-Holland took up a fair 5th position behind stations such as Caroline SW and Radio Nova Dublin.FRS News28 PopPoll_Nov1982_500 Talking of magazines...the famous Dutch Free Radio Magazine published part 1 of a two-volume article about the Free Radio Service Holland. More information in the 1983 article! SeasonalGreetings FRSTeam_Dec82_50
With the traditional X-Mas Party FRS said goodbye to 1982. Sunday December 19th it was the first time since January that two frequencies were occupied. It was not the original 10W transmitter but one of the new 40W transmitters being used on 6237 kHz in the 48 mb. A new auto reverse cassette machine was installed enabling the FRS people to return only once for a tape change during an entire broadcast, a further reduction of the risk being caught by the authorities (two audio cuts: FRS XMas Party 1 & 2 December 19th 1982). 

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  • Last Modified: Friday 10 November 2017, 07:50:11.

FRS on YouTube

FRS-Holland on Sunday June 19th 2011 (evening broadcast) on 7685 kHz {youtube}9n-UI8ERJZM{/youtube}.
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