Monthly Archives: August 2015

Coolest Vintage Radio Ever

california_kilowattby Matt Novak — “If you were a radio nerd in the 1940s, this was your dream set. Built by Kluge Electronics in Los Angeles, the “California Kilowatt” could not only send and receive messages, but it came with all the bells and whistles — including built-in speakers and an illuminated map of the world, all housed in a sleek fold-down desk.

The term California Kilowatt was slang in the ham radio community for a transmitter with a power input that exceeded the legal limit. The slightly misleading part? This radio only transmitted at the legal limit. I guess even the coolest radio ever can’t have it all.

From the ad in the March 1946 issue of Radio-Craft:

Kluge Electronics, Inc., is the first to conceive, design and produce this remarkable contribution to modern radio. Among the special Kluge features designed into the CALIFORNIA KILOWATT are:

A California Kilowatt transmitter with an amazing new tube development — 5 band operation with variable frequency control in each band — phone or CW at the throw of a switch — 110 or 220 volt operation;

Provisions for your choice make of receiver;

Built-in speaker — (high-fidelity remote speaker also available); Continue reading...

Intro to the HF Bands

This is a video targeted at new HF operators and covers the 20 and 80 meter bands.

W5VE Mobile 4 in the Mountains


Taking a break yesterday up near Winding Stair Gap in the beautiful mountains of Macon County, North Carolina. The antennas are for my ham radios — 220 in the front, duoband 2 meters/440 behind (W5VE).