1923- Longwave Broadcasting in Australia

Project Overview
1800s - Land Telegraphy
1874 - Guglielmo Marconi - a Tribute
1895 - Wireless Telegraphy
1901 - Wireless Telegraphy
1902 - Wireless Telegraphy in Australia
1904 - Australian Coastal Radio
1906 - Wireless Telephony
1912 - Melbourne Radio - VIM
1914 - Shortwave Wireless Telephony
1920s - Commercial Shortwave Telephony Development
1920s - Receivers
1920 - The huge RCA Longwave Station in New York
1920 - Wireless broadcasting in Australia
1920s - First shortwave stations in Victoria
1921 - Discovery of Shortwave Propagation
1921 - Koo Wee Rup (Victoria) Experimental Wireless Receiving Station
1923- Longwave Broadcasting in Australia
1923 - Evolution of Australian Domestic Radio
1924 - 3LO - Melbourne's Second Broadcaster
1924 - 3AR - Melbourne's first broadcaster
1924 - The Braybrook (Melbourne) Transmitting Site
1925 - First Shortwave Stations in Western Australia
1926 - First Shortwave Stations in New South Wales
1926 - RAAF Communications - Laverton (Vic)
1927 - Beam Wireless Worldwide
1927 - Beam Wireless from Australia
1928 - ABC Lyndhurst (Victoria)
1930 - AWA Receiving Station at La Perouse (Sydney)
1930 - AWA Radio Centre at Pennant Hills
1933 (to 1969) - Shortwave Radio Clubs in Australia
1936 - Ship Broadcaster - the MS Kanimbla
1939 - Belconnen Communications Station (Canberra)
1940 - RAAF Receiving Station at Werribee (Victoria)
1941 - RAAF Frognall (Melbourne)
1941 - ABC Brisbane
1942 - Army Wireless Chain - west of Melbourne
1942 - Dutch Stations in Australia
1943 - ABC Radio Australia - Shepparton (Victoria)
1943 - Army Shortwave HF Stations in Melbourne
1944 - ABC - Radio Australia - Looking Back
1945 - PMG Receiving Station - Highpark (Victoria)
1945 - Radio Australia - DXers Calling
1946 - Radio Australia - Communications Programs
1946 - VNG Time Signal Station
1948 - Radio Australia QSL Cards
1948 - ABC Sydney
1966 - ABC Cox Peninsula (Darwin)
1970 (to 2012) - Shortwave Radio Clubs in Australia
1975 - ABC Gnangara (Western Australia)
1975 - ABC Carnarvon (Western Australia)
1978 - Omega Navigation Station - Woodside (Victoria)
1985 - ABC Northern Territory
1989 - ABC Brandon (Queensland)
2003 - Private Shortwave Broadcasters
Timeline - Part One - 1839 to 1927
Timeline - Part Two - 1928 to 2012
SPECIAL - Licencing of Shortwave Broadcasters
SPECIAL - Radio Receivers for Shortwave
SPECIAL - Radio Monitoring as a Hobby
Bibliography, References and Resources
Links to the author's personal websites

1923 - 2FC - raising antenna mast

1920 - 2CM Sydney from Wentworth Hotel






First Longwave Stations
At the time when radio broadcasting first began in Australia, radio engineers of the day considered that the widest coverage could be obtained by emitting high power on a longwave frequency. Consequently, some of Australia's first radio broadcasting stations transmitted for some years on what has since become the European standard longwave band.

Early 1920s
A total of five different stations in Australia were issued licenses for longwave broadcasting, only three of these stations were launched, and all three were involved in shortwave broadcasting. This is how it happened.

December 5, 1923
The 1st station in Australia to operate on longwave was 2FC in Sydney, which was inaugurated as Australia's 2nd broadcasting station. This station, which was projected under the callsign 2LO, reminiscent of the more famous 2LO in London, was constructed by AWA, with studios in Farmer's Building in downtown Sydney, and transmitter at suburban Willoughby.

The initial channel allocated to 2FC was 1100 metres, 273 kHz, with a power of 5 kW. Three years later, the transmitter was re-sited to the AWA facility in outer suburban Pennant Hills, still on longwave. However, at the beginning of the following year, 2FC did transfer from the longwave band, to 442 metres, 680 kHz in the standard mediumwave band.

Broadcasting station 2FC operated on longwave for something over three years, and it was also involved in early shortwave broadcasting. Today, 2FC is still on the air, though under the callsign 2RN, with 50 kW on 576 kHz.

Around the same time that 2FC was licensed, the owners, Farmer & Co., obtained a license for a 2nd commercial station in Sydney under the projected callsign 2FL. This additional station was allocated the longwave channel 880 metres, 341 kHz with a power of 1/2 kW. However, station 2FL was never launched, and the license was cancelled.

October 131925
In Melbourne Victoria, this same commercial organization, Farmer & Co., obtained another license for a longwave broadcasting station with 5 kW on 1720 metres, 174 kHz. The projected callsign for this station was 3FC, though the call was changed to 3LO before the station was inaugurated.

3LO moved into the broadcast band on 810 kHz in mid-1926. Thus, it was on the air lon ongwave for a little over six months. It's still on the air today with 50 kW on 774 kHz, under the same callsign 3LO.

June 4 1924
In Perth, the early wireless experimenter, Wally Coxon, involved with the erection of another longwave station, 6WF. This station was located in the Westralian Farmers Building in downtown Perth, with two massive radio towers, each weighing 3-1/2 tons on top of the building.

It was inaugurated on June 4, 1924, with 5 kW on 1250 metres, 240 kHz. This station remained on longwave much longer than any of the other broadcasting stations in Australia, and it left longwave and moved to 690 kHz five years later. Station 6WF was also involved in shortwave broadcasting; and it is still on the air today with 50 kW on 720 kHz under the same callsign 6WF.

The 5th license for a longwave broadcasting station in Australia was issued to Millswood Auto & Radio Co. Ltd., in Adelaide, South Australia. They were allocated the longwave channel 850 kHz with 3 kW under the callsign 5MA in the year 1923. Millswood announced that they intended to inaugurate their new station towards the end of the year 1923, though the usual delay occurred.

In preparation for their new radio broadcasting service, they installed a temporary transmitter with just 250 watts output. It would appear that some test broadcasts were radiated from this temporary unit, but when the PMG Dept issued a new set of regulations for radio broadcasting in Australia, Millswood withdrew, and the license for 5MA was cancelled.

Thus, a total of 5 different licenses for longwave broadcasting were issued by the PMG Dept in Australia. Two stations, though projected, were never inaugurated; stations 2FL in Sydney and 5MA in Adelaide. Three stations were placed on the air; 2FC in Sydney, 3LO in Melbourne, and 6WF in Perth.

The era of longwave broadcasting in Australia began officially on December 5, 1923 with the official inauguration of 2FC Sydney, and it ended nearly six years later when station 6WF in Perth was transferred into the mediumwave band on September 2, 1929.

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