2 comments

  • Steven Smith

    I did not know that Bill Lehnhoff had been involved with Kagt in the early days. When I think of Kagt I think of Bill Berry. Lehnhoff was best known up here as the chief engineer at radio Kari Am in Blaine. When I began as a part-time jock at Kbfw, when the station was at the top of the towers, Lehnhoff was officially the guy who worked tech problems. There was another operater, with a first phone, who was on paper the chief engineer. But he had passed the test by taking one of the FCC license cram courses, so he could not troubleshoot anything. Even a mechanical problem with a turntable led to calling in Lehnhoff. Back then KBFW had had two or three guys who were called chief engineers, but they had zero technical knowledge or skills. Often Bill L. would come by on weekends to work on a list of probs, but mainly what I saw him do was check turntable speed with one of those strobe wheels that you put over the spindle. The TT motors were synchronous with no speed adjustment, so not sure the point of his tests. It seemed like busy work. Shortly after I started as a jock about 1972, management hired a real combo on-site engineer and jock who was very capable…Bill Hamelin. Shortly after Bill Hamelin left, to start his own mfg company, I became a combo jock and chief. Despite my changing roles at the station, I kept that title and performed those duties from 1974 until I sold Kbfw in 1999. And, if you wonder, I was able to resolve about 95% of the tech problems over the years, but a couple times I hired consultants for transmitter or directional antenna issues.

  • mikec

    Steven-that’s great you got the opportunity to learn the engineering side of the biz. I think ‘luck’ might have also been a factor with your solving of 95% AM transmitter issues. 🙂 AM sticks CAN be a nightmare. i too was lucky to learn the engineering side of AM while still a jock. Licensed as a ham operator at age 9, the engineer at my first station – CJDC Dawson Creek BC was more than happy to get me involved with the 1 kW DA-N signal. A bonus was learning a bit of TV engineering in spite of it being much more complex, as CJDC-TV operated on ch 5

    Examining this card, I had forgotten that KAGT went silent for a few years in the early 60’s & don’t remember that. I assume the owner just wan’t able to make a go of it. For a 250 watt ‘graveyarder’ KAGT had a potent signal thanks to the incredible salt-water groundplane adjacent to it’s towers. It could be heard with stunning strength all throughout the San Juan’s & southern Gulf Islands BC, lower Vancouver Island and the metro Vancouver area.

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