Videokarma.org

Go Back   Videokarma.org TV - Video - Vintage Television & Radio Forums > Early Color Television

We appreciate your help

in keeping this site going.
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 05-15-2018, 07:51 PM
benman94's Avatar
benman94 benman94 is offline
Resident Lunatic
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Detroit, MI
Posts: 1,052
Early color sets in... Escanaba?

I need the help of the Wisconsinites. I recently stumbled across some ads for early color sets in Escanaba, Michigan circa 1956 and 1957. Anybody from Michigan, or Wisconsin for that matter, knows that Michigan's Upper Penninsula was, and is, pretty desolate. The only television station in the UP that would have been broadcasting at that time, WDMJ in Marquette, was a strictly monochrome affair.

That leaves only the north-eastern Wisconsin stations in range of Escanaba, and even then, only in the deep fringe at about 100 miles. I can't find any references to a station in the Green Bay or Marinette areas broadcasting in color. I briefly considered that they may have been picking up Milwaukee, but reception at 192 miles seems unlikely to me.

Any ideas?

Attached are the relevant advertisements:


Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 05-15-2018, 08:16 PM
WISCOJIM WISCOJIM is offline
VideoKarma Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Grand Chute, Wisconsin
Posts: 1,882
The only two stations in the UP before the 1960's were WMBV and WDMJ. Neither had color at that time.

Canada had one station that reached the UP market, but it was also B&W only at that time.

Green Bay's first color broadcasts were in 1958 by WFRV.

Maybe Milwaukee TV did reach that far in the 1950's. The strongest AM radio station in many areas of the UP is still Milwaukee's WTMJ (620AM).

.
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 05-15-2018, 08:29 PM
benman94's Avatar
benman94 benman94 is offline
Resident Lunatic
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Detroit, MI
Posts: 1,052
Quote:
Originally Posted by WISCOJIM View Post
The only two stations in the UP before the 1960's were WMBV and WDMJ. Neither had color at that time.

Canada had one station that reached the UP market, but it was also B&W only at that time.

Green Bay's first color broadcasts were in 1958 by WFRV.

Maybe Milwaukee TV did reach that far in the 1950's. The strongest AM radio station in many areas of the UP is still Milwaukee's WTMJ (620AM).

.
The city of license I found for WMBV was Marinette, making that a Wisconsin station. The second station on the air in the UP was WWUP, which was just a full power repeater of WWTV in Cadillac, Michigan.

The Canuck station you're referring to is in Sault Ste Marie, Ontario, channel two IIRC. WWUP was in Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan. That's clear over on the east side of the UP and it would have been impossible to pick up either in Escanaba. Hell, the terrain is rugged enough, and the forests dense enough, that pulling in WDMJ out of Marquette would have been hit and miss on occasion, especially given the lower transmitter power. I guess the one thing Milwaukee reception would have had going for it would have been Lake Michigan itself....
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 05-15-2018, 08:58 PM
WISCOJIM WISCOJIM is offline
VideoKarma Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Grand Chute, Wisconsin
Posts: 1,882
Sorry, yes WMBV was in Wisconsin in the "Twin Cities" of "Marinette-Menominee" often thought of as one community. The only difference we see when crossing from one into the other is the different amount of taxes on fuel.

.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 05-15-2018, 09:15 PM
benman94's Avatar
benman94 benman94 is offline
Resident Lunatic
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Detroit, MI
Posts: 1,052
Quote:
Originally Posted by WISCOJIM View Post
Sorry, yes WMBV was in Wisconsin in the "Twin Cities" of "Marinette-Menominee" often thought of as one community. The only difference we see when crossing from one into the other is the different amount of taxes on fuel.

.
We're being robbed at 26.3 cents per gallon plus the 6 percent sales tax and our roads still look like shit... hopefully the crooks in Madison have more sense than our crooks in Lansing...

Anyway, I'm going to look and see if color sets were being advertised in Marquette and see if they weren't strictly monochrome at WDMJ. Perhaps WDMJ was capable of broadcasting color network programs. I'll also check Ironwood, MI papers for color ads.

I do know that WBAY was the easiest station to pull in if you were in Escanaba pre-WDMJ, but as you said, they weren't color capable.
Reply With Quote
Audiokarma
  #6  
Old 05-15-2018, 10:00 PM
old_tv_nut's Avatar
old_tv_nut old_tv_nut is offline
See yourself on Color TV!
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Rancho Sahuarita
Posts: 4,600
Could those ads actually be 1958? Don't know what years Admiral sold that model.
__________________
www.bretl.com
Old TV literature, New York World's Fair, and other miscellany
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 05-16-2018, 12:36 AM
Electronic M's Avatar
Electronic M Electronic M is offline
M is for Memory
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Pewaukee/Delafield Wi
Posts: 9,600
Wonder what the stores looked like back then?...If there was a 50'+ antenna tower behind them I could see attempting to DX Milwaukee. TV DX was doing very good in the 50's and many magazines of the day had fascinating reports.
__________________
Tom C.

What I want. --> http://www.videokarma.org/showpost.p...62&postcount=4

Reading between the scan lines since the mid 2000's.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 05-16-2018, 04:17 AM
benman94's Avatar
benman94 benman94 is offline
Resident Lunatic
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Detroit, MI
Posts: 1,052
Quote:
Originally Posted by old_tv_nut View Post
Could those ads actually be 1958? Don't know what years Admiral sold that model.
Nope, late 1956 and early 1957. I double checked the dates on the newspapers they were culled from.
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 05-16-2018, 04:21 AM
benman94's Avatar
benman94 benman94 is offline
Resident Lunatic
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Detroit, MI
Posts: 1,052
Quote:
Originally Posted by Electronic M View Post
Wonder what the stores looked like back then?...If there was a 50'+ antenna tower behind them I could see attempting to DX Milwaukee. TV DX was doing very good in the 50's and many magazines of the day had fascinating reports.
I suppose there was much less man made noise to contend with, and much of the LOS path being over water helped tremendously I'm sure, but that's a quite a long haul.
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 05-16-2018, 09:09 AM
zeno zeno is offline
VideoKarma Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: New Hampshire
Posts: 3,043
I think Milwaukee isnt so hard in those days. Some life
examples.......
On Cape Cod I could easily get FM from Nova Scotia. Since putting
RF over the ocean is a waste I would imagine they were quite
directional to the north. TV from Maine was near perfect on
rabbit ears (6 &13). Probably 150 miles.
In the evening most days Europe, Africa & Mid East AM's come in
if you have an analog tuner or can tune the 9K spacing.
At home ch 8 Mt. Washington on ears 130 miles with heavy adjacents
on ch 7 & 9. The FM from there was ride around quality in stereo.
Remember also on a good set you will get color on the weakest of signals.
IIRC some ducting normally does happen over a water route aso.
In the north country it used to be common to see towers or roof
tripods for TV antennas. Some used Yagies just to eke out another
station.
See if you can find an area Sunday paper from then & what the
TV guide lists for stations.

enuf
73 Zeno
LFOD !
Reply With Quote
Audiokarma
  #11  
Old 05-16-2018, 11:54 AM
jr_tech's Avatar
jr_tech jr_tech is offline
VideoKarma Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 3,771
In the late 50s, many isolated communities had fairly decent community tv antenna systems. I remember my parents staying in a motel in Bend Oregon and being pleasantly surprised that the tv dial was nearly filled with channels from distant cities; Portland, Eugene, Medford and even Bosie Idaho (over 250 miles), apparently received by an antenna system on a hill east of town.

Bosie (channel 2) was a little grainy, but quite watchable, but was several times overrun by another station which turned out to be ch 2 from Denver (KFEL). Apparently, this was a fairly regular occurrence in the summer.

jr
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 05-16-2018, 02:52 PM
zeno zeno is offline
VideoKarma Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: New Hampshire
Posts: 3,043
I may add to that when the Boston stations shut down for the night
the NYC stations were there just barely. Add a little ducting
and they were quite watchable. A big rotor antenna VERY watchable.
Thats abt 200 miles all over land & my house was down low.
There is no way it was LOS ........ Try that with allegedly better digital !

73 Zeno
LFOD !
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 05-16-2018, 06:12 PM
Robert Grant's Avatar
Robert Grant Robert Grant is offline
VideoKarma Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Monroe County, MI
Posts: 454
Getting WTMJ-TV in Upper Michigan some of the time would be not at all far-fetched. When times were better, we would rent a cabin for a week or two in Manistique. On days when warm humid air was over Lake Michigan and there was little or no wind, Milwaukee and Chicago stations would boom in. Both digital and analog. I literally watched two Willis Tower stations, digital, with an unfurled jumbo paperclip for an antenna.

Of note, however, is that highband VHF signals were weaker, and low VHFs even weaker, sometimes missing outright. So WTMJ on 4 would not often be strong.

If you're wondering about WJMN, it was an NBC affiliate in its early years, but only came to air in the early seventies.
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 05-16-2018, 09:38 PM
NewVista's Avatar
NewVista NewVista is offline
VideoKarma Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Milw, WI
Posts: 665
Actually the lower the channel number, the further it can be picked up, giving WTMJ-4 the greatest reach.

WTMJ was all-RCA equipped, in the 1980s they had RCA 'new-look' blue-toned-color-cabinet Transmitters, replacing earlier generation RCA installed in late 1940's and used for color in 1954.

The deco chrome & red pin-stripe trims on my avatar pic are from early 1950s RCA disused equipment that was stored in WTMJ basement: It was like a candy store, the assistant engineer would let me fish around down there!
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 05-17-2018, 07:23 AM
Robert Grant's Avatar
Robert Grant Robert Grant is offline
VideoKarma Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Monroe County, MI
Posts: 454
Quote:
Originally Posted by NewVista View Post
Actually the lower the channel number, the further it can be picked up, giving WTMJ-4 the greatest reach.

<snip>
In terms of normal reception*, absolutely correct.
However, the effects of tropospheric refraction (an abnormal propagation mode, but not uncommon over Lake Michigan in the summer), are far more profound at UHF, and worse on low-VHF than they are on high-VHF.

On a typical summer's day (and in late Spring), warm, humid air can be cooled where it is close to the cold lake's surface, whilst the air above is still warm and dry by comparison. The speed of light (and thus of radio waves) is faster in the warm dry air than in the humid air immediately above the lake surface. The radio wave thus assumes a curved path following the transition zone where the humid air and the dry air meet.

*Without tropospheric refraction, a channel 4 signal will be usable over a greater distance than a channel 9 signal, which, in turn, would work at a greater distance than a channel 48 signal.
Keep in mind that low-VHF analog stations were generally limited to 100kW ERP, while high-VHF stations could and usually did have 316kW ERP. Analog UHF stations could use up to 5000kW ERP (1000kW before a 1958 rule change), but few used the maximum.

Normal VHF reception is of both the signal travelling directly to the antenna, and the signal travelling from the transmitting antenna, and reflecting off the earth (near the receiving antenna) back to the receiving antenna. These two paths cancel each other out to a degree, the longer the wave, the closer to 180░ out of phase the reflected signal is, thus the receiving antenna needs to be high off the ground to make use of the low-VHF benefit.

Last edited by Robert Grant; 05-17-2018 at 07:45 AM.
Reply With Quote
Audiokarma
Reply


Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 05:38 AM.



Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
ęCopyright 2012 VideoKarma.org, All rights reserved.