[hard-core-dx]: THE KIWI RADIO STORY 1977 - 1997 - UPDATE
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[hard-core-dx]: THE KIWI RADIO STORY 1977 - 1997 - UPDATE
Hi there all.
Here is our Updated KIWI RADIO STORY.
If you have it on your site please can you swap the existing history for
the "new" one you are getting now in TWO Parts.
The KIWI RADIO Story
1977 -- 1997.
1997 KIWI RADIO PUBLICATION. ALL RIGHT RESERVED.
SEPTEMBER 7 th 1977
SEPTEMBER 7 th 1997
Welcome to the KIWI RADIO STORY
IT'S HISTORY 1977 - 1997
Hello I am Graham J Barclay, owner and operator of
only Free Radio (Unlicensed) station on Shortwave.
Please enjoy the history below.
Any comments or enquiries are most welcome at:
P O BOX 3103
OR Email us at: kiwiradio@xxxxxxxxxxx
another site to view us is: http://www.geocities.com/CapeCanaveral/9885
The idea of a Pirate radio station was first considered
back in 1972, but was never begun until 1977.
4YZW ( now called KIWI RADIO ) began
transmissions in 1977 from the township of Oamaru located
115 KM north of Dunedin and 247 KM south of
Christchurch in the South Island of New Zealand.
The month is September and it is the 6th day when the
first broadcast went out on 96.5 MHz ( although it
was often announced as 66.5 FM ). The transmitter power
was very low and covered the area of Oamaru with a
radius of approx 8 KM.
Technical problems plagued the station from it's start and
the transmissions were closed down in February 1978.
WKNZ - 1978
On March the 16th 1978 Radio WKNZ began broadcasting
in the mediumwave band on a frequency of 1490 khz with
a power of 300 watts.
Once again technical problems limited coverage and the
number of broadcasts with the station closing down in
During 1979 and into early 1980 transmissions were
broadcast for the purpose of transmitter allignment
RADIO FREEDOM - 1980
Dunedin Based transmissions began at 8.00pm on
March the 25th 1980 with 200 watts on 7180 khz with
the callsign of RADIO FREEDOM, and the
song "Pilot of the airwaves" introducing the station.
Two months later a move was made to 4200 khz to
avoid interferance under the call letters of 4XK.
RADIO FREEDOM gave Dunedin listeners their
first taste of FM-Stereo radio on 103.1 MHz on
October 5th, 1980.
On October the 7th RADIO FREEDOM changed it's
shortwave frequency to 5650 khz using 150 watts, and on
October 9th New Zealand's first Longwave broadcast was
beamed out on 207 khz. On November 4th tests began on
1305 khz in the mediumwave band. The frequency was
changed to 1548 khz on the 16th of November resulting
in improved daytime reception around Dunedin, but
suffered interferance from 4QD in Emerald, Australia
The FIRST Major Crisis occurred on December 4th,1980
when Post Office Radio Inspectors and Police Officials
arrived at 5.45pm and closed the station down.
(The station had earlier that day recieved a phone call at
11.15am advising of the impending closure and soon after
2.15pm the station began it's broadcasts for the day and
continued until Post Office Radio Inspectors and Police
turned the transmitters off at 5.47pm.)
They presented a search warrent and removed two of the
transmitters, but left the studio equipment intact allowing
programming to begin once again 11 days later for a brief
period on December 15th 1980 on 1548 khz.
Transmissions were limited throughout 1981 mainly on
On April the 10th RADIO FREEDOM appeared in
the Dunedin Magistrates Court on four charges of
Unlicensed Radio Broadcasting and was fined a total of
$466.00 (including costs).
The two transmitters were forfeited to the Crown and the
remained of property returned.
On June the 16th 1981 when RADIO FREEDOM
resumed broadcasts on 1548 khz it adopted the call letters
of 4WF and tried some experimental early morning
broadcasts. These continued until the 3rd of August on
1548 khz as well as 705 khz without much success, so on
October the 6th broadcasting concentrated on 1548 khz
with 40 watts and new call letters of 4FFF.
1548 khz was used until February 1982 when a move was made
to 4080 khz Shortwave took place, but unfortuently tests on
this frequency proved so unsuccessfull with the transmitter
catching fire and blowing up.
So once again 1548 khz was re-introduced, this time with
increased power allowing extended evening broadcasts.
RADIO FREEDOM made another entrance onto the
Shortwave bands on March 26th 1982 seeking wider coverage.
The frequency was around 3900 khz and the transmitter power
was ONLY 1.9 watts.
Publicity in the Otago Daily Times on March the 29th brought
unwelcome publicity to RADIO FREEDOM prompting a
"FAKE" closedown of all it's operations the next evening.
However such was the response from local listeners that the
station returned to air on April the 3rd.
However luck was NOT in the stations favour, and
finally it ran out AGAIN.
At 7.05am on April the 28th 1982 Police and Post Office
Radio Inspectors arrived to close the station down for the
SECOND time in less than 18 months.
They closed the station down mid-programme to the tune
"They're coming to take me away..aha". Listeners
recieved a live commentary of events as they happened.
On the 3rd and 4th of June, DESPITE the upcoming Court
appearance, Brief transmissions were carried out on
106.254 MHz FM Stereo. These were brief so as to avoid
harsh penalties in the Courthouse.
RADIO FREEDOM was again before the Judge in the
Dunedin District Court on another Four charges of Illegal
Broadcasting under the Post Office Act of 1959,Section 164
which reads basically that all transmitting equipment, either
maintained or used must have a licence from the Radio
Inspectors Engineers Branch, and failure to comply Can
result in a penalty of a maximum fine of $1,000.00 and / or
3 months imprisonment.(please note The penalties have now
increased - see later text ).
This time RADIO FREEDOM was fined a total of $644.00
(including costs), and "LOST" another two transmitters, but
once again all other property was returned intact.
RADIO FREEDOM made it's next appearance on the
Dunedin airwaves on September the 10th 1982, but with a
new call name of RADIO STAR on 106.254 MHz FM.
The next broadcast was a week later, but this time from a
NEW location - Hastings ( located in the Hawke Bay on the
east coast of New Zealand's North Island).
An FM-Stereo transmission from "THE PIRATE RADIO
VOICE OF NEW ZEALAND' proved most successful.
RADIO FREEDOM was at that time broadcasting on
3930 khz Shortwave and RADIO STAR was on 106.2 FM.
On October the 8th 1982 RADIO FREEDOM Closed down
it's Dunedin operations.
A Major event occurred on September 28th, when programming
was being broadcast similcast with 3930 khz Shortwave and
106.2 FM Stereo in Parallel, with reception of up to 900
HASTINGS - NAPIER - HAWKE BAY.
On October the 14th 1982, the station went mobile broadcasting
FM - Stereo programmes en route from Dunedin
FM broadcasts from Hastings commenced on October
23rd while Shortwave began on the 28th using 3930 khz.
Results have been most impressive with reports from as
far away as the Canary Islands, off the coast of North Africa.
New Callsigns were introduced, 2PRF for RADIO
FREEDOM on FM, where both Stereo and mono modes
were used, and the callsign of 2FFF for RADIO STAR.
A test was made on January the 3rd 1983 on the FM frequency
of 90.5 MHz under the name of RADIO RACHEL - 2PRR.
RADIO FREEDOM moved to 90.5 MHz from it's 106.2 MHz
frequency and then moved from 90.5 to 89.5 MHz as a result
of interferance being caused by us.
At that time the Shortwave frequency was changed from
3930 khz to 7404 khz in the 41 meter band.
On February the 4th the broadcasts returned to 1548 khz.
On the 11th of February a further significant event for
RADIO FREEDOM was the fact that three frequencies
were broadcast in parallel at the same time. 7404 khz Shortwave,
1548 khz Mediumwave and 89.5 MHz FM-Stereo.
Since that date RADIO FREEDOM has taken advantage
of this new benefit and broadcast on many occasions using two
or more frequencies.
The Shortwave frequency was changed on April 16th to
13344 khz, and on May 15th was broadcast with 11844 khz
and 7474 khz in use.
This was the "LAST" broadcast from RADIO FREEDOM
as changes were about to take place.
" KIWI RADIO ".
On May the 19th 1983 the station RADIO FREEDOM
changed it's name to KIWI RADIO for several reasons,
some being that there were already too many "RADIO
FREEDOM's around the world, also it was feelt that a change
would not confuse us with anyone else. We also feelt that as the
KIWI is our National bird, and that New Zealander's are
referred to as KIWI's and that the word KIWI is distinctly
New Zealand and that to the best of our knowledge there is
NO other KIWI RADIO in the world apart from the U.S.A
where the letters of K or W are assigned to stations for their
Broadcasts began as KIWI on 11844 khz using 300 watts and
on the 29th of May broadcasts were carried out using 5922 khz
11844 khz and 23688 khz with carefully tuned transmitters
resulting in an excellent response.
On August 20th broadcasts were started on 92.75 MHz using
50 watts, this was changed on October 29th to 89.5 MHz FM.
The Shortwave frequency was changed to 5850 khz on December
5th, giving us a clear channel to operate on.
On the 7th of December a test was carried out on 90.5 MHz, and
on the 14th the frequency of 5850 khz was substituted for 26050 khz.
Broadcasts were also carried out on the following frequencies but
were withdrawn because of interferance: 1170 khz MW, 11400 khz
SW and 88.9 MHz FM.
Throughout 1984 KIWI RADIO continued to broadcast on
Shortwave and FM frequencies. The frequencies were changed
In 1985 we had the pleasure of introducing John England's
programme "THE REBEL RADIO NETWORK" containing
many very interesting items on Free Radio and over the
following years was to introduce George Gimarc and the Radio
Station KZEW from the Dallas / Fort Worth area of Texas with
the programme "THE ROCK & ROLL ALTERNATIVE".
We were in 1985 comfortably situated on the Shortwave
frequency of 5850 khz and broadcasting what were called "Marathon
Broadcasts by listeners in Australia who tuned into KIWI RADIO
BUT that was too good to last and the Radio Inspectors closed
the station down again on the evening of July 6th 1985 at 5.45pm
just after "THE REBEL RADIO NETWORK" programme had finished
and the relay programme from TUI RADIO was just commencing.
They removed two transmitters, correspondence and other equipment.
The next day the local and national newspapers were around asking
questions, along with Radio Stations 93FM, 77ZK and BAY CITY RADIO
all wanting to know more about KIWI RADIO..
On the 17th of July TELEVISION NEW ZEALAND carried a story on
KIWI RADIO on it's National News Bulletins.
KIWI RADIO resumed broadcasting in early August, and
was allowed to present it's case to the Government National
ROYAL COMMISSION into Broadcasting in New Zealand in
The case was put to the Commission, and was limited to the point
of Free Radio in the sense of Total NON-Governmental
involvement in New Zealand's Radio Services.
KIWI RADIO was heard fairly by the Commission at Te Aute
College South of Hastings.
On the 26th of October KIWI RADIO started tests on 1575 khz
which continued into November, when on the 6th a test was done
on all three frequencies of 89.0 MHz FM-Stereo,1575 khz AM
and 7340 khz Shortwave with positive results.
KIWI RADIO was relayed in Europe by different stations
like RADIO APOLLO and RADIO DELMARE.
In December we were broadcasting on 89.0 MHz FM as
"MUSIC CITY RADIO - 2HMR"- Hastings
Music Radio, we were also relaying RADIO LIBERTY SOUND from
France as well as introducing Guest announcers like Fred
89.0 MHz FM was very positive in it's use with no interferance
at all and allowing good reception overall.
On January the 23rd 1986 KIWI RADIO was taken to Court
for it's raid of July 6th 1985, and pleaded Not Guilty to two
charges of maintaining Unlicensed Radio apparatus and two
charges of using Unlicensed Radio Apparatus. The case was
stood down for a hearing on May the 19th 1986.
KIWI RADIO continued to broadcast as "REAL PEOPLE
RADIO" on 89.0 MHz FM , and on the first weekend of April
relayed another Free Radio station from Europe called
"THE SATELLITE BROADCASTING CO" from Germany.
On the 19th of May KIWI RADIO appeared in the Hastings
District court, where one charge of maintaining an Unlicensed
Radio Transmitter and one charge of using an Unlicensed Radio
Transmitter were withdrawn by the Crown Prosecutor, the end
result was that KIWI RADIO was fined $150.00 (plus costs)
for maintaining an Unlicensed Radio Transmitter and $100.00
(plus costs) for using an Unlicensed Radio Transmitter.
The result was a surprise when we were expecting, not only
heavy fines, but the results to be visa-versa, and the Judge concluded
by saying that KIWI RADIO'S case was of certain nuisence value
to the Court's time. ( A remark that we hope the Radio Inspectors
will remember in future ).
We were fined a total of $500.00 (including Costs), and everything
except the two transmitters, were returned to us.
On the 24th of May we were REAL PEOPLE RADIO on all
of our frequencies AM / SW /FM and were getting very used to
the Real People Idea of Radio, especially when radio overall should
be for the people, by the people in it's idea's etc.
A month later we tested in the 41 meter band Shortwave with 100
watts in the SSB mode with poor results, and in July returned to
the FM band on the new frequency of 91.9 MHz FM, and in August
combined this frequency with 7300 khz SW with good results.
In the same month relays were forthcoming from RADIO TORENVALK
in Holland and RADIO BIG LIZARD in France.
Relays were also present in September with RADIO PAMELA INT
from The U.K and our old friends at RADIO WAVES INT from France
returning to the KIWI RADIO Transmitters. When we
relayed RADIO PAMELA INT we tryed out our old frequency of 5850 khz
SW, but with very poor results as interferance from a nearby
utility station was apparent.
In October 91.8 MHz FM was the best frequency used with more
tests for increased power during which FALCON RADIO from the
U.K was relayed. Tests were also taking place in the 75 meter band SW
with reduced power, and on the 31st of October KIWI RADIO
broadcast on 91.8 MHz FM and 7280 khz SW.
The 1st of November saw a relay of the station RADIO PACIFIC INT,
also from the U.K.
BUT November was to be an extremly upsetting month for
KIWI RADIO. On the 5th of November, sometime between
9.00am and 12.00 noon we had unwelcome visitors, ( whom we
commonly call Burglars ). They removed most of our equipment
and caused damage to other items.
We were able to get together some basic equipment for use as well
as a low powered Transmitter for a small, but very important broadcast
in Christmas 1986. We aired our own programme along with relays
from RADIO TUTUCHAMAN and CANZONI RADIO - both from Germany.
On January the 7th we issued a general statement that we would
be closed down indefinitely due to the November 1986 Crisis,
and that we would not broadcast unless it was for a special reason,
eg: DX Conventions etc, to allow us to get everything together again
and working properly.
We were off the air until the 2nd of May 1987, when we began
tests on 7340 khz SW and at the same time sufferred severe
technical problems ( later traced to RF overloading ).
At the same time we resumed the programme from "The
Four Freedoms World Service" called *The Rock & Roll Alternative*
from KZEW / 4FWS and it's host George Gimarc.
On the 13th of June tests were done on 7280 khz SW and
continued through to the 10th Annniversary of KIWI RADIO
when on the Sunday morning we did a special 10th Birthday
programme lasting only two hours.
Two weeks later we relayed the station SPECTRUM LEISURE COMMUNICATIONS
from England. On the 24th of October we went
out on 7300 khz SW, and on November the 14th we relayed
our good friends at RADIO APOLLO from the U.K.
On the 5th of December KIWI RADIO was on 91.8 MHz FM
and 7295 khz SW, and presented it's FIRST TOTAL COMPACT DISC programme
hosted by Christian Sperl from Germany.
1988 - 1989 - 1990.
KIWI RADIO Transmissions were limited to about five or
six broadcasts per year continuing on in the 41 meter band and
51 meter band, as well as several broadcasts on the FM band.
A number of SW transmissions were carried out with KIWI
RADIO transmitters and on the 11th of October we used a
different station name RADIO DX on 5855 khz SW with
30 watts as a special broadcast to DXer's at a DX Convention
being held in New Zealand, as we try to put out at least one special
broadcast per year for various DX Clubs around the world,
as bit of a challenge.
In December we broadcast on the 13th and the 20th on 5850 khz SW.
Again several broadcasts went out using 5850 khz SW
and at the same time we were being relayed in Russia
by the Station RADIO WITHOUT BORDERS INT from Moscow.
KIWI RADIO broadcast on frequencies around 5850 khz
and in August of 1992 we started another series of relay
transmissions, during which we heard from the USA Free
Radio Station WSKY.
In November of 1992 KIWI RADIO reduced it's
frequency to 5030 khz SW for test transmissions.
KIWI RADIO continued into the 1993 year with broadcasts
in the 41 meter band SW and on 5850 khz in the 51 meter band SW.
January saw the introduction of a new station to the New Zealand
Airwaves by relay, ROMANTIC SPACE RADIO from Russia, and
in February we heard another Russian Free Radio station
RADIO MAGIC from Moscow.
Our Transmissions were beginning to move to the new frequency
of 7445 khz in the 41 meter band SW, also around 7400 khz SW,
and after tests we found that several frequencies were needed
for different times of the day.
In April KIWI RADIO did another special broadcast under
the name of RADIO SUE - we called it this because of the
track called "Run around Sue" and that fitted the kind of music
we were using. Also I have a very good friend called SUE.
Programmes continued throughout May, June, July, August &
September at regular intervals, and we had another relay to
broadcast, this time from CRSM - RADIO SCOTTISH MONTREAL
located in the USA.
At the end of October KIWI RADIO changed it's interval signal
from a 3 note sequence to the call of the New Zealand North Island
KIWI bird - it has become one of our trademarks since.
In November we appointed our self-appointed call letters of ZL2KR
(ZL for New Zealand, 2 for the area of New Zealand that we are
located in, and KR for KIWI RADIO).
Our transmissions were being heard into the United States and
South America with no trouble at all.
KIWI RADIO relayed RADIO WAVES INT and the WCS
programme from France, and another relay from CRSM during
December was a chaotic month with many extra broadcasts going
out, and at the same time we were promoting the "DON"T DRINK & DRIVE"
On January 1st after several tests KIWI RADIO began
SHORTWAVE - STEREO broadcasting. (KIWI RADIO does
admit that it does NOT transmitt in true stereo).,It uses two very
closely alligned transmitters so that with two recievers set within
15 khz of each other, then the "Stereo Effect" is heard. This was
something novel for us, especially as we were announcing :
" In the 41 meter band in Stereo... this is KIWI...".
Also we were getting a large amount of mail coming in asking us
how they could contact us during our programmes, so without
worrying too much about things, and especially after a small note
in the 1994 edition of Passport to Worldband Radio, under the
section of New Zealand, and the title KIWI RADIO, and
in brackets ( Unlicensed, but left alone by the Government.)
We feelt that with this, and the fact that we had had no problems
with the Authorities since our last raid in 1985, we should be
a little more casual in our approach , so we opened up our
telephone lines to have the listeners call us.
The Success was Immediate.
KIWI RADIO sounded great in STEREO and we started
using the FM frequency of 101.6 MHz FM, and we decided to
get out and do more special broadcasts from other places
outside of the Napier / Hastings area.
So on February the 12th we went to Patutahi located about 15
kilometres outside Gisborne and put RADIO PATUTAHI
to air on 7445 khz with 100 watts, and got reports from the USA.
In March RADIO WAVES INT from France was relayed in their
final programme, as they were "closing down" their operations.
Broadcasts continued on 7445 khz SW, and we put together plans
in March for another special station to go on air from Moeraki
in North Otago in the South Island to be known as RADIO
MOERAKI. But on April the 3rd we announced that we had to cancel those
plans due to circumstances beyound our control. We did
however broadcast a prerecorded programme of RADIO
MOERAKI from the Hawke's Bay KIWI RADIO transmitters
on the 16th of April to compensate.
KIWI RADIO also went over to using the USB - SSB mode for
broadcasting, and on the 17th of April we asked people to call us,
and within two and a half hours KIWI RADIO logged a total
of 273 phone calls being recieved, with the furtherest phone log
being from Iceland - "Unbelieveable , we thought".
The USA Free Radio Station, RADIO DOOMSDAY was relayed
over KIWI RADIO on the 17th of April.
Six days later KIWI RADIO went up country to a place we
call Watsons Mountain, located about 1,000 metres above sea level,
and on a good clear day you can see right across the North Island _
- Excellent to broadcast from.
April 23rd saw WMR - WATSONS MOUNTAIN RADIO
go to air on 7445 khz USB, RADIO DOOMSDAY was also relayed
The next day April 24th saw another name change to ANZAC
( Australian And New Zealand Army Corp) RADIO to
commemorate ANZAC day here in Australiasia.
In May we tried out 14 MHz SW, but were unsuccessfull
resulting in a burnt out antenna system, that was repaired
over the next few days.
We also started promoting a Free radio magazine called
A.C.E. from the USA.
On May 20th we began to use 7445 khz SW from 10.30 UTC
with poor results.
We continued to use 7445 khz all the way through 1994 with
many broadcasts, including relays from other Free Radio
stations.: May 29 - RADIO STRASBURG INT from Germany
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