Shortwave Pirates

A look at the world of shortwave free radio

FEATURED QSL


The Vault is a new station from Europe that has also been heard regularly in North America. It uses the frequency on 6985 kHz


WHERE TO FIND FREE RADIO STATIONS


Most stations can be found in specific parts of the shortwave spectrum.

76 metres: 3900-3945/4010-4100 kHz:

This is popular with European pirates, especially in the evenings when skip is longer, and during the day in winter months. 

60 metres: 4700-5150 kHz:

Once  this band was full of stations from Africa, Asia and South America but not now. This part of the band has become increasingly popular with pirate stations such as Charleston Radio on 5140 and Mystery 21 on 4700.

52 metres: 5780-5840 kHz:

European pirates can also be found here, overspill from 48 metres.  Stations like Harmony can be heard on 5780.

48 metres: 6200-6400 kHz:

This is a prime area for the Euro-pirates, especially at weekends.

 47-42 metres: 6400-6900 kHz:

Other pockets of pirate activity occur in this area ... in particular between 6400 & 6450 and around 6850. Stations often pop up wherever they find a clear frequency 

43 metres: 6900-7000 kHz:

This area tends be mostly used by North American pirates, but is also used by some Euro-pirates.

39 metres: 7500-7750 kHz:

Unreliable propagation means this band isn't widely used but some Euro-pirates can be heard here.

Others also can be heard on higher shortwave frequencies ... such as 9290, 12256, 15070 among others.

Very few operate to fixed schedules and will just come on air when they feel like it. Weekends are the busiest times, especially Sunday mornings in Europe. Some can be heard outside these frequencies.

A good source for finding out which stations are on air is the popular Pirate Radio Chat where stations and DXers chat about all things pirate radio. Go to: https://xat.com/PirateRadio2011  


What can you expect to hear:

The vast majority of European pirates come from the Netherlands, although there are also active stations in Germany, UK, Scandinavia and Italy and other European countries. The main diet is music - pop, rock, dance, schlager, polka, indie. Some of the programmes are pre-recorded, others transmitted live. Power used ranges from a few watts to up to 1kW (or more sometimes!).

Many will issue QSLs for correct reception reports. See the QSL Gallery section for QSLs I've received over the years.


The Addresses section has contact and web site details for many pirates.


The Links page has many links to websites with logs, information and other useful resources for the DXer.


So, happy hunting!

UPDATES

Oct 12 2020: QSL Gallery - added eQSLs from Radio Klein Paris, Premier Radio & Pop Shop Radio


Oct 10 2020: Links - removed some dead links and added a few new ones 


Oct 8 2020:  QSL Gallery - added eQSLs from Texas DXer & Radio 319; Addresses - added website link for Radio Europe (Italy)


Visit shortwavedx.blogspot.com for news and loggings