S1R, -May I try to help Mrs. Stokes who tells of her efforts to V get Vatican Radio ? Whoever sold her a short-wave radio " guaranteed to get stations all over the world was a bit of an optimist, and probably meant she'd get them all if she moved near enough to them.
As the largest 'dealer in expensive imported radios in the London area, selling extensively to nationals of Near and Far Eastern countries, I daily meet numerous people trying like Mrs. Stokes--to receive overseas stations without understanding the problems involved.
Long-distance short-wave transmission depends on the phenomenon that the transmitted wave reaches its destination far away by being bounced round the earth between an ionized layer above the earth and the earth itself, and from experience transmission engineers know What wave-length, aerial array, etc., to use to drop the transmission in the required area.
So the first thing a listener needs to do is to find out if the programme it is desired to pick up is being directed to the listener's area. The B.B.C. ate the best authority on this. authoritative and helpful.
Next, the long-distance listener needs a first-class aerial (not just a hit of wire round the house) and on this any of the aerial makers, or I, could help. About £15
would cover a fair aerial installation.
Given the presence of a signal any good radio will reproduce it, but a listener must always be prepaled to endure the static and general interference inseparable from long-distance work. A specialist short-wave receiver will have controls to enable the listener to cut out interference from adjacent stations, but much short-wave work is subject to permanent interference about which nothing can be done.
I also get many enquiries from Irish people about reception of the Irish programme. Of this and other foreign stations, it may be said that reception is entirely problematical and more dependant on things external to the receiver than to the receiver itself because the listener is outside the service area of the station and depends on reflected waves.
On this or other complex problems I am delighted to help your readers. but please let them believe the problems are many, and chiefly external to the receiver.
6 Lillie Road, London, S.W.6.