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WGSF-TV Blog

04/14/08

08:21:02 am, by admin  76 views 
Categories: Welcome

This is the latest feature of the WGSF Television website:
http://wgsf.oldgleaner.com/


WGSF Blog : This Blog provides a means for information exchange and discussion similar to that on the old WGSF Yahoo! Groups site. To learn more about 'Blogs' and 'Blogging,' Click on the "Information" link in the menu in the upper right corner of the page.

Read!: Scroll down to the list of Categories in the Sidebar: Select one of the categories from the list, or start with the menu to the right:
* Recently
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* Latest comments

Contribute! : Click on 'Feedback' at the bottom of the post, type in your comment in the 'Comment text' box, and click 'Send Comment'.

Feedback: Your suggestions are welcomed. Simply use the CONTACT menu to send an email directly to me.
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04/07/08

Teachers and WGSF

06:35:58 am, by admin  47 views 
Categories: Teachers

Link: http://wgsf.oldgleaner.com/

In the spring of 1963, the Newark Branch of the Ohio State University offered a course in Teaching By Radio and Television (Education 601).
The course was taught by Dr. Hazel Gibbony of the Communications Center at Ohio State and enrolled the following teachers:

Margaret Agin
Alice Armstrong
Monna Berro
Helen Brown
Thelma Bounds
Bernard Campbell
Marjorie Fant
Janice Greider
Elizabeth Hall
Helene Hart
Rowena Jones
George Roberts
Leah Russell
William Snook
Mabel Stockman
Otto Stockman
Angelin Taylor
Elizabeth Weston

Because of the availability of WGSF, the course concentrated on teaching by television. As a ?nale, the class presented a live half-hour broadcast of different methods of using television in the classroom and and the community. The telecast was made on May 20, 1963 from 8:00 until 8:30 PM.
Some of the teachers who took the TV Production course went on become faculty advisors at NHS for WGSF.
How many from the list do you people remember from some point in your
educational experience?

04/09/08

Robert McDaniel Obituary

06:48:18 am, by admin  246 views 
Categories: McDaniel Obituary

Robert Michael McDaniel
June 6, 1920 - April 4, 2008

Funeral services for Robert Michael McDaniel, 87, will be at 10 a.m. Saturday at Trinity Episcopal Church, 76 E. Main St., Newark, with the Revs. Kathryn Clausen and Steven Carroll officiating. Burial will be in Cedar Hill Cemetery.

Robert passed away April 4, 2008, at the Selma Markowitz Care Centre operated by Hospice of Central Ohio.

The obituary in the April 9, 2008, Newark Advocate is at:
http://www.newarkadvocate.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080409/OBITUARIES/804090318/1023

Although not one of the original group of teachers, Robert taught the Summer school TV course for several years.
Leland Hubbell

04/09/08

Robert McDaniel

06:41:35 am, by admin  56 views 
Categories: Teachers, Robert McDaniel

Link: http://wgsf.oldgleaner.com/

Robert McDaniel taught the Summer School Television course at WGSF for several years.

A veteran of World War II, Robert served with the 4th Army as an infantry sergeant, then in the Morale Division (USO), writing and directing shows that toured many service bases.

Robert graduated from Denison University, where he was a member of the Phi Beta Kappa fraternity. He received his M.A. in rhetoric from The Ohio State University. A master of the classics, he taught at all educational levels in Licking County, including Granville and COTC.

Several of his students at Granville High School came to WGSF.

He delighted in British phrases and names, such as, "Pop the bonnet and check the petrol." To make a phone call was to "ring up" someone. He claimed to be proficient in several languages, but most of us were at a loss to check, as we had enough trouble understanding the "British," let alone Greek and Hebrew.

04/11/08

Games Slayter Family

10:33:20 am, by admin  36 views 
Categories: Welcome

Link: http://wgsf.oldgleaner.com/

WGSF Television

Newark, Ohio 1963 - 1976

Public Broadcasting Television Station WGSF operated in Newark, Ohio, from 1963 to 1970 as Channel 28, and then as Channel 31 until it ceased operation in 1976.

The call letters for station WGSF honor the first major contributor to help finance the station - the Games Slayter Family. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russell_Games_Slayter

The station was officially dedicated in 1963. A larger photo of this page from the dedication booklet with photos of the station and of Mr. and Mrs. Games Slayter may be seen at: GamesSlayterFamily.html

Notes On Call Letters
Radio and television broadcast stations in the United States are assigned call letters (station identification) that begin with either the letter 'W' or 'K' followed by two or three other letters, in this case, GSF, for Games Slayter Family.
(Some people persisted twisting the call letters to W-S-G-F)

It is interesting to note that the designator -TV was NOT part of the assigned identification - legally, it was just 'WGSF.' 
The station was once cited by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) because the station identification slide read "WGSF-TV" and the audio announcement proclaimed it as such. We had to quickly make new , correct slides, and change the announcer's copy.

04/11/2008

Transmitter

07:14:27 am, by admin  45 views 
Categories: WGSF Transmitter

Link: http://wgsf.oldgleaner.com/

The WGSF Television Transmitter
A multi-page post -

Part 1: The Transmitter - At the Heart of WGSF
Most people never see the apparatus that constitutes the final link between the television production system and the receiving audience. The transmitter equipment in most stations is typically located at some remote hilltop site, far from the studio and production controls, or at least tucked into some inaccessible and off-limits room in that mystical realm seen only by the eyes of broadcast engineers and technicians.
The WGSF television station was therefore most unique, in that all the operating controls, including the transmitter, were located in one room. At WGSF, the transmitter and activities of the control operator were right there for everyone to see and experience.
The production control room sat in front of the transmitter, sharing controls in the same console. The announcer could look out from the audio production booth and gaze upon the glowing electronic tubes in that expansive box that occupied most of one wall of the control room. One entry door into the studio took you right past the entire length of the transmitter. The station office shared space with the maze of plumbing behind the transmitter that connected it to the antenna located 410 feet above. Even the rest rooms were just a few steps from the center of operations.
In addition to controlling the parameters of the transmitter’s ‘behavior,’ the duty operator was also responsible for programming, that is, switching from program source to program source as listed on the broadcast schedule, controlling the appropriate video or audio recorder, ?lm chain, or network and pre-loading ?films, slides, and tapes. The transmitter, therefore, was essentially the heart and soul of the entire operation.
It was a special challenge for student staffers to operate station breaks, under the watchful eye of the duty operator.
I dare say that no person in television broadcasting other than Leland Hubbell has had the experience of leaving the host’s chair in the studio in the middle of a live broadcast, replacing a failed audio final transmitting tube, then returning to the studio to finish the broadcast. Only at WGSF! 
Written by Leland Hubbell
This is Page 1: Select Next page>

Part 2: Pulling Transmitter Duty 
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) required that a person holding a valid FCC “First Class Radiotelephone” license be at the controls of a broadcast transmitter during the years WGSF was broadcasting. (Those rules have since been modi?ed.)
Passing the required FCC exams, then posting the crucial license at the transmitter is indeed a proud moment for all who seek such status. 
Obtaining the “1st Phone Ticket” made one a member of a select group, signifying the successful passage of a series of challenging examinations from the FCC. The licensing requirement also meant that a very limited pool of people were available for employment as a transmitter operator. Several of WGSF’s operators either came through the electronics programs at the Newark Air Force Station, or worked there as their primary job.

Although there was a certain challenge to it, transmitter duty could be described as hours of tedium and boredom interspersed by moments of pure panic! 
WGSF had a turn-on and turn-off routine. The engineer would ?rst switch electrical power on to the equpment at the main electrical control panel behind the transmitter. The transmitter would be switched to “standby” or warm-up status to avoid sudden electrical stress to the expensive transmitting tubes. The auxillary equipment would be checked, and the sign-on tapes and slides would be loaded and previewed. After a few minutes of warm up, the actual broadcast mode would be activated, ?rst at low power, and gradually increased to full operating licensed power. A slide with a test pattern and station identification was broadcast on the visual transmitter, and a test tone of 600 hertz frequency on the aural, which provided standard signals to evaluate the transmitter’s performance. At sign-off, the broadcast power units were ?rst turned off, and the system allowed to cool down gradually, again to minimize stress to those expensive transmitting tubes.

Broadcast stations are required to keep both a record, called a log, of all programs and announcements broadcast, and a technical record for the transmitter itself. It was the custom at WGSF to take a complete set of meter readings on the hour, and a short check of operating power and channel frequency on the half-hour. The power and frequency readings were the critical ones, required by the FCC, but the other operating parameters were essential at times for the maintenance engineer to evaluate when it was necessary to make critical adjustments or change tubes. Advancements in technology have brought automation, remote and computer control to transmitter operation. The FCC rules have been changed accordingly. That was never an option for WGSF.
The first years of operation were the really lonely ones.
Robert Brooks, the first paid employee, kept a hand-written Program Log (A listing of programs broadcast, Announcements, Station Identification, times, etc.), plus the Transmitter Log. Except for the Station ID (Call letters, visual and aural) - all programming came off-air from WOSU-TV, Channel 34, in Columbus, Ohio.
WGSF broadcast only on weekday evenings from March 18, 1963, until September of 1964.
WGSF started broadcasting daytime school instructional programs in the fall of 1964. Leland Hubbell, who replaced Robert Brooks as Chief Engineer, would come in for the morning sign-on, and stay until the school schedule ended in the afternoon. The station signed off, and the operator went home. Wayne Gehres then came in, signed on, and worked the weekday evening shift until sign-off.
Most days, the operator would not see another person, or even have a telephone call the entire shift. The only person other than the operating engineers to routinely visit the station on Horn’s Hill was WGSF station General Manager, E. Dana Cox, Jr., who would bring up the program log and perhaps make the announcement tape. His visits often occurred during the gap between the daytime and evening schedules, and neither engineer would even see him.

Allan Smith served as the Sunday transmitter Engineer for many years. Sheri Short took over the daytime shift. Several engineers shared the mid-afternoon shift, including Irv Brown, John Gross, and Charles Cohen.
Except for four locally originated programs broadcast in the spring of 1963, there was no television production to bring anyone else to WGSF for three long years.
Things picked up with the advent of local production in 1966. Still, periods of solitary vigil remained, especially during weekends,.
A salute to the transmitter engineers who sat at their sometimes lonely operating post atop Horn’s Hill, in Newark, Ohio. 
December 24, 2007 by Leland Hubbell

Built by the General Electric Company, the transmitter was designed in the early days of UHF television broadcasting. The WGSF equipment consisted of three cabinets, and was sort of like a Siamese twin. There were actually two transmitters, one for the sound (aural) and one for the picture (visual) broadcast information, joined in the middle by a unit common to both. The visual circuitry, the more complex part, was located on the left side of the transmitter, and the aural to the right, viewed from the control position in front of the transmitter. 
The larger, central unit contained the devices to establish the operating channels, and generated both the picture (visual) and sound (aural) carriers of the broadcast signal and ‘modulated’ them with the respective sound or picture information. The low powered 100 watts level signals out of the central cabinet went to the ‘final amplifier cabinets where they were boosted to licensed broadcast strength (1000 watts, visual, 600 watts aural) - one on either side of the central unit. 
There was a maze of plumbing behind the transmitter. The respective audio and visual signals were filtered to remove frequencies that might be outside of the assigned broadcast channel, and combined by a device called a "Filtrexer" (filter/multiplexer) onto one transmission line (big copper pipe!) that went up to the antenna at the top of the tower.
Parts of the system used at WGSF, like the Filtrexer, were essentially overkill, as they were designed and rated for much more powerful transmitters that required as much as ten times or more the ratings that WGSF needed, but again, WGSF used whatever was available.
The main duty for the transmitter operator was getting the transmitter on the air, and keeping it there. Getting the box on the air, and keeping it there were two different ball games, however. All of those meters on the transmitter and related monitoring equipment told the operator something about how the transmitter was performing, for better or for worse. The transmitter operator or engineer maintained a record, or log, of the various operating parameters, according to FCC rules and regulations. The settings that kept the transmissions at the proper channel frequencies and output power were cautiously observed, accordingly noted on the log, and adjustments were made if needed. 
The FCC (Federal Communications Commission) Rules and Regulations not only assign the frequency (channel) on which a station operates, but also proscribes limits as to how close to those standards one must stay. It was not always easy to keep the WGSF transmitter spot-on. The transmitted power would drift up and down depending upon the voltage supplied by the electric company, usually dropping as the big industrial users came on-line during the day, and soaring in the non-working hours. There was a switch on the central cabinet of the transmitter to boost or reduce the power - within limits. When the big transmitting tubes reached their age limits, it was hard to make minimum power. Temperature also affected both the power and the frequency of operation.
One required monitor displayed the operating frequency of the Aural and Visual transmitters, and the Aural modulation levels. 
The device we used at the station to monitor the frequency sometimes drifted off accuracy itself, giving us a false reading, and a possible citation for illegal operation. WGSF used an HP-335 monitor. (See next page) Both the transmitter and the monitor had to be adjusted periodically to stay within legal specifications. The station subscribed to a monitoring service, so we got a monthly frequency accuracy check from Woodward Labs, a company in Mt. Vernon, on retainer for that purpose. Those readings were also logged by the operator, noting any deviation above or below the assigned channel. The monthly report was noted in the transmitting log, and kept on file. Adjustments were made if needed - and they usually were. 
Until colorization,WGSF was only authorized to broadcast in monochrome (black and white. )There was a circuit in the transmitter video modulator which was supposed to delete the color information from the picture, but some people reported that they sometimes still received network programs with color. We had no way of knowing; WGSF had no equipment for checking for a color picture (Not even a color-capable television) until after receiving the color equipment.

All of the original equipment at television station WGSF used vacuum tubes - lots of vacuum tubes. Vacuum tubes wear out: their performance drops over time, or they even short out entirely. Most of the test equipment owned by the station when it initially went on the air was from a radio/TV repair shop that was bought out. The device used to test vacuum tubes was essentially for home type electronics, but covered most of the common tubes used in the WGSF equipment, but still mostly "go/no go" readings. The purchase of a more industrial oriented model made the task of preventative maintenance both easier and more accurate. Every tube was checked on a periodic basis, and the readings kept in a database.
Most vacuum tubes used at the station could be purchased locally from an electronics supply store, the same place the radio and TV repair shops bought theirs. The major transmitting tubes, the power amplifiers, or ‘finals,’ were made only by General Electric, cost over a thousand dollars, and had to be obtained from a dealer of industrial tubes in Columbus, OH. We babied those beasties, and kept a special card under a serial number on file for each one.
WGSF followed a special turn-on routine for the transmitter, starting at reduced power, and gradually increasing to the normal operating power. The transmitter also had special circuitry designed to ease the tube up to normal parameters, so as not to damage the ‘heater’ or ‘filament’ in the tube. Still, most of the power tubes didn’t just wear out; they would die of an open filament, burning out like a light bulb, their distant cousins. They could also sustain an internal short between elements, no matter how carefully we watched over them. Still, some of the specialized transmitting tubes could not be checked, except by the operating readings monitored and indicated by the meters on the transmitter itself. Thus the chore of taking and recording an hourly set of readings had a practical aspect besides meeting FCC rules and regulations. The maintenance technicians could note the performance of those tubes, and replace them when necessary.
Broadcast signals must conform to very stringent standards. Meeting those standards was always a challenge at WGSF. 
Changing any tube in the radio frequency chain that generated the broadcast signal necessitated retuning the amplifier stage. The aural transmitter was fairly straightforward, and generally required only a minimum of attention.
The visual section was literally a nightmare! The visual transmitter required a tuning process called ‘broadbanding.” That meant that more than a dozen adjustment points had an impact on the proper overall performance. Further, WGSF never had the proper test equipment, a ‘sweep generator’ and sideband analyzer that would trace a picture of the bandpass on an oscilloscope screen. Initially, the station had one oscilloscope to display a video signal, a Tektronix model 524 AD on a ‘Scopemobile.’ It doubled as test equipment for any video signal work. Eventually, a dedicated oscilloscope monitor for the transmitter was obtained. 
All sorts of things could go wrong to distort the picture in some way, and often did. There were about 15 adjustments, any of which had the ability to really mess up everything else. It was a frustrating task, since WGSF never had all the proper equipment to make accurate adjustments. Replacing a critical tube could take hours and hours of ?ddling to get things right again. The visual modulator never did operate exactly as designed, and was at best of times rather frustrating to keep within speci?cations. 
Trying to tune that thing properly was about like trying to get the toothpaste back into a squashed tube. Squeeze that tooth paste tube here, you get a dip. Squeeze another place, that dip changes, but you get another dip. Pretty soon you no longer have the nice, smooth tube that you started with. Now multiply that to the square of 12 - or more. That’s what it was like to tune the visual transmitter without the proper test equipment. Pretty much “by guess and by golly!”
Add to that the device that put the picture information on the radio frequency carrier. The video modulator was maddening. It never worked as designed, ever. It nearly drove GE’s own engineer to total despair during the conversion from channel 28 to channel 31. He would get on the telephone to the guys in the engineering department back at GE, mumbling things uncomplimentary about the modulator. He came to hate a particular, though essential, piece of test equipment. It would simulate a picture change from total white to total black. The meters on the transmitter would flip wildly, the protective circuitry would kick in with a ‘klunk,’ and kick the whole box off the air. Over and over! Yes, he despised both the modulator and the standards that it would not - could not - attain.
There were certain vacuum tubes in the modulator that could be pulled from their supposedly ‘normal’ locations and placed in sockets labeled “Emergency Operation. “ Every transmission at WGSF was an “Emergency Operation. 
The Chief Engineer also took care of major maintenance, not only on the transmitter, but on most of the rest of the equipment as well. In later years, some of the technical staff had the expertise to deal with minor repairs, but the transmitter went above and beyond ‘normal,’ requiring expertise with high power radio frequency equipment, and of course the FCC First Class Radiotelephone License. Each station is required to do a thorough testing of all broadcast systems, called a “Proof Of Performance.” This was done by an outside company before the station ?rst went on the air in 1963, when the station changed from channel 28 to channel 31, and again when the transmitter was ‘colorized;” that is, it was equipped and certi?ed to handle color programming. 
Written by Leland Hubbell

The HP 335 modulation monitor provided the visual and aural carrier frequency monitoring. I don’t think I visited a transmitter that didn’t have one for many, many years. Even if they had a later unit, most places kept the HP also. Actually we did have the Marconi sideband analyzer that was provided by the State after the colorization. I know Jeff (Campbell, WGSF Engineer) felt he never did quite master the unit, though it apparently had some advantages over a general purpose spectrum analyzer and a sweep generator. It was at the bottom of the left hand rack that we added for the color conversion. The scope used to monitor the visual modulation was the Tektronix 529. The important thing was learning to use the zero carrier pulse to generate a reference point and then remember that we actually looked at the modulation upside down: the higher the waveform got the less the modulation. We had one color monitor, a Ball-Miratel 12 inch unit, to see how we looked in color. The Tektronix 144 and 147 test generators the State provided made us the envy of a lot of stations that were still using ?rst and second generation test generators. Even when I got to WBNS, they were still using a Riker solid state test generator at the transmitter and a tube type test generator down in master (control.) There was a Tek 144 making bars into the router. When we got the direct PBS microwave feed the color certainly started looking better. The color programming that we got off air from WOSU was somewhat impaired. The other piece of modern test gear we had was a Tek 453 oscilloscope that we used in place of the 524 and even took on remotes and minimotes when necessary. The odd thing about that scope was that one channel occasionally acted up. If you banged on it, it would be ?ne for a while. I accidentally found the problem a year or so after we got the scope. One end of the resistor connecting the input connector to the circuit board had never been soldered at the factory.
The Hickok tube tester with the built in roll chart listing the tubes was actually a lot of fun for the ?rst 20-25 tubes. After that it got tedious.
You mentioned the GE engineer, Sabeff, who disliked the modulator so much. Do you remember his comment one evening when he got disgusted with the progress he was making? And do you remember asking WCLT to shut down their transmitter long enough to con?rm that the birdie he was chasing wasn’t an external signal? He was amazed when he walked in and saw the iconoscope (camera chain) still operating. Do you remember where he’d last seen one working? (Brazil) 
You didn’t mention the pretty blue glow of the mercury recti?er tubes. Imagine the EPA permits you’d need today to run those tubes. 
Daniel

Part 3 From Daniel Black

Sign Off
The transmitter was turned off for the last time on June 30, 1976. The transmission line, the 3 1/2 inch copper pipe leading up to the antenna, was switched over to the new translator that was installed and operated by the Ohio ETV Network Commission. The new box operated on the same channel as WGSF, Channel 31, and at the same power. The station, however, was quiet, except for the hum of the new unit as it automatically turned on when WOSU-TV, Channel 34 in Columbus, began their broadcast day on July 1, 1976.
The Federal Communications Commission was accordingly notified, WGSF's license to broadcast was canceled. The WGSF transmitter sat dark and cold, never to be turned on again.
The school district, owner of the station, had one query with intent to purchase the transmitter, but no further response occurred once the technical information was sent to them.
The city and county use the WGSF tower for their two-way radio antennas. The equipment, which was housed in a room in the south east corner of the building. They requested permission to utilize the now unneeded space, stripped of all but the old transmitter, to install additional equipment for their communication services. Permission was granted to the local amateur radio club, who had moved their amateur repeater equipment into the former WGSF audio production room, to dismantle the transmitter. None of the former WGSF staff was there to witness that final phase of the history of WGSF.

4/18/08

Comments on Mr. McDaniel

06:58:20 am, by admin  367 views 
Categories: McDaniel Obituary

Link: http://wgsf.oldgleaner.com/

Comment from: Daniel Black [Visitor]
Mr. McDaniel several times demonstrated his skill at divining a person's geographical origins from their speech.
As I remember it he could do a pretty good job of narrowing it down to part of a state, depending upon how big the state is, by asking a few questions and listening to dialect and accent.
04/09/08 @ 21:43

Comment from: Lu Ann Stoia [Visitor]
Hello friends,
I still have to call him "Mr." McDaniel. He was
an awesome teacher, mentor, story teller, and
friend. McDaniel had a joke and an inspirational
quote on the blackboard every day! He and Leland
Hubbell were my biggest cheerleaders,no skirts or p
pom poms  in the
broadcasting business, and always made sure to encourage me and other kids to follow our
dreams. God Bless you Robert and family.
Lu Ann Stoia
04/10/08 @ 11:21

Comment from: Tad McConnell [Visitor]
Wow, I remember Mr McDaniel too, I had the honor to be a student of his in summer school. He made everything interesting and his humor made us all laugh. I remember he taught me the phrase on where to spend a penny? I never forgot that. He also challenged us in learning too. He was a great guy.
04/14/08 @ 09:24

Comment from: Mitch Morrison [Visitor] 
Mr. McDaniel was one of the nicest guys I have ever had the pleasure to study under. One of our assignments was to write, shoot and edit a tv commercial. It was my first attempt at what would become a liftime of work. The last time I saw him was at the station in the early 70's. It seems like just yesterday. He will be missed.
04/16/08 @ 08:54

Comment from: Tim Schwarm [Visitor]
Mr. McDaniel was a legend at Granville High School in our TV Production Classes. It was a sad day when I heard of his passing. He was always engaging and always had a Gaelic word on the chalkboard to learn. I can see him and "Raul the Owl", his constant companion, riding off in the sunset together in a Rambler. God Bless him and his family.
04/16/08 @ 12:34

Comment from: Tara Cochran [Visitor] 
Mr. Mc Daniel was one of my teachers at the summer school session in 1968. He was a hoot! I'll always remember him demonstrating the floor directors Hand Signals for a test. This class was a lot of fun and a very interesting way to spend a few summer mornings, walking up that Horns Hill for class. It was years later that I realized just how special this opportunity was for a high school Sophomore. I'm very sorry to hear of Mr' Mc Daniels passing.
04/16/08 @ 13:59

Comment from: Elizabeth Burdick-Romero [Visitor]
At GHS we had the pleasure of being instructed by Mr. McDaniel in Medieval Lit. He was a most amazing man. Remember the "Examintion Eagle" ? I,for one, got "BEAKED"! Too often, following the announcement that the EE had been seen on the radar flying over Wright Patterson after sharpening his beak on his grinding wheel, I would give my usual effort on the quiz only to have it returned with the inscription: "BEAKED YA!" I distinctly recall my joy when the message at the top of the blackboard read: "Raul the Owl says: It's not school that's so bad - it's the principal of the thing!" There was another "Raul the Owl says:" that involved a "ball and chain." Does anybody remember that one? Tim may imagine him riding off into the sunset with Raul, but good heavens, let's not forget Hortense and the Owllets! As best I recall, Mr. McDaniel lore says that he spoke seven languages. He was a truly engaging teacher. We loved him. He brought learning to life for us. I have, and will always remember him fondly.
04/18/08 @ 12:07

Comment from: Jeff Hager [Visitor]
Who could forget "The Quiz Bird is sharpening his claws over at Ebaugh's pond "

He was truly a master of trivia..I used to walk in his classroom every day just to see the questions he posed.
10/16/09 @ 20:16:16

01/29/09

WGSF ListServer - Mail List

06:17:44 am, by admin  375 views 
Categories: News, General Discussion - WGSF Blog

Link: http://wgsf.oldgleaner.com/

By Admin -
Working on the WGSF web sites:

Re: Moving the WGSF blog into a new location on the server. 
Updated the software running the blog to a later release. Moving 
shortens the URL - mostly a tech thing. Still a lot to move/change. 
Sometimes frustrating, maddening, but always 'educational' !

I am concerned that people may have problems accessing the web sites, or that there have been issues that I am not aware of (SPAM, etc.)
And I have no way of knowing if messages reach the addressee . . .
Could be ending up in a junk mail folder. So, in a sense, this is sort of a "Roll Call."

(If I DON'T get a response - tells me nothing, of course. Maddening, 
isn't it??)

PLEASE take a moment to help check this out, even if you have nothing to say other than "Hi" or OK.
(It took a while to get) the contact function working right 
on the blog. You will see a menu on the page.

There is a line of words in a menu at the upper left of the page:

* Home
* Announcements
* How To Register
* Contact
* Log in
Click on the word 'Contact' - you should (?) get an e-mail form to fill out to send a message to 'Admin' (me) and let me know if it is working for you.

Listserver for group e-mail:
e-mail sent to the WGSF Listserver address automatically goes to 
everyone on the list.

BUT you have to be a member of the list to post - as a protection 
against SPAM

Admin;
aka - Mr.H

admin [Member]

Received by Admin via email:
(Names withheld for privacy)

Came through fine.
L.

Hello Mr H.
Your roll call found me alive and mostly well. I am working for a company call 4D Security Solutions. My position is Chief System Architect. We design and deploy large security protection systems with multiple sensors (video, radar, smart fence, buried sensors, etc) with a central Situation Picture Display and dispatch mostly involved with intrusion detection. 
Before that I did 28 years of Electronic Counter Measure system design (ever try to make a B-52 disappear?).
I never meant to get into engineering, but after 35 years, I guess it stuck.
I will always remember my time at WGSF and always appreciate your guidance and support.
B

Here is my new e-mail address. They say the old one will "go dark" in May so I thought I would get ahead of the game a bit. I will re-register once you get that feature finished. Thanks for all the work you do to keep teh site operating.
C

Hello Leland. I thought I was on the list. I visit the site from time to
time, and enjoyed the Television Museum web site too. The photos of the
remote truck brought back some really great memories.
M

Hi Mr. Hubbell,
Just letting you know I was able to access this site. Hope you are staying warm. Wishing you all the best.
L

Hi Mr. H,
I WAS able to sign in at the WGSF site. Hope you got my message.
L

Mr. H,

Got your message, and wanted to let you know we're still alive in D..... Been very busy (a good thing in this economy).
D

Hello Mr. H.
D

Hi Leland. Just answering your email request. Hope all is well with you and your family. . . . .
L

Just wanted to let you know I have been getting and reading your posts. I usually don't have anything to add, but I do read everything.
L

(Thanks to All;
Mr H.

02/19/09 @ 06:28

01/30/09

Unconventional Camera Mount

09:11:15 am, by admin  645 views 
Categories: Video Cameras

Link: http://oldgleaner.com/wgsf_tv/images/Studio1.jpg

WGSF Studio 1967
01/11/09 21:56

Unconventional Camera Dolly.
There were no dollies or tripods at WGSF to support the RCA TK-30 cameras when WGSF first received them from WJW-TV.
An impromptu mount was constructed, and it worked! I took a wide board, cut a hole to fit the pan/tilt head, and mounted it to the cart as seen in the photo. 
This is the 'infamous' Blue Cart: It served many different functions over the years, at times even as a "mini-mote" production utility.
I think that the blue cart was built by the Industrial Arts (Shop)
department. The Newark High School shop department again came to our aid, building two tripod/dolly units that also be adjusted up and down. Mr. Defenbaugh and perhaps some others were responsible. 
Bill Clifford operating the camera; Scott Elliott, seated; John Hall with WGSF sign.
Scott Elliott worked for many years at WCET Cincinnati, the station that loaned us the Dumont TV Cameras in 1966; he died of cancer a few years ago.
John and Bill are members of the WGSF Group here on-line.

I thought it to be a good opener picture.
The Blue Cart was used for all sorts of duties, first at the station, and then at the TV Center at Newark High School. It was still there when I retired in 1995, but they have dumped a lot of stuff since then, so I don't know if it is still around or not.

A later view of the studio, with a camera on one of the tripod/dollies: 

Leland Hubbell

digital cameras [Visitor]

You do whatcha gotta do! Its kind of funny to me that they used this cart, it seems a little unstable and it makes a me a little uneasy when looking at it. 

The second photo...ah! Much better.
-Chris

04/26/09 @ 18:37

Bob Grundisch [Visitor]

I was one of the still photographers and camera operators at WGSF in 1967 and still have B&W photos, the original WGSF-TV patch from my blazer and a few original newspaper articles saved from the Newark Advocate....if anyone would like to add them to the web site. 

I've worked in television news over the years, serving as news anchor for KUSK Television in Prescott Arizona. I'm presently a staff writer and photojournalist for several newspapers and magazines near Dayton,Ohio. 

I'd be interested in meeting membes of the staff again.

My e-mail is BobFlash3@aol.com

07/07/09 @ 21:53

02/03/09

WGSF History (Part 1 -7)

10:41:15 am, by admin  168 views 
Categories: Background, WGSF History

Link: http://wgsf.oldgleaner.com/

Part 1 - The Early Days
(A Multi-page History)

The station had a very rough early history, including some of these facts:

Several people, including the director of what was then called "Audio/Visual" wanted to develop a means of bringing the technique of Instructional Television into the classrooms of the Newark City Schools. Newark had over 10,000 students at that time, needed to pass a school levy, and were very short on teachers in the arts, but looking for any help possible in all areas of education.
They looked at both Cable TV (CATV) and Microwave systems. Both of these delivery systems were being developed, and installed, in the larger cities.
Nationally, this was the time universities were setting up vast lecture/viewing halls, with closed circuit TV. (CCTV)
Several TV stations were built in Ohio and other states on the new educational television allocations.
The Columbus City Schools were heavily into local ITV production at this time and teamed with WOSU-TV in Columbus.
However, the signal from WOSU_TV 34 was not adequate to be useful off-air in Newark.
The Federal Government and the Ford Foundation were making facilities and equipment grants to school and community organizations to develop Instructional/Educational broadcasting.
Locally, several people endeavored to bring a station to Newark, including the Games Slayter family. The reasoning was that open-channel television would have the added benefit of adding public access, called Educational Television (ETV) as well as Instructional/ (classroom) television (ITV) by mail on video tape and film. Nationally, an organization developed called National Educational Television (NET) headquartered in New York. Programs were distributed on both video tape and film. Any station wishing to participate had to have equipment to play these formats.
The Newark group pushed ahead, truthfully believing they would be able to obtain funding. They managed to obtain enough to build a building, and to purchase a transmitter and antenna system.
The license for the broadcast station was set up in the name of the Newark City Schools. The community group that had managed the station up to this point had to relinquish all control to the schools. Not everyone was happy with this arrangement, but they went to work with what they had available.
In addition to the transmiter/tower/antenna, there was a reel-to-reel audio recorder, microphone, and a borrowed videcon television camera. 

Existing equipment was not made eligible for reimbursement when the federal funding process was finally established. The station project was under-funded. It took the development of a special fund - The Licking County Fund for Public Giving - to pay it off.

02/04/09

Mobile TV Production Van

06:49:02 am, by admin  174 views 
Categories: Mobile TV Production Van

Link: http://wgsf.oldgleaner.com/

Mobile TV Production Van
Van currently housed at The Early Television Museum, 5396 Franklin Street in Hilliard, Ohio

An advertisement for the sale of an RCA equipped mobile television production van caught the eye of WGSF station manager Leland Hubbell in early 1969. This van was owned by KCPX, Salt Lake City, Utah. (Originally purchased by KDYL(W6XIS) Salt Lake City in 1948, the call sign was changed to KCPX). 
The van was purchased by WGSF through a grant from the Thomas J. Evans Foundation. 
Station Manager, Leland Hubbell, and his wife, Dorothy, flew to Salt Lake City, and drove the van back to Ohio.
It saw extensive use in Newark and surrounding communities, televising graduations, parades, fairs, festivals and sporting events. 

When WGSF terminated broadcasting in 1976, the van was donated to the Ohio Historical Society in Columbus, where it sat in a warehouse for over thirty years.

The Ohio Historical Society agreed to loan the van to the Early Television Museum in 2008, where it will be put on display. The van has most of its original equipment, including TK-30A cameras and the microwave system.

Link to article about the WGSF mobile production van, with commentary by Daniel Black:
http://www.earlytelevision.org/wgsf_van.html

See also this promotional advertisement by RCA:
http://www.earlytelevision.org/rca_remote_1948.html

The Early Television Museum is located at 5396 Franklin Street in Hilliard, Ohio (614) 771-0510

02/05/09

The Newark Test

04:13:53 am, by admin  75 views 
Categories: WGSF Progrmming, The Newark Test

Link: http://wgsf.oldgleaner.com/

During the time frame after the cameras were sent back to Cincinnati, and the RCA cameras arrived from Cleveland, John Hall and I developed a slide show called The Newark Test. We asked viewers to take the test on a form printed in The Advocate. A
slide of the Newark area was shown, then the correct multiple choice answer. Everything started out good - Show the picture, ask the multiple choice question, and then show a slide of the correct answer of A, B,C, or D.

We had a back up Kodak carousel projector, and a spare bulb. After about 10-minutes we were "sliding down the hill." Projector bulb burns out (of course); spare projector pressed into service as the slides were being transferred to the back-up projector. The
picture slides in the transfer didn't get in the exact right order and of course the letter showing the answer to the question some how got in the wrong spot. Sometimes the correct or wrong answer got ahead of the picture.
If I remember correctly the audio was recorded by John and me ahead of time.
People who probably didn't really know that Newark had a TV station, were ringing the phone off the hook to inform us of the jumbled mess. Too bad we didn't have a phone system like today, in which we could tell them to start pressing (dialing) numbers for improved service while disgusting music played telling them their call was important to us.

See also: Murphy's Law

As I think of things, I will write them as we walk down memory lane. Things to be covered:
Licking County SpotlightLand of Legend shows on the hill; and probably
several more.

Bill Clifford
Source: http://tv.groups.yahoo.com/group/WGSF_TV/message/17

02/05/09

Video Cameras Used at WGSF Television

02:57:34 am, by admin  1102 views 
Categories: Video Cameras

Link: http://wgsf.oldgleaner.com/

WGSF Television Cameras
Most of the television camera equipment used at WGSF was 'hand-me-downs' and 'loaners.'
The first camera that I know of is the one pictured in the 1963 photos, probably a videcon type, loaned from WCET in Toledo, OH. It was apparently used for the first broadcasts, in 1963, and for showing the station ID for some time after than.
An obsolete film chain camera, an RCA TK-20 iconoscope tube camera, was obtained from the National Educational Television Center in Ann Arbor, MI, and utilized throughout the rest of the active years of WGSF.
The first projector is shown in the photo from 1963-64, of WGSF Manager Dana Cox and Bill Wheeler of Ohio Power. It was from Lincoln Jr. High, one of the old Audio/Visual types once used in the classroom. That was replaced by a standard Kodak Carousel 35 mm projector, with a "change" button connected to the remote control receptacle located at the transmitter control panel. WGSF went through several of these projectors over the years, as the slide projector was used on every station break and got a lot of use.

Another TV Camera made a brief appearance at WGSF, but was never used on-air. Leland Hubbell built a videcon camera from plans published in Radio Electronics magazine, and demonstrated "See Yourself on TV" with it, hooked into a TV set up as a monitor. The video pulses were not broadcast standard, but at least it was a television camera. It was used in the amateur radio/TV station of K8MZH, where the pulses were not a problem.

Station Manager Dana Cox arranged for the loan of two Dumont image orthicon (I/O) cameras from Cincinnati ETV Station WCET in early 1966, and Leland Hubbell met the WCET personnel in Dayton to pick them up. They are shown in the pictures of the TV Production class of 1966. Note that they usually were run with the side doors open, due to heat problems created by the large number of vacuum tubes in a small space. The camera cable connector was on the side, rather than underneath as most other similar cameras.

The equipment WCET supplied consisted of the television cameras, camera control units, and power supplies, but not the syncronizing pulse generator unit. Dumont used positive-going sync pulses, rather than the standard negative sync, so an adapter was needed to tie the Dumont equipment into the WGSF system. A simple inverter was constructed in a surplus cabinet to interface the cameras to the Sarkes Tarzian sync generator then used at WGSF.
The cameras were loaned with the possibility/option that WGSF would buy them. The school district could not come up with enough money to make the purchase, so the cameras were returned to WCET in early autumn of 1966.

At this time, a sliding shelf was set up so that an old "lantern slide" projector could be used, and even film strips projected directly on the face of the TK-20 iconoscope pick-up tube. The lantern slides were the same size as a Polaroid transparency, about 3 x 4 inches, and was used in the fall of 1966.

Station WJW, in Cleveland, donated two RCA TK-30 "field" cameras in late 1966, and they served as the studio cameras for some time after that. These cameras used the popular image orthicon type of tube, used by many manufacturers at that time. The tubes were available for many years, but cost over $1,000.00. The dolly units were fabricated in the high school industrial arts shop.

Funds were allocated in 1967 for the purchase of some additional equipment, which included a film chain. The TV camera was an 'Industrial' type videcon, with a remote camera control unit. It was briefly used in the studio until the mounts for the TK-30's were available. The camera was shown mounted on a studio tripod in the Dispatch feature article of 1967. The scan had to be reversed to match the projector image, and used in the film chain for many years, even into the Channel 19 days at Newark High School. The film chain used multiplexer optics (multiple projectors into one camera) and permitted 35 mm slides and 16 mm film to both be shown with this camera. The old TK-20 Ike chain was still utilized for slides, providing cross-fade options.

The Mobile TV Production van, acquired in 1969, also used the TK-30 I/O cameras, so WGSF now had five similar cameras.

All of the RCA cameras were donated to the Historical Society in 1976, when station WGSF ceased broadcasting, including the TK-20 Ike chain.

Later, as the I/O tubes became more expensive, two GBC videcon cameras were purchased. The cameras were cheaper than a new I/O tube. They were connected to the station or remote sync generator, and fed into the RCA camera control unit (minus the TK-30 camera head.) This provided the proper sync pulses, as well as the ability to "shade" the camera video output to broadcast standards.

These cameras were used for several years, even at the high school, until replaced by Panasonic color cameras in the late 1970's. They were eventually donated to an Amateur Television group in Columbus, OH, when Leland Hubbell retired from the School system.

WGSF used both Panasonic and Sony portable reel-to-reel video tape units for news reporting and some remote production in the early 1970's. The units were battery powered, and consisted of a videcon camera (monochrome, or B&W, as all of the cameras were at WGSF) connected to a one-half inch reel-to-reel recorder in EIAJ format. They held a half hour or recording tape. The non broadcast nature of the video required a special transfer process to be airable on broadcast television. The first solution involved shooting the monitor image from the portable VTR with a studio videcon camera focused on the monitor. Crude, but effective.

Later, when Time Base Correctors (TBC) became available, the portable VCR video was routed though a KSN model TBC. This was at a time when most stations were still using 16 mm film for all news reporting.

Links and Resources:
RCA TV Equipment Section of the Broadcast Archive
Studio and Field cameras - TK-10 and TK30 Image orthicon
Telecine cameras - TK- 20 Iconoscope

National Educational Television
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Educational_Television
http://www.museum.tv/archives/etv/N/htmlN/nationaleduc/nationaleduc.htm

Dumont:
http://www.museum.tv/archives/etv/D/htmlD/DuMont/DuMont.htm
See Chuck Pharis' web page for photos of a Dumont camera, and the associated power supply and sync generator:
http://www.pharis-video.com/p3028.htm

Museum of Television:
http://www.mztv.com/newframe.asp?content=http://www.mztv.com/pioneers.html

Video tape formats: EIAJ (Electronic Industries Association Japan
http://www.tech-notes.tv/Standards-Practices/TVTapeformats.htm

air jordan [Visitor]

I am new here in this site. But i will be visiting this site time and again. this article is so interesting. One of the most interesting analysis on network effect. Great job buddy.

07/05/09 @ 22:22

02/05/09

Comments on 1975-1976 Programs

04:03:18 am, by admin  210 views 
Categories: WGSF Progrmming, Program Summaries

Link: http://wgsf.oldgleaner.com/

http://tv.groups.yahoo.com/group/WGSF_TV/

Here are excerpts from Diane's program summary from 1975 and 1976.
lhh

1975 Programs . . .
Licking Count Art Association - 1 hour 27 minutes 15 seconds
Communiscope - 5 hours 45 minutes 40 seconds
31 Reports - 121 hours 6 minutes 43 seconds
Wildcat Den - 18 hours 41 minutes 19 seconds
Specials - 24 hours 52 minutes 55 seconds
Movies - 24 hours 52 minutes 55 seconds

Boy, John Hall and his movies happening on the weekends with Laurel
and Hardy and some of the serials ("The Crimson Ghost" and "Nyoka and the Tigermen"). More game being shown: baseball, football, and
basketball.

1976 Programs . . .
I finally made it through 1976. Boy, you can feel the depression on
the paperwork. Some info was incomplete so a couple of shows I had to guess if they were new or reruns. Also, for several of shows (Wildcat Den, Communiscope), the topic is not on the log and I looked through the Advocate microfishe at the library and many times the published schedule did not match the program log.
Anyway, Licking County Art Association did 6 shows (2 hours, 55
minutes, 25 seconds), Communiscope did 12 shows (9 hours, 44 minutes,22 seconds), 31 Reports did 127 shows (61 hours, 12 minutes, 40 seconds), Wildcat Den did 20 shows (9 hours, 35 minutes, 40 seconds), other specials had 32 programs (18 hours, 23 minutes, 46 seconds), and of course the movies with 101 features (143 hours, 8 minutes, 56 seconds).

02/05/2008

Murphy's Law

03:31:48 am, by admin  370 views 
Categories: WGSF Transmitter, WGSF Progrmming, Murphy's Law

Link: http://wgsf.oldgleaner.com/

A very necessary and oft-quoted axiom - an accepted truth, dictum, truism, principle; maxim, adage, aphorism - at WGSF Television was Murphy's Law.
Simply put, it states:

If anything can go wrong, it will . . . At the worst possible moment!

There is a corollary known as IPIO - The Innate Perversity of Inanimate Objects.

That is the nature of the final screw to fall into the device being reassembled. Or, a slice of bread to fall buttered-side down.
The 'watched pot' that doesn't boil, or the printer/copier that can sense that you are in a hurry, and jams!
IPIO

02/05/09

The Blue Truck

03:08:27 am, by admin  280 views 
Categories: Mobile TV Production Van

Link: http://wgsf.oldgleaner.com/

The "Blue Truck"

WGSF Television acquired a Ford Route Van that became a mainstay of transportation for several years, both during the latter years of WGSF and for several years after the move to the Newark High School campus.

For discussion starters:

The truck had a manual shift transmission, which presented a challenge to some of the younger WGSF staffers. I remember waiting through several traffic light changes while observing a neophyte driver struggle to master the clutch and gas feed, the driver all the while becoming more frustrated. The truck just 'died' on each attempt, but the lesson was eventually successful.

Another youthful driver had a chilling experience while traversing the first big curve on the down-hill run from the station on Horn's Hill. The steering locked up, and the truck ended up between two trees, headed back up the hill the hard way. Took two wreckers to extricate 'Ole Blue from that precarious position. Did that deter the driver from ever driving again - truck or auto? No way! After necessary repairs to the steering, she was back at it again. I knew that person was headed for a successful career, and it was so.

Another incident at the junction of 21st Street and and Moul St. tested the mettle of two other voyagers in the Blue truck. Smoke began pouring out from under the dash.

The truck had a few years on it, and mucho milage, when we got it. The metal was no longer pristine, yea, there were a few openings in places that Ford had not provided in the original design. A few strategically placed bricks covered the most problematic holes. While tooling out Route 16 past Cherry Valley intersection one rainy day, I looked back to see a 'rooster tail' of water kicking up from the tires. INSIDE the van! Some enterprising and clean freak do-gooder had cleaned out the truck for my trip, including the essential bricks covering the holes in the floor.

It served to transport all of the equipment from the station to the high school campus after WGSF closed. It was still used as the Mini-mote for some time, and other innumerable transportation tasks, until finally pulled from service in the late 70's.

02/05/09

Mini-Mote

03:06:13 am, by admin  173 views 
Categories: Mobile TV Production Van

Link: http://wgsf.oldgleaner.com/

MINI-MOTE
Mini-mote TV Unit
05/08/08 | by admin

- This is a Multi-page Post -

WGSF Television expanded the ability for remote production by putting together what we called the MINI-MOTE (Miniature remote unit).

Mounted on the Blue Cart, the Mini-mote could be loaded into the Blue Truck (or other vehicle) and taken just about anywhere, and it was.
An ampex 2 inch VR-660 VTR would fit on top of the cart for recording, providing two hours of recording time on one of the large reels of tape, with editing capability.
The television camera was the GBC videcon, with zoom lens.
The sync generator was a small solid state unit, which fit into a special rack mount containing a pulse distribution amplifier. 
Electrical power was routed through a powerstat, a variable transformer, with voltage meters built into the panel. The VR-660 was especially sensitive to power line voltages higher or lower than the standard 120 VAC.
A 3-monitor rack mount unit was used for picture monitoring.
A Shure audio mixer was used for microphone and Auxiliary audio inputs.

The Mini-mote was used for coverage of the Ohio State Fair in 1974 (?) at a time when most television stations were anchored to a fixed venue. WGSF roamed the fairgrounds, getting a very enthusiastic response from the people we covered. We could edit on the fly with the VR-660B Edicon® system. Even though the rubber on the old wheels on the cart peeled off from the weight (the VTR alone weighed nearly 100 pounds) the ability to go nearly anywhere made a for sucessful addition to the station's production capability.

It proved to be the beginning of the end for the large RCA production truck, which took well over an hour to set up. We could wheel in with the Mini-mote, plug into any standard 120 volt AC source, set up the small tripod/dolly and camera, hook up the cables, and record - all in the matter of a few minutes.

Later, a newer version of the Mini-mote was used for years providing television production facilities at Newark High School. The cart had larger, sturdier wheels, color cameras, better monitoring, a video switcher with effects, the Shure Audio mixer, and either a 3/4 inch U-matic® videocassette recorder, or the newer 1/2 inch VHS VCR system. Many programs were aired live on the CATV system, CATV 19, as well as recorded. The cart was wheeled all over the Newark High campus, and one of the specially equipped school busses with a wheelchair lift was utilized to take it to other production locations that were covered with multiple cameras.

02/05/09

Power To the Truck

03:02:02 am, by admin  103 views 
Categories: Mobile TV Production Van

Link: http://wgsf.oldgleaner.com/

Power to 'The Truck'

All of the original equipment in the RCA mobile television production van used vacuum tubes, and there were a lot of them! Vacuum tubes have a big appetite for electrical power, and dump a lot of that power as heat. The original owners of the truck installed an air conditioner in the left rear window, and cooling was necessary even on days that the ambient outside temperature was on the cool side.
The combination of the television equipment and the air conditioner brought the total electrical current load close to 60 amperes, at 220 Volts. This rather heavy electrical requrement created some interesting situations as we traveled the community, setting up for remotes in - well, rather remote locations, at times.
The success of any set-up was therefore dependent upon a supply of enough electrical power to run a typical small house of that era. The ideal location had an outlet for an electric stove (range outlet, 60 amperes, 220 volts). Lacking that, Chief Engineer and Jack-of-all-trades Leland Hubbell drew upon his knowledge of electrical systems, and went inside the main power panel. A variety of "pig-tail" cables with connectors and heavy-duty clamps interfaced the supply panel to a fused switch box. An electrical meter was essential to the operation, and a check was made to assure things were correct at the power outlet/panel before powering up the truck.
The electrical power supply cables to the truck had twist-loc connectors, and these had to be inspected frequently for good, clean contact, as they often showed signs of overheating. The connectors had to be soldered; screws would loosen under the load, and quickly overheat and char the connector. The cable entered the truck at a multi-plug outlet. The load was balanced as closely as possible, with part of the equipment on each side of the 220 volt supply. The connector box had three low-wattage lamps as power indicators, and could be set up for 3 phase systems by internal links, if needed, but was always used on single phase settings while we used the truck. One lamp was across one leg of the 110/220 line, and two across the other. If both lamps glowed equally, the incoming voltage balance was assumed to be acceptable.
The truck had a 'power-stat' adjustable transformer to set the voltage to the correct range for the truck. This was located just behind the driver's seat, at the bottom of the equipment racks. The truck electronic equipment required a nominal voltage of 110-120 volts, and local sources were found to vary all over the range, sometimes too high, sometimes too low. The air conditioner required 220 volts, supplied by its own power cable, but came through the
Most set-ups were routine: Find a 60 ampere range outlet, or a "mains" supply panel, measure to determine voltages, plug in or clamp on the WGSF switch/fuse box, check the indicator lamps, and tweak the power-stat for the correct voltage. If things measured up, we could start turning on the equipment. We were not always able to turn on everything, especially at locations like the Hartford Fair Grounds, because the lines couldn't handle the load. We were sometimes reduced to running only one camera, and no air conditioner.
Electrical service is supposed to be inspected and installed by licensed electricians, but we were never sure what we would find. For example, when I connected inside the power panel for a set-up at a public location, the lights on the truck power strip showed a big unbalance - one lamp went bright, the double lamps dimmed, before we turned on any equipment. And I was clipped onto big 4-ought (0000) size cables in the box. Turned out the ground cable wasn't! It fed an electric stove in the kitchen, and they had not connected the ground (neutral) cable to the main ground because the range was 220 volts. The ladies said the burners worked but the clock (operated off of 120 volts) never did. Once I went to the main ground with our clamp, all was OK. But I told them to get the electrical company back in and make it right!
Another remote almost brought disaster from improper wiring. I had checked it out in advance, and left instructions to use the standard range receptacle behind the commercial type electric stove. The guys on the crew for the remote said that they would handle the set-up, and I could attend another function before showing up at the remote. I arrived to find everybody in somewhat of a state of shock! (Luckily not electrical.)
Spotting another standard range outlet receptacle out in the open, the 'techie' decided not to crawl behind the greasy stove, and plugged the truck power cable into the one feeding the large deep fry oil cooker. The plugs mated; the voltages didn't! Someone had wired 220, 3 phase, service into what was supposed to be a standard outlet for 110/220 single phase service. They had presence of mind to unplug quickly - when the power-stat started smoking. Fortunately, nothing was damaged, nor anyone hurt.
We did an out-of-town basketball remote where the service proved to be under-powered. We were able to wheel the truck into an Industrial Arts shop room, putting us inside, nice and cozy, on a winter evening. Too cozy! Too warm, so we also plugged in the air conditioner. We made it through the game, and were into the wrap-up when the breaker finally gave up and popped out. A close one.
We had electricians install a special circuit for us at several locations around Newark. There was one at the Newark High School gym, and the Performing Arts Center (auditorium), as well as at White (football) Field. Many of the schools had a kitchen with a suitable electrical range outlet available.

02/13/09

On-line video/movies

03:38:52 pm, by admin  224 views 
Categories: General Discussion - WGSF Blog

Link: http://wgsf.oldgleaner.com/

We have talked about converting some of the WGSF programs, like Wildcat Den to digital, and putting them on DVD, or scheduling them on the web.

There are several possibilities - various formats. I lack experience in those modes at present. I suppose the way to start is to stash something on the server and see what happens. Dan, John L., Mitch - any of you have experience in digital files and formats - .WMV, .AVI, .MOV, and .MPG file formats ???

Then, download. I watched the ustream.tv live broadcast last May from the Early Television Museum at

http://www.ustream.tv/get-started

But that is a timed schedule. The advantage is, don't have to store anything at our web site. But - you watch then,or don't see it!

OR: this blog handles YouTube Google Video Daily Motion LiveVideo and iFilm. I am familiar only with YouTube at this point; will have to learn more.

SO: Just as a starting point, I uploaded a .WMV (Windows) file to the WGSF server so you can try downloading a movie file. It is a cute thing that someone forwarded to me.
Give it a try, go to: Home Security


Then please report on how it worked for you.

If it comes through, maybe we can post some other (more appropriate) WGSF type of things.

Mr H

admin [Member]

Received by Admin via email"

Worked fine on this end!! Great clip!

02/19/09 @ 05:59

admin [Member]

Sent to WGSF mail list by Admin:

(In part)
To: WGSF alumni -

Standard television broadcast state of the art equipment had advanced 20 
years by the time YOU got into it in the 60's and 70's, but you actually 
began back at the foundation of the industry. 1948 mobile truck and 
equipment! Those of you still in the business can talk "vintage" with 
the best of the oldtimers.
We were into solid state (transistor) by the time the station shut down.
Remember editing on the Ampex VR-660 helicals? It worked and was the 
best we had.

Several of you are still working in the television or radio business. 
How about sharing with the rest of us what you are working with now, as 
compared to WGSF days. Anything. . . Remember the wire services and 
teletype machines clunking along. Rip -n- Read.
... Edited for brevity . . .)
Doesn't have to be elaborate - and can be in an e-mail here on the mail 
list, if you like.
Be neat, I think.

Admin = Mr. H

02/19/09 @ 06:04

02/13/09

Digital Television Transition

09:40:36 pm, by admin  762 views 
Categories: Digital Television

Link: http://wgsf.oldgleaner.com/

Digital Television

Analog-to-digital transition
Congress passed legislation on February 12,2009, changing the date for the termination of analog broadcasts of over-the-air television from February 17, 2009 to June 12, 2009.

Television Channel Listings
Central Ohio Television
(As known on February 12, 2009)

WCMH-TV 4 NBC 14 - WCMH-DT COLUMBUS, OH 
WCMH-TV will delay the switch to digital television to June 12, 2009.
Listing DT channel (virtual) 4 and 4.1 for programming

WSYX-TV 6 ABC 13 - WSYX-DT COLUMBUS, OH
WSYX-TV 6 will delay the switch to digital television to June 12, 2009.
Listing DT channel (virtual) 6 and 6.1 for programming

WBNS-TV 10 CBS 21 - WBNS-DT COLUMBUS, OH
WBNS-TV 10 will delay the switch to digital television to June 12, 2009.

WHIZ-DT 18 NBC 40 - WHIZ-DT ZANESVILLE, OH
FCC: Licensee/Permittee has obtained FCC approval to terminate its analog service prior to the transition date.THE ANALOG SERVICE WAS LOST ON 07/25/2008 DUE TO THE FAILURE OF A POWER COMBINER . . . . ANALOG SERVICE WILL NOT BE RESTORED.

WTTE-TV 28 Fox 36 - WTTE-DT COLUMBUS, OH
WTTE-TV 28 will switch to digital television February 17, 2009.

W31AA (Low Power) Newark, OH Translator for WOSU-TV 34 Columbus PBS 
Low power stations have the option to continue in analog. The W31AA translator currently retransmits the WOSU-TV 34 analog signal, which will cease on June 12, 2009.

WOSU-TV 34 PBS 38 - WOSU-DT COLUMBUS, OH PBS
WOSU-TV 34 will delay the switch to digital television to June 12, 2009.
In addition to WPBO (Portsmouth, OH), the station has two repeaters: W31AA in Newark, and W47AB in Mansfield.
W47AB, located within the Cleveland DMA, serves north central Ohio.
W31AA broadcasts on a frequency previously used by WGSF (TV); the repeater signed on July 1, 1976, the day after WGSF closed down.

WSFJ-TV 51 24 - WSFJ-DT COLUMBUS, OH
After the analog television shutdown scheduled for February 17, 2009 [1], WSFJ-TV will remain on its current pre-transition channel number, 24 [2] using PSIP to display WSFJ-TV's virtual channel as 51.

WWHO-TV 53 46 - WWHO-DT Chillicothe/COLUMBUS, OH 
WWHO-TV 53 will switch to digital television February 17, 2009.

NOTES: There is a good list of television stations in Ohio at Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia 
Broadcast television stations serving cities in the U.S. state of Ohio.
"Northern Ohio Amateur Radio Development" is another source that I have found for television channel information.

. . . .Note: The Wikipedia listing also has Defunct stations in Ohio, and low power stations listings.
They use identifiers and sort buttons by:
VC refers to the station's PSIP virtual channel. 09 refers to the station's physical RF channel from 2009.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

"The Program and System Information Protocol (PSIP) is the protocol used in the ATSC digital television system for carrying metadata about each channel in the broadcast transport stream of a TV station and for publishing information about television programs so that viewers can select what to watch by title and description."
To learn more about the Virtual Channel and PSIP, got to the article on Wikipedia.

DTV Forum [Visitor] · http://www.dtvusaforum.com

Digital Television community dedicated to helping others transition to DTV.

(Note: 
This site seems to offer assistance to people with questions about DTV. I have published this comment believing that to be true. If anyone knows of reasons why they should not be linked here, please contact me.

admin)

02/28/09 @ 00:03

02/13/09

WGSF Is Defunct

07:59:47 pm, by admin  125 views 
Categories: Background

Link: http://wgsf.oldgleaner.com/

Defunct Television Stations In Ohio

Defunct full-power stations

* Channel 15: WICA-TV - Ashtabula (8/25/1953-6/16/1956 and 12/15/1965-12/26/1967)
* Channel 16: WKTR-TV - Ind. - Kettering (3/20/1967-1970)
* Channel 26: WSWO-TV - Ind. - Springfield (7/14/1968-6/22/1970)
* Channel 30: WRLO - Portsmouth (5/14/1966-?)
* Channel 30: WUXA - Ind. - Portsmouth (5/8/1988-1989)
* Channel 31: WGSF - PBS - Newark (3/18/1963-6/30/1976)
* Channel 45: WXTV - Youngstown (11/15/1960-2/28/1962)
* Channel 61: WKBF-TV - Ind. - Cleveland (1968-1975)
* Channel 68: WCOM - Ind. - Mansfield (1988-1989)

Television stations in Central Ohio (Columbus)
(See last listing)
Local Stations


WCMH 4 (NBC, 4.2 RTN) • WSYX 6 (ABC, 6.2 MNTV/This) • WGCT 8 (Ind.) • WBNS 10 (CBS) • WDEM-CA 17 (Ind.) • W23BZ 23 (Ind.) • WTTE 28 (Fox) • WCSN-LP 32 (Ind.) • WOSU 34 (PBS) • WCPX-LP 48 (AZA) • WSFJ 51 (TBN) • WWHO 53 (CW)
Outlying areas 
WHIZ 18 (NBC, Zanesville) • WBKA-CA 22 (A1, Bucyrus) • WOCB 39/WXCB 42 (TBN, Marion / Delaware) • WOUC 44 (PBS, Cambridge)
Cable-only stations 
ONN • FSN Ohio • The Ohio Channel • STO
Defunct 
WGSF 31 (PBS)

From Wikipedia, the Free Enclopedia 
See also the Wikpedia article about WGSF

02/16/09

People!

05:17:25 pm, by admin  292 views 
Categories: Welcome, Background, WGSF History, General Discussion - WGSF Blog

Link: http://wgsf.oldgleaner.com/

You pass a lot of things as you drive down the road or across town, physical things. Cars and trucks in the next lane, behind you and before you. Buildings and bridges, Structures large and small, from the tidy to the tawdry, ‘McMansions’ and monuments. Even the magnificence of natural ‘wonders’ pales to insignificance when compared to the one element that grabs our attention, and our emotions - People!
Take away the human element and the most grandiose monument is just a pile of stone. Erase the names from the Vietnam Memorial in Washington, DC, ignore the association with its reason for being, and it retains only one thought in our minds - Who built it, and why. Stonehenge intrigues us, only in part because of its composition, but primarily because somebody built it. We know ‘What’ it is, and ‘Where’ it is, but we are driven to discover the ‘Who’ and the ‘Why’ - the people connection!
So, too, with any history we may compile. The physical elements are akin to computer firmware - things to touch and see. But people, ahh, people! That is the ‘software’ that gives life to history, that makes monuments truly majestic, and puts the “Awe” in awesome. Feelings, thoughts, emotions - the ties that bind and the forces that drive us. 
Yes, we can analyze, we can describe, we can measure and calculate the finiteness of things, but life is not in them. Because we are human, things are only complete when we imbue them with a relationship to our humanity.

Now, why am I writing this as a prelude to a history of a television station?
Simply because we may write all we may about trucks and transmitters, cameras, consoles, and gadgets galore, and they, like a monument, are clumps of metal and plastic. A monument to human ingenuity, perhaps, but of meaningless utility until they are brought into the human equation. 
Why did someone build it? What was it used for? How did this contribute to the sharing of feelings, emotions, conquests and failures of the human spirit? That is the essence of what any history is all about. Any trip down the road or across town is significant only of the passage of time until someone recounts what people did during the trip. Those experiences are what makes the journey memorable!

The ‘journey’ for the Television Station known as WGSF involved trucks and transmitters, cameras, consoles, and gadgets galore, but it is the “people” element that makes a history of this particular institution worthy of remembering, retelling and compiling.

That WGSF had some television equipment, at least some of the time, and used it for the purpose of broadcasting television programs, was one of the few things that was shared in common with most other stations. The deficiency of equipment was more than overcome by the exuberance of spirit shared by those who participated in this “adventure.” There must have been some mystic that so enthralled teen-agers that they would trudge across town, through snow, and up a two-hundred foot high hill, to become part of it. Let’s face it; it wasn’t just for the TV toys that you expended so much effort, but for the ’games’ you played with them. Talk about the equipment if it is relevant to the story line, but the real story is the people connection.

That is what I most wish to collect with this history. 
What happened? Why do you remember that? Things that went right and things that went wrong tend to stick in our minds. Yes, I have documentation on many things, physical and procedural, but the most necessary component is the remembering and retelling of the experiences, the emotions, the frustrations and “hilltop” moments as you interacted with the people you encountered there. 
Share the “who-what-where-why-how” of your “life” with WGSF Television. And, if you had a life after June 30, 1976, did it make a difference somewhere along the trip from then until whenever?

Please share what ever pops up from the repository of those memories of this part of your life journey.

admin [Member]

Received by Admin via email:

Just wanted to let you know I have been getting and reading your posts. I usually don't have anything to add, but I do read everything.

02/19/09 @ 05:49

admin [Member]

Received by Admin via email:

Keep bothering us. Someday I will have time to write my experiences.
They were mostly good.

BTW, How do i get ride of the lesser fleas?

02/19/09 @ 05:51

admin [Member]

You hit the nail on the head. I can't for the life of me, forty+ years later, remember much of anything about equipment. Other than the cameras, cable, and big metal wall of lights, knobs, and switches, and a few other things (pop machine in your office, window into the recording booth) nearly all my memories are about people. Not even so much about shows (Teen Time, Land of Legend), but so much more about the people I worked with. (Of course, sometimes that led to socializing, like partying at my parents' house, dating, and so on, but we won't discuss that here, to protect the innocent.)
Working and being with those people had quite an influence on me at the tender age of 15.
I remember little vignettes: John Hay trying to keep moths out of camera range for a show in the heat of summer when it was so hot we opened the back door; Monkey Rock; Mr. H. taking the gang to A& W for coney dogs and root beer after the show (was that a Ford Falcon?); Denise Jakeway trying to maintain some modesty while climbing to the roof of the truck while wearing a dress (Hartford Fair); the heady feeling of setting up the Land of Legends stage and backdrop outside the station in the parking lot with Susan Edwards, who also got door prizes for the public.
I haven't been back to "the hill" for ages, but I think I still remember every curve of that pavement...and I think that most people who have a memory of it probably have a memory of some of the people, or a person,(or, OK, maybe a truck) connected with some curve along the way to the top.

02/19/09 @ 05:52

02/19/09

Security and Privacy

07:30:03 am, by admin  275 views 
Categories: General Discussion - WGSF Blog, ListServer, General Blog Features

Link: http://wgsf.oldgleaner.com/

The Internet is, by its very nature, a very open and world-wide communication medium
Its strength in the ability to reach the multitudes is also an oft-taken opportunity for the unscrupulous to prey upon the unwary and unwilling.
Several measures and procedures are utilized to protect the WGSF on-line presence, as much as possible, from the prevalence of SPAMmers, phishers, identity thieves, and nere-do-wells in general. 
The Blog Administrator will be alerted by e-mail about any post, and review it.

1. Open E-mail addresses are eliminated or hidden as much as possible.
This site utilizes a special Contact form to send comments to the Admin. so that a visitor can not glean the address.
Anti-spam:

2. A list of words and topics in maintained in SPAM files that 
will flag any attempt to use those key-words and and block them. 
Any URL containing one of the keywords will be banned from posts, comments and logs.

3. Posts:
The Blog Administrator will be alerted by e-mail about any post, and review it. 
The Blog Administrator reviews all posts and comments, and may choose from these options:
View... Edit ... Deprecate Delete! No Comment

The Blog Administrator may:

* Edit the post to make it more acceptable for publication; or
* Deprecate the post: It is retained in the files, but becomes invisible to visitors to the blog; or
* Delete the post. (Blip! It's Gone!!)
* Publish the post; The blog software Saves the post to the on-line files,and 'Pings' the internet to alert browsers (Google, etc.) that a new message has been posted.
(See also the Documentation/Manual

4. Persons may register to become a member/contributor to the blog(s). Both the registration and the contributions/comments are still subject to review by the blog Admin.

5. ListServer

The ListServer Mailing list is restricted to registered members, and the membership list is subject to review and action by the Admin.Names and address may be blocked. 
A request to subscribe will generate an email requesting confirmation, to prevent others from gratuitously subscribing you. This is a private list, which means that the list of members is not available to non-members.

We will attempt to make your visits to the WGSF Internet sites as secure and pleasant as possible.

Leland Hubbell
Site Administrator (Admin)

With SPAMMERS, SCAMMERS, and PHISHING attacks, These options become very necessary.

03/13/09

Outside of the Box

03:05:34 pm, by admin  68 views 
Categories: General Discussion - WGSF Blog

Link: http://wgsf.oldgleaner.com/

Pigeon hole! To categorize; especially to limit or be limited to a particular category, role, etc. Society in general seems to be addicted to putting people in a box - typecasting, profiling, stereotyping. Television, like most other businesses, has long established traditions as to which occupations require a particular type of "Pigeon" to place in that hole.

I broke into commercial broadcast television in the late 1950's. The Engineering/Technical staff, the studio and properties crews, newsfilm and other occupations were definitely male oriented. Clerks, typists, secretaries, etc., were of the feminine gender. The Ladies could properly host a "Women's" or children's show, or do an on-air commercial pitch, but the line was drawn at general staff announcing duties, all male, of course.

Even within the gender defined roles, duties were strictly segregated. It was observed, with a great deal of truth, that you could tell which crew a studio worker belonged to if you saw a piece of backdrop start to fall over: The Tech guy would grab for the TV Camera; the props guy would go for the scenery.

Well, in a professional environment, I suppose that is well and good.
In a Unionized shop, imperative. But I never looked upon a school as being anything other than wide open to all students, free from typecasting, profiling, and stereotyping. Announcers, directors, camera operators, performers - "Build NO Boxes!" No pigeons stuffed into holes. Nor was I content with the "Vocational-Technical" label many tried to impose upon my classes.

Sure, I am quite proud of those individuals who found a home and a life's career in broadcasting or a related field. I am equally proud of the many who found something valuable to take with them into the world beyond the educational setting. "Don't knock-knock it until you have try-tried it" was a phrase popular at one time. Well, I believed anyone who wanted to "try-try it" should have the chance. 
Many found that television had nothing to offer them. That, too, satisfies me. "What if I only had a chance. . . " What if . . ." 
"What if's" are among the saddest of all things. 
No, I am quite aware that each of us possess unique skills, talents,and abilities. I also know that gender, race, or other determinates should not prohibit us from at least having the opportunity to try things, even if we find that it is just not our "Pigeon hole." 
I hope that I will be judged as more prone to encouragement than discouragement. Certainly, a look at the many things that were done at WGSF by all participants, adult and student, indicate that we took some wild leaps of faith. 
I looked upon my role more as an enabler, one who provided opportunities, and then filled in the gaps as needed. I tried, over the years, to show how artists, technicians, thespians, journalists, and, yes, athletes, could come together, work together, and produce a television program as a team. Each person contributing their best in their personal area of expertise to become part of the whole.

03/14/09

The Summer of '76 - WGSF to The TV Center

08:17:08 pm, by admin  116 views 
Categories: WGSF History

Link: http://wgsf.oldgleaner.com/

Moving In: The Summer of '76

The main item of business following the final day of broadcasting, June 30, 1976 at WGSF Television was to sever the links to the broadcast world. The FCC license to broadcast was formally returned to the Federal Communications Commission. Many steps had already been taken, such as scheduling the cut-off of feeds from PBS, O/NET, and the press feeds for news. Now the equipment itself had to be relinquished to the various agencies.
The Channel 31 Mobile Production van was deeded to the Ohio Historical Society, along with some equipment and programming records.
The Telephone company came to take down the microwave dish that had provided our PBS feed. I jokingly commented that if they didn't want the antenna, I would take it. A little later, one of the men came in and asked if I was serious about taking the antenna. Seems that the truck they brought wasn't big enough to hold a ten-foot diameter parabolic dish antenna. I said that I really would take it (for a possible ham radio use). They called back to the office in Columbus, where it was determined that they could not just give it to me; I would/could pay for it, though. How much? The grand sum of $4.00!

The WGSF files were transferred to the Board of Education Office downtown. The WGSF office on 5th Street was cleaned out, and a new occupant moved in. Secretary Ellen Wolfe was transferred to a clerical job at the Board of Education.
There were still many telephone calls - the mail and calls would continue for many years. Some people seem to never get the word!
Alice Armstrong came up to make copies of some of her music education programs. There were a few visitors to the station on Horn's Hill, but it was, for the most part, a quiet, lonely summer.
There had, of course, been discussions as to how best to utilize the equipment that remained, and especially how to integrate the television service into the overall Audio-Visual/Media program. There was very little in the way of video tape equipment in the Newark School System in 1976. Most of it was located on Horn's Hill, not the most convenient way to service the classrooms. Finally, a room was found on the Newark High School campus, in 'E' Building. This room measured only 9 x 18 feet, but was enough to set up a shelf with several video tape recorders. Tapes could be made, then taken to the classroom for playback on one of two available reel-to-reel machines on a TV Cart.
I still had access to the old blue route van from WGSF, and it made many trips up and down The Hill that summer of '76!
The beginning of the school year was not the end of frequent excursions to the station, but the room was ready to go!
Room '15 E' became the "TV Center" and I quickly became responsible for the scheduling and movement of the TV/VTR Carts.

03/14/09

Television for Newark, Ohio

04:35:53 pm, by admin  117 views 
Categories: Background, WGSF History

Link: http://wgsf.oldgleaner.com/

The "Baby Boom" years hit the entire United States school system with the largest number of students in its history. The trickle began with those born after the War (WWII) in 1946, and swelled to flood proportions by the late 1950's. Institutions of Learning scrambled to accommodate the influx of students.
New technologies for teaching were eagerly explored, as well as constructing new buildings. The rapidly developing television industry was championed by many educators as a means of reaching, and teaching, many students simultaneously, utilizing the few teachers that were available.
Newark, Ohio,was one of the communities that moved toward television technology in the 1950's. The new campus style high school,dedicated in 1963, was wired for closed circuit television (CCTV) and distribution of off-air television. The intention was to utilize the new non-commercial Educational Television stations then under construction. The Ohio State University, in Columbus, OH, had a station broadcasting by the late 1950's. A consortium of educators and institutions developed a service to distribute Instructional Television programs by means of high-flying aircraft, carrying
special television equipment. The Midwest Program for Airbourne Television Instruction (MPATI) operated for several years, flying over Montpelier, IN. The New Newark High School was equipped to receive and distribute these programs.
There were two major drawbacks with this system at Newark: The selection and scheduling of MPATI programs did not fit well in the high school curriculum or classroom schedule; and, not enough television receivers were available to service the many classrooms.
Accordingly, a pilot project was set up at one of the elementary schools, Hazelwood School, on the far east side of Newark. This was utilized for many years.
The Columbus City Schools developed their own Instructional Television curriculum, and broadcast those programs on the Ohio State University station, WOSU-TV, Channel 34, in Columbus. Most of the schools in Newark were not able to receive an acceptable signal directly from WOSU-TV, however.
The Media or "Audio-Visual Department" had been working toward on these challenges in the late 1950's. A community group was able to come up with a plan to build an Educational TV Station in Newark. The low-powered station was on a high hill, positioned to easily receive the signal from WOSU-TV and rebroadcast it to the entire Newark Community. WGSF Television began regular broadcasting on March 18, 1963. No Instructional/Educational programs were aired at that time, however. Only a week-day, evening schedule was possible, mainly from the National Educational Television service (NET).
By the following year, summer of 1964, a consortium of local Ohio school districts, including Newark and Columbus, worked out a plan to distribute ITV programs via WOSU-TV, which included both copyright and other ownership and clearance issues, and a cost-sharing program through membership in the Central Ohio ETV Foundation (COETV).
Several other Ohio communities developed similar arrangements, utilizing University ETV stations.
WGSF Television added personnel in the summer of 1964, and began broadcasting COETV programs in September, 1964, as well as the evening NET "Public" programs.

03/15/09

Cablecasting

03:23:34 pm, by admin  217 views 
Categories: WGSF History

Link: http://wgsf.oldgleaner.com/

The launch of the Soviet earth-orbiting satellite, Sputnik 1, on October 4, 1957, surprised the world. A second orbital satellite, Sputnik 2, on November 3, 1957, stunned the American scientific and educational community, especially since this satellite was large enough to carry a dog into space. Subsequent failures of the much vaunted,and televised, American Vanguard project stuck in people's minds and deepened American dismay over the country's position in the Space Race. 
Coupled with the need to provide education to the ever burgeoning "Baby Boom" school population, the nation responded with increased funding for science and technology. Television technology was one of the solutions proposed, building upon the recent assignment of UFH television channels in even the smaller communities across the nation. Instructional/Educational program production was also encouraged and funded. 
While some funding proposals focused upon broadcast facilities, including state-operated systems, still other funds were made available directly to the schools. Reception and distribution equipment enabled the schools to receive instructional (ITV) and enrichment programming (ETV) for utilization in the classroom and lecture hall. 
Later, as video recording technology developed to the point where consumer/educator grade television recording and playback equipment was practical and affordable, funding was made available for this technology. While many schools used some of the available funding to purchase such equipment, including television cameras and other related hardware, the technology often overwhelmed the "Audio/Visual/Media" personnel at the schools. Unless someone was available on-staff with the expertise and the time to work with the television equipment, this "great technological leap forward" often languished. 
Many school administrators, and forward-thinking visionaries, revisited this bonanza of television "origination" equipment when the CATV franchise laws were made public. People were eager to activate those "Public/Community" channels. 
I (Leland Hubbell, former Manager of the WGSF PBS station, and now of the Newark School District TV Center) of was one of those people!
While the Cable Companies were favorably inclined toward granting access to the Community Access channels for qualified applicants, they quickly learned from experience that many applicants were not able to bring their hopes and dreams to fruition. Dedicated channels devoid of programming served no one. It would take more than “talking points” to become wired into the CATV system and occupy one of those channels. Still, my goal was to take the school system into cablecasting.

03/15/09

From Broadcast to Cable

03:15:45 pm, by admin  60 views 
Categories: WGSF History

Link: http://wgsf.oldgleaner.com/

The first systems to communicate over long distances with electrical signals utilized wire or cable. The telegraph, teleprinter, and later, telephone, required a physical connection to the "wire" to send or receive those communications. It also meant that the "wire" owner not only could restrict service, but could charge for the connection.
When it was discovered that radio frequency waves could also carry those same electrical signals, but without the wired connection, it was naturally called "wireless" communication. 
The transmission of sound (voice and music) programs intended for reception by the general public came to be called broadcasting, from the term used of the scattering of seed. Anyone within the signal range of the transmitting, or broadcasting, station, with the appropriate reception device (receiver) could listen in. And they did. Radio broadcasting quickly caught on with the public in the 1920's, '30's, and '40's.
Methods of also broadcasting pictures were rapidly developing at the start of WWII. Put on hold during the war years, television quickly became popular after the war. Television broadcasting was much more involved and expensive than radio, however, and was generally limited to large population areas. Many small towns and cities found that they could not afford to operate a television broadcast station, nor were they always able to receive adequate (or any) signals, especially if they were in a location, such as a valley, that blocked the VHF signals, or rendered them so weak as to be unusable.
Those broadcast signals might be quite adequate at some higher elevation, however - if you happened to have an antenna located there. Re-enter wire and cable communications. Set up an antenna in a favorable reception location, connect a cable to it, and run the cable to your home down in the valley. Or to many homes in the valley, for that matter. Just keep stringing that cable. Community Antenna Television (CATV) was born. 
Again, the owner of the system could not only place restrictions on who could use the service, but could charge for it. Money could be, and was, made in CATV service. Competition to construct CATV systems was quite keen, so much so that regulation soon followed. As with many public utilities, franchises could be granted - or denied. It quickly became necessary for Federal Government as well as local oversight of CATV service, especially because the broadcast signals carried on the CATV systems were under Federal Communications Commission oversight.
Programming from existing television broadcast stations was not the only issue, however, as the final legislation was developed in the 1970's. A community, or a CATV system owner, for that matter, could insert television broadcasts that originated from even the simplest television source. These signals could take the form of a program schedule guide, a local "Bulletin Board" service, or the origination and broadcast of local community sports, educational, governmental, religious or other programming. Rules were formulated to require franchisees to provide channels for certain local community programs. Educational institutions and governmental bodies could then access the entire cable (CATV) audience without the expense of operating a large broadcast transmitter system. 
The local competition was quite vigorous in the early 1970's and a CATV franchise was operating in the Newark community by the time WGSF ceased broadcasting in 1976. Now, the Newark City School District had to establish a television origination operation that could be placed on one of those Educational CATV channels stipulated in the franchise.

To Be . . . or Not To Be

06:25:59 pm, by admin 152 views
Categories: WGSF History

Link: http://wgsf.oldgleaner.com/

It was a classic case of "good news, bad news."

The good news: The key word in the early 1970's was "Upgrade." as in, "Upgrade all Ohio Public Broadcast Television stations to become fully capable of both transmitting and originating color television programs."

See: The Statewide Plan

See: The Stations

Each of the stations was invited to submit a list of equipment necessary to at least play back film and video tape in color. While all stations, including WGSF, could now transmit network originated programs in color, several still lacked the facilities for full color capability. In some cases, this meant adding a color-capable camera for an existing film chain, or colorizing a video tape machine. For WGSF, however this meant almost a quarter of a million dollars worth of "upgrade!"
It didn't take long for us to dig out the equipment catalogs and put together a list. The Newark School District Board of Education - licensee of the WGSF station - filled out the application for funding, and submitted it to the State.
So far,so good. We, at the station, were elated!

Now the bad news: The other applicants were on solid financial footing; only minor modifications and clarifications would be needed in their case.
Not so with WGSF. The Newark Board of Education was asked to prepare financial projections for continued long-term support for the station, including provisions for operation and maintenance of the equipment, free as it was. This was no small matter.
The typical color video tape machine contained parts that had to be replaced after a few hundred hours of operation; these "headwheel" assemblies were expensive. While the knowledge necessary to maintain this color equipment could be acquired by diligent study on the part of the Engineer/Technicians, adequate, quality test equipment had always been lacking at WGSF.
Further, would The Board be able to attract and employ capable technicians when experienced technicians typically moved to better paying jobs in the larger markets.
In short, the Ohio ETV Network Commission wanted assurance that the expenditure of a vast chunk of money was a worthwhile investment for the State of Ohio.

See: Photo of Newark Advocate news article in the WGSF Photo Album.

john louden [Visitor]

I remember when I saw the first color signal from WOSU relayed through the WGSF transmitter. I knew we did not have color capability and I was surprised the transmitter could still pass the color signal.

03/18/09 @ 07:58

03/16/09

Toward Granting of a CATV Franchise for Newark, Ohio

05:53:39 pm, by admin  181 views 
Categories: WGSF History

Link: http://wgsf.oldgleaner.com/

Several companies had applied for a cable television (CATV) franchise in Newark over the years, but none had been granted. 
Pressure on the Newark City Council really built up in the early 1970’s. It seemed more and more likely that this time the push would result in the granting of a CATV franchise.
I followed the development of the Cable CATV Rules and Regulations closely, as did many others in the educational and broadcast communities. Also like many community interest groups, I recognized the potential of utilizing one of those channels as an adjunct to the WGSF broadcast capability. I openly championed access to the Community channels as stipulated in the Rules and Regulations, suggesting that they decide in favor of a company that offered access channels. This did not endear me to some of the parties involved in the debates and discussions concerning the granting of a franchise for CATV service in Newark. 
A lot of money was at stake, and the participants - the companies and law makers - were feeling the pressure. 
Some of the applicants felt that I was favoring one company over another, and speaking out where I had no right to do so. My point, however, was, “If you grant a cable franchise, please include stipulations that include a Community Access channel for the Newark City Schools.” Some applicants seemed to dodge that portion of the rules and regulations in their presentations to the Newark City Council. Others seemed to dangle various enhancements that in all likelihood would never be implemented.
The television service community was also very concerned about the impact a CATV franchise would have upon their occupations. Even though most realized that the CATV movement was sweeping the country, and that the granting of a franchise was likely, it still didn’t sit well. Television antennas, supporting towers, installation and service made up a large part of their business. There was also concern that the CATV company would even restrict access to the receivers in the homes. 
I had enjoyed a good, working relationship with these technicians, but many now were thinking that I was a traitor to their cause. Again, I affirmed that I had no real input into the selection of a franchisee. I was simply speaking out to make all parties aware of the new Rules and Regulations, especially the requirements for the community access channels. 
I will never know whether my efforts made any impact on the choice of a company to receive the CATV franchise. As written, though, the franchise specified criteria for granting access to community channels on the system. 
The next step was to meet that criteria for an educational channel.

03/17/09

First Day of Programming, WGSF

09:34:17 pm, by admin 689 views 
Categories: WGSF History

Link: http://wgsf.oldgleaner.com/

The first day of programming on the new WGSF Television station was March 18,1963. The following photo copy of the actual Program Log, signed by WGSF Chief Engineer, Robert Brooks, is shown in the Photo Album. (Open a separate page in your browser, and switch back and forth for best results)

Program Log

The entry "Hours 164" refers to the total operation of the transmitter up to that time, which included various tests and alignment prior to actual programming.

A poster identifying the channel and call letters ( WGSF, Channel 28, Newark, Ohio was shown during the interval between programs, while Mr.Brooks switched away from the WOSU-TV signal. A videcon camera borrowed from the ETV station in Toledo was set in the studio. The video source is indicated as "LS" or Live studio origination.
See: The First Day
for photos of Mr. Brooks, the camera in the studio, and the transmitter switching control panel.

Programming oriented toward children aired from 4:00 until 6:00 PM.

The first locally produced program was aired at 7:00 PM. Produced and narrated by Newark School's Superintendent Dr. Thomas Southard, utilized teachers who had taken a course on "Teaching By Television" at The Ohio State University.

03/19/09

WOSU-TV to Cease Analog

07:39:16 pm, by admin  410 views 
Categories: General Discussion - WGSF Blog

Link: http://wgsf.oldgleaner.com/

The Media section of the Columbus Dispatch, March 19, under Broadcast Bits, announced that WOSU-TV will cease analog broadcasting at 7:a.m. March 31.

I have no knowledge of plans to continue operation on W31AA, the Newark Translator station, when this happens.
The Channel 34 to channel 31 translator has always depended upon the channel 34 analog signal.

MORE:
March 25, 2009 - Columbus Dispatch
Dates for switch to digital only:
WSFJ-TV (51) - April 16
WBNS-TV (10) - June 12
WCMH-TV (4) - June 12
WSYX-TV (6) - June 12

03/19/09

Educational Televison Status Report, 1959

04:45:17 am, by admin  364 views 
Categories: Background

Link: http://wgsf.oldgleaner.com/

This report outlined considerations to implement the reception or distribution of Instructional Television programs in the Newark, Ohio City School District.

Newark Public Schools
Department of Instruction

Audio-Visual Services
February 5,1959


FROM: R. G. Powell, Audio-Visual Services

THROUGH: Forest Moran, Director of Instruction

THROUGH: Thomas B. Southard, Superintendent of Schools

TO: Officers and Members, Newark Board of Education

SUBJECT: Educational Television Status Report

PURPOSE:

The purpose of this report is to report on the progress of research that has been undertaken by various members of the staff of the Newark Public Schools concerning the possible applications and potentials that educational television offers to the Newark Public Schools.

(Note: Parts of the above listed document will be here excerpted to provide a sense of the scope of the original plan for television utilization in the Newark Public Schools.
The entire document contains eighteen (18) pages, including estimated construction and operating costs.)


(Excerpt)

THE NEWARK PLAN:

After much discussion and planning, a workable system for Newark has taken form. The basic plan has been reviewed by many persons associated with education and the telecasting industry and has gone through many revisions. It is presented here in the phases that we see it developing.

PHASE I: A building, perhaps of geodesic design, would be constructed on the high school campus to house the television facilities. It is believed that the building, itself, could be constructed in such a way as to make it unique to television application to school systems. Equipment would be purchased to allow us to connect to the co-axial cable system that is being installed in the three little schools, the science building, and the Hub,to distribute films, film-strips, slides, audio signals only, and live programs. At the same time, the persons assigned to the staff could be working with the studio equipment in preparation to presenting certain parts of our curriculum to classes throughout the school system

PHASE II: Co-axial cable would connect the television center with every school in the city, enabling each school to to receive as many as twelve different programs at one time. 
.
PHASE III: Since the initial purchase of equipment would be along broadcast quality lines,this same equipment could be used for open-circuit telecasting. A transmitter would be purchased and an antenna erected, and certain programs would be transmitted to the public living within a certain radius of the center.

(End excerpt)

(Ed. NOTES: - A new campus-style high school was under design and/or construction at the time of the publication of this document in1959. The reference to the "three little schools" was the working designator for Newark High Buildings later known as 'C' 'D' and 'E' buildings.

Much of the 1959 'Newark Plan' was in fact accomplished, although in reverse order: (a) A television broadcast station was built on Horn's Hill, remote from the Newark High School campus, and operated from March 18, 1963 through June 30, 1976 (See Phase III above) (b) Co-axial cable (CATV) connected the television center with every school in the city of Newark (Phase II.) (c) It may be of interest to note that, by 1990, many other parts of the system proposed as Phase I in 1959 did in fact exist! 

(1) - The TV Center was located in 'D' Building on the Newark High School Campus.

(2) - Live programs were broadcast from the TV Center's studio, not only to the High School Campus, but to the entire Newark School System, and the community at large, via the community-wide CATV system, on CATV Channel 19.
(3) - The TV Center staff scheduled, and distributed upon demand, video programs made possible through a State of Ohio network. The Newark Public Schools were a charter member of the Central Ohio ETV Foundation, a consortium that provided Instructional Television (ITV) programs from national sources.

(4) - The daily school announcements were provided to all teaching stations at Newark High School via television receivers in each classroom, and also by audio over the campus-wide Public Address system.
(5 - Audio only signals could be directed to selected buildings and classrooms, providing students with radio broadcasting experience. 

(6) - Pick-up points throughout the high school campus also enabled and were used for telecasting from the Performing Arts Center (NHS Auditorium), the Jim Allen Gymnasium, and the new Library/classroom Building.
(7) - Several of the Elementary and Middle schools were operating their own closed circuit (CCTV) systems, in addition to the building-wide CATV distribution.

8) - Students and teachers in those buildings had received training in television production, telecast their own daily school announcements, and often participated in a weekly school report to the community (via CATV Channel 19) - Schools In Action.
(9 - The monthly Board of Education meetings were video-taped, and telecast to the community. Upon occasion, the Board meetings were aired "Live."

(10) - The TV Center utilized automation and other technology not envisioned in 1959 to maintain a full-time presence on the community-wide CATV channel 19, which included school announcements, program schedules, and telecasts of school activities.

03/26/09

Vacuum Tubes

01:32:25 pm, by admin  1514 views 
Categories: Technical

Link: http://wgsf.oldgleaner.com/

The original equipment used at WGSF was built in the heyday of the vacuum tube, following in a long tradition of both broadcast and consumer equipment. Practically every piece of equipment used them, lots and lots of vacuum tubes. Cousins to the light bulb, with many of the same characteristics: they weakened with age, and often departed this useful life by “burning out,” that is, the heater or filament opened. Of course, they could also develop a short between the elements in the tube, sometimes taking out several other components as well. 
Most broadcasters - and industrial users of vacuum tubes - tried to head off such disasters through “Preventative Maintenance.” That is, we periodically checked or measured the quality of the tubes. Time consuming, yes, it meant pulling out each vacuum tube in turn, usually with the equipment turned off, dialing up the tube characteristic on a roll chart on the tube checker, inserting the tube, allowing time for it to “warm up,” and pressing the test button. The reading was duly noted and recorded on a chart listing each tube, the equipment location, date, etc. Those that failed to measure up were replaced from the spare stock. We were required to maintain sufficient spares to restore operation in case of an outage. 
Most of the vacuum tubes were similar to those used in countless radio and television receivers all over town. We could obtain these at one of two dealers in town, and were given quantity discounts, the same as radio and TV repair shops. 
Other tubes were more specialized, especially those used in the power stages of the transmitter. Industrial types, like 5763, 829B, 4X150, 866A and 872. We went to an industrial tube dealer in Columbus for those. The price was still reasonable, but the “biggie” was the GL-6942 transmitting tube. Made only by General Electric, the manufacturer of the WGSF transmitter, a trip to the store hit the supply fund hard. Always above $1,000, they were going for about $1,600 - each - by the mid 1970’s, and the transmitter used two of them. 
The Gl-6942 was a specialized power tube, designed for use in a coaxial cavity at UHF frequencies. It required a specialized turn-on and warm up procedure, blower cooling at all times it was powered on, and gradual cool down. Still, a filament or inter-electode short took out more tubes than old age. Replacing a final tube also required a lengthy retuning process - no two tubes were ever exactly alike - electronically.
The transmitter was not the only equipment to require kilo-buck expenditures for tube replacement. The television cameras had their equivalent in the photo pickup tube, the image orthicon, or I.O. Though not subject to shorting like the transmitter finals, these tubes had their own quirks. As they aged, the tubes would tend to retain the image focused upon the photo mosaic. They became “sticky.” It helped if you could “orbit” the image, that is, you slowly moved the camera just a little bit to the right, then up, then left, then down, over and over, trying not to jerk or be readily noticeable to the audience. It took practice to become a good “orbiter.” Electronic orbiters were eventually developed, and were included in the units in the mobile truck when we got it. Still, the time came when replacement was a necessity. We would hold out as long as possible, then cough up the $1,200 to $1,600 price tag, and enjoy a new, non-sticky tube - for a while.
We discovered that we could buy a new videcon type camera for the price of that one tube. Mostly solid-state (transistorized) except for the pick-up videcon tube, and the CRT in the viewfinder. Low power, long lifed, and certainly attractive. Except that the cameras in that price range didn’t meet broadcast video specifications for certain waveform measurements. We found a way around that, though. The TK-30 camera control unit provided the necessary horizontal and vertical drive pulses going to the camera head, and then added the proper sync, blanking, pedestal and shading signals for the return video. We made an adapter that allowed us to connect the GBC Videcon camera to the TK-30 camera control unit. The camera got the necessary synchronizing drive pulses for proper timing, sent the video back to the control unit - which didn’t know that the original TK-30 I.O. camera head wasn't "out there!" We could set the pedestal and gain, and even adjust the shading, all with a substitute camera that cost about the same price as a replacement I.O. tube. 
Later, I was able to obtain a small,transistorized rack-mounted unit to replace the TK-30 control unit. The full TK-30 complement went to the Ohio Historical Society when the station ceased operation. By that time, newer camera equipment and video production switchers contained more elaborate circuitry than our racks and boxes of tubes ever had.