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Re: SOS de MGY - Titanic - Real? or Fake?

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  • David Ring
    W5FG, Jack Najork, sends a good message - why if the recording was a fake why wasn t it circulated. I still have a feeling that the recording -
    Message 1 of 5 , Dec 22, 2007
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      W5FG, Jack Najork, sends a good message - why if the recording was a
      fake why wasn't it circulated.

      I still have a feeling that the recording -
      was done by the members of the AWA. I found Ed Gable's email address
      (finally) and I am sending this to him.

      Jack W5FG found the recording in Tasmania - and his last email is given below.

      The recording is just too good - it was recorded locally. Parks
      Stevenson hasn't written in about the tone of the spark - which would
      certainly be telling because unlike other ships, the Titanic (and her
      sister ships) were outfitted with a 5 kW synchronous rotary spark

      Ed Gable, if you know where this recording came from, drop me a email
      and I will send it onward to the various email groups that have been
      following this.


      David N1EA

      ---------- QTC ----------
      From: J Najork <w5fgnaj@...>
      Date: Dec 23, 2007 4:04 AM
      Subject: Re: SOS de MGY - Titanic - Real? or Fake?
      To: David Ring <n1ea@...>

      Hi David: Thank you for sending me that lengthy msge re authenticity of the SOS
      Titanic . I have one question which puzzles me. If, as you say, some
      of the boys got together and decided to "make history" why did they
      not promulgate their brainchild more widely? No one here or for that
      matter in EU evidently ever heard this and you would think that the
      "guys" would have had a lot more fun by passing their fake message
      around and getting some reaction. As is, the thing was just about
      lost in Australia so, good samaritan Jack decided to save
      history......well, there are a lot of negative opinions out there and
      that is what they are: opinions. In lieu of positive proof I'll just
      go along with the opinion that the message was lost, was found, and is
      of questionable authenticity but no hard proof of "fakery" exists.
      Thanks again, David. I'm off jan 3 an another world cruise...68 days
      around South America, Antarctica ...Look for me W5FG/MM on 18115
      14153 SSB or low end of CW band. 73 Jack

      David Ring <n1ea@...> wrote:
      Thanks for all the wonderful answers about the SOS recording of the Titanic.

      There were only a few who thought it was real. Most thought it was
      false, some for the keying speed, some for other reasons which we will
      investigate later in this email.

      Regarding the keying, many thought it was a Vibroplex, however two
      people reported that they could and can send with a straight key at
      that speed and that the keying in the recording was that of a straight
      key. I know some whom I've heard on the air - TG9ADM comes to mind -
      he is a young man - less than 20 years of age - and he sends with an
      Ameco straight key - also known as a Japanese JJ38 key. He can send
      25 to 28 wpm. I've heard him.

      The other objection to the sending is the shortness of the dashes.
      However, Phillips was a former wire telegrapher and they used a short
      dash - about 2:1 ratio to speed up the transmissions. Also I've found
      that when sending fast on a hand key -- "something" has to go to get
      the speed - it's either the spacing of the length of the code elements
      - mostly the dash.

      In support of it being a fake were mentioned the "highly unlikely"
      possiblity of MCE having a Edison Dictaphone - even if they realized
      they had a "news story" and made a telegraph or telephone call - who
      are they going to call that has such a machine? This is Newfoundland
      - not New York City. However because of Newfoundland's significant
      geographic location with respect to Europe, it had significant
      telegraph coverage - if not telephone coverage. The trans-Atlantic
      telegraph cable was at Heart's Content, NF to Valencia (where present
      coast station EJK is located).

      Some interesting reading on Newfoundland early communications is at
      the bottom of the news release.

      Others question the non-fading of the signal. A signal from 300 miles
      or less - as was the distance from Titanic to Cape Race doesn't
      exhibit the quick fading of the HF bands, but if it does fade, it does
      so gradually often with the time of day - however 300 miles or less
      was almost always solid copy with modern equipment. But most noticed
      that the signal was "too loud" - I agree if the signal was received
      with such a strong signal, it would have been received "somewhere"
      barely received - but heard. It wasn't. Cape Race copied it fairly

      I will close by giving the email from Canadian Radio Historian, Spud
      Roscoe, VE1BC:

      On Dec 16, 2007 1:52 PM, Spud Roscoe
      Here is my 2 cents worth.

      It has to be a fake because none of the old boys I interviewed 35
      years ago that were there mentioned it. The DF station on Cape Race
      had call sign VAZ
      and Reay Bridger operated that in 1919. He modulated a transmitter
      with a gramophone and received several reports on the signal from
      passing passenger ships. If there had been a recording like this these
      old boys would have mentioned it. Unfortunately they have all been
      dead at least 20 years now.

      Another thing I have been given is a typewritten log for this incident.

      Again false. The original logs burned when the MCE/VCE station burned
      in 1919. I knew the log was a fake as soon as I saw it because it was
      not written in the radio language of the day.

      Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to one and all!

      Spud VE1BC
      Halifax, Nova Scotia

      So I conclude - with your help - that it is a fake.

      Thanks for the answers and the help.

      David Ring
      R/O US Merchant Marine (Ret)

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