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KXLY-TV Abandons Video Objective

December 25, 1952

Bad Weather, Icing Slow Mount Spokane Progress

The Spokesman-Review

“Television by Christmas” plans were abandoned Tuesday by KXLY-TV here as bad weather continued to hamper work on the station’s transmitter installation atop Mount Spokane.

W. Norman Hawkins, television manager for the station, said weather conditions on the nearby peak have made work almost impossible during the entire month of December.

“All we need is one good day—during which we could connect our transmitter to the broadcasting antenna with the coaxial cable,” said Hawkins. “Virtually all other work that would put us on the air has been completed.”

As early as July 21, Edward B. Craney, general manager of radio station KXLY, had hoped his organization could offer home-reception television by today. Craney’s announcement came after KXLY won (on July 11) Channel 4 television rights from the Federal Communications Commission.

Heavy Ice Load

Work on the KXLY-TV installation on Mount Spokane began in mid-October. By November 30, a micro-wave receiving antenna in the transmitter building was receiving closed-circuit television signals broadcast by KXLY-TV from its studios at W315 Sprague. KXLY-TV has a micro-wave relay unit on top of the Majestic Hotel, W324 First, beamed at Mount Spokane.

Icing conditions well-known to skiers at Mount Spokane have been the main detriment to tower-antenna work by KXLY-TV technicians.

“On December 13 there was from 10 to 15 tons of ice on our 90-foot antenna tower,” Hawkins disclosed. “Then a warm rain came along and knocked it all off to permit work for a short time. Even at that, the periods that our men can work are so short that little can be done at one time.”

KXLY-TV won a court action over its project on Mount Spokane on November 28. Television Spokane (station KNEW) filed suit seeking to void a lease KXLY-TV received from the State Parks and Recreation Commission to utilize the peak for its operations. Acting Superior Court Judge Ed B. Powell ruled in favor of KXLY-TV.

KHQ-TV Congratulated

Meanwhile KXLY-TV hopes to offer telecasting by “mid-January,” according to Hawkins.

KHQ-TV, which had its tower installations complete on December 1, scored an Inland Empire television first on December 8 when it telecast a test pattern, and followed on December 15 with a one-hour program of live and film-recording telecasting. The station offered its first commercial telecast on Saturday.

“Once the antenna-transmitter hook-up has been made, the entire installation must be inspected by an FCC man before we can start telecasting test patterns,” Hawkins added. “After that our schedule should about parallel that of KHQ-TV.”

“We here at KXLY-TV certainly appreciate the early troubles experienced by KHQ-TV in getting installations complete and on the air—and congratulate officials of the station for their fine job,” Hawkins added.

Thursday, December 25, 1952 

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