The LPFM Saga…
Posted on February 26, 2014
I’m a couple months into the LPFM adventure. As reported we got our application in just under the wire. Within a few weeks we received confirmation that the construction permit was granted.
I have requested WCFO as the station call which identifies with our City of Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio. I should hear something back on that request very soon now. There are no other FM’s with that call and only one AM in Georgia with that call which should not be a problem.
I’ve begun the exhausting research for equipment. Being a City function will require that I obtain quotes from three different vendors to satisfy the bid process.
The hard part is taking advice when everyone “has the best” regardless of what your looking for. I have a firm price from a climber to install the antenna. That’s my starting point. Gotta get the antenna up before much else can happen. At 120 feet, I don’t think I’ll be climbing.
Transmitters are in the area of $3k to $6k. An EAS decoder, $2k to $4k. Antenna anywhere from $800 to $3k plus climber for installation.
Once the antenna, transmitter and EAS equipment is in, the station will go on-air for testing using canned programming for a short while.
Our school system is very excited, planning for a broadcast vocational education program. Students will learn all facets of the business; air personalities, programming, news, etc. The school will have a studio/classroom operation in the school.
The school system would like us to have the station up by this fall for football season. I smell Live Remotes there. Since they will have to develop a curriculum, the studio/classroom probably won’t happen for another year.
A backup mini-studio will be located at the transmitter site for those special times when the network connectivity is lost and the main studio is offline. Or, for when I’d like to disappear for a few hours during the day.
LPFM package prices start around $15k and the sky is the limit depending on what you want.
It’s been mentioned that a web presence is an essential component for promoting a station. Guess I’ll be putting up a Facebook page soon. I’ve already started a test streaming station using, of course, a free host service. It’s just a juke-box right now but the boss was impressed. You can listen at WCFO RADIO.