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November Electronics Project for GRI - Franks Box with one bent pin at $30

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Articles It doesn't get any easier than this. A new piece of gear for the ghost-hunting toy box. I went out on the Radio Shack site and ordered model# 12-587, an AM-FM radio for $30 that can, with one bent pin on a connector, be converted to sweep stations on AM or FM to operate as a Franks Box.

So this is our project for November. For the winter months, I'll run about one or two of these how-to articles a month and share my own experiences with the build for all of you.

For this receiver, which I received on Friday, November 6'th, I had one screwdriver and a single pair of needle nose pliers. It turned out to be all I needed to make the modication. The bending of the single pin to the left (from my view of it) that inhibits the "stop on station detect" was so easy that I had the entire modification done in ten, count 'em, ten minutes.

The next trick is to integrate the audio output of the radio to record to a digital recorder. There are a couple of options. For one, just letting the radio sound record through the air to a digital recorder is one option. The disadvantage is that any subtle message might be lost with other noises completing for attention.

Another way would be for the recorder to be patched into the input of a digital recorder at the same time as a microphone with a Y-connector stereo mini cable.

http://www.radioshack.com/product/index.jsp?productId=2404397 to see one of these. This would provide the means to use a microphone input from a computer microphone. Directional mics are better for this kind of thing if you can find one. Amazon has one from Cyber Acoustics for about 4 bucks or you can find them at garage sales or in your junk drawer.

The two items can be patched into the input of the recorder and then you just need either headphones or an amplified speaker to complete the arrangement to listen to the output. Make sure to keep the amplified speaker far away from the mic so there is no feedback.

Testing and using the hacked radio for EVP work

I will test and post some EVP sessions using this hacked radio during November and post the results here. If you make the same modification and wish to discuss it and your results, feel free to comment on this article. I expect to have a test set of EVP runs done by mid-November.

How to do the modification for yourself

Visit this YouTube video for the full skinny on how to do the modification:


For an actual session with this very radio hack, see:

Links of interest:
  • http://www.radioshack.com/product/index.jsp?productId=3734118 for the radio at Radio Shack