On February 23, 1945 KXL Broadcasters, consisting of: Frances R. Symons, President; Edmund B. Craney, Vice-President; Howard S. Jacobson, Secretary-Treasurer & General Manager began the filing process for a new FM station in Portland, Oreg., seeking 95 Megacycles, broadcasting unlimited hours with a coverage of 9,710 square miles. The transmitter site would on Mt. Scott. At the time, no station was broadcasting from that location. The proposed 100 foot self-supporting tower and 64 foot "Lingo six-bay horizontal turnstile" would make the overall structure 164 feet. A 10kw transmitter was planned, supplying the antenna with 9.6kw and an effective radiated power of 40.8kw. KXL Broadcasters proposed 50kw if the FCC found the 40.8kw not adequate to serve Portland.
On May 18, 1945 the FCC received KXL Broadcasters application and issued it file number: B5-PH-502 on May 25, 1945. On June 23, 1945 the FCC placed the application in the pending file, pursuant to FCC policy of February 23, 1943. Here is the standard letter mailed to all FM applicants during WWII:
FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION; 66643
Washington, D. C.; Serial No. 71; February 23, 1943
NOTICE TO HIGH FREQUENCY (FM) BROADCAST STATION LICENSEES, PERMITTEES AND APPLICANTS
The Commission has decided that because of great shortages in material, equipment and skilled personnel, and in order to sustain the interest in high frequency (FM) broadcasting, it will not dismiss or deny applications which cannot qualify under the provisions of the Memorandum Opinion of April 27, 1942, for construction permits or for modification of construction permits requesting extension of the periods of construction for high frequency (FM) broadcast stations, but instead will take no action at this time upon such applications.
Permittees or applicants for construction permits for high frequency (FM) broadcast stations whose construction permits or applications were surrendered or dismissed pursuant to the Memorandum Opinion of April 27, 1942, may request reinstatement of their applications.
This policy is in addition to the policy announced August 4, 1942, which provided for the issuance of licenses for high frequency (FM) broadcast stations during the war provided construction has reached a point where substantial service can be rendered.
Similar policy has been adopted with respect to television stations.
BY THE COMMISSION
T. J. Slowie,
On October 19, 1945 the FCC "Conditionally Granted" KXL Broadcasters a "Construction Permit" for a new metropolitan, possibly rural FM broadcast station in Portland, Oregon. KXL had requested "rural". On April 10, 1946 the FCC assigned the station call letters "KXL-FM"; Class: Rural, on 96.5 Megacycles with 39.9kw; Antenna height 952 feet above average terrain; Tower 164 feet above ground. On April 13, 1946 KXL Broadcasters was one of four Portland AM stations announcing in The Oregonian, the intent of building an FM station.
On June 19, 1946 KXL Broadcasters proposed an idea to KALE, Inc. for joint operation of dual broadcast facilities on Mt. Scott. KALE was in the planning stages of moving from the KOIN transmitter site at Sylvan. KALE was not interested in this plan. On August 5, 1946 Federal Telephone & Radio Corp. sent KXL Broadcasters a quotation price for a "164 foot International Derrick Self-supporting Steel Tower designed to support the Federal Square Loop Antenna including CAA lighting" $4,462. "Erection of above including the necessary foundations and tower lighting" $3,950.
On January 21, 1947 KXL Broadcasters announced to the FCC plans to purchase a REL 250 watt FM transmitter for testing with a 3 Bay turnstile antenna. KXL-FM would begin as a mobile station with FCC permission. The transmitter would be operated from a truck. The transmitter laying on its side. A 22 foot aluminum mast would require only a limited crew to erect. A station wagon would be equipped with an REL receiver to determine if multi-path signals were predominant in a particular terrain. The FM receiver station wagon would be tested in rural locations, including the side of Mt. Hood.
On February 4, 1947 KXL Broadcasters placed an order with Radio Engineering Laboratories, Inc., Long Island City, N.Y. for a REL transmitter and 3 Bay Antenna made in two 12 foot sections which would make an antenna 22 feet high when put together. Also two additional sections that could be placed under this antenna to raise it another 22 feet. Ed Craney to REL "We intend to use this transmitter lying on its side, as you indicated it could be operated and will mount it in a truck. We are telling you this because some changes will probably have to be made in the crystal mounting and rectifier tub mounting. If you can give us any suggestions as to the securing of the transmitter to the truck, we will greatly appreciate it. If any special mountings could be secured from you to let the transmitter rest on sponge rubber so as to protect it as much as possible, we would like to have such mountings if available."
On February 18, 1947 the FCC granted KXL Broadcasters authorization for making site tests. On March 19, 1947 Ed Craney requested REL to equip the transmitter with a transformer and a tap on primary so it could operate on 110 volts as this was the voltage of the generator. On May 13, 1947 REL shipped the order which included one "REL model 549( )-DL, 250 Watt Frequency-Modulated Broadcast Transmitter, using the Armstrong Dual Channel Direct Crystal Controlled Modulator." (manual 5-1-46). Complete with 2 sets of tubes and 1 set of crystals. Serial #7099 for $4,700.00. One REL model 642 Three Bay Antenna plus REL model 689 Special Mounting. $950.00. One REL model 643 Pre-Emphasis Unit. $125.00. Two 100 foot transmission lines (open) #8 copper wire and 50 three inch spreader insulators. $30.00. Total: $5,805.00.
There is only speculation KXL-FM did test broadcasting on 96.5mc in the Summer and Fall of 1947. In an FCC letter dated February 17, 1948 to KXL Broadcasters, the FCC does make reference to testing in 1947: "Although the Commission authorized the issuance of a construction permit on April 10, 1946, the permit has never been issued due to your desire to make tests to determine the best site for the station. It is understood that, while considerable measurement work has been done, it was desired to make further test in the area. In view of the time that has elapsed, the Commission desires to know whether such tests have been completed, or, if not, present plans concerning them. The Commission desires to issue a construction permit for your station as soon as practicable. If regular operation cannot begin in the near future, please advise the Commission concerning the practicability of interim operation."
In a reply letter to the FCC on March 19, 1948 KXL Broadcasters stated: Interim operation of the FM station pending final construction is not feasible for the reason that the FM transmitter to be used by KXL-FM is the one which will be used in the tests to be commenced around April 15, weather permitting. Moreover, the AM transmitter of KXL is located on low ground--too low for proper use in this area of the FM transmitter. The plans are to take the antenna to the top of the mountain (Larch Mtn.) for the purposes of conducting the tests. During the testing period it is the desire of the station to duplicate KXL's program service from the test location."