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|City||Mountain View, California|
|Broadcast area||San Francisco Bay Area|
|HAAT||−75.0 meters (−246.1 ft)|
|Callsign meaning||St. Francis High|
|Former frequencies||90.5 (1970s-1982)
|Owner||Mountain View Public Broadcasting|
KSFH FM 87.9 is a student radio station broadcasting an active rock radio format. Licensed to serve Mountain View, California, USA, the station is owned by Mountain View Public Broadcasting, and is completely run by the students of private school Saint Francis High School, broadcasting a wide range of music. The radio station is available in all of Mountain View, most of Los Altos, and the northern part of San Jose. The station also broadcasts home football, basketball, and baseball games.
In the 1970s, KSFH broadcast from two rooms adjacent to the boys' gymnasium. The signal was so weak, it was joked[by whom?] that once the listener left the parking lot, they lost the signal. Patients in nearby El Camino Hospital (diagonally bordering the campus, separated by the football field) would call in and make requests. The format in that decade was album-oriented rock, emphasizing Jethro Tull, Yes, Led Zeppelin, and other major rock groups of the era. Despite its weak signal, music director Jeff McCallion successfully negotiated with several record labels (A&M Records among them) to provide free promotional records for the station to play. This was a rare benefit for a high school radio station.
KSFH was built in the technological spirit of the 1970s and similar to the famed "Home Brew" Computer Clubs that were frequented by Steve Wozniak and Steve Jobs. The station's transmitters, mixing boards and primary "on air" components were almost all entirely built from scratch, few items were "off the shelf" ready bought. KSFH was hand crafted, built and engineered by students and former students (Primarily engineered thru the diligence of James O'Malley), the station's equipment was built from spares and electronic components purchased from Quement, Haltec and Radio Shack electronics stores. Long cold nights building the station (the rooms had no heat) were fueled by resourcefulness, junk food, Taco Bell and Jack in the Box runs - like all great startups[vague]. The original transmitter (10 Watt SPARTA exciter) was built from a repair manual, purchased from SPARTA Electronics, and later christened "Everclear", not only for its clarity but also after a popular 110 proof liquor, only sold in Nevada. Finally, after the erection of the tower and antenna upon the St. Francis Gym roof, all broadcast components worked perfectly[according to whom?] - KSFH was on the air. Serving St. Francis High School, its students and community for decades.
KSFH originally used 90.5 MHz before moving to 88.1 in 1982. KSFH moved to 87.9 MHz in 1999. The application to move to 87.9 was applied for on August 17, 1998 and granted in 1999. A license to cover was issued on October 9, 2001.
KSFH is one of only two radio stations (K200AA being the other) that broadcast on 87.9; that frequency is not normally issued by the FCC due to it being close to television Channel 6. KSFH is the only one operating under the rules as written, which only permits the use of 87.9 for displaced full-service class-D FM stations.
St. Francis High School consummated the sale of KSFH to Mountain View Public Broadcasting on October 7, 2015, at a price of $20,000.
History of call letters
The call letters KSFH-FM previously were assigned to a station in San Francisco, California. It began broadcasting October 22, 1947, and was licensed to the Pacific Broadcasting Company.