AM Technical Profile: WHBO

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Transmitter Location:
[map] [bird's eye: tower 1 | towers 2 & 3] [street view] Near Seminole Lake and state 694 in the Tampa/St. Petersburg area, Pinellas Park, FL.
Power (ERP):
Day: 3.6 kW
Night: 420 watts (licensed)
Night: 430 watts (CP)
STA: 105 watts nights
Day: 1 tower
Night: 3 towers (licensed, one tower collapsed and on unused in current setup)
Night: 2 towers (CP)
Other Information:
0.5 mV/m Daytime Groundwave Service Contour from the FCC's Public Files
[Article] Scott Fybush's "Site of the Week" visit to this tower site in 2013, with pictures.
Owned by Genesis Communications
This channel started out in the 50's as a daytimer Country station on 1050 with the calls WHBO (HillsBorOugh county not the pay TV channel). It originally had a transmitter site on Florida Avenue in the Sulphur Springs area.  When the FCC broke down 1040's clear channel status, WHBO was able to get more power by moving to its current frequency. The format was 50's based Oldies for a while, then it simulcast a Tampa FM Adult Contemporary station.

The station was able to move from Sulphur Springs to the current licensed site in 1983, when 570 WFSO (now WTBN) vacated its three tower array here for an even bigger site north of town.  This move necessitated being re-licensed to the suburb of Pinellas Park, but gained them their first nighttime service.  Later after signing on from here, they added a small fourth tower for added night reach into Tampa.  With this facility, the station's modest daytime power puts out a great signal across the salt water path to the upper Gulf of Mexico.

At one point after the move to the current tower site, the station was Religious, but later did Talk and Sports, with the unusual moniker, "Friendly Talk, Good Sports". They carried mostly ABC and Fox talk programming. 

In 1994, the station's transmitter site was modified to allow 1520 WXYB (licensed to Indian Rocks Beach) to be diplexed on the fourth tower.
In 2006, construction workers in the residential area where the towers are located accidentally cut a guy wire and caused the collapse of the #3 nighttime tower.  As such, the station requested a Special Temporary Authority to run non-directional at night from one of the three remaining towers.  Due to land use difficulties, the tower rebuilding was at first delayed, then nixed completely.

In September 2008 it was announced that Genesis Communications was moving the talk to sister station WMGG, formerly Spanish-formatted "La Mega".  In October 2008 the station would pick up ESPN sports and WHBO calls from 1470 AM.  On 4 September 2012 the station became one of the flagship affiliates of the new NBC Sports Network, carrying all the network's programming, which runs from 7 pm to 5 am each day.

In 2014, the station, which had been running on a STA since 2006 for non-directional nighttime operation, was granted a move to the tower of sister station WWBA a few miles away.  It began operating from that location with the same day power as licensed, but with 15 watts at night.  Unfortunately, the engineers ran into issues with getting both stations to "play nicely" on the same tower, and were forced by 2019 to relocate again, this time to a temporary long wire operated near the WTMP AM site.  This facility used 400 watts into a 120 foot longwire.

In June 2019 the station began operating under a LMA (Local Marketing Agreement) with NIA Broadcasting, who ran the station as "SportsTalk 1040".  That lasted until May 2020 when the station's operation reverted back to Genesis, who changed the format to Conservative Talk as "Talk 1040".

In December 2019, the station began broadcasting from its licensed facility once more, but with a non-directional nighttime signal of 105 watts.

After sixteen (!) years of STA extensions and moves, the station finally applied to re-use its existing licensed site, with the two remaining towers and a slightly modified nighttime pattern, running 430 watts. That application was granted in May 2022.