Paging a new hobby

Time to do something completely brand new.

Have you got any stuff lying around your house because you are sure you’ll get around to fixing it one day? I’ve got a guitar for the Rock Band game that’s been in bits for a few years now.

Part of the deal with learning amateur radio was it becoming a gateway into electronics and with the intermediate license under my belt and a little more electronics knowledge, it’s time to put some of it to the test

I really don’t know what I’m doing, so this is going to be a living document of my failures and possibly even successes.

What’s the plan, man?

First of all, you shouldn’t listen to pagers. I’m pretty sure it’s illegal, and the only people who really use them are the NHS so every page is probably someone dying. I don’t need to know that.

However pagers sit in an interesting space. They are receive only, so no matter how badly I screw up, if I tinker with one it won’t transmit interference. The protocol is public knowledge and I’m licensed to transmit on certain bands, so I have a radio hotspot here that will send out pages with gusto. All I need to do is reprogram the pager to listen to the right frequency.

Parts so far

I bought a Philips pager Type 58D. The primary benefit of this device is it is cheap. It’s not the recommended device. There is no documentation available for what I’m about to do. There are many similar models. I assume they are ok under the hood.

A Hantek 6022BL oscilloscope. All the instructions for any of the pagers I’ve seen so far include post soldering adjustments to tune it to exactly the right frequency and sensitivity. I’ve got a few things to fix so I’m confident in the investment.

I have some random components floating about and a soldering iron. I hope I don’t need to do any SMD bits.

Next steps

We await the postie with the pager. Try and enjoy the sunshine meantime.


it looks like PageOne is the only UK provider of paging services left

Pager frequencies by service Looks like all the one’s I can easily get are VHF so a UHF conversion might be tricky.

My own mooking about under the hood:

POCSAG documentation

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