Portable direction finder
The StSG-52 is a portable radio direction finder
built by Wilhelm Quante
in Wuppertal (Germany) in 1952. It was used
in the 1950s and 1960s for locating clandestine radio stations
and foreign secret agents.
Officially described as a
(StSG) , the receiver was based on the earlier Störsuch-
und Meßgerät StG-50, that was developed by Quante in 1950 [B].
StGS 52 is a single conversion super-heterodyne receiver
with the intermetiate frequency (IF) at 470 kHz.
It contains 5 valves (3 x DF91, DK92 and DAF91) and is powered by
two battery sets: 1.5V for the heater and 75V anode voltage.
It covers three frequency bands:
- LW: 150 kHz - 350 kHz
- MW: 520 kHz - 1.4 MHz
- GW: 1.02 MHz - 1.4 MHz
The receiver is housed in a wooden case, which allows an internal
'window' coil to be used as the direction-finding antenna.
When receiving a radio station, the operator rotates the
receiver, in order to determine the direction of maximum
(or minimum) field strength, using the S-meter at the bottom left.
This procedure was repeated several times from different positions,
until the location of the transmitter could be determined.
It can also be used with an external antenna.
As the receiver is valve-based, it consumes more power from the
batteries than a modern one. For this reason, the StSG-52
is operated by a trigger-switch
that is hidden under the carrying grip. This trigger-principle
was used before on a wartime direction finder made by Siemens.
Due to its rather limited frequency range (150 kHz to 2.7 MHz),
the StSG-52 was replaced later in 1952 by its successor the ASRV-52
that was suitable for frequencies up to 11 MHz.
Störspannungs-Suchgerät = Interference Signal Finder.
PLEASE HELP —
The above information is all we have at the moment. We have not been able
to find circuit diagrams and a suitable user manual for this device.
Even the manufacturer, the former Quante, has not been able to help us
any further, as details about this device are missing from their records 
If you have additional information, or additional accessories,
A large number of StSG-52 units was used by the Dutch
Radio Monitoring Service (RCD) – at the time headquartered
in The Hague – for locating clandestine radio stations, such as radio pirates
and foreign intelligence agents.
The units were deployed throughout the
country and were in use until the mid-1960s. Units that were used by the
RCD can be recognised by an extra ID-plate
that is fitted on the control panel, just below the leather grip.
➤ More about the RCD
In Germany, the Quante StSG 52 was not only used for finding clandestine radio
stations, but also for locating TV sets. In the early days
of television, customers had to pay a fee for a permit to receive
television and radio broadcasts. If you did not pay for a reception permit,
you risked a fine or, worse, imprisonment. As the local oscillator (LO) of a TV
set emitted a signal that could be picked up with a sensitive receiver
outside the house, the Deutsche Bundespost (German Post Office)
used Quante direction finders for locating non-registered (and hence
The image above shows two employees of the German Post Office in front of
a Volkswagen van of the Funkmessdienst (Radio Monitoring Service) of the
Deutsche Bundespost on a street, probably somewhere in Berlin,
in September 1956.
The man on the right
carries a Quante StSG 52 on his shoulder,
whilst holding a directional antenna in his hand.
The other man holds a Telefunken Teleport 5 two-way radio in his hands
and is probably communicating with another search team.
DevicePortable direction finder
UsersGerman Post, Dutch PTT
Bands3 (L, M, G)
FrequencyL: 150 - 350 kHz
M: 520 kHz - 1.4 MHz
G: 1.02 - 1.4 MHz
PowerLT: 1.5V (4 1.5V batteries connected in parallel)
HT: 75V DC (anode battery)
AntennaInternal: directional coil
External (magic wand)
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© Crypto Museum. Created: Monday 03 August 2009. Last changed: Wednesday, 26 October 2022 - 20:36 CET.