The original broadcast booth was literally in an old closet on the second floor of 4415 San Jacinto. The broadcast board looked like something from a 1950s Russian submarine with huge black bakelite knobs used for volume control and large, loud switches used for pot controls. You had to lower the volume before flipping a switch, otherwise the "clunk" of the switch would go out on air. The control room included two old turntables, two cassette decks, and a rotary phone. The station frequently went off the air for hours or days at a time until various repairs could be made. The most serious downtime occured in December of 1983 when the station was down for almost 2 weeks as the engineer searched for replacement parts for our obsolete transmitter.
KNON's first on air pledge drive took place in April of 1984 and was called the Springathon. In October 1984 Jeff Murray arrived as our new station manager. In 1985 KNON did its first live broadcast, Little Joe Blue live from the Nairobi Room. We also held one our first live music events, the first ever KNON Blues Bash at the Nash Street House in Dallas.
By 1985 the condition of the transmitter had become critical. Parts were almost impossible to find and repairs were becoming more difficult. KNON was still broadcasting far below its licensed power. In May 1985, Agape obtained a new $60,000 bank loan. This money allowed the station to purchase new transmitter equipment, a new broadcast board, and finally increase our broadcast power to the licensed 9.6 kilowatts, still far below our allowed 100 kilowatts. The new broadcast board was much smaller and more modern than the ancient equipment we had been using. Many of the volunteers called it "the Playskool board" because it looked like a toy compared to the massive equipment we had been using. It featured bright blue colors and push button operation.
Also in 1985, volunteers began construction on a new broadcast booth in the larger room adjacent to our broadcast closet. It was completed in late 1985.
1985 was a banner year for the station as our signal finally reached many more people. This led to recognition by press and listeners alike. KNON was named best radio station in Dallas by the readers of the Dallas Observer. Volunteer Phil York's program, The Texas Toast, was also recognized as the best radio show in Dallas. Volunteer Nancy "Shaggy" Moore was the subject of a cover feature article in statewide magazine Texas Monthly. Her life story was optioned as the subject of a possible movie project (which never happened). The Dallas