Radios Emeritus

Honoring those radios I've owned but have since moved on to others who could appreciate them more.

  • Zenith A big beautiful Tombstone style set with a huge black "airplane" dial. It's a model 6-V-27, a 6-volt farm radio, long since converted to AC. A birthday gift to myself, I found it at a local antique store. Sold to someone who could do the challenging cabinet restoration properly.

  • Zenith A model 4-B-639 6-volt farm radio from 1942, in a sort of golden-hued cabinet with faux zebrawood trim. The original tubes and caps were all fine (but one cap), as was the synchronous vibrator supply. I added an external AC supply and donated it to our church's Youth Group Mission Project fundraising auction.

  • Automatic Radio From 1946, this model 614-X is a hot-performing 6 tube set. The RF stage has only input tuning, but really adds to the reception. The bakelite cabinet polished up very nicely. Donated to the church Youth Group auction.

  • General Electric I owned one of these AM/FM transistor portables 'way back when I was in college, and grabbed this one up at a yard sale. Since sold, as not fitting into my collection.

  • Emerson This model 745 Town & Country AC/DC/Battery portable is very mid-'50s. Its 6 miniature tubes give it decent performance to go with its Eisenhower-era styling. It uses an almost-unobtainable 1L6 converter tube, which luckily can be replaced in this Broadcast-only set with a 1R5. I owned 4 of these radios at one time! (Some were the nearly identical model 754.)

  • General Electric This 1946 GE model 220 has six tubes and both broadcast and shortwave tuning in its somewhat bulbous bakelite cabinet. I'm not sure why I liked this set -- maybe the spacious and easy-tuning dial.

  • SilvertoneI guess I'm a sucker for 1936-era airplane-dial sets like this model 4466 from Sears, even when they're coated with white paint. It looked much better when I refinished it and replaced the grille cloth. And it works on both Broadcast and Shortwave bands -- I'm always amazed when 60+ year old sets still play.

  • Silvertone This Silvertone (Sears) 3351 Commentator pushbutton table set, made in 1939, was found in a junk shop for $5. Dark brown bakelite cabinet with gold trim, 5 tubes. This rather dignified bakelite receiver was missing its knobs and dial pointer, for which I have found replacements. I recapped it, and it played OK, but never as well as I thought it could.

  • Philco Only the second console I've bought, this 1932 Philco 112x is sorta tattered, but at least I saved it from the dump! It even powers up and makes noise (though no reception yet). With 11 tubes, it's the biggest set I've ever owned.

  • Philco One of the early AM/FM sets from Philco is this model 48-472 from 1948. A nice and hefty bakelite cabinet houses its 7-tube chassis, which of course includes some of those dreadful Loktal tubes. Bought during delusions about my ability to fix FM radios...

  • Philco I couldn't pass up this Philco 610 stepped tombstone, languishing at a thrift store. It had been a "decor item" at a local clothing store, so it looked nice but the cords (including speaker and antenna) were cut off, so it's still silent.

  • Sheffield I picked up this cute midget stepped tombstone at the local Salvation Army store. It's in such good shape that at first glance I thought it was one of those modern replicas. Needs tubes, but quite amazingly clean and complete. It wears a Sheffield nameplate, but little other identification. The tube types used (stamped on the tube sockets) indicate about 1935 vintage.

    Updated February 21, 2013