could be ...... though different things have cyclical value I have
found..... once upon a time my dad paid a bloke 3 shillings to come and take
the family's radiogram and gramophone away in a truck. I bought, then sold
that same model gramophone in the 1990's - a HMV Library Grand. Got $2300 at
auction for it.
But radiograms - now that's another story altogether, but retro has taken
Australia by storm so who knows
I just know I will never be into them
Me neither, but there are some wonderful things around from the 60s and
Now talking radios I'd love to get my hands on the bloody great thing my
grandparents had in the 1950s - it was a piece of furniture in itself, and
as a kid I loved twiddling the knobs to try and receive exotic stations such
as Hilversum and Berlin, the names of which appeared on the tuning panel.
It isn't just the valves it's output transformers, high voltage capacitors
and slow-motion dials which require a wiring diagram of their own. Even back
in 1970 I was having to cannibalize parts from other appliances to keep
You can use modern solid state innards of course, although gearing the
dial is tricky.
I was a radio officer at sea for many years, working often right at
the cutting edge of obsolescence (magneto striction resonators, ah me)
- We had a lot of old kit that remained in use up to the mid 1980s
when rules on frequency drift changed. The Dwarka pilgrim ship that
ran up the Gulf (used for the film Ghandi) had a receiver with three
holes in the front panel so you could see if the elements in the
valves were lit.
After WW2 there were lots of old military bits about, the standard
battery change over switch Marconi used was formerly the bomb bay door
control knob for the Wellington bomber.
Mate of mine has a collection of truly ancient telephones into which
he is fitting modern innards so they can be used with tone dial only
exchanges and the like. Not sure why exactly, they look interesting
but the only one that is useful is an old thing with a support on the
handset to jam it on your shoulder. The candlestic types are NBG if
you have to write anything down.
Not as easy as you might think. The original speakers were high impedance
and transformer-coupled. Modern output stages are low impedance and
direct-coupled. Our radio had separate speakers for treble and bass (16 and
32 ohm I think) coupled via an elaborate arrangement of twin transfromers
each of which was custom wound.
And if anyone is thinking of replacing the speaker, I once measured 240
volts AC from the screws holding the speaker in place on an old Sobell. The
neutral wire had become detached so the live was looking for the shortest
route to earth which in this case was the screws holding the speaker in
place and anyone unfortunate enough to touch one of them.
Polytechforum.com is a website by engineers for engineers. It is not affiliated with any of manufacturers or vendors discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.