Neat gift today - cool old Crystal Set

Discussion in '"Boat Anchor" & Classic Equipment' started by W7UUU, Sep 9, 2018.

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  1. W7UUU

    W7UUU QRZ Lifetime Member #133 Volunteer Moderator Life Member Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    At least it appears to be "old"... although I do have a few doubts. This was a gift from a guy helping me move a bench today. I've given him a hand more than a few times, and he wanted to return a favor.

    Very simple crystal set with variometer coil. Doesn't seem to have all that many turns for AM radio band but I must assume that it does. There is no brand markings whatsoever, only "patent applied for". Tuning knob and variometer appear to be bakelite.

    The "Little Tattler" Hi-Z headset really wins the day!! That alone is worth being on display. There's another "no name" Hi-Z headset as well.

    The cat's whisker is missing the galena - but somewhere around here I have a large galena crystal that I've always wanted to cleave and would be a good source for the crystal socket.

    The chassis is painted aluminum... that's the odd part, at least to me.

    I plan to restore this to operation with new paint and just a rebuild - it's such a simple device.

    Anyone have any idea what this might be as far as manufacturer, year, etc.? Or is it a repro? Really hard to say...


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    WA9UAA, KB4QAA, N2SUB and 4 others like this.
  2. KD2ACO

    KD2ACO Platinum Subscriber Life Member Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

  3. N2AU

    N2AU Ham Member QRZ Page

    W7UUU likes this.
  4. WR2E

    WR2E Ham Member QRZ Page

    You sure it's aluminum and not die-cast zinc?
  5. W7UUU

    W7UUU QRZ Lifetime Member #133 Volunteer Moderator Life Member Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    No I'm not sure. But will look again - I think "die cast = brittle" - this looks like plain old aluminum pan. I'll take some closer pix and post.

    That chassis is the puzzling part. Were it wooden or Bakelite sure. But I really don't expect to see aluminum in a product from the 1920s

  6. K6GB

    K6GB XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    I saw one of that vintage at an antique store, didn't get it, had the xyl with me and she just doesn't understand, even if she does have a license.
  7. W7UUU

    W7UUU QRZ Lifetime Member #133 Volunteer Moderator Life Member Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    Nah - it's plain old aluminum. I'm thinking this was a reproduction from much later than the 1920s. Maybe the 1950s - painted to look like the 20s.

    Unless someone is aware of aluminum chassis metal in commercial use when a radio of this design might have been popular.

  8. KB4MNG

    KB4MNG Ham Member QRZ Page

    That is awesome, worthy of a show case in the shack. Thats how I got into ham. I got parts from Radio Shack and put several radios together. I tried for hours trying to modify them to be better with no success.
  9. K8ERV

    K8ERV Ham Member QRZ Page

    Good catch. Wanna sell it?
    When I was young (about 125 years ago) I spent many hours listening to "free" broadcasts on an xtal radio.

    TOM K8ERV Montrose Colo
    WA7PRC likes this.
  10. KP4SX

    KP4SX XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    Remember, unlike a variocoupler, a variometer (typically) has all its windings in series.

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