Most restorers of classic radios from 1940s to 1970s have seen the black phenolic knobs with brand name Daka-Ware, Chicago, IL on the inside.
Daka-Ware was the brand name for products produced by Davies Molding.
The Harry Davies Molding Company started in 1933 with seven molding presses and three punch presses in downtown Chicago by owner Harry Davies. The small, single-room company was started during a time when the economy was depressed and work was scarce. Known as a phenolic molder, Davies manufactured numerous parts including knobs, handles, cases, ashtrays, as well as custom molded products. During the 1940’s and WWII, Davies Molding became a supplier of plastic components for the war effort. In 1954, Harry Davies retired and, in turn, sold his interest in the company to a handful of people including his nephew, Ted Davies.
A second, smaller plant was established in 1966 to accommodate the demand for plastic component parts. One year later, the original plant was destroyed by a fire which forced the smaller plant to operate 7 days a week, 24 hours a day. To off-load the burden of this small plant, Davies moved to a facility on the west side of Chicago later that year.
For 25 years this location served Davies well; however, as the economy flourished and as Davies acquired new injection molding presses, Davies needed to expand once again.
In the fall of 1991, Davies Molding moved to a suburb of Chicago, Carol Stream, Illinois where it is located today in an 99,000 square foot facility. The facility houses fifty (50) thermoset compression molding machines, five (5) thermoset injection molding machines and twenty-four (24) thermoplastic injection molding machines, all ranging in tonnage from 20 to 400 tons.
They specialize in insert compression molding and insert injection molding.
Davies Molding is now the largest manufacturer of plastic knobs and handles in the world today.
A Davies’ knob or handle can be found on countless products including industrial machinery, lighting equipment, lawn & garden equipment, power tools, cookware, barbecue grills, food processing equipment, medical & lab equipment, electronic equipment, fitness & recreational equipment, and more.
So, look in their catalog of standard products they manufacture and you may find that knob you thought was no longer made!
Control Knobs & Instrument Knobs
Pointer Control Knobs
Their entire catalog (current designs)
SO, if you desire that custom knob (and desired color) -- it can be made -- and the mold may still be in stock.