My Radio Collection — 1960's
This is one cool set! This Philco was made around 1960 or so and represents one of my newest sets. This was made for the british market. I found this while fishing on ebay. This catch is 26 inches long! It has a 120-220 selectable transformer. The Philco 135 has 6 tubes, including the rectifier and tuning eye tube. With only 4 active radio stages (mixer, IF amp/detector , audio preamp, and audio output) this radio won't perform as well as many of my other radios. But what it doesn't have in performance, it sure has the looks. This is an AM/SW radio only with phono input, the broadcast band, two shortwave ranges (calibrated in meters) and three bandspreaded shortwave ranges. This was one of those "one evening get em running" jobs. There was a wire that was broken, the rectifier tube was bad, and I replaced two capacitors. I have no schematic for this set, so if anyone could help me, I would appreciate it!
Matsushita National UM-680
Here is my first Japanese 1960's tube radio. It might be 1950's. Hard for me to tell. This radio is top shelf. It sits on my top shelf in my living room too. It's a gift from a friend. All I needed to do is change the paper type capacitors, replace a few tubes and pilot lamps and do a small amount of rewiring. Rubber coated wires again.
It is a fantastic radio. It is AM only but it really sounds nice. The cabinet is wood with a plastic front. It is kind of large, somewhat like the Euroceivers from that era. This set has 6 tubes including the rectifier and the seeing eye tube. That 6E5 tube is a little weak.
There is a ferrite loop antenna in this radio. There is a string linkage to a control on the front panel to rotate the loop for best reception. This is a nice feature. Besides the volume, tuning and loop direction control, The combination on-off switch has a three position tone control switch. The lights on the front above this switch indicates the tone setting. Very neat!
With the electronic restoration I did, this set plays nice and loud!
What? This is a transistorized radio. What is this doing here? Here's the story. Way back in the dark ages, around 1965, I had purchased a radio like this new. I am not sure how much it was, but somewhere around 70 to 80 dollars. That was a lot of money in the olden days. I had a good time with this radio. I took it with me on my paper route, listening to shortwave stations on it. I remember that on Saturday mornings, Radio Canada used to have a shortwave listener program. It made the paper deliveries a little bit easier. But one day I left it outside and when I remembered where I left it, the radio was gone. Kind of a hard lesson for a teenager, one I never forgot. The loss was covered on my dads homeowners insurance policy so I was able to get a replacement radio, a Ross. It just wasn't a GE, but it worked. I used it for a long time and I gave it to a teenager about 20 years ago.
So now comes the wonderful world of ebay. I looked for this radio for nearly a year. There are plenty of AM-FM models and I even saw the AM - Marine Band radios, but not the 4-12 mhz shortwave receiver. Last week I found one, and it was cheap. The handle was broken, and the spring was missing from the band switch. But I bought it and I was very happy to get it. The sound was a little tinny, so i replaced 3 electrolytic capacitors. While I had my soldering iron in there, I managed to burn the dial cord. First time I ever did that. Anyway, I replaced it and after a badly needed alignment, the radio works super! I am a happy camper and reliving my childhood on the cheap.
I always knew that GE made 3 versions of the radio above. I think there were more model numbers too, but this one is the "marine" version. The shortwave coverage is from 1.8 to 5.1 mhz. Not too big of a deal for shortwave listening but I can now listen to the AM ham radio operators on 75 meters. This one came to me in very nice condition.
This is the second one of the three GE portables I bought. This is an AM-FM model. This by far was the most popular of the 3. This one is missing the tip on the antenna but otherwise quite a nice radio. I always liked these old GE portable sets. I noticed on all three that there is very little bass. I thought that the electrolytic capacitors were dried out, but when I replaced them in the shortwave model, the sound was still the same. Still a very nice radio