The Chelsea Radio Company
BY WALLY WORTH
Always on the trail of a new old radio company, especially in the Boston area, Wally Worth has come up with another. But, as always, he seeks more information, so let's hope someone out there can help. (Editor)
The Chelsea Radio Company started to sell radio parts by advertising in Radio News magazine in April 1922. Located at 150 Fifth St., Chelsea, Massachusetts, the company offered its own tube sockets, amplifying transformers and variable condensers.
Also advertised was the Model 104 regenerative receiver, a 1-tube set with a WX12 tube. This very early, quite rare set is shown in Figure 1.
Figure 1. The Chelsea Model 104, a 1-tube set manufactured in 1922.
The company made many other models, including the Model 107, a 4-tube, RF set; the Model 122, a 3-tube "triple circuit" set; the Model 110, a 1-tube regenerative set; and the 2-stage Model 115 amplifier. Also made were the Model 111, a 2-tube amplifier and the 3-tube Model 103. About 1923, two 3-tube regenerative sets -- Models ZR30, shown in Figure 2, and ZR4 "Continental" -- were offered.
Figure 2. The Chelsea Model ZR30, manufactured about 1923.
In 1925, they produced two models of the "Chelsea Super-Five," a 5-tube set with a slanted front panel. These sets came with a wood-grain front panel with reddish knobs, as well as with a black Bakelite panel with black knobs. A front view of the Super-Five is shown in Figure 3. All the company cabinets were finely finished and very well made of walnut.
Figure 3. A front view of the 5-tube Chelsea Super-Five, manufactured in 1925.
In his Radio Collector's Guide, Revised Edition, Morgan McMahon also lists the following models: a 102, a Super 106, a 140 Bearcat, a Truphonic Six,and a Deluxe.
Except for changes of address, I have no information as to the owners or staff that comprised the Chelsea Radio Company. In 1924, they were located at 173 Spruce St., Chelsea; in 1925 they moved to 179 Spruce St., still in Chelsea. Their advertising in Radio, Radio News and Popular Radio magazines was small and sparse.
I would welcome any additional information on this company or their products. Many thanks to Dave Crocker for his input to this article.
(Wally Worth, 2 W. Elm Ave., Wollaston, MA 02170)
At age 15, Wally Worth began saving his paper route money to buy parts for 1-tube sets. Then in 1985, fifty years later, he started to collect anything that needed cabinet work. His diverse collecting tastes include crystal and 1920s battery AC sets, as well as transistor, multiband, and novelty sets. He also collects early tubes and both horn and cone speakers.