Antique Radio Classified
A.R.C.--The National Publication For Buyers And Sellers
Of Old Radios And Related Items--Published Monthly

Estes Auctions
Burbank, Ohio -- September 25, 2004

Reported by Ray Chase


The September Estes auction was advertised as a huge auction, and it was that and more. Three estates from Minnesota, Illinois, and Pennsylvania were offered, and this turned out to be one of the largest one-day auctions that I have covered. It started at the usual 10:00 a.m., and I stopped recording at 5:45 p.m., though about another hour of goods was to be offered. I did record all the major items, as the last hour dealt with box lots, parts, and some remaining lesser value items. My detailed listing contains a little fewer than 700 lots, and at this point, the auction bottom line was $116,880.

The major categories of this auction ran the gamut for most collectors: early items, crystal sets, crystal detectors, military, Ham gear, Zenith, early phonographs, books & paper, tubes, microphones, telegraph and early parts. Something for everyone, except perhaps transistors and novelty radios.

Attendance at the Friday evening viewing seemed sparse, and the possibility of light competition at auction time was beginning to surface. However, it was not to be, as buyers streamed in on Saturday morning bringing the bidding crowd to 100 or more. Likewise, there was little activity in added goods coming in on Friday night; the undersides of the tables were nearly empty. However, this also changed on Saturday when many consoles arrived along with other goods that helped fill up previously empty spaces.

I have said before that an Estes auction is like a visit to a radio museum, and this one had lots of museum goodies that you could touch and drool over. Just to mention a few: an Amrad SE-1420C, an RCA IP-501A, four very nice Atwater Kent breadboards, two Western Electric Model 4 series superhets and two of the antenna tuners, an Air-Way G, a DeForest 200 2-step amp, a DeForest Interpanel, a Kennedy 110, a NESCO 2-step amp, a Norden Hauck C10 superhet, a Ware AD-2, and on and on, along with a batch of Weingarten repro Audions.

Among the Zenith items, the military URR/520 Trans-Oceanic in excellent condition was notable. Working and including the instruction manual, it sold for $1,400. All in all, a memorable auction and one that was not to be missed.

e=excellent, vg=very good, g=good, f=fair, p=poor, unk=unknown condition, N.O.S.=new old stock, wk=working, nwk=not working, WT=with tubes, NT=no tubes, gf=good filament, BB=brass-based, TT=tipped tube, SW=shortwave, PS=power supply, PB=push buttons, WE=Western Electric. All prices have been rounded down to the dollar. Some low cost items and items in poor condition or with descriptions that are not specific have been omitted. Please see print version of A.R.C. for complete auction listing.

Photos by Ray Chase and John Terrey.

(Ray Chase, 1350 Marlborough Ave., Plainfield, NJ 07060; Estes Auctions, 7404 Ryan Rd., Medina, OH 44256; (888) 769-4992;

A warning: Auction prices are not current values. Our selection of auction items is not necessarily complete. A listing such as this cannot adequately include the condition of cabinets, chassis, transformers, tubes, the operating status of the set, and the inclusion of incorrect, restored or replica components, etc. Auction prices are the result of the excitement of the auction process, the skill of the auctioneer and the specific interests of the participants. Nevertheless, auction prices serve as useful references and as another element in the value determining process. The possibility of error always exists, and if we are notified, corrections will be reported.

Air-Way Type G 5-tube receiver
This Air-Way Type G 5-tube receiver sold for $1,100.

Television set and horn speakers
This 1951 Zenith "porthole" television set sold for $500. Also pictured are two Burns "petal" horn speakers. The tortoise shell model, above left, in very good condition with a good driver, sold for $650. The Model 205 sold for $300.


This Type SE-1420C Medium Wave Receiver was manufactured for the Navy by American Radio & Research Corp. (AMRAD) in 1920. It has a coverage of 250 to 7,500 meters and sold for $7,000.


Two versions exist of the small, 9" high Amplion AR-102 horn speaker. Although both are called the "Dragonfly," only the version shown on the left includes the word "Dragonfly" on the label, and, in fact, also carries a line drawing of the insect. The version on the left, with a small "ding" on the bell sold for $450. The other sold for $500. Enlarged views of the tags are shown in the center.

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Last revised: April 24, 2005.

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