Burbank, Ohio -- July 19, 2008
REPORTED BY RAY CHASE
The July 19, 2008, Estes auction at Burbank, Ohio, contained radios from the Herndon radio collection of Lexington, Kentucky, as well as other consignments. This was a hot weekend. The temperature on Friday was 90 degrees, and although Saturday was a little better, the conditions in the non-air conditioned Expo Auction Center were somewhat uncomfortable. Several large fans were employed to keep the air moving, but they added to the noise level sometimes making hearing a bit difficult.
This was a pretty normal auction with something for everybody -- the usual mix of battery sets, 1930s wood AC radios, consoles, Ham gear, plastic table radios, and tubes. The pre-sale area of "fixer-uppers" and other low value goods was jammed full with the usual parts, box lots, and test equipment, but also with some pretty nice plastic radios. This pre-sale auction started at 8:45 a.m. and did not end until 10:10 a.m. I did not record any of these results.
The main auction included two rows of console radios, over 20 in all, as well as several console Victrolas and 12 plus lots of cylinder records. One outstanding item was the large Fada 212T tombstone, a seldom seen radio that sold for $3,100. This sale also featured a nice selection of cone speakers.
During the main sale, there was a side auction to dispose of four tables of novelty and transistor radios. Other side auctions were also held to clear out batches of paper and books, 45-rpm records, test equipment, and bulk tube lots. I was not able to record any of these and missed recording some of the main auction items while I tried to run back and forth to bid on a few of these side items for myself. By mid-afternoon the crowd had thinned out quite a bit and many bargains were available. The auction was pretty much over at 3:45 p.m., except for some bulk tube lots.
Left, Federal Type 59, a striking and desirable 4-tube receiver, sold for $725. Right, a 3-tube Clapp-Eastham Radak C-3 receiver sold for $300.
This Adams Morgan Paragon RD-5 receiver and A-2 2-step amp sold with tubes for $500 and $400 respectively.
The total sale value that I recorded was about $35,000, not counting the 5 percent buyer's premium.
Three interesting speakers: top to bottom, a Tower Castle cone speaker, selling at $350; a Vitalitone ship speaker, at $350; and a Tower Adventurer ship speaker, at $150.
Abbreviations: 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, BB=brass based, TT=tipped tube, SW=shortwave, PS=power supply, PB=push buttons, gf=good fil, N.I.B.= new in box, WE=Western Electric. All prices have been rounded down to the dollar. Some low cost items and items in poor condition or non-specific descriptions are omitted. See print version for complete auction listing.
This Pfanstiehl Model 18 5-tube battery set has an unusual tuning dial. The set covers the broadcast band, but the dial markings, instead of being in the usual kilocycles, are in meters: 200-560.
Ray Chase has been a radio enthusiast and a collector of many types of radios for years. Currently, he specializes in World War II electronics equipment, as well as early battery superheterodynes. He also has an extensive collection of radio documentation and ephemera.
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.