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

Ralph Muchow Estate Auction Tops $1,000,000!
Auction Highlights

By John V. Terrey & Ray Chase

Web Edition

Time was too short before our press deadline for more than this cursory report of the recent Muchow auction. For the October issue, we will have done our usual comparison of prices from various sources and will present a definitive report. (Editor)

The attentive crowd waits for the bidding to start. Edith and Ray Chase will soon begin recording the auction for A.R.C. in the front row, left.
The attentive crowd waits for the bidding to start. Edith and Ray Chase will soon begin recording the auction for A.R.C. in the front row, left.

The heat was on in Elgin, Illinois, August 3-5 -- both inside and out. While temperatures soared outside, the excitement mounted inside the Hemmens Convention Center, as Auctioneer Richard Estes mounted the podium. At the peak on Saturday, a standing-room-only crowd of over 300 registered bidders had gathered for what well may be the radio auction of the decade.

The numbers speak for themselves -- 1,733 items passed the block for a total of $985,158. Adding the 5% buyer's premium made a grand total of $1,034,416. This is the first antique radio auction on record -- at least, to my knowledge -- to exceed a million dollars. Note: All prices reported here subsequently will not include the buyer's premium.

Unfortunately, our deadline for the September issue of A.R.C. would not allow for more than a snapshot of this remarkable event, including the $1,000+ items we have extracted from Ray Chase's 68-page hand-tabulated report. However, the October issue will have a detailed report from Ray Chase, Estes Auctions, and others. Our hats are off to Ray and his wife Edith who deserve special accolades for their recording of all items during the whole 251/2 hours of heavy bidding.

Most interesting was the fact that, throughout the three days, the level of intensity was maintained. On Friday, the 437 lots of tubes, paper, and advertising sold for $101,000 -- an amount far exceeding that for all the items in the usual auction sales at meets. Highlights included the two Orson Welles "War of the Worlds" transcription disks, selling at $14,000, and a very rare Wireless Specialty Apparatus Co. Audion tube, which drew the top price of $3,200.

It's doubtful that many there had ever seen such a wonderful array of advertising items, wall hangings and stand-up displays. Eleven of them sold for over $1,000 each.

Saturday and Sunday saw the same level of intensity with 1,300 lots selling for a total of $884,000. In all, I would categorize three groups of offerings: unique, one-of-a-kind items; rare items; and items usually seen at flea markets and auctions. Many of the latter were picked up at market prices, especially by those who stayed until the end. And remember, everything, whether rare or common, was in good to excellent condition.

Though complaints were heard about the "astronomical" prices paid for some items, it's worth reflecting on that phenomenon. Yes, some prices did seem out of line, but how can you begin to put a price on such items as the receiver Admiral Byrd took to the North Pole? The $33,500 paid by an organization planning to take it on a trip that recreates his voyage to the Pole becomes reasonable in that light.

Is $26,000 too much for a Collins Wireless telephone from 1906, a rare and important piece in radio history? This one could be the only one in existence. How about the Marconi 106D selling at $15,000? Here is an example of a typical going rate, as two others have sold in recent years for about the same price. There is really no way to name a "right" price, as value, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder. And after all, the prices were no crazier than those seen often in eBay auctions.

And there was certainly much to behold. I can't remember ever seeing 12 Atwater Kent breadboards, 6 Leutz and 9 E.H. Scott receivers in one auction. A total of 177 items went for over $1,000 each. The high prices seem justified when you realize that the rare, quality items were there, and people had come from all over the world with money in their pockets to spend on them.

Just to give you a taste of the whole, the following is a quick overview of the items sold for over $1,000. Prices are not guaranteed to be accurate.Tune in next month for a complete report with many more photos.

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.

Just a few of the consoles, horns and cathedrals sold.
Just a few of the consoles, horns and cathedrals sold.

Row after row of Atwater Kent box and metal sets with breadboards in the distance.
Row after row of Atwater Kent box and metal sets with breadboards in the distance.

Admiral Byrd receiver, 1928$33,500
Ampleflex folding loop antenna, German1,700
Amplion theater horn, large, 4' x 4' opening1,500
Apex speaker lamp1,500
Atwater Kent "technician" breadboard1,300
Atwater Kent 3-panel display, 3' x 18" h1,050
Atwater Kent 5 breadboard, reproduction8,000
Atwater Kent 8 breadboard, prototype2,050
Atwater Kent 9 breadboard1,900
Atwater Kent 9 breadboard, w/BB tubes5,000
Atwater Kent 10 breadboard2,800
Atwater Kent 10 breadboard, w/5 tubes1,600
Atwater Kent 10 breadboard, w/5-good tubes1,000
Atwater Kent 10, Pooley board1,000
Atwater Kent 70, console, ornate2,000
Atwater Kent 84 grandfather clock radio2,500
Atwater Kent 90, radio in fountain6,250
Atwater Kent 4052 breadboard, w/tubes1,325
Atwater Kent 4120 breadboard1,300
Atwater Kent advertising lamp, 14"1,900
Atwater Kent advertising, artist signed, 14" x 3'2,600
Atwater Kent advertising, motorized2,200
Atwater Kent banjo used at convention1,000
Atwater Kent edge-lit sign, 12" x 12"1,100
Atwater Kent foldout sign, 4' x 3'1,800
Atwater Kent photo album, 1927 convention, (2)2,600
Atwater Kent prototype breadboard, 3 tubes1,000
Atwater Kent stand-up advertising display, 14"2,200
BC-611 WWII walkie-talkie, w/display, (2)1,300
Bigelow loose coupler crystal receiver, 19101,600
Bonzo figurine, 8"1,300
Brandes woman's head, w/headphones1,400
Brunswick Panatrope console, large13,000
Canadian Ind. Tel. 3-tube receiver2,000
Celluloid horn speaker1,100
Chicago Radio Labs, early Zenith prototype2,300
Clapp Eastham loose coupler1,100
Cleveland Radio Mfg., 3-unit set3,000
Colby tuner1,050
Collins wireless telephone, 190626,000
De Forest 15-panel set14,000
De Forest cone speaker, 30", ornate1,400
De Forest D10, w/loop2,000
De Forest D17, w/tubes & loop1,000
De Forest LS300 horn speaker1,200
De Forest P-200 amplifier, w/2 tubes2,300
De Forest single-wing, spherical Audion, open fil1,450
De Forest T300, CF-122, CF-18523,000
Decretet receiver, French1,800
Deutch loop antenna, folding2,300
Display case, oak, curved glass1,100
Edison concert 4" cylinder phonograph3,000
European receiver, w/spherical audion, 19129,000
Federal 59, w/tubes1,500
Federal 611,900
Firth Vocaloud speaker, wood case1,100
Floratone sea shell speaker, 18" tall1,700
GE for RAF, aircraft set2,200
GE GG140 transmitter, early4,900
GE Type P military receiver, 19171,300
Gilbert crystal set & transmitter2,400
Great Lakes Naval spark transmitter3,750
Grebe 3-panel advertising, 3' w x 2' h1,700
Grebe Clarifier1,300
Grebe CR-3 Special1,600
Grebe RORK amp.1,600
Home Brew crystal receiver w/loose coupler, 11,050
Home Brew receiver, large, 3' w x 14" h2,100
Horn speaker, metal, wood base1,000
Howard console3,100
Japanese "Zero" aircraft receiver/transmitter1,100
Japanese WWII Naval receiver1,600
Kellogg "technician" set, w/3 Moorehead tubes1,400
Kelvert 3-tube amp, w/3 red-top tubes1,000
Kennedy 110, w/tubes1,800
Kennedy 220 receiver2,100
Kennedy 281, w/amp1,100
Kennedy 525 amplifier1,700
Kennedy horn speaker1,800
Lenzola speaker, marble, German2,200
Leutz Armstrong superhet3,000
Leutz C10, w/10 tubes1,125
Leutz Model C1,500
Leutz Model J, RF amp.1,000
Leutz Trans-Oceanic1,400
Leutz Universal super 8, no tubes2,100
Magnavox 6-tube amplifier in wood case2,400
Magnavox A-3 amplifier, w/3 tubes1,100
Magnavox A1R horn/amplifier1,500
Magnavox R-1 horn speaker, small2,300
Magnavox R-2 horn speaker, large bell1,200
Magnavox R-3 horn, small bell1,300
Marconi 106D15,000
Marconi SE 1444 receiver1,000
Martin 3-valve French receiver, w/BTH tubes4,300
Master Radio horn, French, wooden bell2,300
McIntosh triple-detector1,200
McMurdo Masterpiece VI, 3-units, no cabinet3,100
McMurdo Silver Masterpiece, 3-pieces, no cabinet1,250
Mesco ornate wooden speaker1,700
Michigan 3-tube battery set1,300
Michigan MRC-31,100
Mo. Technical Institute spherical Audion receiver27,000
Murdock-Mesco spark transmitter, 1912,3,600
Music Master horn, very large wooden bell1,000
Nesco AMS 5 receiver (looks like IP501)2,200
Nesco BC-131 receiver1,600
Nesco SE, 1950 compass receiver1,100
Nesco SE-2512 w/coils1,000
Norden-Hauch super 10 w/coils & tubes3,750
Northern Electric R11, R15, R15, 3-units2,000
Orson Welles "War of the Worlds" transcription disks14,000
Parrot speaker, white1,600
Penn. Wireless tuner & amp., 2-units2,500
Pickerill dual-detector receiver, 190819,000
Pierson-Rockford console, large, sliding doors2,900
Pilot Super-Wasp w/coils, no cabinet1,750
Pittsburgh SP-21,200
Pliodyne Model 9 Universal, w/tubes1,600
Pocket Radio1,050
QST 15 years including first issue, bound1,300
Queen & Co. spark coil, large2,500
Radio Apparatus Co. hi-freq. amp, 4/tubes6,400
Radio Apparatus Co. loose coupler, vertical3,600
Radiola IIIA, Canadian Westinghouse, in cabinet1,300
Radiola radio/phonograph console, early2,800
Radiola X, w/tubes1,900
RCA 44 desk microphone, WROK3,150
RCA tube tester, early, wood case2,500
RCA wall tapestry, 8' x 4'1,050
RJ-5 w/double-wing Audion, open fil.2,100
Saal floor-standing horn speaker, 3' tall1,050
Sarnoff horn speaker, curved4,300
Sarnoff horn speaker, straight4,900
Scott "Baby" Quaranta24,000
Scott 6T11 projection TV, table1,800
Scott 18, w/remote, (2), chassis only4,100
Scott 23-tube chassis, speaker1,100
Scott Allwave15, in secretary cabinet1,400
Scott Imperial, roslyn cabinet4,700
Scott Phantom console3,000
Scott Philharmonic console, early12,000
Scott Philharmonic, Warrington2,000
Scott Philharmonic, Waverly Grand cabinet4,000
SE-143 Audion control box8,000
SE-1440C compass receiver1,200
Spark transmitter, home brew, helix coils2,600
Spy radio, WWII, 3-units & display3,200
Stoelting crystal set, 191211,000
Stratosphere transmitter from balloon, 193511,000
Stromberg-Carlson wall tapestry, 4' x 8'2,600
T.E. Clark coherer receiver16,000
T.E. Clark electrolytic detector display1,300
T.E. Clark spark transmitter13,000
Tecla crystal set, 19151,400
Victor disk phonograph w/horn1,150
WE 1C loop1,000
WE 3A receiver2,500
WE 3B receiver1,200
WE 4B receiver2,250
WE 25B amplifier, no tubes1,400
WE amplifier w/3 tubes1,050
WE CW-936 transmitter/receiver7,000
WE fan, brass blades1,000
Western Television, scanning disk receiver9,500
Westinghouse "station monitor," 2-pieces8,000
Williams loop antenna1,450
Wireless Appliance CF-3, w/3 DV-5 tubes1,600
WLF brass creed plaque1,225
WSA Audion3,200
Zenith 1R & 2M amplifier, 1R panel modified1,600
Zenith 7T tombstone, export model1,000
Zenith 15-tube shutter dial1,900
Zenith 1928 console, ornate, Spanish4,100
Zenith phonograph panel receiver, 4-tubes2,300
Zenith portable, 19256,750
Zenith Stratosphere, no cabinet8,000

A few of the splendid advertising items offered.
A few of the splendid advertising items offered.

(John V. Terrey, c/o A.R.C., P.O. Box 2, Carlisle, MA 01741. Ray Chase, 1350 Marlborough Ave., Plainfield, NJ 07060. Estes Auctions, 7404 Ryan Rd., Medina, OH 44256; (330) 769-4992;

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