EDITOR'S COMMENTS From Antique Radio Classified for January 2005
(Copyright 1996-2005 by John V. Terrey - For personal use only.)
As always with a New Year, there's a sense of renewal, of hope that the "good days" of the past
year will multiply in the year to come. For long-term
radio collectors, those good days might combine the old
and new ways of collecting. The new, of course, is
represented by the Internet which offers a global market
and sometimes instant satisfaction to buyers and
sellers alike. However, it is also a largely impersonal
venue that can lead to disappointment and loss. Since
the person you are dealing with is often an unknown, in
a worst case scenario, the result can be
out-and-out fraud. That fact seems to be borne out by an
increase in the number of scams reported to us in recent months.
What to do? How to maintain the old, more
intimate ways of engaging in this hobby while still enjoying
the new benefits of the Internet? What is slipping away
is the sense of camaraderie and mutual support
that comes from the more personal venues of clubs,
meets, and publications, such as newsletters and A.R.C.
Sadly, impersonalization is becoming the norm in
radio transactions. Even the auctions that are
proliferating today contribute to that sense of a loss of
connection with the seller or buyer who would have met you
face-to-face at a meet or talked to you on the telephone.
Reporting on annual radio events, we've noticed
a gradual decline in attendance in recent years.
Though seemingly insignificant at first glance, the
cumulative effect of the decline doesn't bode well for the
future. Make no mistake, decreased numbers and
increased costs put a squeeze on those who put on events.
Thus far the only solution we've come up with lies
in a challenge to you for 2005 and years to come: Make
a New Year's resolution to support your local clubs
and radio publications like A.R.C. All of these
organizations, literally the bedrock of our hobby, are
struggling to find a way to survive in this age of the Internet.
It's time for everyone to step up to the plate to help
preserve what is good about the old ways of
disseminating information and of bonding with radio friends.
A.R.C. makes efforts to do that monthly, and
our lead article by Managing Editor Dorothy Schecter
and the A.R.C. staff is a case in point. When my
archives yielded up a brochure on Day-Fan radios, we
seized the opportunity to write about this 1920s company.
In the same vein, when Richard Arnold finds a
set that interests him, like the Kadette 86X, he shares the information by writing about it. Richard's efforts
are indicative of his strong support for the hobby.
The New Jersey Antique Radio Club's
Saturday clinics are a prime example of how the old
interpersonal ways of collecting can create good will, as well
as preserve an old set. Walter Heskes writes about
repairing an IF transformer in a Crosley 10-135 brought in
by a grateful noncollector. Walt describes in detail
what transformers are, what they do, how they are
designed, why they fail, and how they can be
repaired. Ray Bintliff supplements this information with a
short piece describing failure in a Philco RF transformer.
Crystal, battery, AC and portable sets create a
wide variety on the Photo Review pages. But perhaps
most striking is the crate labeled "Radio Ginger Ale" on
one side and "Superior Quality" on the other.
We have no greater contributor to the hobby
in general and to A.R.C. in particular than Ray
Chase who reports faithfully on Estes auctions. At
about $60,000 total, this auction did not yield the
largest proceeds, but it did offer over 1,000 items. Some
were rare and seldom seen at auction, like the Zenith
suitcase portable and the John Firth Vocaphone.
And as meets go, few are more successful
than Michigan's Extravaganza reported by John
Reinicke. This club seems to do everything right. First, it is
open to all, and second, it is held on Friday and
Saturday, convenient days to attract old and potentially
new collectors, as well as casual shoppers. In addition,
its Friday evening social is included in the cost of
the event and everyone attends to enjoy good
company. Hats off to Extravaganza and to all who supported it!
Radio Miscellanea includes feedback to
articles, kudos, and a museum announcement. Most
prominent is the example of scam attempts that should make
us all take notice and be warned.
A.R.C. Benefits. Start the New Year by taking
advantage of A.R.C. benefits to subscribers on books:
a 10 percent discount and free shipping by book rate
in the U.S. Discover, American Express, Visa,
MasterCard accepted; a toll-free number (866) 371-0512;
the Web: www.antiqueradio.com.
Coming Radio Events. The list this month
includes 39 events, enough to get you started on that
New Year's resolution. And, plan now to attend the
Greater Boston Antique Radio Collectors' Radio XXXVI,
organized by A.R.C., in Westford, Mass., on February
20, 2005. Many consider this a not-to-be missed event.
John V. Terrey, Editor
Printed without comment
We continue to receive reports from advertisers of
e-mail responses to their classified ads proposing to
pay them with a check, sometimes via a third party,
in excess of the purchase price. The seller is asked
to refund the difference by wire. In more than one
case reported to A.R.C., the check received was "bad."
To minimize problems, we always suggest that
you know whom you are dealing with or ask for references.
ON THE COVER
Selling at the Estes Auction for a bargain $95,
the Atwater Kent Model 37 in a Red Lion Cabinet
Co. cabinet is an excellent example of how a 1920s
set was built into furniture. The pull-down front,
which reveals the radio, serves as a desk.