VOLUME 13 DECEMBER 1996 NUMBER 12
EDITOR'S COMMENTSFrom Antique Radio Classified for December 1996
(Copyright 1996 by John V. Terrey - For personal use only.)
Preparing the December issue of A.R.C. as we do in November evokes an early holiday spirit, along with a bit of nostalgia. In this last festive month of 1996, we look back on a year of steady improvement in our magazine. We also look forward to more of the same in the New Year. Meanwhile, perhaps we can arrange for Santa to drop our renewed pledge of quality into those subscriber stockings "hung by the fire with care."
Wally Worth certainly takes up a nostalgic theme for those of us in the Boston area when he explores the rise and fall of the Samson Company. Many manufacturers produced only a few models, and we thank our readers for continuing to ferret out the histories of these obscure firms.
Although A.R.C. prides itself on being a medium for information exchange, little did we think that nearly two years after publishing an article on call letters, we would still be publishing follow-ups. Actually, Al Germond goes even further than simply discussing call letters; he gives a fine summary of the evolution of three radio networks -- NBC, CBS and ABC. We also include contributions about call letters from nine other readers.
Foreign sets and collectors are represented this month by two articles. Ray Bintliff compiles a follow-up to a March 1995 Photo Review photo of a Russian radio. This composite is based on information submitted by five contributors about the Red Star radio, including its possible French and German ancestry.
The other foreign article is a collector profile of Dino Gianni of Milan, Italy, and his extensive collection. Robert Lozier and Vic Franzoni contributed the article and photo montage of Dino's crystal sets, receivers, amplifiers, consoles, radio/phonographs, and military sets.
This month's restoration topic is the Echophone EC-1 communications receiver manufactured by Hallicrafters in 1940. Ray Bintliff describes his success in restoring this basic 6-tube, AC/DC set.
A reminder: The danger of shock when operating AC/DC sets can never be overemphasized, and Ray mentions this fact in his article. Since the chassis on these sets is usually connected directly to one of the two AC line cord wires, A.R.C. recommends that AC/DC sets be operated only via an AC isolation transformer.
Alan Douglas continues with Part 7 of his series on vintage tube testers. This particular installment is probably best for the tube tester devotee who is comfortable tossing around terms like "KS 15750," "TV7" and "micromhos." Actually, Alan covers how to handle a host of glitches that can compromise the operation of old tube testers.
Alan also contributes a description of Radio Rex, a novelty dog and doghouse. He relates the little-known fact that this toy was manufactured by the predecessor to the National Company, once famous for communications receivers.
Ray Bintliff's Radio Collector's Guide to Philco Bakelite Block Condensers is reviewed by Ron Ramirez. Ron reports that this is an excellent book that was long needed for the radio restorer's workbench.
Photo Review this month features additional foreign sets -- Australian and British -- along with a unique, 1960s, Art Deco wall speaker that looks like a framed painting. Radio Miscellanea includes a letter reminding mail-order buyers not to "mess with" items received damaged or not working. There are also a few letters from happy A.R.C. readers.
Finally, we publish the answers to Dave Crocker's second "Radio Quiz," which appeared in the April 1996 issue. Sorry about the delay, but we are often limited by space. Thanks to all who sent in answers and also those who mentioned that they enjoy this feature.
Renew Now and Save. With the new year, comes another necessary increase in A.R.C.'s subscription and advertising rates. Annual U.S. subscription rates will increase $2.00 per year, classified ad extra words increase 2c, and display advertising rates increase about 8%. Each year, to keep A.R.C. serving the radio collecting community, we must absorb increased costs of postage, printing, supplies, rent and personnel. We always announce these rate increases in advance so that subscribers and advertisers can take advantage of current rates before the new rates take effect on January 1, 1997.
Coming Radio Events. About three dozen radio events are scheduled during December. International events of note are being held in London, England; Toronto, Canada; and Vienna, Austria. It's not too soon to be looking forward to 1997 and its offerings. "Mark Your Calendar" also lists the dates for many of the major 1997 meets. Of special mention are two events that involve A.R.C. -- Radio XXVIII on February 23 in Westford, Mass. (attendance last year was over 900!), and the 2nd annual ski/radio meet at Crested Butte, Colorado, from February 26 to March 1. I hope to see many of you at these events.
Holiday Greetings. From all of us at A.R.C. -- John, Scott, Lisa, Cindie, Dorothy, Chris, Ray, Dave, Dick, Bobby and Jean -- a happy holiday and a prosperous new year of collecting.
John V. Terrey, Editor
ON THE COVER
The search for a holiday cover for the December issue is always a challenge. This year, our choice is a postcard from the editor's collection. The subject seems appropriate in that a child fascinated with radio in times past is our hope for the future -- a new generation of radio collectors.