RADIO MISCELLANEA -- OCTOBER 2002 From Antique Radio Classified for October 2002
(Copyright 1996-2002 by John V. Terrey - For personal use only.)
"Antique Radio Classified" invites its readers to contribute letters and information for inclusion in "Radio Miscellanea" and elsewhere in the magazine. "In The Marketplace" is based on information submitted by the businesses themselves. All topics should be of general interest and sent to A.R.C., P.O. Box 2, Carlisle, MA 01741. All material submitted should be verified for accuracy and may be edited for publication, which is not guaranteed. See the masthead for more details.
Radio Row Memories
I so enjoyed Syd Steinhardt's article, "The Death of Radio Row," in the September issue that I had to add my thoughts, along with those of the interviewees in the NPR article. Radio Row was my hangout as a boy. That's where I learned much about radio from the professional salesmen who knew what they were talking about. Back in the late 1930s and early 1940s when I would frequent Eagle Radio, 84 Cortlandt St. (CO7-7368), I remember the day the salesman slipped a 6-inch ruler in my shirt pockert after I had bought a part. Eagle Radio always took the time to explain things to me. I believe I bought my first microphone there - an Astatic crystal mike - so that I could talk on the radio, along with the phonograph I had bought there.
Then there was Leotone Radio where you could find anything really old for a few dollars. Once I was building a Neutrodyne radio but didn't have the neutralizing capacitors. Well, Mr. Leotone cut one out of a Neutrodyne set. As a 15-year old, I was astonished. Looking back I wonder why he didn't sell me the set. I believe he charged me a quarter for the two capacitors.
About the time Radio Row was demolished, I moved to Cape Cod, so the fate of the site was unknown to me. From 1962 to 1992 when I retired, I was a radio operator at WCC Chatham Radio, an RCA marine radio telegraph station, the largest in the world. I loved every minute of it. It was recently sold to the town of Chatham which will hopefully turn it into a museum and operating Amateur station. Any support from readers would be appreciated.
--Leon H. Baumlin, Harwich, MA
More Views of Radio Row
Those readers who want to know more about the neighborhood that was demolished to make way for the World Trade Center will find of interest the book The Destruction of Lower Manhattan by Danny Lyon, MacMillan Publishers, 1969. Lyon is a wonderful photographer who shows not only the wonderful 19th century buildings destroyed for the center, but also the demolition workers at their jobs. While there is nothing more about Radio Row in this hard-to-find book, it does a sensitive job of conveying the quiet dignity of men at work, as well as what was lost when the Center was erected.
Incidentally, Tokyo, a very dense city, somehow manages to keep a street like the old Cortlandt St. going. It's nicely described in the July 2002 IEEE, pages 40-42, "Finding the Strange and Wonderful in Electric Town."
--A. David Munsch, Belmont, MA
How About a Radio Row Book?
This is just a note to say how much the articles about Radio Row that you have printed over the past few years have meant to us readers. I, for instance, have ordered kits, parts, and radios from many of those New York merchants from the time I was a teenager in the 1950s. Mail order items went out from those little stores to people all over the nation. We ordered through Popular Mechanics, Popular Science, and other pulp magazines. We didn't know who we were ordering from, but we sure got neat gizmos. And the tubes and parts were really cheap; otherwise, we couldn't have ordered them.
So, who is going to write the book? It has to be written; it cries out to be written. We want to read the whole story, from folks like Mr. Schneck of the first radio store on Cortlandt St. to the last of those business families that were kicked out to make way for the World Trade Center. There just needs to be a book!
--Alton A. DuBois, Jr., Queensbury, NY
Several More from Alton...
Stylus Repair Source
I have found a company in England that repairs and supplies sapphire and diamond styluses for recording and playing phonograph records. I have had an Edison cylinder recording cutter restored there. A letter to the company will get a brochure of the services offered. The following is the address: Expert Stylus Company, P.O. Box 3, Ashpead, Surrey KT21 2QD, U. K. Tel: 01372-276604. Fax: 01372 276149.
--Alton DuBois, Queensbury, NY
On 1L6 Socket Modification
In the September 2002 issue of A.R.C., Stan Jennings asked for an article on socket modifications to the 1L6. Why go to that trouble? The editor mentioned using a 1R5 tube by cutting off pin #5. This is fine, but do not try to cut the pin with a nipper or side cutter. The best way is to place a small pin shield under the #5 pin and over the adjoining pins and then use a Dremel cut-off disc or a fine jeweler's saw. Cutting it with a side cutter or nipper will invariably break the glass from the shock.
--Alton A. DuBois, Jr., Queensbury, NY
Freshman Polydyne Cabinet Questions
In reading the article on the Freshman Polydyne (A.R.C., April 1999), I got the impression that the metal case of that set is similar to the case used by Atwater Kent for the Atwater Kent Model 40. Could it be that they bought cabnets from the same maker? Did Freshman introduce that type of case before Atwater Kent used it?
--Stephen Mauck, Lyons, KS
We'll spread the word and perhaps a writer will answer the call. (Editor)