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 A good but expensive way to display radios
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 Return to top of page · Post #: 1 · Written at 7:33:12 PM on 17 March 2013.
Brad's avatar
 Administrator
 Location: Greenwich, NSW
 Member since 15 November 2005
 Member #: 1
 Postcount: 5510

I'm in the middle of repainting at the moment and the first room on the agenda is the lounge room.

At the same time I have recently been shrinking the size of my collection for two reasons.

Firstly, I want to concentrate on collecting and displaying radios that are in good condition yet have a significant historical value. This has always been a goal though I've also had a bad habit of collecting everything I find and this leads to an inevitable decline in my ability to access places like spare bedrooms and garages! Something has to give, so I have been offloading radios and spare parts in the last three months to interested parties. My hope is that what I have shifted will receive the same appreciation that I wanted to give.

Secondly, the sale of surplus gear has allowed me to start funding appropriate ways of displaying my receivers. The display cabinet pictured below cost an even $1,000.00 and it was delivered yesterday. I almost died when I saw the price but it is the perfect cabinet for my collection of 1940s AWA Radiolettes. At the end of the day, what is now in this cabinet is worth far more than the cabinet itself and in more ways than one.

AWA Radiolette Display


In a financial sense, these radios are a perfect investment opportunity. Those on the top two shelves in particular, though all up we are looking at something like $3,000.00 for the six together.

In a historical sense, these radios are examples of our manufacturing heritage. The more we see factories close and jobs exported, the more important that items like this will become. They are Australiana personified.

Post-industrial Australia is becoming a train-wreck at the hands of the current national government, Coles, Woolworths and the 'big four' banks. That is my political rant for the month of March. I hope you like the display. Smile


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A valve a day keeps the transistor away...

 
 Return to top of page · Post #: 2 · Written at 9:36:45 PM on 17 March 2013.
MonochromeTV's avatar
 Location: Melbourne, VIC
 Member since 20 September 2011
 Member #: 1009
 Postcount: 1043

You have done well, Brad. That is a perfect cabinet to display your Radiolette collection.

It is interesting, along with the DL/KM Astor Mickeys, that these 500M type AWA's are very collectable. Considering that these radios are technically fairly basic, were mass produced, and were aimed at the lower end of the market in their day.

I too have the same issue with de voiding my space of surplus radios and old B/W TV's. I am about to embark on some major renovations and the clutter has to go!

In regards to Post Industrial Australia, the same is happening in a lot of other Western Countries as well. Last year I spent some time in the US and Canada. Whilst there I travelled on a train from Chicago to Detroit. Along the way you could see the wreckage of what was once the industrial heartland of the US. Abandoned steel mills in Gary, Indiana to the destruction of Detroit. Compared to what I saw over there I think we are still ok here. But for how long? Who knows!!

That was my contribution.
Cheers.


 
 Return to top of page · Post #: 3 · Written at 10:26:51 PM on 17 March 2013.
Brad's avatar
 Administrator
 Location: Greenwich, NSW
 Member since 15 November 2005
 Member #: 1
 Postcount: 5510

There was an article in the SMH yesterday about how the population of Detroit has almost halved due to the slowdown in the US car industry.

About two years ago I found out about a little-discussed UN treaty that Australia is a signatory to and I am fairly sure the US is as well, that requires first-world nations to cause their secondary industries to migrate to the third world. I don't know who could possibly think that Australia owes the rest of the world that much but I do remember one thing from the books of history - back when Australia was attempting to become industrialised in the 1800s we did have some help from the Mother Country though we basically became an industrial power through determination, ingenuity and a protection policy, not because the two major industrial powers at the time, Great Britain and France, felt they owed us or any other country any underlying loyalty or privilege.

The irony with the UN is that they were inaugurated for the sole purpose of preventing war and that is the one thing they have failed to do. Apart from that they've been a bunch of interfering sticky beaks and they are involved far more in our daily lives than we really know.


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A valve a day keeps the transistor away...

 
 Return to top of page · Post #: 4 · Written at 12:19:15 AM on 18 March 2013.
GTC's avatar
 GTC
 Location: Sydney, NSW
 Member since 28 January 2011
 Member #: 823
 Postcount: 5262

That is a great display cabinet indeed.

When I was studying economics at school in the 1960s, it was already evident to the authors of our texts that there was shift in importance from secondary industry to the tertiary sector and that secondary industry would slowly decline in Oz. I recall at the time finding this hard to believe ... but they were right.


 
 Return to top of page · Post #: 5 · Written at 2:03:30 PM on 18 March 2013.
Chris Ronayne's avatar
 Location: Wauchope, NSW
 Member since 1 January 2013
 Member #: 1269
 Postcount: 576

Brad, that is a very nice display you have there! Well done! I need to think up something for my growing television collection!

Chris


 
 Return to top of page · Post #: 6 · Written at 11:24:12 PM on 5 April 2013.
Steve's Gravatar
 Location: Donald, VIC
 Member since 7 January 2006
 Member #: 13
 Postcount: 259

Well done display Brad and I know the cost of display I must dig in the cupboards see if I can send you some pics of the days when I had the 1000's of sets !

1996 I bought 16 giant display cases / bookshelves all in teak - I put 30 of my then 66 Radiolettes, into the display setup !

A second section I set up 12 radio stars with a gaurd of 2 Symphony leaders 1 on each end ! it took me 3 weeks to polish exactly 400 sets on display, its an endless job!

In the 90's id have spent some $5,500 on suitable display shelving , its gets out of control and before you know it ''poverty'' is encroaching ! Its also hard to find uniformity in suitable display furniture - in the end I ran out of house space -------------the house had to go! its radio / first / last and always !

The last lot I set up in display before I sold off all the collections in the 90's , was a huge showing of Astor Mickies and Healing Minors ( the 401e golden voice) 200 of them !

Its a lot of work, but I look at collectors these days they are struggling to house / display 100 / 160 sets ! how'd you like to have had my job in November 1997 trying to house 3,460 of ''the little darlings ''; it's no mean task I tell you !

You wake up one day and look at what you have you say what the hell am I doing with 1000's of sets ?? it hits home you know ----you have a fortune tied up - the reality strikes you !

My Mrs when alive used to say! why have you got so many sets, as you don't even like listening to radio!!!! Totally true ive never had a radio on in a house more than 3 hours a week in the last 30 years ( I can't stand listening to radio lol lol )

Collecting can become an obsession ! yes I loved collecting them ( thrill of the chase ) - and I loved restoring them )) but listening to them '' No'' only if it was on the horse racing station --now thats worth listening too !

I recall listening in on one of the family members radios in 1970 ( it was a Breville Bakelite of the 40's ) we heard Gunsynd win the 1970 Doncaster - then again hearing the great horse will the 1972 Rawson stakes after they thought he was all washed up - those events you recall on radio ! good memories - great horses and great radios !

The best sound of the radios though by far is to be found in the Consoles ! Set up a nice Motor drive 262 AWA of the late 1930's all restored - now thats premium sound quality - I still have the giant motor drive 262 , residing at a rellies house, now thats class !

Nothing much beats the performance of the big AWA'S produced in the 1937 to 1947 era !


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Steve.

 
 Return to top of page · Post #: 7 · Written at 9:46:14 AM on 6 April 2013.
Brad's avatar
 Administrator
 Location: Greenwich, NSW
 Member since 15 November 2005
 Member #: 1
 Postcount: 5510

Choosing the right furniture for display purposes is hard, especially since everything in the loungeroom is already from different eras. I have an art deco sideboard and a barley twist dining setting from around 1910 with the pie crust edge around the extension table.

The telly is a 54 inch Panasonic plasma job and the entertainment unit it sits on is made in China and decked out with a Sony Betamax VCR and Sherwood components; DAB+ tuner, CD player, DVD player, huge amplifier, etc. So there's plenty from yesterday and today.

The Kriesler 11-7 sits on my grandmother's china cabinet because that is the type of radio she used to have in her dining room. It was fitting to make sure the two went together I think. I also have a perfect Kriesler 11-20 Plum Pudding but haven't found a spot for it yet.

The photo below shows what one wall of my bedroom used to look like.

Valve Radios


This display is long gone and I no longer own some of the radios there though with the sale of some radios I've since bought others plus the investment in new ways to display them. I think I'm getting to a stage where open display of most of the radios I have will come to an end and in future they'll be glassed in and illuminated with warm-white LED strips.

I have a huge AWA radiogram in my office at work and it is often a talking point. I don't remember the model number but it is the ten valver that the HRSA once described as the instrument of rare distinction. It still needs a turntable but the power in the radio is incredible and AWA even put a decent loud speaker in it.


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A valve a day keeps the transistor away...

 
 Return to top of page · Post #: 8 · Written at 1:44:04 PM on 6 April 2013.
Chris Ronayne's avatar
 Location: Wauchope, NSW
 Member since 1 January 2013
 Member #: 1269
 Postcount: 576

Very nice collection there Brad! That makes me want to go out and purchase some valve radios - even though I'm a telly person!

I'd like to make a display like this for my 34cm colour televisions...

Chris


 
 Return to top of page · Post #: 9 · Written at 8:54:13 PM on 1 December 2015.
High Tension's Gravatar
 Location: Kurri Kurri, NSW
 Member since 22 March 2015
 Member #: 1716
 Postcount: 6

Those are some NICE collections! My own collection is small, consisting mostly of regens and TRF sets from the 1920's and a couple of crystal sets. I am fascinated by their simplicity and sensitivity. A Browning Drake and an AC Dayton XL10 are my favourites. I do have a couple of Radiair cabinets and a nice Salonola console I plan to do something with, but only ideas so far as I am not really sure what parts or particular circuits were used. Yes, I could put anything in them, but usually I'd rather be historically accurate.

My own opinion, whatever you like, keep. If you aren't keen on a set, find someone who is and let someone who appreciates it enjoy it for a while.Your own happiness in the hobby is the key.

Lindsey


 
 Return to top of page · Post #: 10 · Written at 12:58:59 AM on 3 December 2015.
Tallar Carl's avatar
 Location: Latham, ACT
 Member since 21 February 2015
 Member #: 1705
 Postcount: 1405

Hey Brad, are you ever selling any of your reliance mantle radios. I wouldnt mind having a look.


 
 Return to top of page · Post #: 11 · Written at 4:56:02 PM on 3 December 2015.
Brad's avatar
 Administrator
 Location: Greenwich, NSW
 Member since 15 November 2005
 Member #: 1
 Postcount: 5510

I only ever had one Reliance. It was sold about three years ago now.


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A valve a day keeps the transistor away...

 
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