UK Vintage Radio Repair and Restoration Powered By Google Custom Search Vintage Radio Service Data

Go Back   UK Vintage Radio Repair and Restoration Discussion Forum > Specific Vintage Equipment > Vintage Radio (domestic)


Vintage Radio (domestic) Domestic vintage radio (wireless) receivers only.

Closed Thread
Thread Tools
Old 14th May 2019, 8:02 am   #1
crackle's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Basildon, Essex, UK.
Posts: 3,178
Default Childhood memories of radios.

My wife says she cant remember any specific radios from her childhood, I am sure her parents had one but it made no lasting memory.
On the other hand I can seem to remember many of the radios we had in the home, from when I was about 7 years old to when I left home.
You may have guessed that KB radios and their cousins played a part in our home, mainly because Dad worked at STC who owned KB in those days.
Specific radios which I remember were;

Click image for larger version

Name:	KB_GR40.jpg
Views:	73
Size:	103.7 KB
ID:	183062 A large radio which sat on a shelf above the washing machine, with a fascinating array of rotating wave bands.

KB UP21 "Scarlet Rhapsody"
Click image for larger version

Name:	KB_UP21_scarlet.jpg
Views:	48
Size:	106.0 KB
ID:	183063 This radio actually belonged to my older sister but I used to listen to at night under the bedclothes.
But there were also other radio also bought from the STC staff shop.

Regentone BT18 "Minim"
Click image for larger version

Name:	regentone_bt18_lside.jpg
Views:	50
Size:	67.4 KB
ID:	183064 Belonged to my Aunties I used to marvel at the small size and crowded components.

Regentone BT23 "Regenteener"
Click image for larger version

Name:	regentone_bt23.jpg
Views:	45
Size:	130.5 KB
ID:	183065 (or more likely the RGD equivalent) I used to listen to Caroline, Radio London and the other pirates on.

RGD RR214 "International"
Click image for larger version

Name:	RGD_rr214_rfront.jpg
Views:	67
Size:	98.9 KB
ID:	183066 Our first VHF FM radio I used to listen to the police on this radio and turn it off in a panic if they mentioned they were near my road. Also used to plug it into my home made amp and speaker to listen to and record Pick of the Pops.

BVWS Member
The KB Museum

My collection in the Radio Museum

Last edited by crackle; 14th May 2019 at 8:09 am.
crackle is offline  
Old 14th May 2019, 8:09 am   #2
crackle's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Basildon, Essex, UK.
Posts: 3,178
Default Re: Childhood memories of radios.

There were other radios which were given to me as gifts to play with.

Pye P31MBQ
Click image for larger version

Name:	Pye P31MBQ.jpg
Views:	28
Size:	78.8 KB
ID:	183068 This was given to me by my Aunts, the rectifier went wrong and I replaced it with a double diode valve type. It always intrigued me as to why the best reception was with the lid 2/3rds closed.

HMV 1107
Click image for larger version

Name:	HMV 1107.jpg
Views:	45
Size:	90.3 KB
ID:	183067 This was my main bedroom radio by the side of my bed for a long time. I adjusted it to receive Top band and the Trawler band and had many fascinating hours listening to the conversations.

What radios do you have fond memories of ?

BVWS Member
The KB Museum

My collection in the Radio Museum

Last edited by crackle; 14th May 2019 at 8:24 am.
crackle is offline  
Old 14th May 2019, 8:39 am   #3
'LIVEWIRE?''s Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: N.W. Oxfordshire(Chipping Norton)
Posts: 7,078
Default Re: Childhood memories of radios.

I don't have any pictures, but the first radio I remember was Dad's EKCO, which had the usual Long & Medium wavebands, with pre-sets. It was battery-operated, and may have been a pre-war model as he sold it in 1951. Later there was a battery-operated HMV Table radio (120v HT Dry battery & 2v. 'Accumulator'), followed by two different versios (not at the same time) of the Ever Ready Sky Queen. An Aunt & Uncle I used to stay with during summer holidays had what may have been one of the Philips 'Superinductance' sets - I would only have been about 7 or 8 at the time, but i recall that the tuning dial & knob arrangement was similar to those. Later they had one of the Pye Vanity Case Portables. The first radio I bought was a Fidelity Coronet.
'LIVEWIRE?' is online now  
Old 14th May 2019, 9:11 am   #4
Tractorfan's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: St. Frajou, l'Isle en Dodon, Haute Garonne, France.(Previously: Ellesmere Port, Cheshire, UK.)
Posts: 2,851
Smile Re: Childhood memories of radios.

My earliest 'radio memory' was of the radiogram that my parents bought the same year I was born (1954). It was a table model and badged 'Beethoven' and had a Garrard autochanger. My two elder brothers loved those Sunday afternoon programmes such as 'The Goon Show', 'Round The Horne', 'The Navy Lark', etc., etc.
The radio had a simple fame aerial within, and we turned the whole set round sideways on the sideboard to improve the reception. It used B7G 'H' series valves and it took forever to warm up. My brothers had their usual teenager parties, and the 'gram belted out the Stones, the Beatles et al at a whopping two watts! My brother connected a contact mic to the gram input and played his guitar through it a few times.
Alas, my parents and one of my brothers are no more, but the 'Beethoven' has survived and now lives in France.
Like most of on here, I was given plenty old radios to play with and, I'm sorry to say, most of them were ruined (sorry)
However, an 'uncle' then gave me a Murphy A122 that came from a joiner's shop and was full of sawdust and dead spiders. The valves lit up, the speaker crackled, but no music. I forgot the aerial, So after a length of flex was cast from the bedroom window I was greeted by a dial full of entertainment! I was hooked!! I spent hours trawling the short wave band late at night, and loved hearing all the foreign stations that came in after dark.
Cheers, Pete
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	Beethoven radiogram.jpg
Views:	83
Size:	102.2 KB
ID:	183071   Click image for larger version

Name:	A pair of Murphys (2).jpg
Views:	84
Size:	77.2 KB
ID:	183072   Click image for larger version

Name:	Garrard RC12O.jpg
Views:	76
Size:	81.7 KB
ID:	183073  
"Hello?, Yes, I'm on the train, I might lose the signal soon as we're just going into a tunn..."
Tractorfan is offline  
Old 14th May 2019, 9:17 am   #5
Join Date: Jun 2017
Location: Southport, Merseyside, UK.
Posts: 257
Default Re: Childhood memories of radios.

From as far back as I can remember ca 1942 / 43 I suppose; I can recall a radiogram, a console radio and a table radio. A further table radio was added to the collection ca 1952.

Thanks to this forum I have been able to identify each set together with a picture of each.
Time flies like an arrow, fruit flies like a banana
rontech is offline  
Old 14th May 2019, 1:46 pm   #6
Richard_FM's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2017
Location: Stockport, Cheshire, UK.
Posts: 918
Default Re: Childhood memories of radios.

My Dad had a Grundig Elite Boy 700 for many years, which was useful taking on holidays to France as it had good reception on long & short wave.

I don't know if he's still got it tucked away somewhere, it was looking a bit worn when I last remember it.
Beware of the trickster on the roof
Richard_FM is offline  
Old 14th May 2019, 2:32 pm   #7
Herald1360's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Leominster, Herefordshire, UK.
Posts: 13,700
Default Re: Childhood memories of radios.

Parents had a wooden case Little Maestro in the kitchen/dining room on a high shelf by the open doorway between the two rooms.

Gran had a posher Murphy A70.

My first set was an Ivalek crystal set with the tickler hole in the front but a Ge diode inside.

An Admiral (?) that nearly electrocuted me.

An unknown table radiogram chassis that I resolved my first SSB signals on by making the IF valve oscillate (bit of coax, inner to anode then up through chassis and about an inch of the other end of the inner positioned by the top cap grid connection, 10k WW variable resistor in cathode circuit) which must have played havoc with the AVC but it worked.

Then a few kits- Roamer 7 (ugh), Elegant 7 (much better) and a R1155, best I could afford (it was given to me).

Then I wasn't a kid any longer, at least legally
.=.| _---\__|__|_---_|.
Herald1360 is online now  
Old 14th May 2019, 3:18 pm   #8
Join Date: Nov 2016
Location: Aberaeron, Ceredigion, Wales, UK.
Posts: 1,310
Default Re: Childhood memories of radios.

We had an old Radiogram with a wind up record deck, just canít remember make.
I used to love to sit by the radio and tune into all the foreign stations, and try and guess what language we were listening to, we had a long aerial running length of the garden so no problem pulling in many stations. Dick Barton special agent was a favourite program and later radio Luxembourg.
In addition to listening to the radio I used to play with my lead toy soldiers on the turntable, happy days.
John10b is offline  
Old 14th May 2019, 3:35 pm   #9
McMurdo's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Staffordshire Moorlands, UK.
Posts: 3,661
Default Re: Childhood memories of radios.

I grew up in the early 70's so my radio memories are transistorised!

The family radio was an early 60's GEC Transistor Seven BC505 in red.

The 'kitchen' radio was a Hong Kong black leatherette special called an 'Ameltone Venus' from around the turn of the decade.

Dad had his own radio-cassette which was a luxury 'Calex' TDK701 complete with analogue clock and it went very loud.

When I became a teenager I was allowed to chose a 'Vesta' portable radio from Woolworths. I wanted the woodgrain one but they'd sold out and I had to settle for the silver one.
McMurdo is offline  
Old 14th May 2019, 4:16 pm   #10
newlite4's Avatar
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Bath, Somerset, UK.
Posts: 1,440
Default Re: Childhood memories of radios.

First half of the sixties we had a GEC BC5445 which my brother pulled off the shelf wrecking the case but it still worked. After this, we got a GEC Luxembourg transistor which was a popular set at the time.
Mike, I particularly like the RGD International, lovely little set!
preserving the recent past, for the distant future.
newlite4 is offline  
Old 14th May 2019, 4:28 pm   #11
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Dukinfield, Cheshire, UK.
Posts: 1,508
Default Re: Childhood memories of radios.

Some nice radios on show here! I no longer have any of the radios I grew up with, so I've had to pinch photos off the 'net. First is a 'Stag' 6 transistor pocket radio from about 1966. It worked much better than it looked!
Next is a nice National Panasonic RF610, my first radio with FM. Purchased on holiday in Gibraltar in 1969, £12 IIRC.
Next along is a Toshiba IC700 from the early 70's. This one got left on a hill when things got a bit fraught. Don't ask.
And finally a Grundig Top Boy. I can't remember where this came from but I didn't buy it. Possibly an unclaimed repair from the shop.
Since then it's been Sony and Sangean 'World Band' radios.
Before these there was a large Bush model with several presets just below the dial glass. I found I could tweak one of them to receive Radio Amateurs on the 160m band and the rot set in...
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	Stag.jpg
Views:	51
Size:	22.5 KB
ID:	183087   Click image for larger version

Name:	Panasonic RF610.jpg
Views:	49
Size:	6.2 KB
ID:	183088   Click image for larger version

Name:	Toshiba IC700.jpg
Views:	53
Size:	8.6 KB
ID:	183089   Click image for larger version

Name:	Grundig Top Boy 500.jpg
Views:	45
Size:	37.9 KB
ID:	183090  
Andy G1HBE.

Last edited by Andrew2; 14th May 2019 at 4:38 pm.
Andrew2 is online now  
Old 14th May 2019, 4:30 pm   #12
G6Tanuki's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Wiltshire, UK.
Posts: 7,891
Default Re: Childhood memories of radios.

I remember my parents buying a Philips L2G21T - - in blue. I was delighted to find it had a car-aerial socket so promptly lashed-up a 'clip-on-the-window' aerial-bracket and suitable whip, so we could listen to the Philips in my mother's Hillman Minx (you didn't need a separate car-radio licence for a 'portable' radio used in a car).
Even in the Midlands we got good reception of Radio Caroline.

I also remember a radiogram - RGD 207 or 209? - which I suspect was actually a Regentone or similar nastygram badge-engineered as a RGD. It had MW/LW/FM coverage and even on its internal silver-foil antenna I could listen to "YK", the local police base-station.
G6Tanuki is offline  
Old 14th May 2019, 4:40 pm   #13
Radio Surfer
Join Date: Apr 2019
Location: Tiree, Argyll & Bute, Scotland, UK.
Posts: 63
Default Re: Childhood memories of radios.

My Dad had a radio with a green lid that pivoted 90 degress around the volume and tuning knobs on the side, I think it was Bush transistor radio, but can't remember the model number. I can remember my Mother coming in and slamming the lid down to turn it off whenever she walked in. That radio was on from first thing in the morning to last thing at night, she did say she would bury it with him!

Radio Surfer is offline  
Old 14th May 2019, 5:17 pm   #14
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Leeds, West Yorkshire, UK.
Posts: 1,096
Default Re: Childhood memories of radios.

Our family had a K.B "Gavotte" radio when we lived in east Leeds in the early 1960's. It had a light blue colour, and is now very rare.
My mother's auntie and uncle had a Philips 834A Superinductance radio from when they got married in 1933. My memories of it date back from the 1950's and early 1960's. It must have cost a vast amount of money in those distant times, reckon someone must have bought them it as a present. A relative cleared her possessions out in the 1990's when she died (aged 94 years). I always remember uncle listening to plays on the radio about Edgar Allen Poe (quite sinister). My dad repaired it for them at some point in the 1960's.
My maternal grandparents had a Ferguson 382U "Firefly" radio when they lived in Suffolk in the early 1960's. I can remember it playing songs by Perry Como, Kathy Kirby and so forth.
When they lived in Stockport, Cheshire previously they had a HMV radiogram (pre war model). I can remember a record called "Davy Crockett" (can not remember the artist), but it was bought for my cousin when he was a small lad. When this record was purchased it came with a Davy Crockett hat. It is ironic that many years later, my cousin now lives near the Alamo in San Antonio Texas (what that record was all about).
telstar is offline  
Old 14th May 2019, 6:02 pm   #15
Join Date: May 2019
Location: Derby, Derbyshire, UK.
Posts: 8
Default Re: Childhood memories of radios.

I would love to know if anyone can identify or supply information on the family radio which I can just remember as a very young child. It was a large GEC shelf model, polished wood case, a fabric panel on either side (one side was the speaker grill) with wooden slats, and a pointer tuning dial with about eight push pre-set buttons underneath. I'm fairly sure it was LW, MW and SW, with the usual old station names.
There was an outside wire aerial with insulators (from the house to a large tree!), power from a glass accumulator (changed by the "accumulator man" each week) and HT from a large internal "Ever Ready" blue, or Exide green,
battery. It was later changed to mains power by a large blue metal transformer which replaced the internal battery. (With the odd Wylex mains plug ! )
As my father and grandfather were quite into radios and classical music, I'm fairly sure it would have been a top-end model, perhaps from the late
1930's ? I last remember seeing it in the 1970's or 1980's stored in the garage, having presumably failed way back in the 1950's.
railwayman3 is offline  
Old 14th May 2019, 6:11 pm   #16
ajgriff's Avatar
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Halifax, West Yorkshire, UK.
Posts: 765
Default Re: Childhood memories of radios.

My first radio memory is of a Murphy A168 (first photo) which was given to my parents as a wedding present in 1950. This became my bedside radio and subsequently the basis for my first record player when it was superseded in the kitchen by the more compact Roberts R500 (2nd photo) in 1963. In 1971 I bought an ITT-KB Weekend (third photo) with proceeds from my first summer holiday job and it cost more than a week's wages. The only other working radios during this time were early DIY efforts.

I still have the chassis of the original Murphy plus two more recently acquired examples. The non-working (tin whiskers I imagine) Roberts disappeared when my mother's house was cleared but I also still retain the ITT-KB albeit with a broken aeriel.

Photos are from the Internet.

Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	Murphy A168.jpg
Views:	52
Size:	184.0 KB
ID:	183095   Click image for larger version

Name:	Roberts R500.jpg
Views:	52
Size:	180.5 KB
ID:	183096   Click image for larger version

Name:	ITT KB Weekend.jpg
Views:	53
Size:	183.4 KB
ID:	183097  
ajgriff is online now  
Old 14th May 2019, 6:24 pm   #17
Join Date: Jun 2015
Location: Biggin Hill, London, UK.
Posts: 3,393
Default Re: Childhood memories of radios.

I can remember the 2 radios my parents had when I was a child. I still have them.

My father had a Leak Troughline 3 feeding a Varislope Stereo pre-amp and Stereo 20 amplifier. Of course he also used it for record playing (Garrard 301 + Decca 'Professional' arm) and tape recording/playback (Revox G36).

The 'Kitchen' radio was a Hacker RP18.

My maternal grandmother had a Bush VHF90, which alas is no more. It failed and I dismantled it as a child. It was replaced by a no-name transistor set which I think I still have
TonyDuell is online now  
Old 14th May 2019, 7:06 pm   #18
Nanozeugma's Avatar
Join Date: Nov 2017
Location: London, UK. Manchester once a month :)
Posts: 304
Default Re: Childhood memories of radios.

The only radio my parents ever had - or at least I ever saw - was a Grundig 2035.
It was bought from a local independent radio and TV dealer.
My father would recount (with little provocation) how the delivery people were expecting an HP sale, and once he informed them he was paying in cash they treated him with greater respect...
At some point it had been back to the dealer for repair because the little coloured blobs which got filled in as you advanced the treble control didn't correspond. I assume the reassembly was a bit out of kilter.
Other than that, it worked flawlessly until they passed.

I, on the other hand, got the bug when in my teens and acquired a couple to experiment with from relatives and jumble sales.
I distinctly recall having a Murphy A48 and a Philips 170, heaven knows what happened to them.
Since retiring, my interest has rekindled; I have re-acquired the Murphy and the Philips models.....
..... and rather a lot of others as well
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	2035.jpg
Views:	57
Size:	67.6 KB
ID:	183098  
Thermionic Emission, cures depression, boredom and piles.
Nanozeugma is offline  
Old 14th May 2019, 7:34 pm   #19
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Redruth, Cornwall, UK.
Posts: 1,573
Default Re: Childhood memories of radios.


My memories of the radios we had as a kid were:

1. Ferranti SRG1090 radiogram. This worked very well as I recall but the VHF side of the radio eventually failed. I think that was due to the ECC85 double triode valve.

2. A slightly worn out Pye Q5 transistor radio that we had in the kitchen. It never gave any problems as I recall.

3. One of my first radios that I got my hands on to play with was a Bush VTR133 that worked well on AM but VHF was intermittent and often very distorted. I think this may have been a problem with the AFxxx transistors, possible tin whiskers.

4. A Grundig Elite Boy 500 radio picked up from a TV/Radio repair shop which was thrown out. This was one of my first successful repairs. The PCB had a few cracks in the print due to probably being thrown about or dropped. The audio quality seemed excellent. This radio served me well for many years.

5. A new GEC Starfinder 4 radio which my late dad won in a raffle at work. That was my parents bed side radio for many years. It was replaced with a Morphy Richards clock radio but can't remember the model number. It had a PP3 battery as a back up for the clock in the event of mains failure. Problem was it didn't work properly. When the mains supply was restored, it always came back showing 5:11 as I recall.

6. My brother had an old valve reel to reel tape recorder but I can't remember the make or model. It seemed to have some trick features. Strangely, I think it had some kind of superimpose function on the recordings. Could I be right in thinking it had an echo function, due to spring line reverberation? Did anything like that exist or is my memory playing tricks?

Philips210 is offline  
Old 14th May 2019, 8:13 pm   #20
crackle's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Basildon, Essex, UK.
Posts: 3,178
Default Re: Childhood memories of radios.

There are many good memories there.

Confession time, I don't actually remember when or how any of the radios which I remember, disappeared to. I suspect that they all finally gave up working due to me fiddling and experimenting with them and were then disposed of.
I have recently done my best to obtain replacement examples and repair and restore them properly.

There was one other radio I remember my Dad bought whilst he was at STC. It was an ITT RC1000 The nearest I have been able to find is this RC1001. Click image for larger version

Name:	ITT_RC1001.jpg
Views:	51
Size:	95.4 KB
ID:	183110 We used this to record many audio cassettes which were exchanged with my sister who had moved to Australia.

BVWS Member
The KB Museum

My collection in the Radio Museum

Last edited by crackle; 14th May 2019 at 8:22 pm.
crackle is offline  
Closed Thread

Thread Tools

All times are GMT +1. The time now is 11:22 am.

All information and advice on this forum is subject to the WARNING AND DISCLAIMER located at
Failure to heed this warning may result in death or serious injury to yourself and/or others.

Powered by vBulletin®
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Copyright ©2002 - 2019, Paul Stenning.