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Old 10th Mar 2020, 8:27 pm   #1
sexton_mallard
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Default Pilot 23/625 TV

I acquired this imposing TV as I have never seen anything like it before. It has a 23 inch tube behind a separate faceplate. A quick peek with the back off shows a rather dubious looking transformer connected to the main switch presumably running the CRT heater. This set was manufactured in Ireland, with presumably the cabinet made in East Cork.

It has joined the roundtoit queue but first, the condition of the CRT needs to be determined as I suspect the heater has been overrun. I can't see a label on the tube, I'm hoping it is a replacement of a different type requiring a different heater voltage from the original fitment.

Can anyone shed some more light on this intriguing set which presumably runs 625 line on VHF. More pictures to follow!
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Old 10th Mar 2020, 11:01 pm   #2
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Default Re: Pilot 23/625 TV

Some more shots of the set showing the valve layout diagram, inside the LOPT cage, the tuner, controls and a label showing the valve placement. Something give this set a KB sort of look with the Brimar A59-13W CRT. the label I missed earlier.

The set stands on some funky little conical feet. Some reaction between the faceplate and CRT can be seen but fortunately none of the hideous cataract effects as seen on some US CRTs.
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Old 11th Mar 2020, 12:02 am   #3
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Default Re: Pilot 23/625 TV

Hi Dom,
When I first saw the picture of the chassis, my first thought was that it was virtually the same as my Marconiphone VT161 (in the 59-60 R&TV red book).

Looking at your other pictures, there are distinct similarities. The LOPT cage is similar. The LOPT itself looks almost identical. The three round presets on the lower chassis & general layout is all much the same. The top panel with everything above the panel & the speaker plug on the left is again much the same.

The VT161 uses a PL81 rather than a PL36 and a valve HT rectifier, but I would hazard that whoever made the VT161, also made your chassis. I'm sure John (HCS) mentioned who did make it in my VT161 thread of several years ago.

I like the Pilot TV's from this era and would like to find out more about them. Very interesting that yours in made in Ireland.

Looking back at my VT161 thread, Fernseh said "The Marconi VT161 employs an unique Thorn hand wired chassis in which the metalwork was used in certain export TV receivers."

Also HCS's VT161 can be viewed here

https://www.vintage-radio.net/forum/...i+VT161&page=1

You can see the similarities, although it's certainly not the same.

All the best
Nick

Last edited by 1100 man; 11th Mar 2020 at 12:23 am. Reason: More text added
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Old 11th Mar 2020, 12:41 am   #4
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Default Re: Pilot 23/625 TV

A little further digging has turned up this thread:

https://www.vintage-radio.net/forum/...ad.php?t=60975

That looks to be the identical chassis to your one. Read through the thread and the true manufacturer is revealed!!

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Old 11th Mar 2020, 12:56 am   #5
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Default Re: Pilot 23/625 TV

I haven't come across one of those before. Interesting looking set, hopefully the crt will be ok.
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Old 11th Mar 2020, 1:12 am   #6
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Default Re: Pilot 23/625 TV

The plastic safety screen stretched over the CRT was officially called a Fenbridge Guard, or more colloquially, a "skin"
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Old 11th Mar 2020, 9:45 am   #7
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Default Re: Pilot 23/625 TV

The chassis is clearly of Ferguson/Thorn origins, as has been said above, with a remarkable resemblance to the UK's Marconiphone VT161 and the New Zealand set. Thorn must have licensed the design to overseas manufacturers, or even sold kits for assembly overseas.

The valve position sheet has a Ferguson part number on it, as does the frame output transformer.

Thorn acquired Ultra Radio & Television Ltd from Ultra Electric Ltd, in 1962 and that included the Pilot (UK) company, which Ultra had bought a few years earlier.

In the 1950s, Pilot sets were manufactured by Brownlee Bros Ltd., Molesworth Street, Dublin - under licence from Pilot Radio Ltd, London.

Later in the 1960s, Pilot branded sets were still being made/assembled in the Republic of Ireland, by Brownlee Brothers Ltd (by then, listed as a Thorn subsidiary in at least a Thorn Electrical Industries Ltd annual report and accounts publication). I have an operating instructions booklet for a Pilot model DS-1400 set based on the Thorn 1400 chassis. I also have a Pilot branded service manual for the (Thorn) 900 chassis, issued by Brownlee Brothers.
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Old 11th Mar 2020, 9:46 am   #8
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Default Re: Pilot 23/625 TV

Quote:
Originally Posted by linescan87 View Post
I haven't come across one of those before. Interesting looking set, hopefully the crt will be ok.
Looks like it's being fed from a CRT heater isolation/boost transformer in the bottom LHS of cabinet.
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Old 11th Mar 2020, 12:06 pm   #9
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Default Re: Pilot 23/625 TV

This was produced by Thorn around 1962. It has similar links to the Ferguson 505T fringe receiver. They are very reliable models. J.
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Old 11th Mar 2020, 10:22 pm   #10
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Default Re: Pilot 23/625 TV

Thanks for all the info so far. It does now seem this could be a great telly! I just hope the CRT is OK. The faceplate is water clear...I actually still think its glass but it feels warm and give a dull 'tuk' noise when tapped instead of a ringing noise. This set must have been stored and used away from strong daylight as it has not gone cloudy or yellow. Hopefully life of late will not get in the way again and I can promote it more quickly to the front of the rountoit queue.
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Old 11th Mar 2020, 10:32 pm   #11
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Default Re: Pilot 23/625 TV

Quote:
Originally Posted by sexton_mallard View Post
I just hope the CRT is OK. The faceplate is water clear...I actually still think its glass but it feels warm and give a dull 'tuk' noise when tapped instead of a ringing noise.
From the patterning visible on the CRT's faceplate photo in your first post, the CRT is a "Twin Panel" type, where a moulded piece of clear (but thick) plastic is glued to the glass. If it's a 19", it'll be either a Mullard A47-13W or a Mazda (UK) CME1906. However, your CRT looks to be a Brimar, with the same construction as the Mullard and Mazda.

That patterning indicates the bond (glue) is failing.

Last edited by dazzlevision; 11th Mar 2020 at 10:50 pm.
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Old 11th Mar 2020, 10:43 pm   #12
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Default Re: Pilot 23/625 TV

The 19" Brimar twin panel CRT had the pro-electron code: A47-13W.

DFWB.
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Old 11th Mar 2020, 11:01 pm   #13
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Default Re: Pilot 23/625 TV

Were these actually made in Ireland or just partially built here to get around import duties?
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Old 11th Mar 2020, 11:05 pm   #14
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Default Re: Pilot 23/625 TV

Quote:
Originally Posted by dazzlevision View Post
...it'll be either a Mullard A47-13W or a Mazda (UK) CME1906. However, your CRT looks to be a Brimar, with the same construction as the Mullard and Mazda.

That patterning indicates the bond (glue) is failing.
The CRT is a Brimar 23 inch A59-13W. I've taken a picture to show the appearance and to monitor any deterioration of the bonding (Internet problems at the moment has prevented me to download any pictures). I will post up some more pictures when I can.

What is the bonding agent between the CRT and plate made of? Does the glue bond actually hold the CRT in the set? I can see a slight crinkly margin around the edges of the CRT.

I lugged this set around not realising this. Perhaps it should be transported face down in future. I don't intend to disturb the bond if I can help it as the screen looks so clear and such a dominant feature of the set. It must had a wow factor when the set appeared in the showrooms.
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Old 12th Mar 2020, 10:33 pm   #15
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Default Re: Pilot 23/625 TV

Here is the picture of the screen showing the possible delamination. The faceplate seems to be in remarkable condition. I'm now even starting to think this is a replacement.
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Old 13th Feb 2022, 8:59 pm   #16
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Default Re: Pilot 23/625 TV

Re-opened at Dom's request

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Old 13th Feb 2022, 9:16 pm   #17
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Default Re: Pilot 23/625 TV

I had a chance to revisit this set to resurrect and get an idea on its condition. The CRT heater transformer is a RS CRT transformer wired to 245v mains but on the 20% tap on the secondary (20% above 6.3v) which suggests the heater is being slightly over-run to compensate for a tired CRT perhaps .

Irish electricity supply was officially I believe 220v so the voltages may be ok but the proof of the pudding is in the eating... A general check over for shorts or distressed components seems to not show any other problems. The set has been stored near a airing cupboard ('hot press' in Irish English) but the LOPT will be treated to a warming. The chassis looks a joy to work on. Another update hopefully soon. I am missing a valve in the tuner but will link the filament continuity with a resistor to try and get light on the screen.
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Last edited by sexton_mallard; 13th Feb 2022 at 9:23 pm.
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Old 23rd Feb 2022, 11:10 pm   #18
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Default Re: Pilot 23/625 TV

The set was slowly wakened up with a dim bulb at 42w then 70w. The across-the- mains cap was a respectable looking 1kV rated black glossy Plessey branded lozenge but it started vomiting hot wax so was snipped out of circuit sharpish. These caps which had the appearance of a modern poly cap are wax paper and must now be junk!

A wire linked the missing PC97 valve heater on the tuner to get the valve heater string going. The RS CRT heater transformer secondary was moved to the 6.3v tapping as the CRT heater was nearly 8v on 230v mains .

the mains smoothing/reservoir cap seem to be healthy. On a 150w bulb, the smell of freshly warming dropper resistor was sensed, the whirr of the frame stage and a line whistle can be heard faintly (I can still hear 625 line line whistle on larger sets!). On full mains the hiss of static is heard on the speaker but the EHT rectifier valve started to glow brightly with the purplely white discharge of a gassy valve so no light on the screen for now. Looking at the CRT gun the gun rings don't looked baked to death but the heater connection looks like developing a break - still working for now though.

There does not appear to be a heater cathode short when measured cold. I shall return once I have a couple of 'new' valves...
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Old 24th Feb 2022, 10:23 am   #19
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Default Re: Pilot 23/625 TV

Unfortunately the Brimar tubes did not have the stamina of the Mullard. No doubt it will give a picture and you may be lucky. The bonding agent appears to be a soft silicone compound. It does not set solid. The tube is secured to the cabinet by 'ears' on the glass faceplate clamped to the cabinet with short metal plates. Don't even think of removing it, the glass plate that is! The tuner, made under licence from the USA was used extensively by Thorn in the UK. John.

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Old 17th Dec 2022, 11:00 pm   #20
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Default Re: Pilot 23/625 TV

Re-opened again as requested by Dom.

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