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Old 3rd Dec 2018, 12:20 am   #1
Neil Purling
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Hull, East Yorkshire, UK.
Posts: 2,002
Default Soviet 'Almaz' portable radio

I appealed for information on this radio in another thread while I was waiting for it to arrive from Talinn, Estonia.
It arrived on Saturday 1st December. The auction only closed on the 25th November!
The seller described the radio honestly as 'used' very well used to be brutally honest.
The radio seems to have been made around October 1969. This is the date on two of the transistors. The set was a birthday present for some lucky person as it had been inscribed.
"On the birthday of the Mishe ( name Mike) from the family 20th April 1970."

The seller stated: "This radio I has found on biggest Russian flea market in sankt Peterburg ( ex Leningrad ) in this Summer ."
Their son perhaps? Maybe an expensive present to be cherished?
Look at the images of the outside of the radio & note the case wear around the volume control!

The issue stated was that one band was missing. As this is a MW/LW set I asked which but the seller couldn't tell me.
There was a broken wire on the battery contact (9V PP3).
I tried touching the broken wire to the contact & I discovered I could get LW & BBC Radio 4 fine.
MW was the absent band & I couldn't hear evidence of the local osc in another radio when switched to MW.
I sprayed the wavechange switch with DeOxIt. As I was jiggling the switch to clean the contacts MW appeared & disappeared.
On this radio there are stubs of solid copper wire coming up from the print side of the PCB to which the wires from the ferrite rod are then soldered. In the last image one looks bent. Touching this with a pencil made MW come & go & in fact the wire was loose at the print side.
Naturally it was right under the run of the dial drive cord. I used a tiny screwdriver to press back the cord as I applied the bit of the iron to the offending joint. Job done.
I was able to find several Spanish stations on MW as well as BBC Radio Scotland.
The only flies in the ointment are a worn volume control track or it needs a spray, and the paint has come off the dial pointer rendering it difficult to see. I believe it should be red like the 'Almaz' lettering on the dial.

The set sounds better than the usual midget radio, but not vastly better.
Even so it seems obvious that 'Misha' of Leningrad used it a lot.
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Old 3rd Dec 2018, 3:42 pm   #2
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: Southampton, Hampshire, UK.
Posts: 367
Default Re: Soviet 'Almaz' portable radio

What a fascinating radio, the engraving is superb.

Interesting to speculate on the stations and historical events that well used little radio brought to its owner.

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Old 4th Dec 2018, 2:13 pm   #3
Neil Purling
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Hull, East Yorkshire, UK.
Posts: 2,002
Default Re: Soviet 'Almaz' portable radio

Well used! I have not seen a plastic-cased radio with wear patterns like that before now.
I wish that there was a way of discovering the original retail price of the radio (in Roubles) and how much that represented of the salary of a teen-age person.

I feel that the price of the radio would have been stable. Due to the 'plan' economy of the USSR the original packaging might have been printed with the sale price. A transistor radio was a new & exciting thing, which is why I can visualise Misha as a teen-age person. The gift would not have been a minor present if all the family clubbed together to buy it.
'Misha' cherished it accordingly. There's the heavy wear pattern, but no cracks or scratches to the case.
As for what Misha might have heard... Who knows what was audible on Medium Wave or Long Wave after dark?

This example was not an 'export' radio bought in a 'Beriozka' store with a 'hard' currency.
It is not an ugly radio. It's worst flaw being the nigh invisible dial marker. I have no idea if the marker ought to have been painted white, but it flaked off.
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Old 5th Dec 2018, 7:54 am   #4
Ted Kendall
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Kington, Herefordshire, UK.
Posts: 2,242
Default Re: Soviet 'Almaz' portable radio

Coo! Living history. Well spotted...
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Old 5th Dec 2018, 8:26 am   #5
G4YVM David
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Join Date: May 2014
Location: Salisbury, Wiltshire, UK.
Posts: 881
Default Re: Soviet 'Almaz' portable radio

Nice descriptive thread too. Thanks.
The volume wear looks like he's taken a knife and opened up the slot with a slight chamfer. Is the volume also the on off sw?
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Old 10th Dec 2018, 7:11 am   #6
Neil Purling
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Hull, East Yorkshire, UK.
Posts: 2,002
Default Re: Soviet 'Almaz' portable radio

It is.
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