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 Post subject: Odd find: "National" T-57 BC-only radio
PostPosted: Feb Sat 25, 2017 12:46 am 
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Joined: Apr Thu 16, 2015 11:04 pm
Posts: 336
Location: Sacramento, California
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I came across this puppy in a junk store in the Gold Country a week or two ago. The first thing that I noticed was that it was a "National" branded radio made by Matsushita. You all know the story behind this infamous little marketing oopsie, so I won't repeat it. Second thing I noticed was that the old 9v battery had exploded. The shop owner wanted $5. I told him I'd think about it. Well, this afternoon I went back up the hill and grabbed it.

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The frequency numbers are above the pointer, but the Conelrad marks are printed directly on the pointer window. That's a little unusual.

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I can't find anything on this particular radio using Google. I think that the name "National" was only used by Matsushita for a couple years at the end of the 50s before they got their rears handed to them in court by the amateur radio manufacturer of the same name. Any ideas?

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The inside. Note the battery rot and that the speaker appears to have a Mitsubishi logo on it. The inside back (not pictured) has an inspection sticker of the same type used by Matsushita into the 1970s.

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The corrosion on the clip itself doesn't seem to be too bad. I wonder if I should just grab a piece of sandpaper. I was ready to replace the entire connector, but I'm not sure it's necessary. Thoughts?

I haven't been here in a while, but I just had to post this. Also, I am headed into San Francisco tomorrow to take a look at a prewar GE bakelite tube set. That will be posted elsewhere on the forums if I take it home.


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 Post subject: Re: Odd find: "National" T-57 BC-only radio
PostPosted: Feb Sat 25, 2017 3:49 am 
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Joined: Apr Thu 16, 2015 11:04 pm
Posts: 336
Location: Sacramento, California
Hm, I did a little more googling and Panasonic's site says that that typeface of the "National" name was used starting in 1966. However, you can clearly see Conelrad marks on the dial, and the Conelrad system was discontinued in 1963 after the Pentagon realized that ICBM technology made bomber planes mostly obsolete. Also, I was not able to find ANY evidence that Panasonic used the National name in the US at all except for a few early products. So, I either have a case of a manufacturer using archaic labeling on products after it was no longer required, such as Ford using speedometer specs that were only required for a few years during the late Carter Administration (speedometers were limited to 85 mph, and had to highlight 55 mph exactly) as late as the early 90s, or a radio sold in Canada or Mexico that made its way to America, or both.


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 Post subject: Re: Odd find: "National" T-57 BC-only radio
PostPosted: Feb Sat 25, 2017 8:57 am 
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Joined: Jan Tue 31, 2012 1:55 am
Posts: 2809
Location: Mountains of Mourne. Ireland.
The logo on the front of the radio is National written in Japanese phonetic.
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.. from instagram.

Another two examples (dated 1961) complete with accessories can be found on this Japanese web-site.
http://www.m151a2.jp/audio/kokusan15.html


If you pull the chassis, you may be able to date the electrolytic capacitors...
viewtopic.php?p=2456619#p2456619

Here is an excellent three page article written by Alan Kastner.
Dating early Japanese radios...
http://www.tabiwallah.com/radiowallah/dating101.html


To remove (and neutralize) the white residue left behind by alkaline batteries, I use white distilled vinegar (a mild acetic acid) applied with
a trimmed down toothbrush. Rinse with water (distilled if you have it) and dry immediately. You can also use lemon juice.

.Greg.


Science 101...
"Consumer alkaline batteries sometimes leak under conditions of neglect or misuse. The electrolyte in these cells is potassium hydroxide
(KOH), which is caustic and can cause tissue damage if it gets in your eyes in particular. It also attracts moisture and usually forms a white
efflorescent crust of potassium carbonate after sitting for a little while. It is important to wipe up this electrolyte and carefully clean the
battery compartment with a damp cloth to prevent it from migrating deeper into the electronics and causing irreparable damage to the
circuit boards. Be sure to wash your hands and don't get any electrolyte into your eyes".
from somewhere on the web... :)


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 Post subject: Re: Odd find: "National" T-57 BC-only radio
PostPosted: Feb Sat 25, 2017 5:19 pm 
Member

Joined: Apr Thu 16, 2015 11:04 pm
Posts: 336
Location: Sacramento, California
Yeah, that makes sense, a radio sold domestically in Japan brought back to the States, likely by a US GI. If you notice, the place where the actual "National" logo would be on the lower right is just a blank square, the little logo had fallen off a long time ago. That added to my confusion. I think I can remove the residue using the technique you posted.


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