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 Post subject: Re: Boys Radio
PostPosted: Apr Fri 10, 2015 6:28 pm 
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Location: Gainesville, Florida
eh tongue in cheek serious. you say that a boombox radio antenna is restoration ? frankenstein maybe :|


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 Post subject: Re: Boys Radio
PostPosted: Mar Wed 14, 2018 2:12 am 
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I have a fascinating but very embarrassing story to confess about a little lanyard radio that I think might have fit into the category of a boys radio.

When I was seven years old, my dad bought me a very small radio, branded American Motors, still in its original packaging, at a garage sale. The circuit had three semiconductors: two silicon TO-92 transistors and a germanium diode. There was an RF choke, several resistors, several ceramic capacitors, but no electrolytics. Power was furnished by two watch batteries. There was no speaker; plugging in the earphone turned the radio on.

On a fresh set of batteries, the radio could easily receive CJBC 860 Toronto from our location in Amherst, NY. Sensitivity at the high end of the dial was best. WKBW 1520 was extremely loud, yet WGR 550 sounded quite whimpy. Motorboating occurred on very strong signals, like WUFO 1080. The selectivity of this radio was amazingly good for something with only one tuned RF stage.

The circuit, I strongly suspect, was a reflex design, very similar to the one that Science Fair used in many of its kits. The key difference was that Science Fair put the axis of the RF choke perpendicular to the ferrite rod antenna for stability. The lanyard radio had the RF choke parallel to (but at a distance from) the antenna. In my recollection, the inductor's leads were also left long so that the position of the choke could be adjusted at the factory to set the amount of RF regeneration in the radio.

The embarrassing part is how this radio met its doom. The radio's tiny ferrite rod antenna was attached to the circuit board with a yellowing piece of Scotch tape. I thought that it would be a vast improvement if the antenna were secured to the circuit board with glue. Being only nine or 10 at this time, I did not pay attention to the variable capacitor's open frame construction. The capacitor was ruined and as luck would have it, this was a special midget capacitor that could not be obtained from catalogs, Radio Shack, or a junked radio.


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 Post subject: Re: Boys Radio
PostPosted: Mar Wed 14, 2018 9:29 am 
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Location: Rayleigh, BC, CANADA
You're talking about the Clairtone MINI HI-FI?

Many of those were branded American Motors and CKEY 590 Radio in Toronto as a promotional item.

I bought one brand new at a drug store back in 1971 for about 5 bucks. I Still have it. (photo below)
I also acquired a second radio to experiment with.

It was the Canadian copy of the Clive Sinclair Micromatic in the UK.

This site here has some interesting info: http://www.dustygizmos.com/arcpages/arcsinstuff.htm

You can still find the odd Clairtone on the bay at ridiculous prices.


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Clairtone (Small).JPG
Clairtone (Small).JPG [ 61.88 KiB | Viewed 491 times ]
American Motors.jpg
American Motors.jpg [ 82.96 KiB | Viewed 491 times ]
Circuit Board.jpg
Circuit Board.jpg [ 83.14 KiB | Viewed 491 times ]

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 Post subject: Re: Boys Radio
PostPosted: Mar Wed 14, 2018 6:19 pm 
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Yes, the outside of the radio looked like the Clairtone in the middle photo. The circuit board looked like the one in the last photo, except that I vividly remember there being a small RF choke (baby blue in color) between the batteries and the transistor with the yellow dot.


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 Post subject: Re: Boys Radio
PostPosted: Mar Thu 15, 2018 12:59 am 
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I found some images online that allowed me to figure out the schematic of the Clairtone/American Motors radio. I reversed the foil side image to facilitate tracing of the wiring.

Attachment:
Clairtone_component.jpg
Clairtone_component.jpg [ 32.15 KiB | Viewed 453 times ]

(component side)
Attachment:
Clairtone_foil.jpg
Clairtone_foil.jpg [ 53.59 KiB | Viewed 453 times ]

(foil side, image reversed)

After looking at these images, I think that the stray capacitance between the variable capacitor, the RF choke, and the RF coupling capacitor (the vertically aligned one, closest to the center of the image) facilitated regeneration. This, of course, would have required correct phasing of the ferrite rod antenna's windings.


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 Post subject: Re: Boys Radio
PostPosted: Mar Thu 15, 2018 1:51 am 
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I came across this webpage a while back that has a hand drawn diagram .

https://blog.goo.ne.jp/vrc-tezuka/e/3cf ... f0b29d2c5f

The second diagram half way down the page has been corrected to include the rf choke.

I may even try to build this on a breadboard sometime to see if it works.

Seems that motorboating was a common problem with these tiny radios, mine did the same thing.

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 Post subject: Re: Boys Radio
PostPosted: Mar Sun 25, 2018 1:15 am 
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I realize this is an old discussion, but I haven't found much talk of Windsor boy's radios in the archives.

Last week, I was helping my 91-year old Dad sort some stuff, and we found this 2-transistor Windsor radio, stamped BOY'S RADIO on the back.

Image

Image

I have found photos of other Windsor boy's radios, with the crown emblem, but this one has a slightly less modern appearance, if that makes any sense.

These were obviously very inexpensive radios, so I figure there's nothing to find by way of documentation, except, if you're lucky, a paper schematic glued inside the cover. If I get ambitious, maybe someday I'll replace the electrolytic caps and try to get it working.

Is there anything else to say about this type of set?

Regards,

Phil Nelson
Phil's Old Radios
https://antiqueradio.org/index.html


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 Post subject: Re: Boys Radio
PostPosted: Mar Sun 25, 2018 1:40 am 
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I've got a couple of Boy's Radios with the Windsor badge; here's two of 'em. The model with the other style has a larger component count, and you can tell the difference, it works very well. I have a couple of them. This one, not so great, maybe 3-4 stations in my locale, which is commensurate with the average two Transistor circuits of the day.


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Windsor.jpg
Windsor.jpg [ 205.69 KiB | Viewed 377 times ]

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 Post subject: Re: Boys Radio
PostPosted: Mar Sun 25, 2018 2:02 am 
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Ah, your white one looks exactly the same, only with different colors.

Regards,

Phil Nelson
Phil's Old Radios
https://antiqueradio.org/index.html


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 Post subject: Re: Boys Radio
PostPosted: Mar Sun 25, 2018 2:04 am 
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I tried to sell it on eBay a few years back, I think for 10 or 15 bucks, and couldn't get a nibble.

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 Post subject: Re: Boys Radio
PostPosted: Mar Sun 25, 2018 6:42 am 
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The intrinsic value is negligible, but I think they're an interesting bit of history -- something I might have bought as a boy, if I'd been a little more hip.

I picture a small black and white ad in the back of a magazine . . . .

Phil Nelson
Phil's Old Radios
https://antiqueradio.org/index.html


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 Post subject: Re: Boys Radio
PostPosted: Mar Sun 25, 2018 5:52 pm 
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I never even knew about these until I began collecting Transistor sets in earnest, about 15 years ago. They seem to have been produced in the late '50's to early '60's, but I don't recall ever seeing them advertised anywhere.

If anyone has an ad, I would love to see it posted here.

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 Post subject: Re: Boys Radio
PostPosted: Mar Sun 25, 2018 7:26 pm 
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All I ever seen that's "Ad" related is this-(see photo) a punch card.
but there's no mention of "Boy's Radio"
only that it's a 2 transistor radio

from this link that lists a variety of 2 Transistor radios
https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Cate ... 27s_radios


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1960s_Punch_Card_with_a_2-Transistor_Radio_as_the_Prize (Custom).jpg
1960s_Punch_Card_with_a_2-Transistor_Radio_as_the_Prize (Custom).jpg [ 75.03 KiB | Viewed 348 times ]

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