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 Post subject: Show me your European Multiband Tube Portables
PostPosted: Jun Sat 30, 2012 2:22 pm 
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Location: Utica, NY 13502 (USA)
Zenith Transoceanics and clones always seem to be a popular topic of discussion but what about the European counterparts? I've collected a number of Euro tube multiband portables over the years. What I've found interesting is that many go way beyond the typical T/O tube linup, came with rechargeable batteries (accumulators) and some even have an FM band whose popularity was way ahead of the US at the time. I don't know of a single American-made multiband tube portable that has FM. Most used power transformers for mains operation and for recharging the battery.

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Philips L5X62AB - This radio was made for the European market because it's FM band only reaches 100 mhz. It has 10 tubes including push-pull audio and a little tuning eye tube located in the small window on the right under the dial. I found it piled in a barrel full of radios marked "Make Offer" at an outdoor flea market. Since it had plenty of battle scars, I offered $5.00 which the seller gladly took.

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Grundig FM Concert Boy 57 - made for the US market, this radio has 8 battery tubes and one 6-volt power pentode for audio when used on AC. It has continuous SW coverage from 1.5 - 16 mHz in two bands as well as the AM and full-coverage FM bands. I found this one also at a flea market but for $10. Seller said "I don't think it works".

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Telefunken Hi-Fi - a lucky ebay find, this radio came with an envelope containing original instructions, service information and a shortwave guide. 8-tubes including push-pull audio using a driver transformer instead of a phase inverter. The rabbit-ear style FM antennas operate like a steel tape measure (one is broken at the moment). The audio on this set is particularly pleasing.

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I've got a few others but without FM. What European tube portables do you have?

Dave


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 Post subject: Re: Show me your European Multiband Tube Portables
PostPosted: Jun Sat 30, 2012 3:33 pm 
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Location: SE USA
Dave Doughty wrote:
It has 10 tubes including push-pull audio and a little tuning eye tube located in the small window on the right under the dial.


Now that's cool! What type of tuning eye does it use?

Any problems with finding batteries for these sets or are they fairly generic?

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 Post subject: Re: Show me your European Multiband Tube Portables
PostPosted: Jun Sat 30, 2012 3:49 pm 
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Location: Utica, NY 13502 (USA)
The eye tube is a DM71. You can find it here.

http://www.akh.se/tubes/

But I just read on radiomuseum.org that it is used as a phase inverter and pilot lamp...not as a tuning indicator. Indeed, the schematic shows it connected as a simple triode amplifier used to drive one of the output tubes.

The rechargable batteries need to be made up from modern NiCads or NiMH cells. I believe it is only the A-battery that is rechargeable which is a permanently installed early NiCad. These radios also have a compartment for popping in some emergency D-cells when the internal A-battery becomes discharged. The B-battery is a large 90-volt battery connected with snaps (like American sets). These can be made up from inexpensive dollar-store 9-volt carbon zinc batteries.

Dave


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 Post subject: Re: Show me your European Multiband Tube Portables
PostPosted: Jun Sat 30, 2012 4:22 pm 
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A very fine group you've got there, Dave.
I don't have any German portables. They just don't seem to come my way.


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 Post subject: Re: Show me your European Multiband Tube Portables
PostPosted: Jun Sat 30, 2012 5:01 pm 
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Location: Brunswick, ME 04011 (USA)
...none here, either (just four German transistors, but those don't belong here). Never even see hide or hair of one in these parts. Those are impressive (like most German radios) and probably blow the doors off the typical American tube portable in terms of sound and performance...another indication of how much more seriously they took radio in Europe in those days (they weren't so enamored of TV as the US was and put a lot more into radios)...


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 Post subject: Re: Show me your European Multiband Tube Portables
PostPosted: Jun Sat 30, 2012 5:31 pm 
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Location: Lake County, IL, US
I've had two. Both have been passed along at this point, but some blurry pictures remain. First, is a Tefunken Bajazzo that included FM. Second is a Norwegian Radionette Combi. The cool thing about this is that the front panel popped open to reveal a little turntable! Unfortunately I don't have a picture of mine with the front open, but here's a radiomuseum link to show the idea: http://www.radiomuseum.org/r/radionette_combi.html
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 Post subject: Re: Show me your European Multiband Tube Portables
PostPosted: Jun Sat 30, 2012 5:40 pm 
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Location: Newark, California, USA
Here's a 1951 British set, a Robert P4D, that has 3 built in loop antennas. The set has a gizmo on the bottom that allows you to rotate it for best reception. I picked this up recently and after replacing just one coupling capacitor it turned out to work quite well, original red-painted Mullard tubes and all.


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 Post subject: Re: Show me your European Multiband Tube Portables
PostPosted: Jul Tue 03, 2012 2:49 pm 
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Location: Utica, NY 13502 (USA)
Here is my Metz "Babyphon" BC/SW portable with 45 RPM player. I do have the cover for the phono.

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This Philips LX422AB bakelite LW/BC/SW portable is only 10" wide. The knobs look dirty in the photo but they are actually clear plastic with silver brights. Thanks to radiomuseum.org, I was able to find service information for both this radio and the Babyphon.

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Dave


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 Post subject: Re: Show me your European Multiband Tube Portables
PostPosted: May Fri 17, 2019 8:02 pm 
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Joined: May Fri 17, 2019 7:54 pm
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Hello. I'm curios: the F.M. radios where expensive?
Unfourtenley, here in Europe, in the days of the tube portable radios whe had only F.M. 88-100 M.Hz. (M.c.) and getting the hands on an export tube radio is very hard...


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