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 Post subject: Sky Chief radios
PostPosted: Jun Sun 16, 2019 9:28 pm 
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As part of my acquisitions from a recent estate sale, I got three Sky Chief radios that are from the late-'30s to late-'40s timeframe.

This seems to be a very obscure brand. My 3 could possibly be the largest assemblage of Sky Chief radios yet put together. Until now, there were only 4 models listed in RadioMuseum, and photos for only one of them. Now, with my radios added, there are 7 models, four with photos.
https://www.radiomuseum.org/m/sky-chief_usa_en_1.html

Does anyone know anything about the brand "Sky Chief?" In particular, what retailer was using that name? I'd appreciate any info!

Here are the radios I picked up:


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skychief.jpg
skychief.jpg [ 225.9 KiB | Viewed 1204 times ]

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 Post subject: Re: Sky Chief radios
PostPosted: Jun Sun 16, 2019 9:32 pm 
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Sky Chief - Isn't that from Texaco?

edit: Oh yeah - I was thinking of Fire Chief. - Nevermind . . . :mrgreen:


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 Post subject: Re: Sky Chief radios
PostPosted: Jun Sun 16, 2019 10:13 pm 
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mgrant wrote:
Sky Chief - Isn't that from Texaco?

edit: Oh yeah - I was thinking of Fire Chief. - Nevermind . . . :mrgreen:


Sky Chief was Texaco's premium grade of gasoline.

Fire Chief was regular.

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 Post subject: Re: Sky Chief radios
PostPosted: Jun Sun 16, 2019 10:33 pm 
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Radio Today magazine April 1938 (two ads).
Image
Image
Mentioned in Radio Today magazine, March 1939 as...
SKY CHIEF RADIO CORP., 345 E, 37th St., New York, N.Y., "Sky Chief"
manufacturer of Home radios and Phonographs.

There is a (battery) list of eleven radio models in Service magazine July 1941 p.10

These above, and other (pdf) Hits for...
"Sky Chief radio" site:americanradiohistory.com
https://www.google.com/search?q=%22Sky+ ... tnG=Search


Greg.

Edit:
Image
"Samuel Glick" site:americanradiohistory.com
https://www.google.com/search?q=%22Samu ... tnG=Search


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 Post subject: Re: Sky Chief radios
PostPosted: Jun Mon 17, 2019 3:01 am 
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Excellent, thanks Greg. This link is particularly informative:

https://www.americanradiohistory.com/Ar ... 938-02.pdf

There's a paragraph in there (pg. 54) about Samuel Glick, that identifies him as president of Freed Manufacturing Corp. The tag on my radio [shown in the ad for $14.95] actually has a chassis tag that says "F.M.C." I couldn't get straight whether that was Freed, or Fairbanks Morse. Now I know!

So this suggests that Sky Chief Radio Corp did NOT have any association with Texaco. That's what I was wondering about, mostly.

The tag on my Sky Chief portable shows "S.C.R.C." suggesting that it was actually manufactured by Sky Chief themselves. And apparently they did have their own factory, which answers another question I was curious about.

Thanks!

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 Post subject: Re: Sky Chief radios
PostPosted: Jun Mon 17, 2019 1:07 pm 
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In June 1935 Samuel Glick was the Secretary for the newly-formed Freed Manufacturing Co., Inc.
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Greg.

Edit:
The paragraph from page-24 that you mentioned.
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 Post subject: Re: Sky Chief radios
PostPosted: Jun Mon 17, 2019 6:10 pm 
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S-125-4 is the part number for the license/serial no. plate.

seen here... https://i.ebayimg.com/images/g/epkAAOSw ... -l1600.jpg
from this radio... https://www.ebay.com/itm/VINTAGE-ANTIQU ... 7675.l2557

and mentioned here, incorrectly... https://www.worthpoint.com/worthopedia/ ... 1872529117

Greg.


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 Post subject: Re: Sky Chief radios
PostPosted: Jun Tue 18, 2019 3:25 am 
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Thanks, Greg!

I'm wondering if Freed Mfgr Co changed their name to Sky Chief Radio Co when the Freed brothers left the business? It would sorta make sense.

-Rodney


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 Post subject: Re: Sky Chief radios
PostPosted: Jun Tue 18, 2019 4:23 am 
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That certainly does make sense. If it wasn't published in one of the trade magazines of the day, it should still be possible to find reference to that change in a state related business records journal, which used to be available at the public library.

Amazing that anything at all turned up as some of the smaller companies were quite obscure and some were intentionally flying below the radar to avoid licensing issues and other regulations.

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 Post subject: Re: Sky Chief radios
PostPosted: Jun Tue 18, 2019 1:04 pm 
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Joe and Arthur had yet another radio manufacturing venture about 1940 when they started making Freed Eisemann FM radios.
Sadly Joe died April 1941, but the business did last until the late 1940s maybe early 50s.

viewtopic.php?f=1&t=185471

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 Post subject: Re: Sky Chief radios
PostPosted: Oct Sat 12, 2019 6:39 pm 
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Since acquiring a model unknown 1938-39 Sky Chief battery-only portable radio, I found this thread very interesting and I thought I should add to it.
I did my own research and cannot find a whole lot of information on the company other than both offices and factory were in NYC. In The Portable Radio In American Life book, page 110 picture "c", there's a picture of an a few very early pseudo-portable Tolex covered portables that are ID'd as "Freed-Eisemann" sets. That one, from '36, has "Sky Chief" on the dial plate (??)
The closest model this one resembles in the schematics is the A-219, but with differences. That one is battery/AC-DC for starters, this one is battery only. This set was missing the back (along with the loop antenna), which might have had an ID label. The set uses the new low-drain type tubes by the way.
This set was found in a long closed electronics repair shop in Kansas. It was stored in a back room. The seller had his repairman completely overhaul the chassis which included repairing an open oscillator coil, replacing the speaker coil, and winding a new loop antenna. I made the new back for it. It plays like new and does not need an external antenna, although the terminals were sometimes seen on other early portables if you did want to connect a longer antenna.
I'm adding a pic of the set seen in a storefront window from, likely, late '38. Interesting that it was the only portable displayed and not the Philco 71T from '38, which is supposed to be the first portable offered with the low drain tubes.


Attachments:
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ss-111121-vintage-shopping-09.fit-760w.jpg
ss-111121-vintage-shopping-09.fit-760w.jpg [ 166.54 KiB | Viewed 413 times ]
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 Post subject: Re: Sky Chief radios
PostPosted: Oct Sat 12, 2019 9:25 pm 
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Neat window photo Joe. Here is a large copy.
https://media1.s-nbcnews.com/j/newscms/ ... -1500w.jpg

Was 1939 really 80 years ago!
Greg.


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 Post subject: Re: Sky Chief radios
PostPosted: Oct Sat 12, 2019 11:40 pm 
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egg wrote:
Neat window photo Joe. Here is a large copy.
https://media1.s-nbcnews.com/j/newscms/ ... -1500w.jpg

Was 1939 really 80 years ago!
Greg.

Thanks for the large copy of the photo! Now I really can see the details of the Sky Chief. That must've been a very good camera used to be able to zoom in that well. I wish I could read everything on that card.
PS - Now that I look at the set closely, it's interesting that although it's basically the same as my example, the grill cloth is different, as is the name plate under the speaker, and even the Tolex looks like a slightly different texture. This could be due to slight changes in the run, or this basic set was sold under several names.


Last edited by decojoe67 on Oct Sat 12, 2019 11:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Sky Chief radios
PostPosted: Oct Sat 12, 2019 11:50 pm 
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A Truly Sensational Value!
Mfg. list $19.95
SELF-POWERED PORTABLE.
at half price!
$9.95 Complete.

Eat more vegetables. lol
:) Greg.


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 Post subject: Re: Sky Chief radios
PostPosted: Oct Sat 12, 2019 11:52 pm 
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egg wrote:
A Truly Sensational Value!
Mfg. list $19.95
SELF-POWERED PORTABLE.
at half price!
$9.95 Complete.

Eat more vegetables. lol
:) Greg.

Haha! Thank you. Everything is going on me. It doesn't mention the manufacturers name that you can see does it?


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 Post subject: Re: Sky Chief radios
PostPosted: Oct Sun 13, 2019 12:51 am 
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The badge on the case is one word, and a long one. I'd only be guessing. lol
Image
It appears to be covered-up on the Ad./price card!

Greg.


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 Post subject: Re: Sky Chief radios
PostPosted: Oct Sun 13, 2019 1:31 am 
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egg wrote:
The badge on the case is one word, and a long one. I'd only be guessing. lol
Image
It appears to be covered-up on the Ad./price card!

Greg.

Thanks Greg. That's what it looked like to me too.


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 Post subject: Re: Sky Chief radios
PostPosted: Oct Sun 13, 2019 2:08 am 
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Shootin' in the dark here Joe.

Does this Beitman's schematic for Lafayette model CC55-A match?
http://americanradiohistory.com/hd2/IDX ... e-0052.pdf

Can you confirm the tubes in your set.

Greg.
oh... don't forget to apologize to Rodney for hijacking his thread... :wink:

Edit: I've just noticed that your set has no line cord... :oops:


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 Post subject: Re: Sky Chief radios
PostPosted: Oct Sun 13, 2019 2:55 am 
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egg wrote:
oh... don't forget to apologize to Rodney for hijacking his thread... :wink:

Are you kidding?!? I'm excited that another model from this unusual brand has been found.

I think it's a great idea to accumulate information about Sky Chief in this thread. Thanks to Joe for adding a new model, and to you Greg for all the info you've dug up on the company! There can't be very many Sky Chief models out there.

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 Post subject: Re: Sky Chief radios
PostPosted: Oct Sun 13, 2019 3:16 am 
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East 27th St is now called Rogers with new numbering. Jumping east from 345 East 26th St, you can see where Sam Glick's showroom might have been, a sidewalk-level shop front that is now sheathed in grey metal, with a couple of project vehicles parked along the sidewalk. Brooklyn Rows, I think you'd call that area, or North Flatbush?

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