Lockdown Vintage Audio Activities...

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CitroJim
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Re: Lockdown Vintage Audio Activities...

Post by CitroJim »

mickthemaverick wrote:
03 Jan 2021, 15:47
This auction catalogue has items of interest from lot 562 onward!! :)
https://www.the-saleroom.com/en-gb/auct ... ishop10162
Some nice stuff there, especially the Garrard 301 and 401 turntables :D They fetch a pretty penny these days!

Just like an AX Cabrio, objects of great desire...

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Re: Lockdown Vintage Audio Activities...

Post by mickthemaverick »

One of my first purchased pieces of kit was my HMV reel to reel tape recorder. The unit is long gone but I came across the payment card for it this morning. It appears I paid £1 a fortnight which would fit with my 10s pocket money per week and 7s 6d a week Saturday job in the very same shop!!
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Peter.N.
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Re: Lockdown Vintage Audio Activities...

Post by Peter.N. »

I used to run a maintenance scheme when I was in Kent, when we moved down here I got so many customers who wanted recon or rental TV's never thought about doing it again. I was apparently the only one in West Dorset and East Devon that was doing them. I was rushed off my feet until the trade started dying.

Peter

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CitroJim
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Re: Lockdown Vintage Audio Activities...

Post by CitroJim »

This got sent to me today by a former colleague...

My first place of work after completing my apprenticeship... Our HF Transmitting station...
Central Transmitting Station
Central Transmitting Station
This was taken around 1980, just after I'd moved to pastures new...

Shown on the balcony are a rake of what was then very new 1Kw Racal TA1814 and 500W TA1816 Transmitters and on the ground floor, A rake of STC DS12 5Kw Transmitters (old even then but still doing sterling service) and a few Racal TA1800 10Kw transmitters...

Sharp eyes can also spot a couple of Siemens T100 teleprinters...

Note the 'sinewave' on the balcony safety rail!

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CitroJim
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Re: Lockdown Vintage Audio Activities...

Post by CitroJim »

These days I'm very often listening to Radio 5 Live... As it's only available on Medium Wave and my existing workshop wireless is VHF only I had a problem when busy working on Daffodil...

Today I chose the two most cosmetically challenged examples from my vintage collection for potential workshop duty...
Bush VHF 80
Bush VHF 80
This one is in a Bakelite cabinet which has been very poorly spray painted to 'modernise' it :twisted:

The Bush has the best Medium Wave performance of all. It was recognised in its day as having outstanding performance and so, 55 years later that remains as true as ever... It knocks the socks off more modern stuff, even my vintage Hackers and Roberts sets!
Stella ST113U
Stella ST113U
This little Stella I've had getting on for 50 years! Its cabinet is plastic but made to look like Bakelite! I made the florescent part of the front panel when I first got it as the original was missing...
Stella Chassis
Stella Chassis
It's a very simple and basic set... What is known as a 'Short Superhet' using only four valves... In its day it cost the princely sum of 12 Guineas...

Not much work was needed to get both of them working well :)

In the end the Stella took the honours as the cabinet has a flat top and sits on my battery charger very neatly...
In service...
In service...
And able to act as a light shelf!

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Re: Lockdown Vintage Audio Activities...

Post by Peter.N. »

We used to sell those Bush's new. :(

Peter

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CitroJim
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Re: Lockdown Vintage Audio Activities...

Post by CitroJim »

Peter.N. wrote:
08 Jan 2021, 00:24
We used to sell those Bush's new. :(
I believe it was one of the last valve wirelesses in production, in VHF81 form with the wooden cabinet... Still going strong in the mid-60s :)

I guess Bush were unwilling to drop a good selling and well proved top-performer even though by this time the iconic Bush TR82 transistor set had been in production for a few years...

Back in the 50s and 60s, despite being part of the Rank Organisation, Bush enjoyed an enviable reputation, both in TV and radio, and produced some top-quality stuff...

One of their most iconic TVs was the Bakelite TV22... Now a serious collectors item...

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Re: Lockdown Vintage Audio Activities...

Post by Peter.N. »

Queensway Radio.jpg
I cut my electronic teeth on Bush Jim. We were Bush agents and repaired many pre war radios, and TV's from TV1 and 2 onwards. Probably repaired more of those than any other make, in the first 10 years or so anyway. They were indeed quality sets.

Peter

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mickthemaverick
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Re: Lockdown Vintage Audio Activities...

Post by mickthemaverick »

I remember Ron, my first boss, at TT Reedy praising both Bush amd Ferguson who were both part of Thorn I believe..His thoughts were that Ferguson were similar to Bush electronically but Bush were packaged for the upper end of the market where Ferguson was a more everyday model. Personally I didn't do any work on radio's and tv's, apart from the odd valve replacement when instructed, spending the vast majority of my time replacing elements in fires, irons and other similar stuff. I used to hate the Pifco hairdriers with a vengeance because the plastic ferrule in the nose invariably snapped as you undid the front screw resulting in a repair with the plastic cement and a week's delay before they could be reassembled, as I only worked on Saturdays, and the repair was held together with sellotape overnight for the cement to set. Later on as we began to see Morphy Richards appliances in the workshop, other than irons, I began, what was to be a lifelong skill, to learn how to use fibreglass resin to rebuild cracked cases, very common on their machines! Served me well as I moved into bike and car bodywork repairs :)

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Re: Lockdown Vintage Audio Activities...

Post by white exec »

Pifco produced a whole lot of very poorly built stuff, iirc. This included those hair dryers and hazardous hair tongs, some diminutive vacuum cleaners, but also torches. Another of their items was a cheaply chromed and 'aerodynamic' buzzer for fitting to bicycle handlebars.

Most everyday battery torches became one of my pet hates, whether Pifco, EverReady or whatever Woolworths used to sell. Lousy internal contacts, bulb-holders and useless slide-switches everywhere, many of these devices needed a good wallop to get them going, if you were lucky.

There were some notable exceptions, like the British Railways approved 6v jobbie, with its large rectangular battery compartment. I think RS sold these right into the '80s, and maybe beyond. The black-and-red miner's clip-on helmet torch (with a belt-carried 2v accumulator) boasted a small tungsten bulb and a more powerful halogen one, and was beautifully made, with an obvious emphasis on dependability. I think I have one in the workshop somewhere.

The green-welly coloured Coleman ArmourClad torches looked the business, but inside the same awful C and D cells were limply shoved towards the bulb with a dismal spring. The moulded click-button switches fought off use as they aged. Maglite was something of a breakthrough, but at a price.

LEDs (especially Cree) and use of less-heavy AA and AAA in half-decent holders have produced some excellent items now, but many garage shelves are littered with half a century of awful offerings, which professionals, military, emergency and power services did their best to avoid.

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Re: Lockdown Vintage Audio Activities...

Post by Peter.N. »

I don't think there was any connection between Bush and Thorn, certainly not in my time anyway, certainly the chassis were very different. Fergusons were made round the north circular somewhere, The Bush factory was in Power Road Chiswick, I know I've been there. They were taken over by the Rank organisation and later incorporated Murphy and became Rank-Bush-Murphy and I think they still were when they stopped trading. Many Bush 'products' appeared in later years but it was just 'badge' engineering.

Thorn/Ferguson took over several other manufacturers, including: HMV, Marconi, Philco and Pilot. Philips took over most of the rest and then most of them dissapeared.

Peter

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mickthemaverick
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Re: Lockdown Vintage Audio Activities...

Post by mickthemaverick »

I'm glad you remember the torches Chris because I had the "Magnetic Marvel" from Pifco. The first torch to have a fixing magnet attached, which still works. Not to mention the inside is still rust free and the sliding switch works fine including the 'signalling button' :
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mickthemaverick
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Re: Lockdown Vintage Audio Activities...

Post by mickthemaverick »

Peter.N. wrote:
08 Jan 2021, 13:30
I don't think there was any connection between Bush and Thorn, certainly not in my time anyway, certainly the chassis were very different. Fergusons were made round the north circular somewhere, The Bush factory was in Power Road Chiswick, I know I've been there. They were taken over by the Rank organisation and later incorporated Murphy and became Rank-Bush-Murphy and I think they still were when they stopped trading. Many Bush 'products' appeared in later years but it was just 'badge' engineering.

Thorn/Ferguson took over several other manufacturers, including: HMV, Marconi, Philco and Pilot. Philips took over most of the rest and then most of them dissapeared.

Peter
Quite right Peter, my mistake, the two brands must have been competitors in the shop and my memory is of Fred Wells, the owner, comparing the two with a customer!! Out of interest you can read what Wiki has about Thorn here. :)

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Re: Lockdown Vintage Audio Activities...

Post by Peter.N. »

Interesting, thanks Mick. Ultra, yes that was the other firm.

Peter

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Re: Lockdown Vintage Audio Activities...

Post by NewcastleFalcon »

Just for old times sake I'll import this from the Bike thread

Provincial Incandescent Fittings Co. of Manchester's finest...
NewcastleFalcon wrote:
11 May 2019, 22:43
...and here it is the PIFCO supersonic buzzer very 1960's.

Image
Chris also contributed this to POTD
white exec wrote:
26 Oct 2016, 16:49
Two more Pifco oldies...

Image
Image

and finally, specially for Jim...

Image
Regards Neil