2020-03-31 Collecting Novelty Transistor Radios

Also FB group Vintage Transistor Radios

Collecting novelty transistor radios has a few drawbacks, the most obvious is that they are much rarer than regular transistor radios. Generally the new novelty transistor radios are much more expensive then a regular radio due to their limited production. The customer who just wants a radio is going to buy the utilitarian regular radio, not the novelty. New novelty radios are sold mostly for special occasions such as Christmas and birthdays. So the vintage novelty radios are much less common, and since the supply is so limited, the prices are higher. The limited supply and higher prices of vintage novelty radios makes them out of reach of most vintage radio collectors.

Another factor in their rarity is that many novelty radios are popular with youngsters. They get played with and handled roughly, and that leads to abuse that often makes the radio undesirable as a collectible. And of course time takes its toll. The combination of rarity and rough use make it even more difficult to find vintage novelty radios.

I used to watch Antiques Roadshow on PBS, and I can’t remember ever seeing a radio, much less a novelty radio on the show. I’ve seen many toys, but radios, even ones with fine cabinets seem almost non-existent. The same thing seems true for antique telephones. I’m not sure if it’s because the program considers both of them to be too specialized or there are too many collectors’ associations that cause the market to be very narrow. In any case, novelty transistor radios are too few to be “collector friendly.”


2020-03-29 AM Osc + Modulation + Buffer

This is from Electronics Illustrated Projects 1968. It shows crystal sockets, but instead a RF coil may be used and its value will be about 220 microhenrys. And C1 and C2 will have to be changed to bring the frequency down to the AM band.

The germanium transistors are no longer available so silicon transistors should be used. PNP or else change the circuit for NPN. Like 2N3906 or 2N3904. Or BC557 or BC547.

The audio oscillator is a phase shift oscillator, which typically has a clipped sine wave. The S2 should be a single pole, double throw with one pole going to the existing R10 and the other pole going to a jack for external modulation. So this can be used as an AM band transmitter with an antenna no longer than 3 meters.


2020-03-28 Chemtrails Conspiracy Theory

From a FB comment by a person whose first name was Matthias.  He claimed that chemtrails was not a conspiracy theory, it was “conspiracy FACT.”

I see nothing in this ‘Operation Popeye’ document relating to ‘chemtrails’.


2020-03-27 Real Computers Glow In The Dark


2020-03-24 Journalists Hate Trump Actions

From FB comment Mar 24

Steven Hamre
The overall population, journalists included, hate what Trump does, not who he is. You can go to Real Clear Politics and see multiple approval surveys that prove beyond doubt that approval of his actions have almost never been above 50% and most of the time hover around 40 to 45%. There is no objectivity to it: his actions have been objectionable, that’s why he was impeached. If the Senate had been as objective as you claim journalists should be, he would have been convicted. Indeed, if Trump could be as objective as you want journalists to be, there would not be as many people, including journalists, who would hate what Trump does. His actions have been the root of the problem, not journalists.

PolitiFact and Snopes refer you to sources, they do not have any agendas other than telling the truth as best as they can determine. If there are bad things to say about any politician, no matter what party, both Politifact and Snopes will refer you to their sources. Their sources collectively may have an agenda, typically that is to tell the truth.

Addendum – If *I* see the same news item from 4, 5 or more reputable sources, and a contradictory claim from a single source, I am not foolish and believe that single contradictory source. I believe Politifact and because they also use multiple sources. Don’t be fooled.


2020-03-21 Golden Bell Radio and Bell Trademark

One member posted a transistor radio to the vintage transistor radios FB group and its name is Golden Bell. The first thing that came to my mind was the word Bell. Anything that had the word Bell in it usually had something to do with the telephone company, and if it didn’t, the telephone company would write them a nastygram saying that Bell is a trademarked name. So it was hard to find any thing (other than telephones) with the name Bell. I wonder if the trademarked name required paying royalties for using the name Bell?


2020-03-17 Zinc & Chloroquine Inhibit Viral Replication

This short 9 minutes YouTube video explains the process of how the virus replication is blocked. This is being used already in some countries.


2020-03-13 Switch To Hydrogen

Also posted to CleanTechnica comment to article with “amirite” in title on Mar 14

The world needs to ‘catch up’ by ending use of fossil fuels ASAP, and substituting hydrogen in their place. If we don’t, that 1.5 degree warming goal will be overshot, and things will be exceedingly difficult. The renewables generated hydrogen can be stored and transmitted long distances with minimal losses. That in itself will be just like battery storage, but without the costs. Generating hydrogen has been around hundreds of years, and it’s not efficient. But then ICE (internal combustion engine) technology or fossil fueled electric generation is well under 50 percent, so hydrogen isn’t that bad. We just have to make the changes as fast as possible.


2020-03-11 Climate Change And Denial

This Time magazine article is useful.


2020-03-10 Simple AM Band Antenna Tuning Coil 240 Microhenrys

The standard ferrite antenna loopstick for a 365 pF tuning capacitor has an inductance of about 230 microhenrys. This in combination with the tuning capacitor tunes across the full AM broadcast band.

It’s useful to be able to wind your own inductor so it can be used for an antenna coil, a trap to attenuate a strong AM station or as an oscillator coil for a transmitter for the AM band.

The coil form is a standard pill bottle with a diameter of 32mm or 1.26 inches. The wire I used was 30 AWG enameled magnet wire. I close wound the wire onto the pill bottle until the distance the wire covered was 25mm or 1 inch. I held the beginning and end wires in place with black electrical tape. I tinned the wire ends and measured the inductance as 240 microhenrys. That’s just the right amount for the 365 pF tuning capacitor. If it’s a bit too high a few turns can be removed.

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