A miscellany of early wooden cabinet sets


Dominion Screen Grid 3

for more details click the picture

 Made in the days when progress in wireless sets was accelerating. The new tetrode valve was new and hence many sets used this fact in their name as a selling point. The screen grid valve, as everyone knew meant more and louder stations.

Portadyne Challenger

To see more of this set click the picture

 This is my first Portadyne set. It dates from 1932 although it was sold as "possibly Edwardian".

Portadyne Radio Ltd of London NW10, made radios in the 30s and were still in business in the mid-50s.

This 4-valve battery operated, walnut veneered set cost £12:17:0d, which was pretty expensive, representing several weeks wages for a working man. It covers medium and long waves and has an internal frame aerial and a turntable built into the base. It must be one of the earliest radios carrying station names on its dial.

These heavy "transportable" sets appeared in 1927, with Pye and Rees-Mace models. Two varieties of portable set were popular, heavy wooden sets like the Portadyne, and lighter "suitcase" models, which continued in vogue until around 1935. After WWII, smaller lightweight sets using B7G valves in cases with hinged lids but still using relatively heavy batteries, were popular until the introduction of the transistor and the ferrite rod aerial, when sets were able to reflect trendy design instead of being dependent on the physical constraints imposed by the frame aerial, an accumulator (in pre-war sets) and the HT battery.


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