No frills or furbelows

The Fenman II is definitely a no messing kind of man’s radio.  It’s big, solid and dependable.  Made by Pye, Cambridge, England in the mid-fifties to rival the continental bad boys.  What it may lack in styling, it more than makes up for in sound.

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This ten valve radio is considered, by some, to be ‘without doubt, the best valved radio made in the UK, with push pull output and 4 speakers’.  

A luxury model when it was introduced in the fifties and, according to Pye Ltd the ‘multiple loudspeaker system maintains a true balance of treble and bass in every part of the room and adds an unusual realism and depth to the reproduction’.

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Very soon it will be on its way to its new home in Ireland where the new owner has been patiently waiting.  The latest of our well-travelled radios.  Not the best looking radio we’ve seen, weighs a ton, missing the original knobs, but quality none the less.

Broken Glass

Our latest challenge came from the beautiful island of Madeira.  We received an email from a man looking for a replacement glass panel for a Diora Calypso 62015 which has great sentimental value for his family but was sadly now broken.

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As a rule, we’re loath to break up restorable sets but can’t resist a sob story.  We had an “oh go on” moment and the glass was duly removed, protected by some serious packing, double boxed until it was almost the size of the original radio and shipped off to Madeira with fingers crossed.  The glass on a vintage radio is always the most difficult to replace and the first thing to get broken.

It was a nailbiting wait.  At one point the radio was lost in transit and we thought it had all been for nothing until it was finally tracked down at the airport.

At last we were able to breathe a great sigh of relief when we received the news that it had been located and had finally arrived in one piece.  One happy radio, customer and his Dad and that’s what makes this job so worthwhile. 

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Worth the money, to see my father remembering my grandma and his childhood.

The only problem  … we’re now looking for a replacement glass panel for a Diora Calypso 62015.

Going Dutch

We were recently asked to source a radiogram for a customer, after seeing and hearing one of our previous restorations whilst on holiday in Brittany at La Chaumine.

The result was this beautiful Bush RG46 radiogram from 1954.  With a fully restored radio, brand new record deck, aux input for mp3 or bluetooth and personally delivered to its new home in Alkmaar, Holland.

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Definitely the best Wayne’s Radio roadtrip so far.   It included night ferry from Harwich, tour of the beautiful town of Alkmaar, educational visit to the cheese museum, slice of Apple Cake, a fabulous lunch, climb up a working windmill, several cups of coffee and an assortment of traditional biscuits.   All this was courtesy of a generous chunk of Dutch hospitality from the radiogram’s new owners.  We ended the trip with a large glass of wine and a well earned rest on the night ferry home.  A job well done.
As for Alkmaar, definitely go visit, it’s worth the trip.
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Big, Bold and Brassy

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Telefunken Concertino made in Germany in 1955 or 56.  A beast of a machine, weighing in at an impressive 14.5 kg.

Three speakers, piano bush buttons and a bright green magic eye.  With pre-set Bass, Orchestra, Smooth and Jazz settings, there’s hours of fiddling and adjustment to keep you going whilst listening to your favourite tunes.  Who needs the telly?

1955 ahh … Tony Bennett Stranger in ParadiseJimmy Young , Unchained Melody and Bill Hayley and his Comets were definitely doing a Rock Around the Clock.  What better radio to enjoy them on.

Sadly this one is already well-loved and will soon be on its way back home to Wales but we have two or three similar in the workshop if you’re seriously smitten.

 

Racy Red Roberts

 

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Roberts R600.  Vintage transistor radio manufactured from the late sixties to the early seventies.  This specimen was obviously well loved and looked after but wouldn’t make a sound.  These radios do turn up regularly but rarely in such good condition.  They’re generally minus the silver tops to the caps and with a missing, or at best bent, aerial. Fault-finding was a frustratingly long and tricky process but Wayne got there in the end. Finally fixed, sounds great and ready to be boxed up for its return.

 

Garden Bouquet

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This little square side plate measures 7.5″ and is in very good vintage condition with no chips or cracks.  Beautifully decorated with the GARDEN BOUQUET pattern which was made from an engraving and hand-coloured.  They were Manufactured from 1940-1970 by Johnson Brothers, England as part of their Windsor Ware collection. Each piece has a hand-tinted underglaze making the bright yellows, blues and pinks permanent and acid resisting.

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This design, although quintessentially English, can mostly be found in the United States so possibly made for the export market.

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The rope edging and floral design make it perfect for display or to serve fondant fancies for a forties or fifties tea party.

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