November 1944 Radio-Craft
Wax nostalgic about and learn from the history of early electronics.
See articles from Radio-Craft,
published 1929 - 1953. All copyrights are hereby acknowledged.
A wee bit of levity in the form
of comics is good for the soul on a busy workday. Good humor, it is said, contains
a degree of truth in it, and this group from vintage editions of Radio-Craft
magazine is no exception. One of the comics in particular struck a chord with me
- the one with the table model radio where the serviceman is speaking on the phone
with his customer. The
first familiar feature is the shape of the
radio and the removed rear cover; it reminds me of my
Tesslor R-601S. The second thing is the dead bugs. Just like a
stray cat will climb into your car's engine compartment on a bitter cold day in
search of heat, so will bugs be drawn to a heat source such as that provided by
an electronic appliance filled with warm,
glowing vacuum tubes - they might have liked
the brightness as well. I remember well removing the backs of radios and TVs to
find carcasses of bug colonies scattered around the electronics chassis. A couple
years ago I bought a
and Woodstock telephone from the 1960s to restore. Although it was not a heat
generator, the components were covered with tiny spots of bug excreta both on the
outside and on the inside. It has since been thoroughly restored.
Comics with a High Tech Theme
"I know, Madame, you have no bedbugs in your house
- they're all here in your radio!"
"Even with all his money, he couldn't buy a new battery, so
he had to get an electric eel."
Note: During WWII, it was sometimes impossible to buy common items because resources
were directed to the war supply line.
"And you turn the dial to the right, press this middle valve
down, and out come a slice of toast."
Note: This was perceived as 'the way of the future' back then.
came about as close as we will see to that reality for a long time - if ever.
Posted November 8, 2022
(updated from original
post on 9/26/2014)