June 1948 Radio News
[Table of Contents]
Wax nostalgic about and learn from the history of early
electronics. See articles from
Radio & Television News, published 1919-1959. All copyrights hereby
Micarta was a relatively
significant synthetic material when George Westinghouse invented it sometime around
1910. It was a composite of phenolic resins mixed with structural components like
paper, wool, cotton, linen, and others which would facilitate molding into simple
and complex shapes. Although even the wooden cabinets manufactured at the time were
often very curvaceous and decorative, the process was expensive compared to molding
in forms. Micarta has the advantage of being hard and rigid for good structural
integrity, but since the color permeated the part, scratched and dings did not show
as readily. Its high resistivity made it a good insulator so use in high voltage
assemblies and for circuit boards was common. Look at just about any electronic
or electrical product dating before about 1950 and you will almost surely find Micarta
(or a variation of it, like Bakelite) somewhere in or on it. This 1940 issue of Radio News magazine
included a full-page advertisement for the Westinghouse "DUO" combination radio
and phonograph. A good bunch of photos are in an eBay listing running at the moment,
which you can see by clicking on the thumbnail tot he left (I saved a copy of the
page on Archive.org since it will soon go away). Here is a 1913 announcement for
in the American Machinist publication. Here is a very informative
webpage on the early history of
Micarta (note the
manufacturing employees working in hazardous situations without eye, ear, or
other forms of protection).
Westinghouse Micarta H-122 "DUO" Tabletop Radio-Phonograph
Now ... Westinghouse Give You the First
Genuine Cabinet Development in 25 Years
The Duo cased in Micarta
... The Miracle Material
Tough enough for gears, bearings, and bushings ... beautiful enough for fine
furniture - that's Westinghouse Micarta, the miracle material that won't burn, stain.
crack, warp, dent, chip, or splinter!
Demonstrate this indestructible cabinet to your customers! Snuff out cigarettes
on it. Prove to them that alcohol won't stain it. Let them lift out the carry-about
radio. Have them listen to the full, rich tone of the radio ... the true-to-life
reproduction of the automatic record player.
Then clinch your sales with the welcome news that Micarta's ease of fabrication
makes possible a significant price reduction you can pass on to them.
Stock up on the Micarta Duo today! Watch this feature-packed combination pile
up sales for you!
Home Radio Division • Westinghouse Electric Corp • Sunbury, PA.
Radio's First Name is Westinghouse Plants in 25 Cities Offices Everywhere
Posted February 23, 2022