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  • First car radio

    I just heard on my car radio the story of Bill Lear and Paul Gavin,s invention of the car radio. Seems that the first radio was installed in Galvin's Studebaker. Hope this is not old news to the forum. I think its another first for Studebaker.

  • #2
    Mentioned here: http://forum.studebakerdriversclub.c...ght=transitone

    Craig

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    • #3
      So is the radio in my 39 commander a rare item?
      Diesel loving, autocrossing, Coupe express loving, Grandpa Architect.

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      • #4
        By 1939 radios were available in many cars, but not everyone opted to buy them. The more upscale cars were most likely to get a radio.
        "In the heart of Arkansas."
        Searcy, Arkansas
        1952 Commander 2 door. Really fine 259.
        1952 2R pickup

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        • #5
          Very early thirties radios are rare. By the late thirties, if you have an example with a radio you are fortunate but, it wouldn't be that difficult to find one to install. Curiously, I once owned a '57 Cadillac that had no radio, no A/C and no electric windows or seats.

          What could be considered the first citizen's band radio was installed in a 1919 Studebaker.
          Click image for larger version

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          "All attempts to 'rise above the issue' are simply an excuse to avoid it profitably." --Dick Gregory

          Brad Johnson, SDC since 1975, ASC since 1990
          Pine Grove Mills, Pa.
          sigpic'33 Rockne 10, '51 Commander Starlight, '53 Commander Starlight "Désirée"

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          • #6
            Were the first radios tube radios. I ask because i remember as a kid,my dad had a tube tester and worked on radios and tvs as a supplement to his mail carrier job.
            Randy Wilkin
            1946 M5 Streetrod
            Hillsboro,Ohio 45133

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            • #7
              My first car was a 1937 Chevy business coupe with an after-market radio installed by the former owner. The antenna was coated straps mounted under the running boards. About one station on a good day. The story about Lear, Galvin, and Studebaker was interesting. Many cars built before WWII did not have radios. In 1940-42 I wonder what the %ages might have been?
              "Growing old is mandatory, but growing up is optional." author unknown

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              • #8
                Originally posted by rodnutrandy View Post
                Were the first radios tube radios.
                First car radios? Yes; I believe so. Prior to that, crystal radios--now replicable with germanium diodes.
                Rudimentary vacuum tubes started development in the late 1600's. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vacuum_tube

                As a kid in the fifties I remember the G.C. Murphy five and dime had a vacuum tube tester in the front of the store.
                Vacuum tube amplifiers are still revered for their full warm sound reproduction.
                "All attempts to 'rise above the issue' are simply an excuse to avoid it profitably." --Dick Gregory

                Brad Johnson, SDC since 1975, ASC since 1990
                Pine Grove Mills, Pa.
                sigpic'33 Rockne 10, '51 Commander Starlight, '53 Commander Starlight "Désirée"

                Comment


                • #9
                  Oh yes, they had tubes from the very first on up into the early 60's. "Real radios glow in the dark".

                  Very good article from radiomuseum.org

                  http://www.radiomuseum.org/forum/fir...ar_radios.html
                  Jeff DeWitt
                  http://carolinastudes.net

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by rockne10 View Post
                    First car radios? Yes; I believe so. Prior to that, crystal radios--now replicable with germanium diodes.
                    Rudimentary vacuum tubes started development in the late 1600's. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vacuum_tube

                    As a kid in the fifties I remember the G.C. Murphy five and dime had a vacuum tube tester in the front of the store.
                    Vacuum tube amplifiers are still revered for their full warm sound reproduction.
                    Yeah, I remember taking all the tubes out of my radio and going down to the local drugstore and testing them. Down below were shelves with new tubes in them. I remember thinking it was sort of miraculous that there were the tubes I needed to fix my radio. I must have been 11 or 12 which would have made it about 196
                    Diesel loving, autocrossing, Coupe express loving, Grandpa Architect.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by t walgamuth View Post
                      Yeah, I remember taking all the tubes out of my radio and going down to the local drugstore and testing them. Down below were shelves with new tubes in them. I remember thinking it was sort of miraculous that there were the tubes I needed to fix my radio. I must have been 11 or 12 which would have made it about 196
                      Nearly anyone could be a radio or TV technician in those days: http://forum.studebakerdriversclub.c...ighlight=12ax7

                      Craig

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