A photo tour of the 2016 Shelby Hamfest


My Labor Day weekend was free of travel again this year, so I was able to make another pilgrimage to the Shelby (North Carolina) hamfest with my good buddies, Vlado (N3CZ), Dave (K4SV) and Phil (W9IXX). This year, all four of us brought things to sell in the flea market.

The Shelby Hamfest–referred to, locally, as “The Grand-Daddy of them All”–has long been regarded as one of the largest hamfests in the southeast US. Last year, I posted photos from the hamfest and many of you sent notes of thanks for that.

We arrived very early yesterday, prior to the gates opening for general admission. We set up our tables and almost immediately had customers in front of us. This year, I was in selling mode, not buying mode, as I desperately need to downsize some of my collection and use the money to offset costs of review radios, and some of the conferences I’m attending this year.


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The seller of this Grundig Satellit 500 only wanted $75–an exceptional bargain. I turned it on, though, and quickly discovered the LCD screen worked intermittently after having only been on for a few seconds. It was a little scuffed up too. Still–it produced great audio.IMG_20160903_104935512 IMG_20160903_104924284 IMG_20160903_104909396 IMG_20160903_104840559 IMG_20160903_104753772_HDR IMG_20160903_104732133 IMG_20160903_104706457_TOP IMG_20160903_104638547_HDR IMG_20160903_104633192 IMG_20160903_104355149 IMG_20160903_104343941_HDR IMG_20160903_104335454_HDR IMG_20160903_094424451 IMG_20160903_094413210 IMG_20160903_094350615_TOP IMG_20160903_094345045_HDR IMG_20160903_094337535 IMG_20160903_094247499_TOP IMG_20160903_094222390 IMG_20160903_094157726 IMG_20160903_094153301 IMG_20160903_094129115_TOP IMG_20160903_094125382 IMG_20160903_094121510 IMG_20160903_094112237 IMG_20160903_094108929_TOP IMG_20160903_094102125 IMG_20160903_094057690 IMG_20160903_094051265 IMG_20160903_094047198_HDR IMG_20160903_094043251

Someone had done a spectacular job restoring this Super-Pro. It would make a fine addition to any shack.
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The same seller who had the Grundig Satellit 500 was also selling this Sony ICF-6500W for $75. Other than scratchy pots, it seemed to work well.  It was very tempting to purchase, but I passed in the end.IMG_20160903_093525866_TOP

He was selling this Panasonic for $150. I passed because I had a hunch it needed a little work.IMG_20160903_093512146 IMG_20160903_093503774 IMG_20160903_093301777 IMG_20160903_093259270 IMG_20160903_092333597_TOP IMG_20160903_091445596 IMG_20160903_090320282_HDR IMG_20160903_090221887 IMG_20160903_090216356 IMG_20160903_090213331_HDR

One of the finest R-274-As I’ve ever seen. Again: someone spent a great deal of time restoring this beauty. By the time I found it in the flea market, it had already been sold. Thank goodness!IMG_20160903_090137715 IMG_20160903_090122681 IMG_20160903_090115476_HDR IMG_20160903_090103868_HDR IMG_20160903_090059269 IMG_20160903_090048304_TOP IMG_20160903_090028432_TOP IMG_20160903_085937840_HDR IMG_20160903_085717679 IMG_20160903_085703210_TOP IMG_20160903_085642966 IMG_20160903_085627053 IMG_20160903_085624079 IMG_20160903_085617071

I must have spotted at least six or seven Hallicrafters SX-100s this year at Shelby.
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I managed to come home with only $40 worth of parts: connectors, cables, plugs and a 17 meter band MFJ whip antenna (to try on my recently-acquired Elecraft KX2). I was pretty proud of myself as there were an exceptional number of vintage radios I would have loved to have taken home (like the console radio below–!).


Any Post readers attend the Shelby hamfest? Have you attended any other local hamfests recently?  If so, please comment on what you found!

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13 thoughts on “A photo tour of the 2016 Shelby Hamfest

  1. Art

    Why have the big prizes at the Shelby Hamfest gotten progressively crappier with time? Some years ago, those prizes were things with broad general appeal that a ham living anywhere could use and appreciate, whether that ham was a Novice, Technician, General, Advanced, or Extra. Prizes like an Icom 746 or similar were useful to any ham. Now, they have crap like big hf antennas, big hf amplifiers, and hf SDR’s, that would be useless to many Techs or anyone living in an apartment or otherwise not a hf enthusiast.

  2. Kevin W0VP

    Thank you very much for the photo tour of the Shelby hamfest. The fleamarket looks incredible.

    Myself, I have either purposely or accidentally missed every hamfest I was planning to attend this year since I spent way too much at my first Dayton last year, and I’ve been spending too much lately on radios from EBay. It sure is nice to see that someone can go to a major hamfest and have a great time just looking (and maybe even selling a few things) without breaking the piggy bank.
    I had planned to attend the Peoria Superfest in a couple of weeks, but just bought another Sony ICF-2010 on EBay. So long Peoria 🙁

  3. DanH

    I enjoyed seeing the photo of the restored Hammarlund SP-200. I restored one of these for my Dad back in 1989-1990. They are pretty easy to work on. He used a few of these during WW2. Same basic black color scheme. It’s in my den, now. These radios were fairly stable for the time owing to an outboard power supply. They look especially good in the dark with the illuminated orange S-meter. Band switching on the RF deck is accomplished with a series of knife switches mounted on phenolic cards. The cards are moved up and down by a camshaft driven by the band selector knob. The later SP-600 radios feature a band switching turret similar to the channel switching turrets found on 1950’s TV sets.

  4. Scott King

    Pic #36, there is an Astron power supply on the table. It now resides on my bench. It was a great time for my son and myself, just wish I had more time & money!

  5. Michael Black

    I paid forty dollars for my Grundig Satellit 500, I think it was 2006. It was a community group sale, I was sort of helping to set up, so I wanted it. I decided forty was something I could live with, but felt I’d better go a bit high to get it early.

    A year or two later I got 700 at a Rotary Club sale, $2.50. Someone was looking at it, put it down, I saw the price, thought it must be $7.50 at lest but no.

    I guess it was the 700 that had some battery leakage to clean up. I think it was the 500 that had some display problem, but opening it up and reseating the connectors fixed that. So I suspect the one you saw needed only minor cleaning.

    One or both have some bulbs burned out, backlight for the display, but I’ve yet to get around to putting in LED replacements.

    The 500 was the first shortwave receiver I’d seen after fifteen or so years of going to garage and rummage sales, so it was the find. I did find more for a few years, most not as good as the Grundigs, but that’s tapered off. And the rest were either ten dollars or less.

    I think I’ll make the effort to attend the local hamfest next month (it’s not the only one, but is the biggest local one), other things have conflicted with the date in recent years.


  6. Troy Riedel

    Wow, what great photos … it sure looks like it was a great time, Thomas. I should have driven there instead of staying in as post-Tropical Storm Hermine skirted our coastline.


  7. Gene Quigley

    Hi. I have a question. I just noticed this morning that the screen section on my Tecsun PL-660 has nothing on it. No UTC time , nothing. I turned it on and I hear static but nothing on the screen, and the batteries are new. The radio is two months old.

    has anyone come across this problem before?



    1. Troy Riedel


      Have you “Reset” the radio. Try:

      If the radio does not function properly,you can perform a reset by using a pointed object such as straightened paper clip, into the [RESET] hole in the bottom of the unit, and gently press and release.



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