Tag Archives: Jeff McMahon

This Noyce Joyce radio kit features IN-17 Nixie Tubes

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Jeff McMahon, who shares a link to a Nixie Tube radio kit via the retailer Shop Simo. We’ve no clue how well the radio might perform, but it covers AM/FM, can play from an SD card and is, of course, Bluetooth as well. The radio requires no soldering–instead, it appears to be a modular snap-together kit. Here’s the manufacturer’s description:

Noyce Joyce introduces a new generation of electronic kits.
The whole kit is made of printed circuit boards (PCBs).
With a simple snap-fit connection, you get a fully functional product. In this case a battery-powered radio/Bluetooth speaker.
Our radio is [truly] unique thanks to the used miniature IN-17 nixie tubes.
These nixies stopped production 50 years ago.
For this reason, this product will be available only be in limited quantities of maximum few hundred pieces.
Right now you can buy the first 100 pieces in advance for half price.
These pieces will be delivered at the end of July.

Of course, you wouldn’t buy this radio for the performance–you’d but it for the Nixie tubes!

Thanks for the tip, Jeff!

Post readers: Please let me know if you purchase one of these! I’d love a guest post about the built and your thoughts about its functionality.

Click here to check out the Nixie Radio via Shop Simo.

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Radio Deal: Limited number of refurbished Sangean PR-D4W units on Amazon

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Jeff McMahon, who notes that there are a limited number of Sangean PR-D4W units on Amazon.com.

Click here to view on Amazon.

If you’re seriously considering this radio, check out Gary’s overview on the Herculodge blog.


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Jeff is displeased with Sangean buttons

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Jeff McMahon, who writes:

After my wife complained about our Sangean radio button problems, I made this post:

Our Sangean radios are good performers for FM reception and speaker sound. They are reasonably priced. For user-friendly radios to use throughout the house, the kind that my wife and daughters enjoy using, Sangean is the best bet.

However, for me a general use Sangean is not my first choice. Because I am an FM reception fanatic, I prefer more of a high-performance radio, the kind that has an SW port, so I can connect a wire antenna to the radio, which usually results in improved FM reception. That’s why I have a Grundig G4000A next to my bedside table. But for the rest of my family, it’s a Sangean affair.

However, I should point out a consistent flaw, one that my wife complained about this morning: Three of four of our Sangeans have button problems.[…]

Read the full article at The Herculodge.

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Bedside radio: Jeff ousts the Sangean WR-2 in favor of the Grundig G4000A

(Source: The Herculodge)

Our friend, Jeff McMahon, over at the Herculodge blog has just replaced his bedside radio–he writes:

Inexplicably, the Sangean WR-2 wasn’t getting 89.3 KPCC without static, distortion, and bleed-in from another station, over the last few weeks, even with the wire FM antenna attached to the back of it. Who knows why FM reception is subject to variation. It could be the weather.

In any event, I put the Sangean WR-2 in my daughter’s room (she gets her pop station MyFM 104.3 very easily, with the pigtail antenna on the back) and put the 13-year-old Grundig G4000A by my bedside. With the telescopic FM antenna alone, KPCC has a weak signal, evidenced by the Grundig’s reception meter, but when I put the wire SW antenna to the side SW antenna port, the reception is strong and clear.

Over the years, I’ve had many portables, including the Degen 1103, and some old Tecsun models from about 10 years ago. They all suffered from weak tin speakers. Not so with the Grundig G4000A. The speaker sound is very pleasing.[…]

Continue reading at the Herculodge.

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CB radio manufacturer Cedar Electronics (Cobra) struggles with new tariffs

(Source: The Washington Post via Jeff McMahan)

CHICAGO — Cedar Electronics has been selling CB radios to American truckers since the 1960s, helping connect the workers who keep the U.S. economy rolling. But these days Cedar’s business isn’t exactly trucking along.

The Chicago-headquartered company is racing around Asia looking for other countries to host its manufacturing, after the radios Cedar makes in China and brings to the United States were hit with one of the Trump administration’s 25 percent tariffs this summer, making them more expensive to import.

The White House’s decision to extend its tariff campaign to an even broader range of Chinese imports starting Monday is putting similar pressure on more U.S. companies to uproot their Chinese manufacturing, and to consider layoffs, price hikes and investment cuts.

[…]Cedar Electronics’ predecessor company was the first to introduce CB radios to the market decades ago. “We like to joke it was the first social media device,” Karnes said. The radios, made famous by movies like “Smokey and the Bandit,” are still used by many truckers, despite the advent of cellphones.

Steven Fields, a trucker based in Kansas City, Mo., said he uses a CB to warn other drivers about bad weather and accidents. “Being prepared can make a big difference between a miserable trip and a safe trip,” he said.

About 15 years ago, Cedar moved its manufacturing to China to save money on parts and labor, Karnes said.

Cedar imports almost all of its Cobra-brand CBs to North America, where it holds almost 80 percent of the market. The radios are mostly sold at large truck stops, for $99 to $199, depending on the model.

When Cedar learned its CBs would be included on the initial tariff list targeting $50 billion in imports, it applied for an exemption and imported additional inventory by costly airfreight to have stock on hand before the tariffs took effect. That gave the company enough CBs to meet demand through September without having to raise prices, Karnes said.

Click here to read the full story and comment at The Washington Post.

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Jeff discovers that the Sangean WR-2 loses time when playing radio

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Jeff McMahon, who writes:

I wanted you to know that my Sangean WR-2 keeps perfect time when I don’t play the radio, but when I do play the radio I lose 25 minutes; the clock is 25 minutes slow in other words. I’ve read other complaints from Sangean owners, including from those who own the Sangean HDR-18. Some say it has something to do with RDS. Have you heard of this problem? It’s annoying because I have to reset my clock every morning.

Wow–an otherwise excellent radio that prominently features a clock should never have this problem. This problem essentially renders the clock useless.  I’m not sure what would cause this unless it’s incorrectly pulling time data from the RDS function?

Post readers: Have you noticed this fault in the WR-2, WR-18 or other similar models? Please comment.

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eBay: Jeff spots a vintage Panasonic RF-088

The Panasonic RF-088

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor Jeff McMahon who writes:

“This vintage Panasonic RF-088 8-Channel Preset radio selling on eBay [see above] seems rather rare. In fact, I’ve never seen one.”

Click here to view on eBay.

I haven’t seen one either, Jeff. Appears to be pretty compact. At first, I was curious how an analog radio could have so many presets until I took a peek at the top of the radio.

Each preset is individually tuned. Hard to believe such a compact radio has a total of eight tuning mechanisms! Two presets are designated for FM, two for AM and four presets can be either. Pretty clever! Since it’s a Panasonic, I bet it’s a sensitive little portable.

At $59.80 US shipped, I’m sure someone will snag it.

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