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Antique radio value guide (on the example of the Swedish and Norwegian radios)

The most rare radios are the ones that only one collector has and as no one else even saw anywhere else. In consequence, so should be the most common ones that almost all collectors have and which, in addition, it can be seen in markets and auctions everyday. So far it sounds simple. If now a collector claims he has a very rare Philips model, like he has not heard that any other Swedish radio collector has, is it then necessarily so rare? Perhaps it is rare in Sweden because it not included in the Swedish model program.

Uddenberg receiver, 1927
Tube Radio by Ralf Uddenberg, 1927

For example, it can touch about a Norwegian-built Philips device, which someone brought here at one move. Then it can be rare in Sweden, but common in Norway. Similarly, a radio that sold poorly in Sweden could still have been included in a large production series, most of which were exported. It is not so easy to always judge on the basis of the national or even local access how ordinary or unusual a radio is actually. A radio collector from Gothenburg may think that Uddenbergs or Särnmark's radios are fairly common, while one in Malmö looks Bergh & Co. models often used. A collector from Stockholm or Luleå would definitely not agree with any of the earlier ones. So what can you be sure of and what should you go for in an assessment? Sometimes it can be good to generalize, to create structure, despite the risk that land in prejudices and preconceptions.

  1. Radios were exclusive possessions during the 20th century, but over the years soon became a matter of course in every home. Conclusion: Twenty-one radio was built in substantially smaller series than e.g. 40's models.
  2. Devices with many tubes were always more expensive than those with few tubes. Conclusion: The economy models with 1-3 tubeswas built in larger volumes than those with 4-5 and appliances with 6 or more tubes were made only in very limited quantities.
  3. Devices from Bakelite or similar molded materials could be made cheaper than appliances with veneered wooden box provided the number became large enough to allocate the costs of the form. Conclusion: Bakelite appliances must be in everyone cases have been intended to be made in large quantities and a Bakelit radio should therefore be common place. In addition, it should be made by a company with capital enough to be able to take the initial costs and maybe even introduce it to foreign markets.
  4. Radios that have steering wheel or other bakelite or Plastic details, which only appear on that model, probably have built in so many copies that it has been economically justifi able to order special details for them. Radios using standard knobs and neutral bakelite or brass details around window windows, loudspeaker opening etc may, however, have been produced to a lesser extent even though it is a less sure sign.
  5. The back cover of the radio can reveal pretty much about. The more mass produced it seems larger manufacturers. A pressboard back piece with punched cooling holes and text in relief as well as printed pipe placement sketch are of course massproduced in relation to one in plywood with adhesive label and may be small brass signs with text "antenna", "earth" etc. Here should, however, one takes the age aspect into account. From the end of 40-s the number and forward has almost all manufacturers backing in press paper. Before about 1930 virtually no manufacturers have such backs.
    However, one was very different with the speed to face them. In Swedish-built recipients were probably Radiola first with type 322, 1932. Then had already Philips had them for a year. AGA et al. followed soon aftere. g. King retained wooden back pieces with wire mesh at the far endthe 40-s. A small brand that Univox had with plywood a multicolored sticker, which indicates the mark. Type number and year of action is only on a sticky note under the bottom plate.
MIKO receiver
1920's MIKO Swedish four tube radio receiver

In the radio dealers own pricing lists from the 50's, most radio are available apparatus sold in Sweden between 1930 - 54 listed. Here you can besides data on manufacturing year also find out what a particular radio cost new. If you have an obvious Swedish-built radio, which is not in the list, though which must still be manufactured within the time frames of the list, then it is included security quite unusual. Examples of Swedish brands that do not exist in the list are: Bring, Miko and the Cooperative Association. The latter are, however, not always with Swedish made.
In old brochures and weekly magazines you can see what they are different the manufacturers offered for features in each price range and also study the size of the ads and the repetition frequency to thereby focuses on the size of the companies and possible sales success.


Lastly and finally, it must nevertheless be most important to ask the question what remains today. Generally low quality appliances can after all, they have been thrown away to a greater extent than the more solid ones. Certain models may have contained parts that made them more suitable "slaughter" objects for the builder than others, etc. The only straight is really just to wander around at auctions, flea markets and fairs and watch yellow magazine, internet ads and so on. The larger the substrate you can building their observations on the safer they will of course. To have contact with other collectors and compare each one's own experiences further increase knowledge. Internet is an excellent one aids and forums in this context.


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