You are on page 1of 1

ics retronics retronics retronics retronics retronics retr

TV servicing become an affordable and Googling turned out to be a con- represent any great value
common electrical item in ductance tester for liquids. Typi- except to the keen collector.
equipment households. The equipment cal use would be in a laboratory I obtained the instruments as part
ca. 1955 shown in the picture dates from to check the quality of (drinking) of an inheritance. Unfortunately,
about 1955 and was Philips’ water. However, the instrument the previous owner had been a
Jan Buiting way to give backing to their having an external reference lifetime chain smoker so drastic
massive sales of early TV sets input as well as an accurate action was required to remove a
Up to about 1985 radio and TV (all with valves, of course). internal bridge circuit, the TV persistent nicotine ‘look & smell’.
repair and servicing was a seri- Retailers selling Philips TV sets servicing fraternity soon found Each instrument was scrubbed
ous business providing employ- would also install Philips test out that the PR9500 was also clean with a mild detergent,
ment to thousands of trained equipment in the service and great for R, C and even L meas- dried and then put into a box
technicians. With the arrival of repair department. urements. and fully covered in cat litter to
the microcontroller and dirt- The photograph shows three GM denotes a series of early absorb the smell1. The process
cheap Far East import TV sets items typically found therein in electronics lab instruments and takes about a week to complete
the noble art of repairing TV sets the mid-1950’s, and one per- eventually comprised more than and did not fail to restore the
at the component level (one haps less usual instrument. 50 items, including several all- equipment to its former glory.
hand in pocket!) was no longer The large instrument is a valve oscilloscopes. All were (045126-1)
economic and disappeared in GM2893 RF Signal Generator designed and built between
all but the lowest developed for 90 kHz – 50 MHz with AM 1948 and about 1958 (cf the Reference:
1. Electronic Classics,
countries in the world. The last modulation facilities. I guess this design/lifecycle of today’s ‘dis-
Collecting, Restoration and
fairly authentic TV Service Chop ‘boatanchor’ was mostly used to posable’ equipment!). Philips Repair,
(sic) I saw was in an idyllic street test TV IF amplifiers at the then ‘GM’ test equipment with Andrew Emmerson, Newnes,
near Pythagorion harbour on the widely used 37-38 MHz fre- black, shiny front panels and ISBN 0-7506-3788-9.
Greek island of Samos (yes, the quency. The specimen shown knurled black knobs almost
birthplace of Pythagoras). The has French-language print with invariably contains ‘40’ and
lettering on the shop window did the controls. Its output signal is ‘80’ series consumer electron-  (lower left)
not belie the (admittedly mini- incredibly stable. ics valves throughout the  (upper left)
mum) activity in the shop, which The GM2315 AF Signal Gener- designs. These valves are still  (upper right)
actually had a cluttered work- ator  I would expect to have widely available today and the
bench and fair piles of 1970s been used in conjunction with the instruments themselves are also
Retronics is a monthly column cover-
test equipment. The weary-look- GM7628 RF/AF Signal Tracer  easily repaired and calibrated ing vintage electronics including leg-
ing shop owner, an English in order to locate faults in all thanks to service manuals and endary Elektor designs. Contribu-
expatriate, I would describe as kinds of amplifiers. The signal the use of fairly common parts. tions, suggestions and requests are
an old hippy. tracer still has the original probe. These 50-year-old test instru- welcomed; please send an email to,
In most European countries, the The odd man out is the PR9500 ments are still a common find
subject: Retronics EE.
TV set took about ten years to unit  which after some on radio rallies, hence do not

5/2005 - elektor electronics 77