Lazarus our latest transformation from wrecked radio to Bluetooth Speaker. Found in a house clearance at the back of a garage
where it had probably lived for many years this old radio has been rescued, repaired
When we bought it we thought
it might be beyond economical repair but the knobs were worth rescuing!
We did some investigation and we identified it as a GEC BC4040 valve radio made by General Electric Co, London in 1939. It is a big beastie measuring 18.5 inches long (45cm) and very heavy
Once we got it back to the workshop we realised that the Bakelite was in OK condition, a few wounds and scars but no breaks or bits missing. The speaker had had it and the dial was illegible – both had suffered over the years and were covered with mould. The base & back were the same and the internals were all rusty, but on the plus side it did have all its knobs!
As we had a bit of a break in our busy schedule we decided to bite the bullet and tackle the renovation. The radio was taken apart, the innards were scrubbed down, Bakelite was washed, dried and polished. The material was replaced and we upgraded it to stereo adding a speaker each side – it would have been mono originally. We sprayed the original glass to hide the gap from the missing dial and installed bulbs behind so it still lights up. The Bluetooth technology was added with new wiring and the result is the pretty beastie below.
We love it and have obviously named him Lazarus. It sounds fab and is another gorgeous Art Deco, pre WWII radio saved from landfill.
Since we started adapting and converting vintage speakers, radios & radiograms to MP3 players they have always been wired, using the headphone socket on a mobile phone or MP3 player as the connection. However as our experience has increased and with Apple taking this facility away on their iPhones and iPods we are now offering our MP3 conversions with Bluetooth.
It has always been or ultimate aim to do this however it has taken a while to source the most suitable hardware to make this work with the vintage technology we are adapting.
Currently we are introducing this option with our range of table top radios and standalone speakers.
We have an alternative add-0n solution for radiograms, which connects to the headphone socket and this can added to new conversions and can also be retrospectively supplied for any of our existing MP3 conversions.
Well summer is long gone, Autumn is in full swing and we are nearly back into the thermals! Brrrr !!!
All is calm here at Retro B headquarters gearing up for the next mad round of shows. We are off to Oxford late November and have three visits to London before the end of the year.
We have some fabulous new stock coming to the shows – from the kitsch (a gorgeous glass standard lamp) to the cool (pair of G-Plan butterfly chairs) plus lots lots more. We will also be bringing a selection of our MP3 converted vintage Speakers & radios , in all shapes and sizes which will make ideal Christmas presents. We also have a great selection of bar stock – soda syphons, ice buckets, Babycham, shot & wine glasses so you can enjoy the festivities in vintage style.
We will be selling at the furniture flea in Oxford on 21st November, which will again take place at the Catholic Chaplaincy. This was a roaring success in June and we are looking forward to going back. Click on the Furniture Flea logo for more info.
This will be followed by Modern Shows main event on 22nd November at Dulwich College. We will be in our usual place by the stairs in the South Cloister. As the show gets very busy it is best to book your tickets in advance to save queuing and money. Follow the link to book your tickets http://modernshows.com/the-shows/dulwich-nov-2015/