View Full Version : Early Viewtone TV cabinet on eBay


decojoe67
05-29-2017, 09:21 AM
http://www.ebay.com/itm/ANTIQUE-TV-VIEWTONE-TV-CIRCA-1945-7-CABINET-/292132508237?hash=item440474524d:g:480AAOSwcB5ZKvq a
I've only ever seen maybe two others in all my years. I've never seen one with what appears to be a Viewtone medallion under the screen. Too bad it has no chassis. I believe these were advertised in '45 for $100.

Celt
05-29-2017, 10:51 AM
Fugly little thing ain't it? :)

decojoe67
05-29-2017, 11:04 AM
Fugly little thing ain't it? :)
I'd say more like "primitive". One thing you can't take away from it is that it's a very rare piece of television history. These were one of the very first TV sets put on the market after WWII pre-dating the RCA 630TS and 621TS. Being they were advertised for $100, you can bet these were slapped together as cheaply as possible.
An original ad (notice the slightly different proto.):
http://www.earlytelevision.org/images/rtv_retailing_oct45-1.jpg
A example w/chassis from the Net:
http://image.artfact.com/housePhotos/grogan/64/420564/H0030-L42808301.jpg
Notice is doesn't have the Viewtone medallion.

benman94
05-29-2017, 11:30 AM
I had one in my collection. (I guess I technically still do; it's on a long term loan to a museum back in Michigan.)

They're interesting from a historical standpoint, but hardly a set worth restoring. Very pre-war type design. 7EP4 CRT (a postwar variation on the 5BP4), brute force HV, mostly octals, etc.

decojoe67
05-29-2017, 11:36 AM
I had one in my collection. (I guess I technically still do; it's on a long term loan to a museum back in Michigan.)

They're interesting from a historical standpoint, but hardly a set worth restoring. Very pre-war type design. 7EP4 CRT (a postwar variation on the 5BP4), brute force HV, mostly octals, etc.
Yes, I've never seen a working Viewtone TV and doubt one exists. If I had one I know I'd want to see it displaying a picture, but I'm obsessive that way with items in my collection! What I'd do with this one is restore the cabinet perfectly and retrofit another post-war chassis using a 7BP4. It would make a fun display and you'd be one of a very few with any kind of Viewtone TV artifact. I've seen 4 or 5 of the slopped back models, but only a few of these early boxy models.

rld-tv01
05-29-2017, 01:52 PM
I have the Slopped back table top Viewtone complete with the chassis and a Viewtone 7 inch console "cabinet only poor condition" missing the TV chassis and radio. My Viewtone cabinet is the one on the right. The one on the left is from a UK collection on the internet. I would like the one on eBay but the seller says local pickup only no shipping.

decojoe67
05-29-2017, 03:13 PM
I have the Slopped back table top Viewtone complete with the chassis and a Viewtone 7 inch console "cabinet only poor condition" missing the TV chassis and radio. My Viewtone cabinet is the one on the right. The one on the left is from a UK collection on the internet. I would like the one on eBay but the seller says local pickup only no shipping.
That is so cool! Thanks for posted that photo. Well worth a restoration. It's amazing at how almost every example has major or minor differences. These must've really been assembled in a make-shift small shop.
By the way, I know that seller and he is well experienced with shipping radios and TV's all over the US and the world, so don't hesitate to ask him about it. I can't imagine that he would refuse to ship.

dtvmcdonald
05-29-2017, 09:29 PM
I would consider one of those as extremely worth restoring.

Look at the VP-155 schematic at the ETF: there is NO RF/IF gain control at all
that I see! The VP100 and VP101 have AGC on the convertor tube only.

Of course, there is the chance that the power transformer is kaput. Perhaps
do what the Brits do with their wet climate: heat the transformer to about say 100 or 105F for a week with DC to the primary to be sure its dry

decojoe67
05-29-2017, 09:40 PM
I would consider one of those as extremely worth restoring.

Look at the VP-155 schematic at the ETF: there is NO RF/IF gain control at all
that I see! The VP100 and VP101 have AGC on the convertor tube only.

Of course, there is the chance that the power transformer is kaput. Perhaps
do what the Brits do with their wet climate: heat the transformer to about say 100 or 105F for a week with DC to the primary to be sure its dry
Be aware that there is no chassis with the set that is on eBay. It would be a nice project for someone skilled to actually fabricate a chassis. I would love to see a Viewtone set working.

rld-tv01
05-29-2017, 10:37 PM
Picture of my Viewtone tabletop which has chassis and CRT.

decojoe67
05-30-2017, 05:47 AM
Picture of my Viewtone tabletop which has chassis and CRT.
That's a very nice example. Thanks for posting. Yours is only model you see a few of around. It looks like it's missing the clear rosettes around the tube face. Those are simple to find. It also has the split mask which is unusual. Did you ever consider getting it electronically restored? It would great to see one of them displaying a picture and also learn how these early models worked. Could you take a photo of the chassis? I've never seen one.

Bill Cahill
06-01-2017, 02:07 AM
Yes. Me, too. Nice set. Looks like it's worth restoring.
Bill Cahill

vts1134
06-01-2017, 06:51 PM
Here's a few more photos of the Viewtone Richard posted.

http://i1075.photobucket.com/albums/w438/vts1134/Viewtone%20VP100/My%20Set/DSC_1552_zpsefa6da03.jpg

http://i1075.photobucket.com/albums/w438/vts1134/Viewtone%20VP100/My%20Set/DSC_1554_zpsf792504f.jpg

http://i1075.photobucket.com/albums/w438/vts1134/Viewtone%20VP100/My%20Set/DSC_1525_zps93e0713e.jpg

http://i1075.photobucket.com/albums/w438/vts1134/Viewtone%20VP100/My%20Set/DSC_1522_zps0076491f.jpg

http://i1075.photobucket.com/albums/w438/vts1134/Viewtone%20VP100/My%20Set/DSC_1521_zps15fe110a.jpg

decojoe67
06-01-2017, 09:13 PM
[QUOTE=vts1134;3184798]Here's a few more photos of the Viewtone Richard posted.
Thank you for those photo's! That's the first time I've seen that rare set in detail as well as the chassis. You would think it's European at first glance. What a primitive early TV. I wonder what the story is of the "RUSH" written on the chassis. I'd have to get it working if I owned it!

rld-tv01
06-01-2017, 09:44 PM
Thanks for posting your pictures John. I purchased the Viewtone from John a couple years ago. John drove the Viewtone from Pennsylvania to ETF in Ohio where I then took it to Virginia and it moved with me out to California. John might know more of it's original history then I do. I purchased my other Viewtone console cabinet from the owner of a pack and ship store on Long Island. He had a lot of vintage radios in his store. DecoJoe67, you might know him?

vts1134
06-02-2017, 08:48 AM
Story I know about this set is that it is a traveler for sure. The fellow I purchased it from lived on the West Coast. He purchased it from a guy on the East Coast, who originally purchased it on the West Coast and moved it East with him. Now it's back on the West Coast where I suspect it will stay for a while.

Electronic M
06-02-2017, 09:31 AM
Story I know about this set is that it is a traveler for sure. The fellow I purchased it from lived on the West Coast. He purchased it from a guy on the East Coast, who originally purchased it on the West Coast and moved it East with him. Now it's back on the West Coast where I suspect it will stay for a while.

Sounds like it needs a vacation in the midwest. :D

Polaraligned
06-05-2017, 08:37 PM
I'd have to get it working if I owned it!

I would leave it "as is" if I had one. If it had to be made working, I definitely would restuff those capacitors as I hate seeing a rare TV catch yellow capacitor disease.

vts1134
06-05-2017, 09:44 PM
...yellow capacitor disease.

That's a good one....I'm gonna have to remember that one

decojoe67
06-06-2017, 05:36 AM
Just for reference, the cabinet sold for about $350. It would great if the buyer has the parts and ability to make it complete set again.

benman94
06-06-2017, 10:50 AM
I would leave it "as is" if I had one. If it had to be made working, I definitely would restuff those capacitors as I hate seeing a rare TV catch yellow capacitor disease.

I'm not normally in the "preservation" camp; I like to restore my sets and get them working, but with a Viewtone, I'm much more inclined to simply leave it alone.

I left my Viewtone alone for the most part; I replaced the 5BP4 one of my Uncles had subbed in with a dud 7EP4, but otherwise didn't screw with it. I just don't have the heart to disturb such a rare set.

M3-SRT8
06-12-2017, 09:31 PM
I would leave it "as is" if I had one. If it had to be made working, I definitely would restuff those capacitors as I hate seeing a rare TV catch yellow capacitor disease.

I routinely restuff all of my capacitors in all my restorations.

I'm currently restoring a late production RCA 8TS30. It has all its original caps. But even a fairly common set like that deserves the best that I can do.:smoke: