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Old 08-31-2008, 04:47 PM
julianburke julianburke is offline
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Rca Tk-41

Just in case someone knows of one, I'm still looking desperately for a RCA TK41 television camera! Finders' fee paid! I posted several before but would like to keep it fresh in case one is known for sale. If anyone knows of one, please call me!! I need pieces or parts of any of it. Camera, CCU, cables or books-I need it.

Any early studio equipment or associated equipment as well. Soon I will have a website of what I have in my collection. I have a beautiful working TK-60 (RCA's last B & W camera) of which I will share on U-Tube when I get my home garage cleaned out for the "studio" of all my 30 or so cameras. My microphone collection and early radio will also be shown. I appreciate any responses or leads!! It will all be seen, shared and heard! 865-288-0900 eves Julian Burke
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Old 08-31-2008, 07:11 PM
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Have you ever tried to contact Chuck Pharis?
He has at least 1, maybe more. He might have an extra for sale, Logan
Here is a link to his site, http://www.pharis-video.com/
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Old 09-01-2008, 03:01 AM
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If I remember, I think he did contact Mr. Pharis at one point. I also had recommended a place, and unfortunately the TK41 which I had met and known had flown the coop. I have to say, they are insanely large cameras though.

Good luck finding one Mr. Burke.

David
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Old 09-01-2008, 08:02 AM
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Sheesh, I want an all tube color television camera too! (even if is not an "R.C.A." TK40 or 41)... this when I will have enough money.
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Old 09-01-2008, 11:14 AM
julianburke julianburke is offline
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I have since located a TK41B from New York and it is a very nice one; unfortunately, it is missing its' CCU and will have to work on finding one. I have an extensive collection of all kinds of electronics that I have been building for nearly 40 years and I think of all of the engineers and others that I have made friends with (many are gone now) and what a rich and rewarding life that has been so far.

I have a nice complete working TK60 and a nice complete working TK44 among my 30 or so cameras.
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Old 09-01-2008, 11:23 AM
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Are you getting the big dolly along w/it ? I'd like to see yr set up some time...Terry has told me a lot about it & set my mouth a-waterin'...(grin)
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Old 09-01-2008, 11:48 AM
julianburke julianburke is offline
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Yes, and I have several other spare dolly units that would work too. They too are getting hard to find as I think there are more cameras than dollys.
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Old 09-01-2008, 12:50 PM
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Chuck is the best contact I know of... Also there's a guy by the name of Jim Bragg, a retired CBS camera man in Acton, CA. I haven't spoken with him in probably 15 years, but I know he has/had a TK-41C head in his collection. No idea if he'd sell it, or has others, but it would be worth a try. Sorry, I have no contact info on him anymore.

Charles
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Old 09-02-2008, 11:41 AM
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Sometimes I sell cameras. Right now I am working on restoring a TK-41 to running condition. I need all the spare parts and extra cameras that I have. I can't go to Radio Shack and pick up a part, so I take parts off my spare cameras. I currently have 3 1/2 TK-41s, and one very early (1942) TK-40. I have one complete set of CCU support equipment, and a few other pieces of spare equipment. I am looking for another view finder. TK-41 ccus and support equipment are almost impossible to find. By the way, if anyone has any personal comments to say about me, please contaxt me directly. chuck@pharis-video.com
As far as I know, there are no working TK-41s anywhere right now. I hope to have the first. My collection can be seen on my site. http://www.pharis-video.com
I am currently having some web software problems so my site is not updated as I would like it to be.
Chuck Pharis
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Old 09-02-2008, 06:35 PM
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I'd almost volunteer to update your site for you Chuck. I've been dying to see some recent updates.

David
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Old 09-02-2008, 08:14 PM
julianburke julianburke is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dtuomi View Post
If I remember, I think he did contact Mr. Pharis at one point. I also had recommended a place, and unfortunately the TK41 which I had met and known had flown the coop. I have to say, they are insanely large cameras though.

Good luck finding one Mr. Burke.

David
Thanks David! Julian
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Old 09-03-2008, 04:55 PM
bozey45 bozey45 is offline
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Did you ever contact WCOV-TV in Montgomery, AL? they had a 41 there for a long time just on display in the building.
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Old 09-03-2008, 05:11 PM
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Wonder how many 41s were made in the 1st place ? 500? 1000? 2500? When were the last ones mustered out of service? 1980? '85? There's GOT to be a few of 'em stuck around in dusty junkhole corners somewhere...
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Old 09-03-2008, 10:03 PM
julianburke julianburke is offline
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Tk41

I believe WCOV has one but it is their icon/mascot since they are the original owner of it.

TK41's were produced until sometime in 1967 when RCA introduced their new full line of "New Look" equipment which was light blue in color instead of the "umber grey" so long and famous in the earlier RCA stuff. TK41's were used by their original owners for at least 10-15 years minimum until they were sent to other sister stations or universities/schools in favor of newer and better cameras not necessarily RCA. In their secondary market, they were used until they could no longer keep them up or knew how to. Others were used for remote pickups. They did make great color pictures unlike its' successor, the TK42-3's. RCA was flooded with orders for that "New Look" camera and sales were brisk but it later turned out to be a hated camera. They were early solid state, always required maintenance and would drop out of the chain without any notice. The TK42 had internal mechanical focus and zoom which was ill designed as the cable would bind and then become jerky which is a disaster when on the air. I don't think these had barely a 10 year life span in the studio. They were traded in or disposed of. The TK43 was an identical camera except the focus and zoom was external and trouble free. The TK43 is a very rare camera as it was short lived (too little too late) for its' successor, the TK44 which was a far better camera, produced a great rich and crisp color, more reliable and used the then new Plumbicon tubes. About this time other very good name brand cameras were available and many stations were jumping ship in favor of these such as Philips, Ikegami, GE, Norelco and others as they were outperforming RCA so the handwriting was on the wall. The TK series of 45, 46 and 47 were better than the last one and RCA sold a ton of TK47's all over the world. This was the last model produced by RCA. I have about 12 of these and they are getting harder to find. The TK48 was engineered and in production until RCA went out of business in 1986 or sold out to Thompson Ltd and they decided to not go into the camera business. None were shipped, and every unit that was finished on down to the bare chassis was hit with an ax and tossed into a dumpster.

A local engineer (my friend Doug) was the last class to graduate from the RCA Camden facility and he witnessed this action. They were trying to get them to take some of the stuff but most had no way to get it home or just didn't want it. Mostly video amplifiers or other small stuff-no cameras. I'm sure if I was there, my trunk would have been full as I saw the worth of it then. (That's why I have about 12,000 SF of stuff over 40 years!)

Regarding the TK41's, I think many more are in existance but they are overseas or squirreled away and forgotten. Anything that weighs several hundred pounds is not a really popular item! They are slowly finding their way out like the CT100's and I sometimes use the common rule of thumb as much as 10% of some stuff remains. If they produced about 1000, perhaps around 100 remain in one form or another in parts. Somewhere I saw production figures for this camera and it surprised me how many they did make but some went overseas. Most likely time will tell. BTW, the TK41 was a very serviceable unit, was very reliable for what it was and the engineers liked it very much which gave it about a 20 year life span which in todays advancement standards was phenominal! Plumbicons and vidicons took over the market until CCD's were introduced.

Now for an update on where I saw that list, Steve McVoys website has a camera listing showing Lytle Hoover's compilation of RCA cameras sold. It shows about 239 TK41's were sold. It shows 376 TK42's were sold and that is a scarcer camera to find! Less than a hundred TK43's were manufactured so they have to be very rare! If I am reading and gleaning all info from it, that includes overseas as well so correct me if I am wrong here. 239 is NOT a lot of cameras spread out throughout the world camera market!

Today, the lenses are larger than the camera.

Total production figures of the TK41's were 330, and a third of those went to Europe.
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Last edited by julianburke; 05-14-2012 at 09:17 PM.
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  #15  
Old 09-03-2008, 10:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sandy G View Post
Wonder how many 41s were made in the 1st place ? 500? 1000? 2500? When were the last ones mustered out of service? 1980? '85? There's GOT to be a few of 'em stuck around in dusty junkhole corners somewhere...
Well, trying to put some logic to it (like trying to roughly estimate the volume of the world's oceans without knowing much of the details):

Production stopped in the mid 1960's.
How many stations had live color capability by 1965? Generous guess, 500. Average number of live color cameras per station, guess, 2. So let's say max 1000 TK-41s in service, in 1965. Number of those that were replacements, probably close to zero - my impression is it was most common to just keep them running, second choice being to upgrade to the prism optics and lower-noise video amps. No real replacements until later models came along.

So, I'd guess about 1000 total manufactured, and this may be on the high side.

I hope someone with actual knowledge can provide some enlightenment.
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