Remember a GEC "bow-front" TV that Cathovisor linked to on the website of an auction house in Bristol? Remember the excellent condition it was in?
Well this is how I received it.
My first reaction upon opening the box and seeing that on the front of the AW 43-88 was "holy shit!!!"
So... before I begin this restoration I have posted an ad in the wanted section for a suitable CRT. Pity, as this looks like an otherwise good set and I'm sure the AW43-88 would have had plenty of life left in it. Once a replacement tube's sourced I can't wait to restore this one! As some will know I've been after a GEC bow-front for many years and now I've finally got one, this happens! Not quite a larger cabinet one like a BT304, but still..
I had a lovely 1930s Marconi radio ruined in transit some years back. It was original and untouched, survived WW2, until the careless courier decided to wreck it. I hate couriers. They are total B*ST*RDS who seem to want to destroy where they can.
That's such a shame, it's also why I won't have TV sets couriered to me either. I've had bad experiences in recent years with many couriers, and several vintage items reduced to worthless rubble. I have managed to salvage most items, but they are worthless now.
Looks like the cabinet survived, so hopefully a new tube should get it back to where it was! Best of luck with the tube hunting.
I've had the same bad experience with couriers lots of damaged tv's, now I use a man with a van, he's a door to door courier he collects & delivers the same day. A bit more expensive but worth the price to know your getting your item looked after. As for the GEC I'll think you'll find the CRT to be a Mazda with 12 volt heaters, the type number escapes me at the moment
Good luck with the restoration
The original CRT used in the GEC BT302 was a Brimar 7405A with 12.6 Htr. The Mazda CME1703 is often found in them when the original had failed as its a direct swap in with the same 12.6 Htr. The Mullard AW43-88 is an equivalent however the Htr is only 6.3V, you will need to modify the GEC to drop the CRT Htr voltage.
I have a load of B&W CRT's stashed away in the loft, I placed an ad of the forum to get rid of them, I couldn't even give them away a couple of years ago. I almost necked them all prior to taking them to the tip but ended up burying them away to be forgotten, but they've always bugged me being stuck up there taking up space.
Now I can't be certain but I'm very confident I have at least two AW43-88's up there. I will need to make time and then move a tonne of boxes to get at them all. It's not high on my priorities due to the sheer crud and its like an oven up there at the moment. Also with all that thermal cycling I'm a coward. I have other pressing matters to attend, however if you're in no hurry and prepared to wait, I will schedule it in for a trek. If in the meantime you find one, all well and good.
The Mullard AW43-88 is an equivalent however the Htr is only 6.3V, you will need to modify the GEC to drop the CRT Htr voltage.
Isn't it a 300mA series heater chain? In which case, the other 6.3V will be evenly distributed across all the heaters by the slight increase in current.
As the mains voltage can usually only be adjusted in 20V increments, that 6.3V can't make much difference - it could even correct for a slightly lower mains voltage than the nominal tap!
Now watch it being made! ?