What are your thoughts on this little "Empire made" pocket radio. When was it made and who for? Was it made for Ekco or was it made for some other company who bought the name?
It measures 4.5 inches by 2.75 inches and does not look very well-made, the plastic moulding for the case is a bit rough and ready, and the dial does not align with the vertical end stops.
I'm sure my grandparents had an Invicta radio with identical PCB layout and rear panel moulding but with a different front housing and a conventional "slide rule" style tuning scale. This would have been bought new some time between 1970 and early '72. At that time, both Ekco and Invicta were Pye brands, so there may be a Pye variant of this set too.
and also "Invicta" transistor sets that are Asian and nothing at all to do with Pye.
That was the sort of thing which I was worried about, do you think it is OK to register this radio as an GB Ekco but "Empire Made" which I seem to remember normally referred being made in Hong Kong.
It is strange, back "then" we used to look down on the goods that were Empire Made. But I bought this little radio just because of the nostalgic fact of it being made in the Empire and proudly declaring it.
Looking at the PCB the radio uses germanium transistors so will have been made in the early to mid Sixties. The later 1960s saw the introduction of the first epoxy encapsulated planar silicon transistors. Compare the 1963 Sinclair Micro-6 (germanium) with the 1967 Micromatic (silicon planar).
Nili illegitimi carborundum
I had one of these in the 70's when I was a lad, I put It though hell and back.
Brings back so many memories (I am now 51). Have you got the original case that went with it I wonder ? It was a leatherette style case.
I have been promising myself that if ever I saw another I would buy it, just to say sorry. There was one on ebay some time ago, but I missed out on it. Was it this one ?
Nice to see it in such good condition too.
I bought one of these in July 1966 saving up my £1.25 wages from my Saturday job at Henrys Super Stores. It was 4 weeks wages then. Stupidly threw it away years later. Would like another one now. Listened to a couple of the radio pirates on it. Mine came with a black mock leather cardboard case.
By the middle 60’s Pye/Ekco were importing badged sets from Hong as noted from the Pye factory in HK.
I took my intermediate RTEB ( I think that name is correct, have the cert somewhere) on an Ekco PT438 transistor radio made in HK. Can’t remember what faults they put on it now.
There was a separate soldering test as well, that was a switch wafer with a number of wires and components to fit.
That was 1966.
On this day that Terry was laid to rest, 🌼 among his thousands of contributions made to this community, its perhaps fitting that we should let him speak in this thread via his Trade Tale on pocket transistors.