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 Post subject: Kennedy 281 regen
PostPosted: Apr Sun 22, 2012 10:01 pm 
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I have a chance to acquire a near mint condition Kennedy 281 with original Western Electric 216A tennis ball tube. However, there is no speaker or amp with the set. My questions are, how tough is it to find an amp for this set and what is a fair price for 281 with the 216A tube? Thanks in advance! I'm not looking to flip this, but add it to the collection.


Attachments:
Kennedy 281 SN 2365LW2 000.JPG
Kennedy 281 SN 2365LW2 000.JPG [ 31 KiB | Viewed 689 times ]

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73, David--WD0ERU, QCWA #35042
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 Post subject: Re: Kennedy 281 regen
PostPosted: Apr Sun 22, 2012 11:35 pm 
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The amplifiers come up for sale from time to time. Like all early sets it does take time to find the pieces you need.


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 Post subject: Re: Kennedy 281 regen
PostPosted: Apr Sun 22, 2012 11:53 pm 
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It looks like the potentiometer on that 281, that your interested in, is missing. Hopefully nothing else is missing. What is the seller asking for that Kennedy?

Here's a photo, from the gallery, showing what the complete 281 and amp looks like.

Image

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 Post subject: Re: Kennedy 281 regen
PostPosted: Apr Mon 23, 2012 12:53 am 
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Thanks for the photo Michael, I didn't realize the potentiometer was missing. Guess I should have looked a bit more closely. Seller's asking $600 or he'll be listing on eBay. From what I can tell, some of the eBay prices ended up right around there, however, there were some that were in the $300 to $400 range.

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 Post subject: Re: Kennedy 281 regen
PostPosted: Apr Mon 23, 2012 2:45 am 
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Location: Santa Clara, CA
You can certainly operate the radio without an amplifier, although of course it would be nice to have one to make the set. I have a 110 and it is plenty loud into a set of Baldwin mica-diaphragm headphones...sometimes a bit too loud! It hadn't occurred to me to try a W-E 216 tube, I just used a 200 or a 201 (changing B+ as appropriate, of course). I wonder if I have a working tennis-ball tube somewhere...

--Bob


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 Post subject: Re: Kennedy 281 regen
PostPosted: Apr Mon 23, 2012 3:50 am 
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I just wonder why the original owner hadn't installed the right pot and knob in the first place. Maybe their really hard to find, I don't know. I'm sure the inclusion of that tube is certainly a major influence in the pricing of that radio. A WE 216 isn't a cheap tube by any means but if it's weak, it's not much good other then to occupy the tube socket with a fancy tube. Has the owner tested that tube?

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 Post subject: Re: Kennedy 281 regen
PostPosted: Apr Mon 23, 2012 3:58 am 
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would also want to see what the wiring looks like. A 110 parts set is available on ebay now.


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 Post subject: Re: Kennedy 281 regen
PostPosted: Apr Mon 23, 2012 5:07 am 
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Indiana Radios wrote:
I just wonder why the original owner hadn't installed the right pot and knob in the first place. Maybe their really hard to find, I don't know. I'm sure the inclusion of that tube is certainly a major influence in the pricing of that radio. A WE 216 isn't a cheap tube by any means but if it's weak, it's not much good other then to occupy the tube socket with a fancy tube. Has the owner tested that tube?


It's hard to say why the rheostat and knob would be missing, but it could well have happened 60 years ago, when there was no perceived value to the radio. I don't know if the later St. Louis sets used molded knobs, but the earlier San Francisco ones were cut from a 1/2" sheet of hard rubber, done by drilling a bunch of holes around a circle, then cutting through them with a band saw (or maybe a hole saw), thus leaving semi-circular grooves around the periphery. They're pretty unique, I think. At least the 281 shown does not have those silver-washed dials that rust so easily. Those must be impossible to refurbish, I've certainly been scared off of trying anything with mine.

--Bob


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 Post subject: Re: Kennedy 281 regen
PostPosted: Apr Mon 23, 2012 5:40 am 
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The WECo. 216A was a SIX volt tube, not a five volt tube. Its oxide coated filament had good emission characterisitcs over a range of voltages, and so it was designed to be used WITHOUT a rheostat, simply connected directly to three cells of lead-acid storage battery.

The use of the 216 would explain the missing rheostat, I think. These sets are commonly found with a UV-200 or perhaps a UV-201 in the detector socket.

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 Post subject: Re: Kennedy 281 regen
PostPosted: Apr Mon 23, 2012 2:14 pm 
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From what the seller told me, the 216A tube was what came with this set. The tube supposedly has patent markings on it that refer to this, and at the time it was specific to this set. Does that sound possible and/or correct? If so, it may very well be the reason there is no rehostat on this set, as was said above.

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 Post subject: Re: Kennedy 281 regen
PostPosted: Apr Mon 23, 2012 2:25 pm 
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Quote:
showing what the complete 281 and amp looks like

Michael,
Your Kennedy Type 521 Amp appears to be missing cable and plug :cry:
Attachment:
Kennedy 521 Face.jpg
Kennedy 521 Face.jpg [ 248.34 KiB | Viewed 596 times ]

xeric


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 Post subject: Re: Kennedy 281 regen
PostPosted: Apr Mon 23, 2012 5:07 pm 
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Location: Pocasset, Cape Cod, MA
Quote:
Does that sound possible and/or correct?

No. The 216A was a power tube sold for Western Electric "loud speaking telephones." It appeared in June 1922 as part of the 10A outfit, consisting of the 7A amplifier and 518W horn. The 216A was licensed only for this use, on a paper band wrapped around the neck of the tube.

The 281 appeared by November 1921 and could not possibly have been sold legally with a Western Electric tube (though of course an owner could do anything he wanted, later).


Last edited by Alan Douglas on Apr Tue 24, 2012 1:21 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Kennedy 281 regen
PostPosted: Apr Mon 23, 2012 11:16 pm 
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dschulma wrote:
From what the seller told me, the 216A tube was what came with this set.


That may be the case but that doesn't necessary mean that's the way it was originally meant to be. I think that Kennedy intended to have either a 01 or a 00 tube to be used in that receiver, not a Western Electric 216 tube. How and why a 216 tube found it's way in there, I don't know but I'm convinced it was done long after the radio was purchased. It could have been done by some earlier collector who thought a WE216 tube looked a bit snazzier in that radio then a run of the mill 01 or a 00 tube. I just think the inclusion of that WE216 is artificially boosting the asking price of that radio. If the tube should test strong then I say buy the radio for the $600, If the tube tests weak or can't be tested at all, see if you can buy the radio for $400 without the tube, $500 max.

xeric wrote:
Quote:
showing what the complete 281 and amp looks like

Michael,
Your Kennedy Type 521 Amp appears to be missing cable and plug :cry:


Your right, it is missing the plug but since I don't own it, it's not my problem. That's just a photo I came across in the ARF gallerys. Speaking of missing parts, it looks like your amplifier is missing it's cabinet. :cry:

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 Post subject: Re: Kennedy 281 regen
PostPosted: Apr Tue 24, 2012 2:07 am 
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Quote:
Speaking of missing parts, it looks like your amplifier is missing it's cabinet.

Michael,
Please take no offense.......
Attachment:
Kennedy 281 & 521 .jpg
Kennedy 281 & 521 .jpg [ 213.75 KiB | Viewed 543 times ]

Just thought "dschulma" would want an accurate photo of the Kennedy 521 amp :roll:
xeric :mrgreen:


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 Post subject: Re: Kennedy 281 regen
PostPosted: Apr Tue 24, 2012 2:25 am 
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No offense taken. Accuracy is what we strive for. I always figured you had the cabinet.

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 Post subject: Re: Kennedy 281 regen
PostPosted: Apr Tue 24, 2012 2:35 am 
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Cool 8)
xeric


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 Post subject: Re: Kennedy 281 regen
PostPosted: Apr Tue 24, 2012 2:44 am 
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Thanks guys for the info and pictures. One question...what is the small round screen on the front upper right for?

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 Post subject: Re: Kennedy 281 regen
PostPosted: Apr Tue 24, 2012 3:01 am 
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The screen allows visual display of the intensity of the light from the tube filament to be seen as one rotates/adjusts filament rheostat, is my guess.
xeric


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 Post subject: Re: Kennedy 281 regen
PostPosted: Apr Tue 24, 2012 5:44 am 
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Yes, it's for seeing the glow of the filament...and put a 1-amp tube in there (like a 200) and you will think you have a small fire in there! I got scared at the bright glow, and turned the voltage down to about 4. No wonder the Brits called these tubes "bright emitters"!

--Bob


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 Post subject: Re: Kennedy 281 regen
PostPosted: Apr Tue 24, 2012 1:01 pm 
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Figure $300.00 for the radio itself. Finding the correct knob and finding a good original Kennedy 5 ohm rheostat without rusted wire could prove quite challenging.

If the rheostat was removed, there may be other internal modifications.
See if you can get a behind the panel shot and post those pictures.

There is a complete 281 on the Bay now. The dial scales are not as nice, but should be a good marker as far as value..


Last edited by grid-leak on Apr Sat 28, 2012 11:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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