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 Post subject: How to build this Philmore Crystal Kit?
PostPosted: Nov Wed 15, 2017 11:50 pm 
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Location: Lafayette ,IN
Im needing some assistance in how to turn this into a working set, its a philmore no.101 kit, seems to be missing some parts to make ot work like a place to attatch headphones and antenna, could someone guide me in the right direction as to what I need and where to connect, thanks.


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 Post subject: Re: How to build this Philmore Crystal Kit?
PostPosted: Nov Thu 16, 2017 12:21 am 
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This kit is not a crystal radio kit, it is a holder for a galena crystal and the wire probe which together make a detector. This could be used with any early crystal radio. To make a radio you would need a tuning capacitor and the air core inductor. The kit looks like it does not come with the galena crystal.

This link shows a galena crystal in a holder.
https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/ ... 283%29.jpg

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Last edited by Eddy on Nov Thu 16, 2017 12:29 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: How to build this Philmore Crystal Kit?
PostPosted: Nov Thu 16, 2017 12:28 am 
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Location: S. Dartmouth MA 02748-1225 USA
Take a look here:

https://steampunk.wonderhowto.com/how-t ... k-0141117/

or

http://makearadio.com/crystal/index.php

Have a junque box with a 20's TRF or Neutrodyne radio? Any of the coil/tuning capacitor combinations will suffice as well as other terminal bits of Bakelite.

Chas


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 Post subject: Re: How to build this Philmore Crystal Kit?
PostPosted: Nov Thu 16, 2017 1:12 am 
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This is not a crystal?

I thought the crystal/catswhisker acted as the tuning capacitor. Instructions for more complete sets dont show anything more than this with a base and connections.

Hmmm, I will have to look, I know I used to have the parts you are talking about.


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Last edited by mdulleck on Nov Thu 16, 2017 1:22 am, edited 1 time in total.
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 Post subject: Re: How to build this Philmore Crystal Kit?
PostPosted: Nov Thu 16, 2017 1:21 am 
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Yes, the first image is the crystal, not a tuning capacitor.

The diagrammatic shows a crystal detector with connections to headphones, ground and an aeriel or antenna.

That is an un-tuned crystal radio. If your only a couple of miles from a station it will work just fine... However it will also receive any other strong station irregardless of frequency.


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 Post subject: Re: How to build this Philmore Crystal Kit?
PostPosted: Nov Thu 16, 2017 1:26 am 
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Yes , thats absolutely what I am looking to accomplish. This is for a school project, I dont have a 100ft antenna, or a metal pipe ground, just theoretically how do I make my unmounted detector turn into that mounted detector shown above, I dont know where you would run the antenna connector to, or the ground, or the headphones.


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 Post subject: Re: How to build this Philmore Crystal Kit?
PostPosted: Nov Thu 16, 2017 2:13 am 
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Use a block of wood or plastic for a base. The screws and nuts are for mounting the galena crystal clip to the base and the ball bracket to the base. Put short "jumper" wires from the screws that mounts the ball base and the crystal clip and lead them each to Fhanstock or other wire connector devices that are mounted on the same block of wood or plastic as the Philmore parts. Those connectors will be where the antenna and headphone connections will go. You will need good headphone of 1000 ohms impedance or better. You can find them online or ARF classifieds. The best are Nathaniel Baldwin. The most sensitive are brands that are sound powered but pricey...

The radio depends on the energy of the radio station. If at least 25 ft of antenna and a direct earth ground is NOT available the radio will not work. The longer the antenna the better to 125 feet. Do not use te home electrical ground, it has too much noise on it...

Do not touch the face of the crystal, clean it with a cotton swab with rubbing alcohol.

The crsytal has been exposed to atmosphere for a looong time. Even though Galena is an oxide, the surface will degrade and not detect. If you have a friend who is a "rockhound" or know of a mineral dealer either a "new" piece of Galena or Iron pyrites ma work. Not all Galena or Pyrites are sensitive. Mineral specimens are priced by size and appearance, so an ugly, cheap little lump may work sweet as a detector. BTW Iron Pyrite is almost always "hotter" louder than Galena, but is more "broad"...


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 Post subject: Re: How to build this Philmore Crystal Kit?
PostPosted: Nov Thu 16, 2017 12:52 pm 
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Chas, thank you for the detailed explanation, that helps a lot.


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 Post subject: Re: How to build this Philmore Crystal Kit?
PostPosted: Nov Thu 16, 2017 10:20 pm 
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This is the crystal radio I built many years ago from scratch using a complete Philmore detector.

It's gone through many changes and improvements over the years and works well with a 60 ft random wire antenna in the back yard and a good ground.

The coil is almost 2 inches diameter (hand wound on cardboard tubing), the variable capacitor is from some old tube radio, the whole thing is probably overkill but I was happy with it's performance.

Hopefully this will give you some ideas on constructing one.


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 Post subject: Re: How to build this Philmore Crystal Kit?
PostPosted: Nov Fri 17, 2017 12:50 am 
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Thanks Rocco, the only tuning capacitor I can find goes from 70-280 nF on my meter, Is there an easy way to tell what type of coil I would need to build for this, from one of the links given above the instructions say to use a 245 pF tuning cap for 100 turns #22 wire.

Marc


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 Post subject: Re: How to build this Philmore Crystal Kit?
PostPosted: Nov Fri 17, 2017 1:50 am 
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you can experiment with different combinations, I have tried coils on a 1 inch diameter PVC pipe as shown below, it has more than 150 turns of #22 wire so 100 turns with a 280pf cap should work well. You can always tap your coil at less turns until you find the sweet spot.

Here's a tip: You should build the complete circuit using a germanium diode such as an 1N34 or any other small glass diode will do. After you get the circuit receiving some stations, then you can swap in the Philmore detector for the 1N34 diode. Then the fun starts.


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 Post subject: Re: How to build this Philmore Crystal Kit?
PostPosted: Nov Fri 17, 2017 10:02 am 
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Back about 1954, I had a very simple receiver consisting of a potted Galena crystal, a cat's whisker (both mounted on a Phenolic board), and a single headphone. The antenna wasn't all that long, and I don't think I had a ground wire, but it could pick up two stations, although they would sometimes interfere with each other, as there was no tuning mechanism.

Here's a scan of my Philmore Little Wonder. Note that it only uses a coil for tuning, no variable cap. As such, station separation isn't too valid.


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 Post subject: Re: How to build this Philmore Crystal Kit?
PostPosted: Nov Fri 17, 2017 3:26 pm 
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Thanks for sharing fifties. So Im wondering how or if you even could tune to one or the other station with the set you mentioned, is ot just a matter of the largest signal get through, or does moving the catswhisker to different parts of the crystal somehow tune to different frequencies.


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 Post subject: Re: How to build this Philmore Crystal Kit?
PostPosted: Nov Fri 17, 2017 7:59 pm 
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All of what you posted... :wink: It's operation simply depends on it's location, relative to AM transmitters.

Naturally, the higher and longer the antenna, and better the ground, the more signal strength will get through.

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