Phil's Valve Radio Site

Welcome to this website featuring a pastime hobby, based about my home built Vintage Radios. As well as walking and cycling I have been into Electronics for the past 40 years and I built my first working Radio from a Philips Electronic Kit, A popular educational Christmas toy present during my childhood days of the 1960s and early seventies. The pictures starting from the top left, in the order of 1 to 2 is a battery operated Short Wave Receiver built on Christmas day in 1977 and is still my most treasured Christmas presents. It was purchased from Tandy, which in its heyday was one of the UK leading high street stores for electronic gadgets until it ceased trading during the late 1990s. Picture 3 is a 1950s Mullard design based on there 20 watt push pull designed for high quality Hi Fi reproduction when the valve was king. The original design used the valve line up in the following order. GZ34 Rectifier. 2 EL34 Output valves. ECC83 Phase splitter and EF86 Input valve. This design of mine was built from a Kit purchased from Maplin Electronics, a popular recommended City and Internet retail electronic store, but now more into hi tech gadgets. It is basically the same circuitry with slight modifications. A solid state bridge rectifier replaces the GZ34 in the smoothing circuit. The pictures in the order of 4 and 5 feature my complete home built superhet valve radio. The circuitry was taken from some of my old electronic magazines and books. The valve line up is as follows. ECF82 is for the frequency changer and local oscillator. 2 EF80 are used for the Intermittent Frequency IF Amplifier. EBC81 is used for the diode detector and audio input stage. EL84 is used for the Output valve to drive a loudspeaker. The Radio covers the Short Wave bands between 1.6 to 30 Megahertz and the standard Medium AM broadcast band. The Short Wave bands give me many hours of pleasure, but sadly because of all BBC and national radio stations moving on to FM the Medium Wave band has limited choice. The pictures in the order of 6 to 11 feature my home built, valve portable Hi Fi or so called Hi Fi system to some. The reason I mention is because it uses the Mullard range of valve amplifiers, designed for a output power of only 2 watts, consisting of the ECL82 Triode Pentode I call the super micro chip of the 1950s because it was used for the output stage in many radios, televisions and portable Record Players of that period. The 7th picture features the back inside of this design and right of the picture is a stereo amplifier with solid state rectification and 2 ECL82 valves. The left inside of this picture is a combined FM tuner, Tone control and pre amplifier bundled with a BSR Goldring turntable for the reproduction of records. The FM tuner is also a superhet and uses pulse counting technology for the IF to save winding coils and although a Mono tuner it gives excellent Hi Fi Reproduction on Local and National radio stations. The valve line up is ECF80 frequency changer with a grounded grid RF stage. 3 EF80 are used for the IF amplifier and limiter. The FM detector is a 6AL5 Double Diode, wired as a voltage doubler or correctly known as a tachometer circuit. The Preamplifier is a simple Double triode ECC83 affair for both stereo channels. Please scrawl to the bottom of this page for information of changes taking place on this website during 2015.                 

Transistor Shortwave Receiver. My tresured possession, built from a kit, on a table in the living room during Christmas day 1977

Transistor Shortwave Reciever. This is the back view of the previous design and has given me many years of portable listening pleasure.

The Mullard 520 Hi Fi Valve amplifier of the 1950s. This is a homebuilt stereo design I built from a kit and is used for my multimedia listening.

My homebuilt 5 valve superhet radio. I drilled all this Chassis myself and copied the circuitry from some of my radio books.

5 Valve superhet radio. This is the under chassis view of this homebuilt design and it uses modern transistor RF and IF coils, capacitor coupled.

My Homebuilt portable valve Hi Fi system. This is the front view of this design. It has its own inbuilt preamplifier, VHF/FM tuner and record deck.

My Homebuilt Hi Fi System. This is the back inside view. Towards the right is the main amplifier and looking left is the FM tuner and preamplifier.

My homebuilt valve Hi Fi system. This is ovelooking the top of the entire unit during normal use.

My homebuilt Hi Fi system. This is the front of the FM tuner and preamplifier chassis. The top right view is the FM tuner head, built in a diacast box

Home Built Valve Hi Fi system. This is looking at the back of the FM tuner and preamplifier. Taken during its final constuction.

My homebuilt Hi Fi system. This is the underside cicuitry of the FM tuner and preamplifier. Typical old style of wiring, compaired to printed circuits

My homebuilt 2 Valve TRF Short Wave Receiver. This is a working version of the prototype, featured as a construction project on this website.

Transistor VHF/FM Receiver. This is my own design of a Pulse Counting Superhet Receiver. Similar to a 1960s version featured in Practical Wireless.

Please left click on selected picture to enlarge image


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Links to other sites related to this page

How To Get Components  

Important Electrical Safety Issues Related To Valve Equipment

Important Electronic Symbols Used In Valve Circuits  

Constructional Projects

  Simple 2 Valve TRF Tuned Radio Frequency Receiver

Components List and Chassis Layout For 2 Valve TRF Receiver

Introducing Superhet Receivers' Featuring Add On Converter For The Two Valve TRF Receiver

Transistor FM Superhet Receiver

 Severn Valve HF Superhet Receiver Designed For Advanced Constructors

Double Conversion Pulse Counting FM Superhet Receiver With 10.7 MHZ First IF Stage

Special FM Stereo Decoder Circuit For Pulse Counting FM Receiver

Single Conversion 6 Transistor 10.7 MHZ Pulse Counting Receiver, Designed For Stereo FM Reception

6 Valve VHF/FM Pulse Counting FM Tuner Using Safe 25Volt DC HT Line

Solid State AM/FM Pulse Counting Receiver Designed For HF Short Wave Band Reception As Well As Superb Clear VHF/FM Reception

 Progressive Crystal Set To Regenerative Receiver Using Safe 12V HT Line

Valve Version Of The 10.7 MHZ Double Conversion VHF/FM Pulse Counting Tuner

 3 Valve 3 Watt Stereo Amplifier

   Site Map Of All My Webpages And Favourite Valve Radio Related Links

Links To My External Sites

Please visit to view pictures and articles related to my tours and travels of the UK.

Please also visit to view pictures and articles related to my walks and cycle tours of The Yorkshire Dales.

Happy 10th Anniversary 

   I am pleased to say that it is now my 10th year of running this site and hope to still continue for more years to come. As I have a very busy time over this next coming month I will be hopefully be back to doing essential changes to this site around late June.