I wish I knew the answer to that question. Even during the CB boom, Sears, at least down here didn't even try to market their radios in their stores. During the early to mid 70's, you never seen a CB in any Sears, just catalog sales. It wasn't until well into the boom, they started to carry a few AM only sets in the auto supply/repair centers that were often seperate from the store and most customers didn't go there. They were actually quite rare around here as I remember and I seen relatively very few of them. That's why it surprises me how many are up for auction at any given time and the prices. JCP had a bigger presence here the Sears with only 3 stores verses huge Pennys in 3 malls and serveral, old, mini department stores/catalog centers in strip shopping centers. Some actually as large as a small Sears. They all had hifi/appliance departments, but no CB's. I'd probably put the amount of JCP 23 channel pintos about the same as sears in area use that I know of that all came from catalog sales or brought from elsewhere. Sears never advertised their CB's, nor did Pennys in any of the magazines. Maybe they had different store sales policies in other areas. The Penny's mall stores used to have huge tv/stereo sections compared to sears who seemed more invested in appliances at the stores. To give you an idea of Sear's seeming indifference, during a time where everybody was trying to sell CB's during the boom, the two major grocery chains were selling Kraco's at their customer service as well as places like Zayre and K-mart selling Kraco and K-mart selling their own K brand during the same period. It was like Sears could care less in these parts.
I started to write a piece on the internals of the Hitachis, but didn't post after I seen the next posting. I'll post if interested. I worked on CB's and did repairs on RS stereo receivers and tape recorders from about '72-'early '76 and rarely after that except for some amateur conversions and favors. That's where I became accustomed to the later 40 channel sears units that many of the hams were crazy over as sideband rigs as the major favorite due to the binary design of the PLL over the BCD of the '858 and the superior construction and performance of the Hitachi units. I knew the 23 channel and later 40 channel slope faced unit as well as the "cassette tape recorder base" SSB unit....that unit was awesome inside....and that's coming from a land mobile and marine tech. Hitachi's in general were a different breed of CB build with a totally different approach as if a premium stereo OEM decided to get into the CB business and use the same metalworking and construction techniques unlike Cybrenet,Uniden,or GRE.