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Help Identifying Radio

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#1
Hello,

I picked up a piece of kit at a yard sale this morning for fifteen dollars. It was clearly ancient, so I had to have it. A bit of research has shown that the logo on the tin is for the Canadian Marconi Company, and the model is identified as the "Clipper I". Also attached (hardwired, actually), is a Turner 250 mic, a standard wall plug power-in cable, and an unidentified cable with exposed positive and negative wires. It appears this cable powers the internal speaker. A component inside is labeled 1966, which seems accurate.

The closest I could find online to my radio is the KAAR DT-34, which has a slightly different case.

Plugged in, the fan starts and the light comes on. Beyond that, I don't know if it works, and obviously for legal reasons, I do not want to test it out before getting licensed.

I would like as much info on this setup as I can get, as well as any tips for getting it up and running, including sourcing an antenna. Would it be legal to operate today in its current condition? The history of the system itself, and where it was likely used is of much personal interest as well.

Best regards,

AIA
 

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vagrant

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#2
I am not sure of your location on the earth, but the radio is intended to be used on a boat/vessel, or brief ship to shore communications on a particular frequency.

You're probably okay to listen all day long using an antenna tuned for the marine band, or a wider band antenna that would cover the 152-162 marine frequency range. Here's some links to review:
- Marine VHF radio - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
- Radio Information For Boaters

If you're not near a waterway, it may be a $15 boat anchor and best to avoid spending money on an antenna and coax. Most inexpensive scanners will allow you to listen in on the marine bands if that interests you, but again if you're far from any marine activity you'll probably just hear static all day long.
 

robertmac

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#3
As the previous post noted, not a ham radio. And see marine thread for problems transmitting when not in proper area.
 
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#4
Nice vintage radio you picked up.... If you live near the Great Lakes, the frequency's 156.050 - 162.025 are still in use as the Marine frequencies. I live on Lake Erie, and I listen to the boats a lot. Hang a long wire on that radio if you want to see if it still hears, if so, get an antenna if you live near the water.
 
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#5
Thank you everyone for the for the quick and thoughtful replies. Luckily, I am currently living on the St. Mary's seaway and there is extensive shipping traffic most of the year. I have always had an interest in the local marine activities, so this for me is even more interesting than before.

How would you attach a wire to see if it works? I've attached a picture of the various sockets on the back. There is also a threaded screw and plate attachment point next to the power cable. Is this where a wire would be attached?

Thank you again
 

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mikewazowski

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#6
Slide a chunk of wire into the leftmost connector which is oddly enough labelled "Antenna". If you're close enough to the seaway, you should hear something.

Try Channel 16 if your radio has it.
 
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#7
There's at least one tube socket that is empty on the internal pic - not sure if they built things in that era with sockets left empty or not. Then again, there is such a socket on the back (beside the antenna connector).

How thoughtful of them to put a toaster in there too, but I never toast 3 slices at once - either 2 or 4 :)

In all seriousness though, the "screw terminal" beside the power cable is likely a grounding attachment. If the power cable is 3-prong, probably no need to worry about adding a ground wire.
 

vagrant

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#8
Even a metal hanger might suffice, but be careful when inserting into that far left hole with the threads on it. Just slide it, or a wire in carefully, eventually it will stop. That antenna connection accepts a PL-259 connector. It looks like this: http://static.dxengineering.com/global/images/prod/large/dxe-pl259_it.jpg?rep=False

The metal bit with the screws near the power cord look like the ground connection. Don't ground that to the ground wire on your AC outlet. It's meant for a separate ground wire you connect to a grounding rod outside, but don't worry about all that at the moment. See if you can hear anything first. Connecting a grounding wire to that radio may help with any AC noise, but first things first.

If you don't hear anything in the house, take the radio outside and connect it with a long power cord. Use a wire for an antenna, or the coat hanger. This may help reduce the noise/static that equipment from inside your home might produce and cover up any signals.

I'm not sure if your radio shows channels, or you tune via the frequency. Here's a link to a chart that has the marine frequencies, as well as the weather frequencies if your radio will tune them. As previously mentioned, tune to channel 16 - U.S. VHF Channels

* ATTENTION: Whatever you do, do not hit that button on the microphone. A wire, or metal hanger are not tuned for those frequencies the radio transmits on and you'll cook the radio pretty quick. You also do not want to interfere with radio transmissions. I believe you said the microphone was hard wired, so perhaps just leave it connected. While the radio is turned off, you could always put a piece of rubber, or something under that microphone switch to keep it from pressing down by accident when the radio is on.

Hopefully it works and you're able to enjoy it for years to come.
 
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#9
Understood about the grounding wire. When I plugged it in yesterday, there was no noise at all. Today, however, it made two cracking noises when the volume knob was clicked on, and I quickly unplugged it.

I have heard that some systems will make a "pop or crackle", as posted on another site, but I'm unsure what that would really sound like. This was (like yesterday), without an antenna of any sort. Obviously my immediate concerns are that something is shorting out somewhere or that a component has given up the ghost.

As for frequencies, there is a selectable knob on the front that has the channel selection, in this case 6, 12, 14 and 16.

Obviously I am not going to be transmitting with this setup - I am going to snip a wire or two to the push-to-talk to eliminate any chance of interfering with local traffic.
 
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