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Old 01-06-2009, 6:11 PM
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Default Anyone fimiliar with this plectron reciver?

I Recived this reciver from my friends father that is the chief of fire in a nearby fire dpt.
The model is R519, Made in 1975. works like a charm. Here are some pictures.








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Old 01-07-2009, 6:37 AM
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Ahhh yes, this brings back memories. I believe this is the same model I had back in the days when I was a volunteer firefighter/EMT from 1976 to 1986. What do you want to know about it? It's set to alert on the receive frequency is 46.36. It is a dual tone receiver set to alert on the 2 dual tones listed in the pic.
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Old 01-07-2009, 7:40 AM
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Thumbs up Mine still sounds great!

I still have one just like it running 24/7/365 in my garage. It doesn't have my company's tone set in it so I just leave it set to monitor the county's fire dispatch channel. The volume pot on mine died a while ago but it has excellent LOUD volume (full time now) perfect for my noisey garage.
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Old 01-20-2009, 8:50 AM
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They were the Cadillac of their day. Our Dept had Instalerts, a not very close second. Dual conversion receiver, with LC tone circuits for decoding a non-standard tone sequence. Most tone encoders used 1 sec A tone 3 sec B tone. Plectron used 3 sec A 100ms B. Mainly to keep Motorola at bay, which Dutchess County still uses to this day, making for a limited number of Motorola products that decode their format. The unit is basically bulletproof, the biggest problems I can remember are the internal battery would leak,(an early pocket pager??) the volume controls would get flaky and their even was a recall on the power plug for some reason I can't remember. I still have a few, one on my Dept's tone and a 1/2 dozen or so another Dept gave me for parts.
Plectron made about a dozen different models including some tube models, some cutting edge receivers for the day, that I used as siren controls, they also tried making a pager, but it wasn't very good and had trouble competing with the Motorola Minitor I and the change to portablity. Unfortunatly they went under around 1983. BTW it appears that unit is/was from Chelsea FD.

Last edited by radioman2001; 01-20-2009 at 10:05 AM.. Reason: Additional info
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Old 03-01-2016, 4:20 PM
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Of course! We used them in the late 70's until around the mid to late 80's.
I was issued a Minitor II in 1987. Most monitors of this era were configured to decode
on Motorola Quik Call (Emergency Squad 51 tones). Open it up and determine if the decoder
has either 2 or 4 tone filters. If it has two filters you might be able to get away with replacing them with the pair of Quik Call II tones used by your local fire dept.

If it requires for tone filters it can be modified to decode with Quik Call II by adding a few custom jumpers on the decoder board.

Here is the link to a video of my modified Model 500 converted for Quik Call II.
Cap Code B202 / 1202 (Zetron).

https://youtu.be/tXphPptLw3s
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Old 03-01-2016, 4:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hoseman292 View Post
Open it up and determine if the decoder
has either 2 or 4 tone filters. If it has two filters you might be able to get away with replacing them with the pair of Quik Call II tones used by your local fire dept. [/url]
Those are Plectron tones so it's highly unlikely that there would be any 2+2 filter pairs in it.

The big problem is finding out if it's fast or slow plectron duotone. Fast is .75/.25 while slow is 3.0/.25. A slow duotone decoder "might" work with current QC-II tone timing (3/1) but it's a crap shoot. Without testing the unit, there's no way to tell from the outside which system it uses.

The other problem is finding QC-II filters. G&G might have them, but Wallace is out of business so the chances of locating filters are not as good as they were just a few years ago.

They were great radios for the time, but the battery packs were unreliable after the first couple of years of use.

Funny story about Plectrons, and this model in particular. I belonged to East Rochester VAC from 1972 to 1985. While managing their radio system and inventory, we ended up offering some 30 Plectron R519's for sale when we upgraded to Minitor I's. A little rural squad called West Bloomfield VAC ended buying the whole lot including several old GE single tone encoders. A few years later, I built a house in West Bloomfield and belonged to that for squad for nearly 7 years. During that time, I once again oversaw the upgrade to pagers (Minitor II's this time) and sold the same Plectrons again. It's a really small world.
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Old 03-01-2016, 5:08 PM
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I think Wallace Radio is still working on Plectrons, at least was 6 months ago. Wallace Communications is long gone, but Bob Wallace was dong Plectrons out of his home. Check the web for Wallace radio in Sadrina, Ohio
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Old 03-01-2016, 6:23 PM
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Used one of these for 10 years on the VFD. This was before pagers, we relied on these radios or the roof siren. They were great receivers with great audio (they could wake the heaviest sleeper), and great reception on low band with a small wire antenna. Used one to activate the siren at the station too.
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Old 03-01-2016, 6:29 PM
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Default Plectron receiver

G&g communications , leroy ,ny still repair these , i have my plectron p-1 model uhf band there getting retuned
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Old 03-01-2016, 7:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BITT211 View Post
G&g communications , leroy ,ny still repair these , i have my plectron p-1 model uhf band there getting retuned
How far up or down can these be retuned?


I have the exact receiver as the OP. Mine was an Ebay find and has a 1970 ship date. It's tuned to 37.100 with a tag on the front which states "Bergen County (NJ) Police". I would like to use it on one of the 46mhz FD freqs or maybe even Verona NJ on 33.780.
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Old 03-02-2016, 1:46 AM
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Our department was on 33.940 MHz. There is a bunch of these on ebay. They made scanners too.
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Last edited by W8RMH; 03-02-2016 at 1:56 AM..
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Old 03-02-2016, 2:09 AM
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I don't remember Plectron scanners. Their pagers were larger than many two-way radios are today.

As for the tuning range, a 46.36 MHz unit will likely do 42-50 MHz.
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Old 03-21-2016, 7:51 PM
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I was a volunteer firefighter from 1986 to 2006 and I still have my R-519 Plectron. Still in excellent cosmetic condition and it works perfectly. We got Minitor II pagers in 1989 or 1990 but I still used the Plectron to alert me when I was at home. As a previous poster wrote they had great audio. I'm a deep sleeper and I never missed a call using the Plectron.

I've been an emergency services dispatcher since 1992 and I still use the word 'Plectron' when I do the nightly FD/EMS pager tests. There was a Plectron tone encoder in the desk when I started dispatching and when I did the nightly test I would say 'This is your nightly Plectron test, your time now is 1930 hrs.' We got rid of the Plectron tone encoder years ago but the script is so embedded in my routine that it's just what I do. I still get complaints from the fire chiefs from neighboring towns. They want my department to discipline me for using outdated, and in their minds, improper, terminology on the air. Really?????

Plectron will live on forever
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Old 03-22-2016, 12:22 AM
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Get with the program my friend. Don't make trouble for yourself. Former LE here and I am all too familiar with the back stabbers and smack talkers in the public safety arena.
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Old 03-22-2016, 2:44 AM
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I remember when they called them Plectron Tests. I also agree with fast1eddie having worked in LE and Fire/EMS, you have to play politics if your want to keep your job.
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Old 04-28-2016, 4:59 PM
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I remember our hallway roaming HS assistant principal had a huge tube style ancient blueish grey Motorola alert monitor on his file cabinet which went off now & then, when he wasn't in his office one of the front office clerks would come in & click some kind of lever which would cut out all the communications which didn't sit too well with me since I was so hooked on listening to the tones I would start trouble just to get summoned to his office where with one ear I'd get the weekly lecture while the other ear would listen to those really cool tones, I actually did manage to graduate but thanks to him I still monitor all the best the sandbar fire dispatchers have to offer. They are good men.



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Old 03-05-2017, 10:39 PM
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Wallace Radio is definitely in business. He just repaired my P1 and it works great! 45 years old and still going strong. The Plectron will live for ever !
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Old 03-12-2017, 11:18 PM
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These receivers were of excellent quality and workmanship. The interior of these units were like a piece of art. Given their era, I assume they all were probably hand-wired. I can't imagine what they would cost today if they were made to the same standard and still available.

John
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