Realistic Patrolman 3A

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K7MFC

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I picked up a new (old) radio today - a Realistic Patrolman 3A:



I was browsing the RadioReference forums a while ago and came across some pictures of a similar model. After reading more about the Realistic Patrolman line of receivers, the search was on - I had to have one! After a few weeks of searching I found one on eBay that appeared to be in pretty decent cosmetic condition for $25. The radio powers up and I was able to hear the local NOAA broadcast and VHF Phoenix fire dispatch on clear as a bell! UHF reception is a little quiet and the volume and squelch knobs are a bit scratchy, so I'll be hitting those with some Deoxit and inspecting for any blown caps. The two bulbs on either side of the dial are burnt out, so I will likely replace those with a couple LEDs. Here are a couple more pictures:



 

K7MFC

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Has anyone ever changed a bulb like this before? It is wired into the board and has no markings on it:

 

pro92b

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I recently replaced two bulbs just like the one in your photo. The replacements are LED's and the device was an old stereo receiver, Advent 450S.

The PRO-3A is one of the first radios I owned, bought back in 1972. I do still have the service manual but the radio is long gone. The lamp is just connected across the power supply voltage (after the power switch) and is rated for 17V at 40mA. Use a pair of series-connected white LED's with an appropriate dropping resistor to permanently repair the lights.

At some point I'll get around to scanning the service manual. Service data for the PRO-3A is also available in part in the Sams Scanner-Monitor Servicing Data book, Volume 6 (SD-6).
 

K7MFC

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Thanks, pro92b! I was at the store today picking up some more Deoxit and also looking at some replacement LEDs. Sounds like it should be easy enough to pick up a couple of those and a couple of resistors to get this thing lit up again. A service manual for this radio would be amazing! Please do post here if you are able to get it scanned one day. Google fortunately brought up the owner's manual, which was also very helpful.
 
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pro92b

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The owner's manual does get around - I scanned it back in 2004. The service manual will be too big to attach to the forum but I'll contact you when I scan it.
 

gmclam

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Has anyone ever changed a bulb like this before? It is wired into the board and has no markings on it:

Those were the channel indicator bulbs in my PRO-10 & PRO-77 scanners (before I replaced the scanning circuitry with a CPU and digital readout). I think I have a bunch around here.
 

K7MFC

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gmclan, would you be willing to part with a couple of those bulbs for some cash? Shoot me a private message if so. LED replacements would be easy, but would be nice restore with the original style bulbs.
 

spongella

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Beautiful radio, nice big speaker, a real good find. Enjoy it.

Boy do I miss Radio Shack!
 

phask

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I have one of those... somewhere, last time it was turned on it still worked, but that was at least 5 years ago. Probably has some "noise" in the dirty controls, and paint wear.
 

captmud

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on that reciever i see the slotted antenna brackets. they used to have an tenna that had a plastic sheild that fit in the slot. it keeps the center from shorting out.
 

Violation

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NICE looking radio, Matt. Good find. These radios kinda take me back to my younger (oops) days. Three band coverage was good for the time period,also.
 

kg4pbd

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Taking me way back! I remember lusting over that radio inside Radio Shack, around 10 years old, and no means of ever getting one. Our FD was low band, local PD was VHF high, and neighboring city had just moved to UHF. That was the holy grail of receivers.
 

kg4pbd

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BTW, found it in the 1973 RS catalog. $179 then, that's equal to around $1000 today with inflation. I guess we really can't complain too much about the cost of radios.
 

K7MFC

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BTW, found it in the 1973 RS catalog. $179 then, that's equal to around $1000 today with inflation. I guess we really can't complain too much about the cost of radios.
Here's the page with the Realistic Patrolman Pro 3A from radioshackcatalogs.com - that would have been quite a major purchase 45 years ago! But can you really put a price on "real-life drama and excitement in the action bands?"

 

K7MFC

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Thank you gmclam for sending out a few replacement bulbs! They arrived yesterday, and tonight I replaced the dead bulbs in the radio. While I had it apart I hit all the pots with some Deoxit and got rid of most of the scratchiness, though I'm getting a lot of interference from the stereo and monitors right next to the antennas in the rear of the radio. No worries, it's more of a decorative piece - it will pretty much stay on the local NOAA broadcast so I can flip that on and have a listen to the forecast.

mmmmm...warm vintage radio glow

 
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NYRHKY94

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Very nice Matt! That's an oldie but goodie. Like a lot of guys here, I miss the good old days of gawking at all the scanners at Radio Shack back in the 70's. I bought my first radio there in with my paper route money (Realistic Patrolman 6). It was a new item in 72'. Had all the bands including air. I wore that dial out :)
 

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