RCA Victor 5Q25-A

RCA had a very active factory in Chile, that turned out tubes, radios and related products, apparently from about 1948 or so until about 1970. This is a radio made by RCA Chile probably around 1950. It has a very stout cabinet made from thick, solid hardwood of fine quality. No veneer is used, the wood is nice enough without! The craftsmanship of the cabinet is exceptionally good, so that my guess is that it may have been made by the Martonfi furniture factory.

Someone took advantage of this radio's solid build by using it as an anvil for flattening crooked nails. Its top was deeply jarred! So I had to strip it down, make the holes expand by pouring some water on the naked wood, and then I stained and lacquered the cabinet, using my newly built compressor with an artist's airbrush.

The golden lines on top and under the dial were totally blackened by time and sulfur in the air. They were no gold, after all, but just humble brass. I polished them with a Dremel tool and lacquered them. They shine as new. The same applies to the brass inserts in the two knobs.

The grille cloth was washed, and came out nice and undamaged.

The inside of this radio looked promising. I had never seen such an amount of spiders running for their life, as I did after opening this radio's back! The immense amount of dirt proves that this radio had never been opened before! It was in totally original condition, and only needed a very minor fix to return to perfect operation! But then, it was not even a full 50 years old when I got it, so it was a "new" radio by collector's standards...

This radio marks the transition from octal tubes to miniature ones. The three small-signal tubes are miniatures: A 12BE6 converter, 12BA6 IF amp, and a 12AV6 detector, AGC and audio preamp. The audio power amp is an octal-based 50L6GT, and the rectifier is a 35Z5GT. The filaments are series connected, needing about 120V at 150mA, and a series resistor is used to drop the voltage from the 220V line.

Here is a close-up for those of you who love to see a radio untouched by any cleaning, repairing and damaging hands! Once cleaned, and the little contact problem fixed, the radio worked so well that I put it together and forgot to make any further photos. Maybe, someday I show you the clean  chassis! :-)

I have just one doubt about this radio: The plate behind the dial, instead of the accustomed dark fabric or paper, is covered by a photo of a famous singer and movie actress of that time! She lies on her belly and stretches her bare feet more or less towards the 1300kHz mark. It can barely be seen in the photo on top. Can this be original??? The photo really looks like it was originally mounted at the factory! So I left it in place. Anyone knows anything about half-naked girls hiding behind radio dials?

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