General Electric (GE) 1939

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1939 GE HM 171 Tabletop TV

Small pre-war tabletop top TV (about the size of an RCA 621).

This TV "picture receiver" has a three-channel pushbutton tuner.

Condition: I am indebted to the previous caretaker of this set who spent 200 hours replacing non-original chassis components with "restuffed" original components, replacing non-original tubes with period GE tubes, flattening the badly warped original back panel, and so on. The cabinet has its original shiny finish (with some scratches here and there).

Below is a photo of the chassis after it was cleaned and restored by the previous owner/collector.

Audio Reception: This TV connects to a radio (such as the GE H-73, H-634, H-638, or H-640) for audio reception.

I have the GE H-634 radio (shown below).

I also have a 1939 GE tabletop radio-phonograph H-639 (shown below).

Knobs: The distinctive Saturn-like tuning knobs are made of Tenite -- a type of plastic that melts and may burn (as opposed to Bakelite -- a type of plastic that does not melt but may burn). The design seems to stay with the "1939 - World of Tomorrow" theme.

Audio Modification: Some of these TV picture receivers (like this one in my collection) had been modified to receive audio by installing a speaker in the rear of the cabinet and adding one or two tuning controls for volume and tone on the front of the cabinet.


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