Zenith 935
Written by Bryce Ringwood   

This radio was found (along with others) in the South African equivalent of an English Attic. The cabinet was in pristine condition and the chassis was also clean and almost dust free. It certainly didn't look its 70 or more years of age. The set has a beautiful art deco cabinet and would enhance many a modern interior.


The radio uses 10 Valves and would have been a very expensive set at the time it was originally purchased. It has a radio frequency amplifier for improved sensitivity and a push-pull output stage to provide good quality sound.

Although the radio “worked” when power was brought up to the correct voltage, the power supply capacitors were drawing current and therefore had to be replaced.

The only other problem was the dial belt, which looked like a piece of flat nylon shoelace. These belts are not easy to find – so I replaced it with a piece of flat nylon shoelace. I cleaned all the switch contacts and examined the loudspeaker for signs of wear. There was none.

The set was switched on and it promptly filled the room with “Radio Japan” on the 15 metre band. The only item I couldn't get to work (and didn't try very hard) was the “shadowgraph” tuning indicator. This looks a bit like an EM84 tuning indicator, but works with a moving-coil movement. The narrower the shadow, the better the station is tuned.

Zenith had obviously taken care to construct the set nicely with neat under chassis wiring. I can only hope this set has another 70 years of care.

What strange quirk of the human condition makes spares for this 70 year old radio relatively easy to find, whereas spares for a 20 year old set are very difficult, if not impossible to find?

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