and tried to turn them. The first one I tried, the whole coil
moved in the case and a lead broke off. I pulled a
transformer from my parts chassis and again heated the
rest of the IFs to melt any remaining wax.
After easing out all three slugs, I lubricated them with
lithium grease and screwed them back in. I then did an
alignment at the factory specified “262KC” using a 400
Hz modulation and measuring level at
the speaker. Sensitivity came up and a
couple more stations came in. At this
point, I re-assembled the radio.
Battery Not Included
I think Regency originally chose
the NEDA #215 (Eveready #412)
battery because it was a good fit and
readily available. The flat 22-1/2 volt
battery was commonly used in photo
flash units and had a pretty good
current rating as well (140 mAh).
The battery became rare over the
years and was discontinued by the
major manufacturers in the late 1990s.
A couple of companies are now
producing a drop-in alkaline equal, but
they don’t look like the originals.
I decided I wanted to keep the
original look, so I found an Eveready
#412 at an auction site. When I
checked it, it showed 22-1/2 volts
(Figure 9)! No, it didn’t. It showed
zero volts as expected. What made it
work, however, was my stuffing seven lithium CR1632
cells inside the case (Figure 10).
I slipped some heat shrink around them to prevent
shorts and added a spring to make up the distance to the
end terminal. Coincidentally, the CR1632s produce the
same 140 mAh as the original #412 — so I was truly
simulating how the radio worked when new. Figure 11
shows the battery in place in the
The Restored Radio
Since the Regency TR-1 was the
first, there’s really no comparison to
be made with other pocket radios. It
sounds better than I expected and
richer than some of the later radios.
Later ‘50s American-made
transistor radios were larger ‘beach’
versions sold by Sears and others,
while the Japanese radios — especially
those made by Sony — continued to
Sony’s ‘keychain’ ICR-120 (1968)
was the first radio with an IC and had
a tiny 1” speaker, but it was Regency
that really started the miniaturization
trend by producing the world first
“pocket” size transistor radio. NV
May 2017 45
FIGURE 10. Seven 3V lithium cells fit snuggly in the case.
FIGURE 11. The restored radio with battery
FIGURE 9. How could this battery measure good?