Pix From a Novelty Radio Nut

Animal, vegetable or mineral, someone’s probably made a radio out of it
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The photos on this page come from the “Novelty Radio Handbook,” aimed at collectors and published by Schiffer Books. In 2007 I placed a review copy of this book in a stack of other radio-related publications to tell you about, then forgot about it.

Finding it again today, I thought I’d share some of its 600 or more images. The book is by Debby Weaver, who married into a family of yard sale and flea market lurkers; her father-in-law Ray Weaver owns more than 1,000 such radios. The book sells for $29.95 at www.schifferbooks.com.

You would buy this book for one of two reasons: either because you’re a collector of such radios and the photos and prices will help you keep track of their market value; or because you just like to smile. Anyone who enjoys the world of radio will find their lips twitching upward when looking at some of the radios the Weavers have turned up.

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Left: This hand grenade radio also is a cigarette lighter. Right: Happy birthday, America! The Bicentennial AM pocket radio.

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Left: Peace! Victory! Dick! The former president stands almost a foot high. Right: When you push a button, one of the Yes/No lights goes out on the ‘Decision Maker’ radio.

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Left: This AM/FM radio is in the shape of a pool table; the ball rack controls the volume, the cue stick is the tuning dial. Right: Like something out of ‘Yellow Submarine,’ this AM roller skate was made in Hong Kong.

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Left: ‘Put a tiger in your tank.’ Enco Extra is a gas pump-style AM radio. Right: An AM radio that ‘mirrors its product very closely.’

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Left: I think I drank out of this back at St. Anne’s Elementary School! The straw on this half-pint AM/FM radio is an antenna. Right: The real thing (almost): A radio that looks like a Coke machine. 8 inches. I want one.

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