Where Can I Find Old Vacuum Tubes and Old Radio Parts Suppliers?
History of Crystal Radios

A crystal radio receiver, also called a crystal set, is a very simple radio receiver, popular in the early days of radio. It needs no battery or power source and runs on the power received from radio waves by a long wire antenna. It gets its name from its most important component, known as a crystal detector, originally made with a piece of crystalline mineral such as galena. This component is now called a diode.

Crystal radios are the simplest type of radio receiver, and can be handmade with a few inexpensive parts, like an antenna wire, tuning coil  of copper wire, crystal detector and earphones.  They are technically distinct in many respects from ordinary radios because they are passive receivers, while other radios use a separate source of electric power such as a battery or the mains power to amplify (magnify) the weak radio signal from the antenna so it is louder. Thus crystal sets produce rather weak sound and must be listened to with earphones, and can only pick up stations within a limited range.  Developed in experiments with crystals from about 1895 to 1906 by pioneer radio researchers Karl Ferdinand Braun, Jagadish Chandra Bose and others, crystal radios were the first widely used type of radio receiver, and the main type used during the wireless telegraphy era. At the end of that era, around 1920, they were superseded by the first amplifying receivers, which used vacuum tubes (Audions), and became obsolete for commercial use. However they continued to be built by hobbyists and youth groups such as the Boy Scouts as a way of learning about the technology of radio. Today they are still sold as educational devices, and there are groups of enthusiasts devoted to their construction who hold competitions comparing the performance of their home-built designs.

Ham radio, crystal radio, antique vacuum tube, old radio parts and suppliers ...

Amidon Associates
PO Box 25867
Santa Ana, CA 92799
(714) 850-4660

Ferrite rods.

Antique Electronic Supply
6221 S. Maple Ave.
Tempe, AZ 85283
fax (800) 706-6789
phone (602) 820-5411

A.E.S. specializes in vacuum tubes, and they have a huge assortment.

Antique Radio Classified
P.O. Box 2
Carlisle, MA 01741
(508) 371-0512

Monthly magazine for antique radio collectors. Call or write for free copy.

Circuit Specialists, Inc.
220 S Country Club Dr. #2
Mesa, AZ 85210

Phone: (800) 528-1417 +1-480-464-2485
Fax: +1-480-464-5824
Telephone Hours: 8AM - 5PM MST Arizona Time Monday-Friday

Trimmer capacitors, diodes

Electronics Handbook
P.O. Box #5148
North Branch, NJ 08876

Magazine with electronics hobby/theory projects

Lindsay Publications
P.O. Box 538
Bradley, IL 60915-0538
(815) 935-5353

Catalog of reprints and unusual technical books -- interesting catalog of reprinted out-of-print titles.

Dr. B.A. Turke
P.O. Box 2288
Hollywood, FL 33022
(954) 925-3670

Sold a variety of crystal set parts -- Due to illness, no Longer in Business since 2000.

Monitoring Times
Grove Enterprises
P.O. Box 98
Brasstown, NC 28902
(800) 438-8155 

Magazine for shortwave radio and scanning enthusiasts -- If you are interested in scanning and shortwave, this is the magazine.

Mouser Electronics

An extensive collection of basic electronics parts and supplies.
Crystal earphones, diodes, 1N34 germanium diode, terminal strips, capacitors, switches, wire, fahnestock clips, and much more.

Radio Shack

A wide selection of diodes, wire, capacitors, etc.

Bequaert Old Books
formerly Rainy Day Books
P.O. Box 775
Fitzwilliam, NH 03447-0775

A book store specializing in technical books and reprinted articles of a radio nature.