Links and other Resources
(3 SEP 00)

Projects and info

*The Xtal Set Society - a must-visit site,  a few links.  Two projects on line.  If you haven't built a crystal set before, the Oatbox Radio is about as reliable as they come, and never fails to bring a smile the face of anyone who hooks it up to an antenna and ground for the first time.  Sponsors a discussion group (see below)
 *Classroom Projects - Crystal Detector Sets  good tutorial on detectors and a very nice building project
 Loop Xtal Set
 Crystal Radio with Loop Antenna
*Chapter 4: Radio  nice detailed pictures on their progressive project
Simple Crystal Set
*The G3XRT Crystal Set   has a basket coil (which is reputed to reduce coil self capacitance).  Also shows a rock stand for the intrepid.  Until you get the hang of it, winding a basket coil is like trying to walk and chew gum at the same time; still, it's not as hard as it seems, and the coil works very well, particularly when you feed it with an antenna loading coil instead of a direct antenna tap.
*Al Klase  -  has an outstanding  page here.  I printed it out immediately.  Includes a short course in Crystal Radio 102,  some neat info on headphone and earplug sensitivity, and rockstands he's made.  Recently updated to add pix and drawing of his very nice xtal set.
*GOLLUM Detector Page - some interesting circuits, including how to bias a detector .  Updates page occasionally, and now has a couple of FM crystal sets  and a nice looking double tuned selective set. Also sells a kit, but it appears way overpriced.
 Bizarre: Crystal radio
 Bizarre Foxhole radios my first and only razor blade detector worked once for about 5 seconds; of course I was 11 at the time.  Guess I'll have to try it again, this time with a bias battery.  Very nice coverage of Foxhole radios here.
*Gnome  has a couple of interesting sets to build , and has done some investigative stuff with alternative detectors (rocks).  Has a double-tuned rig for selectivity, using mutual inductance coupling ( you should really look at this one).
 Building a Crystal Radio-Construction
 World War II Foxhole Radio
 Build Your Own Crystal Shortwave Receiver  looks like it is more trouble than it's worth for a single tuned circuit, particularly with all the bandspread switching.  Too much work and switching for a low performance design. Needs an antenna tuner added.
Crystal Radios a very detailed set of instructions for a classic "slider"
*Vintage Early Radio     - some very interesting stuff about variometers (variable inductors) , as well as a tutorial on regenerative and reflex receivers
 Crystal Radio Circuits by Wenzel Associates, with some new stuff on diodes added
 Electronic Circuits has too-simple  xtal set plus one with an op amp booster
Common AM Receivers - Crystal Set Australian college electronics course page.  What the heck, go to the index and take the whole radio course: AM Radio Receiver Project Home Page
*WHAMLOG  has many of the above links and links to a lot of antenna building sites, and then some.  Bookmark this site.  Werner Funkenhauser keeps this one full of good sites.
Low Tech - has a couple of sets, but no specs or details yet.  Watch this site.
Medium wave wave trap  sometimes you gotta have one - got this from Whamlog
Ed Ganger's coil winding formulas for single and multilayer and spiderweb coils.
High-Power Crystal Radio a Popular Electronics reprint circa 1960 - claims speaker performance (but don't try it that way unless you have a really strong local)
Building Crystal Sets a variometer project, and more coming soon, so they say.
Another loop crystal set
Headphones    how to fix 'em.
DIY: Crystal Set Radio on close inspection, the 10 turn primary really should not be connected to the 35 turn secondary; only to the antenna and ground.  Gives you some loose coupling and better selectivity (also might try connecting the detector to about the 10th turn on the secondary instead of at the top while you're at it...).  The web author of this design said his was correct per the original ( but we know better, don't we).
my homebrew crystal radio- and SW receiver  a breezy, informative site with 3 xtal set plans-one is an HF rig (shortwave for you newbies)
Gerard's Jampot Ontvanger crystal radio in a jar from .nl land
Crystal Radio  plans and instructions for a simple slider from a Junior High.
CRYSTALª@RADIO  site in Japan; nice set, but most writing in Japanese.  Look at the rest of the site too.
*xtalradioplansHarbich's crystal radio plans library.  Get 'em while you can.  Includes construction plans for the Miller tuner.
Crystal Radio Sets on the Net or how to build one similar to the old Radio shack crystal set - nice directions.  An extra winding for antenna loading would help selectivity in my location.
Australian Vintage Radio! See if you can make one of the valveless headphone amplifiers.  Also has a simple little one-tuber.  (gotta make one soon)
*A crystal radio set for Dad's Mum's and beginners A nice site; worth visiting
 Zip cord radio antenna don't try this at home, kids.
 Germanium diode selection  a nice, objective comparison of diodes "over there"
*Ben Tongue's Web Pages - thoughts on xtal set design and headphone testing.  Very nice info on high level detection and improved impedance matching, diode selection, etc.  A bit technical for many, but has some good directions for getting a high impedance match to the tank circuit.
Producing wound components detailed discussion of coil construction
Very nice looking XTAL SET
Capacitor Codes how to read them
J.W. Miller Hi-Fi Crystal Tuner - the plans and building instructions
Inductors. - some dope about coils and such
Germanium Radio how to make a novelty radio out of those free Compuserve CDs
Marconi magnetic detector try to make one of these and get it working.
Here are two homebrew sets from the 20's. Home Built, 1 Crystal Set or  Home Built, 2 Crystal Set
XTALSETS.COM  Paul Shafer's new site.  Don't let the .com fool you, he's not selling anything...yet, but really wanted to snag the url.  Has a couple of pocket radio projects for you city dwellers.
The Boy's Book of Crystal Sets - The book is out of print, but here are a couple of schematics from it.
*Crystalset.htm  - a novel tuning capacitor in this one from SatCure .  Includes an optional one- transistor amp.  Also look at his index page; lots of neat stuff.  Has some hard to find parts as well.
Rocket radio  instructions for making your own. (found it again).
The Circuit Archive - a new site with a couple of more advanced xtal circuits from the UK wireless presses.  Noodle around on this site and find some more goodies.
Online Radio & Electronics Course you'll like this one from down under.
Electrical Engineering Training Series.  Courtesy of the US Navy Training command.  Worth reading.
*Crystal Set Competition from Queensland Australia - beautiful rigs, and plans for the prize winning Mystery Crystal Set (the rage in 1932).
Beagle Baly see pix and schematics for the Heathkit CR-1 and the Knight Xtal set, and more.
Delaware Agricultural Museum and Village: Crystal Radio Activity Sheet .  A simple xtal slider demonstrator.
The Unusual Diode FAQ
Old-Time "Interflex" Radio Receiver Hugo Gernsback made my convertible with a germanium transistor and a tube.  Like me, it took him three iterations to get the selectivity down.
HOMEBREW QRP IS GUD 4 U strip the receiver down to a shortwave passband xtal set, or just build it as shown and copy CW and SSB.
ARRLWeb: Science Fair/Merit Badge Projects has a QST crystal radio project you can download in PDF
Crosly Crystal Set and a couple of other old designs.
136khz.htm Read the part about antennas - the long wave guys have to deal with too- short antennas also, to the extreme.
The S G Brown Microphone Amplifier try this one out - good luck.  Back up Brian's url to find more goodies, such as why it takes two and a half cartons of cigarettes to build a crystal set.
HOW TO BUILD A SIMPLE WIRELESS TELEGRAPH SET two xtal sets and two doorbell buzzers and you're on the air- from across the room.
Freddy's homepage - homebrew xtal radio 3 spiderweb coils, some string, and ...Fred assures me that details will be posted soon.
FM only: Low Tech FM Radios for those of you who asked

YAHOO! PHOTO ALBUMS (more than just pictures)

 Xtal Set Photos by Dr. Whiz
 Charlie's SW Xtal Set
 Loose Coupler's pix
 Mike Lee's gallery


The Moorabbin receiver a nice two transistor receiver.
One Tube Regenerative Radio Project a radio for a buck?
NorCal Regen Building Contest at HamCom 99 ham regens with links to others
Diotran Radio - a simple regenny
Regenerative Receivers -Aussie college page with simple schematic and explanation of how they work.  Part of the "course" above.
Harry's Homebrew Homepage   another couple of regens and other interesting stuff
Regenerative TRF Receiver
W2UW's 1-FET transmitter/receiver

Operating aids

AM Radio Database Query Program (FCC) USA helps answer the questions about why you can't hear them, or can't avoid them- lists frequency coordinated n. and s. american stations- and then go to the next link to:
    Find Distance Between 2 Sets of Coordinates (FCC)
How far is it? another distance program with some coordinates of selected cities
CANADIAN AM RADIO DIRECTORY some real dx listed in here- 50 watt stations.
Combined BCB Freq List!  Good lookup for those stations you never heard of.  Includes stations below the MW band.
FCC AM Database Search not the official site, but works nicely, even when the agency budget is still in committee.
BROADCAST BAND DX LOG BOOK   nice layout which shows program formats for many stations; useful for those that only ID once an hour.
Lightning Explorer Free Page gives you a map of the US showing lightning strikes within the last two hours or so - find out where that static is coming from.
Herman's dx homepage download a European/N. Africa/middle east guide to mw stations in zipped PDF format

 Parts, sets, and kits
No recommendations on any of these except as noted. If you notice a link missing, be sure there is a reason.  If you have a link to add, tell me and I'll look at it; if you think someone doesn't belong on this "mantle", tell me about it

*Scott's Crystal Radios   Great classic headphones and homebrew rigs and repros and other stuff to use them with.  You can ask if you are looking for something special.  Visit his headphone heaven and get some serious headphones.
*Larry's Genuine "Rockstand" Detector  Handcrafted with cheap American labor; his (he subsidizes these by keeping a day job).  If you get one any place else, you're probably paying too much for too little. Larry used one of these in the dx contest to clean out the state of California, western Canada and half the Baja peninsula.  Includes an assortment of rocks with it.(I got mine)
*The Xtal Set Societyserious kits (at good prices) and some parts, including 2000 ohm headsets (ok for local stations only) and new 365 pF air variables (very nice ones - smooth and actually 20 - 400 pF).  Also carry some vintage headphones from time to time.  Just added a one-tube regenny kit, designed by Mike Peebles.
*Mouser     - get the catalog sent to you; hard to use the online PDF version- best buy for enameled wire - lots of parts and service good - get your crystal earphones here too.  Detailed specs for many parts available on line.
*Dan's Small Parts and Kits - Online catalog, something new all the time; has lots of neat  buys in quantity.  Stock changes, so keep checking back. Good prices and service.
*Playthings Of Past has some nice old stuff, and the prices are very good.  Give Gary a try; you won't be disappointed.
*Antique Electronic Supply Online - kits and hard to find parts.
*Transtronics- Has a nice basic solderless xtal set by Techtronics  similar to  the older Radio shack version- check out companion solderless speaker/amp.   Has some other neat looking radio/electronics stuff, such as an inexpensive rf signal generator kit.  Minimum $20.00 order.  Buy a bunch of the xtal sets and hand 'em out to every 10 year old in your neighborhood.  See my review of this one.
Radio Shack -  - best buy for 1N34 diodes, resistors, and plastic coated wire.  Forget the solderless radio kits (okay, get the xtal set and do my project).  Their gazillion and one electronic kits are useful for breadboarding.  Will special order the high impedance crystal earlugs that come with the project kits; best price if you only need one or two; part no. is 10637379.  If you aren't satisfied, no-hassle returns.
PV Scientific Instrument's Crystal Radio Page  - hand crafted radios and kits - they may look pricey, but sets like these aren't junk box specials, unless you have a really nice junk box. Will also make you up a kit - just give them a price range.  If you buy one of their sets and don't like it, send it to me for disposal and I will pay S&H - hi.
Circuit Specialists  electronic parts. Online catalog.
Electronic Kits for Kids  Mini Labs Slider
 Ramsey Electronics has a crystal radio -looks pricey, but worth a look.  Construction and operating manual downloadable in PDF format.
Einstein's Emporium  has the Smithsonian kit and the Mini Labs kit.
Electronic Goldmine has an interesting assortment of electronics stuff, including AM tuning coils and polyfilm variables.  Online pdf catalog.  Good service, and will actually send a cash refund if out of stock on prepaid orders.  Stock rotates.
eBay Listings: Radio Equipment auctions on neat radio stuff.
 Surplus Shed:    currently has some sensitive  4kohm military surplus headphones made by Trimm for a good price.
Restoration Hardware  sells a rocket radio - just like you could get in the '50s. (reports are that it doesn't work very well or tune above 1300 kHz, but at 10 bucks, might be a nice nostalgia item).  Put one in my stocking.
Ocean State Electronics a nice on-line catalog.  Has some ZN414s (pricey).
 radiokits A "credit card" radio, limited edition (instant classic?)  By Fran Golden - circuit design probably like the new RS kit, but costs more.  Novelty design.
 Jayso Electronics - Hobby Kits a new twist - a Videokit - video plus what looks like the minilabs slider.  Boring...
 AM Crystal Radio Kit C. Crane imported an interesting  looking slider from Old Blighty.  Another instant classic attempt?  May be a nice gift if you have more money than time.
 Dick Smith Electronics  -Australia's answer to Radio Shack - back of catalog has a nice electronics reference section.
 Hand crafted xtal sets made to order  K8CIX makes some beauties.
Amidon get your ferrite cores and toroids from the source. buying info: Crystal Radio Kit  a Minilabs slider at a good price
MINI LABS CRYSTAL RADIO . And yet another source
 eToys: Crystal Radio Kit - UK site with a basic xtal set
Circuit Test Electronics another set from the UK
C.B. Schrock It took two years, but they got their picture links working
Fair Radio Sales Company Inc. surplus and some nice matching transformers for high level detection.
Electronix Express good online catalog
ONE CHIP AM RADIO KIT a MK484 IC radio.  Looks good, price looks right, but oh, those Canadian shipping charges.  Buy several for your scout troop.

Since I have been mostly been building my own, or helping students with theirs, I can't say how most of the kits will work out, but will put up a new page and post  reviews if you send them to me.

 The Xtal Set Society - get a sample copy of their newsletter on line, then subscribe.  I've got 5 of their books, and am getting more.  Be sure to include P.A. Kinzie's book on Crystal Set History, Fundamentals and Design in your order.
The National Radio Club / DX Audio Service - has  useful publications and reprints on dxing, antennas, crystal sets...
Lindsay Publications     fun to read web site and catalog.  Good service.
Rainy Day Books   interesting  early crystal radio reprints Search for New, Out of Print and Used Books - the world's largest source of out-of-print books!
Nation Builder Books
Books and Videos on Transistor Radios and More worth a look for collectors
ManualMan Homepage large selection of electronic operating, service and assembly manuals

 Collecting, collections and related groups

Gasoline Alley Antiques NOVELTY RADIOS has some original Miniman rocket radios - very pricey, but some people will spend anything on nostalgia.
Welcome to - offers some of the small radios of yesteryear as collectors items.  Take a look and bring your checkbook.
GOLLUM has some neat pix at his site too.
Antique Radio Classified: Radio on the Web order sample copy of the magazine on line; you might get hooked
Antique Radio Resources  links page to a lot of antique radio sites, including some pix of early crystal radios.
Radiomuseum Rottenburg pix of some nice old crystal sets
Radios Antigos no Brasil a nice page from Brazil, in english
Radio and Phono Archives
Peter's Radio-Page
Matt's antique radio page
ancient radios
Air Champ Crystal Radios does anyone remember these?
AGN another beautiful set
Xtal Radio Index Japaanese site with some nice pix
Antique Wireless Association
Pre-1930 has some old sets and some interesting repros.
LWCA Longwave Home Page when you're ready to go down low....

Rockheads in (Cyber)Space

*The Crystal Set Radio Club -Cyberspace crystal radio club; bandwidth courtesy of Yahoo.  Join in and connect with other rockheads.  Anyone can watch, or join in.  Lively postings and good stuff. (Got to join to see the pictures)
 Rap 'n Tap   Xtal Set Society forum.  Re-formatted after the old program started giving us fits.  An excellent place to get in on the action - visitors positively welcome.
 Yahoo! Clubs amradiodx100khzto1800khz most of these guys don't use xtal sets much, but they know how to dig out the long haul stations

Have anything you want to add? drop me a line