EH Scott Radio Enthusiasts

The Fine Things are Always Hand Made

Hi all:

I have been asked to quote the chassis restoration for an EH Scott 16.  Apparently this was about a 1937 to 1939 radio, which was about the time a lot of companies were starting to use the deadly, murdering rubber wiring.  Can anyone tell me if this model had rubber wiring?  Definitely something I need to know before I can quote this job.

Any help greatly appreciated

Best regards


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Hi David

so far I have not had occasion to work on any Scott radios.  I have worked on one McMurdo Silver masterpiece six.  At the time I considered it probably the pinnacle of a.m. radio.  (The 18 inch Jensen supergiant was, I believe, the largest speaker ever put in an a.m. radio, and I have never heard anything that I think can equal the sound from that set.) I realize this can be a matter of vigorous discussion, however.  The Zenith folks will generally consider the Stratosphere as the "pinnacle".  I have seen examples of both of these sets priced over $25,000.   Was the Scott Philharmonic their top of the line?  

David C. Poland said:

Mike - in the 1930's, each Scott radio was custom built upon receiving an order from a customer. No middle man. In 3 to 5 weeks it was shipped to the customer. There was a choice of cabinets at prices from $25 to well over $100. The cabinet was shipped separately, and most were exclusive to buyers of a Scott radio, most by Rockford Peerless Furniture company. 

Very high end, well engineered and ruggedly built. Many were shipped abroad. Leading edge technology. Scott was also a high fidelity pioneer. The 1935-37 Allwave High Fidelity 23 tube Scott with the optional pair of Jensen tweeters, was the first true high fidelity sound system for the home. The 16 tube Scott "economy" model Sixteen f 1937-8 was no slouch,  better front end than, say, the much revered 15 tube Zenith of 1937-38.

E.H. Scott Radio Laboratories pinnacle receiver was the Quaranta series with 40 to 50 tubes depending on configuration.  The Philharmonic was their top of the line receiver after the Quaranta.


The AM/SW Philharmonic 30 tube was feature laden 1937-41. The FM/AM/SW 33 tube introduced mid 1940 sacrificed the volume expander to accommodate the FM circuit. 4 stage audio with final stage using four 6L6's in push-pull parallel and 15 inch Magnavox with optional pair of tweeters. McMurdo Silver was a fierce competitor until bankruptcy late 1930's. Based on number appearing of both brand, in recent years,  Scott appears to have outsold McMurdo 10 to 1 or more from about 1932 to 1938. Very hard to find McMurdo info and tech info. Some Scott info 1929 onward sets is in Riders, and more is on this site in Info Archives.

Great Scott!  (pun intended).  FIFTY TUBES??  Most people in the middle 1930s would have to put in a bigger breaker box just to plug that thing in!  The good news is, they would not need a furnace in the wintertime.  I am going to try to look that radio up and read about it.  

One of the things I found most interesting about the McMurdo Silver masterpiece six was that it had a microphone input, so I guess these guys actually invented karaoke clear back in the 1930s. One of the saddest things about the masterpiece series was that a great many of them fell victim to kids who were looking for a guitar amplifier.  It was a very simple matter to unplug the wires from the receiver chassis and throw it away, add a couple of jumpers, and you had a guitar amp with an 18 inch speaker that I believe has no equal to this very day.  This is how my brother-in-law came to have his McMurdo Silver masterpiece six.  He found a discarded chassis at a flea market in 1985 and bought it not knowing it was missing several key components.  He brought it to me asking me to fix it up for him, and I had to tell him that he was missing a cabinet, speaker and power supply chassis. Fortunately, I hung onto the chassis. 15 years later, after the invention of the Internet, he found a Clifton cabinet with the power supply and speaker that had been made into a guitar amp.  For all I know, it could have been the same cabinet that came with the chassis, but I did not know of any way to prove that.  I presume the McMurdo's were the same as you have described with the EH Scott, in that they were made to order.  The chassis had an elaborate metal placard on it that said "custom manufactured for C. M. Boyd. I almost cried when that radio left my shop. Sadly I believe it is in China now.

Norman S Braithwaite said:

E.H. Scott Radio Laboratories pinnacle receiver was the Quaranta series with 40 to 50 tubes depending on configuration.  The Philharmonic was their top of the line receiver after the Quaranta.


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