The model 48-230 was one of Philco's
more adventurous designs of the era.
It is known today as the "flying wedge"
and was the first of several Philco
models to adopt this theme (see also
This model had a sales price at its
time of introduction in 1947 of $29.95.
Curiously, it was described in certain
newspaper advertisements as having
a "maroon" plastic case. I believe this
was an error, as most ads of the day
referred to the case as brown and to
the best of my knowledge no maroon
version was ever sold. The 49-503,
the 1948/49 incarnation, came in
either ebony or teal, again no maroon.
The set covers standard broadcast
from 540-1620kc and has the five tube
line-up 7A8 (converter), 14A7 (IF),
14B6 (det/avc/2nd af), 50A5 (AF o/p)
and 35Z5GT (rectifier).
|Philco "Transitone" Model 48-230 "Flying Wedge"
Brown Plastic Tube Radio (1948)
...ultra modern compact table radio in streamlined cabinet of lustrous brown
|"Another inspiration in modern radio design... new..
refreshingly different. It's smoothly molded cabinet of maroon
plastic is highlighted with a unique latticed ivory grille.
Fine-toned AC-DC radio. Beam power Pentode output tube"
..ultra modern, the last word in radio design.
I found this set in a flea market in the summer of 2007. It has no cracks, and even
has its original back, but was somewhat scratched. The good news is that these
radios are constructed of polysterene plastic and are not painted, so the color runs
uniformly through the plastic. Therefore I was able to start by lightly sanding out the
plastic with wetted 400 grit waterproof sandpaper. I then proceeded to use 600 grit
followed by 1500 grit paper. To bring back the shine, I started by rubbing down with
Brasso polish and finished off using Novus #2. The original scratches were mostly
removed and the finish now shines almost like new!
Note that the key to bringing back these cabinets is to start with a somewhat coarse
grit paper to remove the scratches and then to work through progressively finer
papers and polishes to bring back the shine. One word of note is that the 400 grit
leaves fine marks that do take some effort with the finer grits to remove. I would
therefore suggest starting with the finer grits before trying the 400, as these may be
sufficient in many cases. Do not press too hard as the plastic is somewhat fragile and
Note: Do not use the same procedure for bakelite cases as this material has a fine,
shiny coat that, once sanded off, exposes the internal filler and leaves a coarse, dull
surface. That's the opposite outcome to want you want!