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Zenith Model 12-U-158 (12U158) Console Radio (1937)
This beautiful Zenith model 12-U-158 console was introduced
in the summer of 1936 for the 1937 season, at a list price of
$149.95. A distinguishing feature of this set, along with model
12-U-159, is the ultra-large version of the big black dial,
measuring approximately 10 inches in diameter, for sure one
of the largest domestic radio dials ever produced. Note that
the 'U' in the model numbering indicates that the a set is equi-
pped for 110v AC operation and to tune ultra-shortwave, bet-
ween approximately 20 and 50 Mcs.

Zenith advertising described the 12-U-158 thus:-

"....12 tubes. Tunes American and foreign stations, police,
amateur aviation, ships at sea, ultra short-wave. Auditorium
12-inch electro-dynamic speaker. Voice-music-High-Fidelity
Control. Sensitivity Control. Lightning Station Finder. Target
Tuning. Split-Second Relocator. Overtone Amplifier. Acoustic
Adapter. Individually Illuminated wave-bands. 43 inches high

Technical Details

The 12-U-158 is a twelve tube all-wave receiver covering the
frequency range 550kcs to 54mcs in four wavebands. The
tube line-up is 6k7 (RF amp), 6L7 (mixer), 6C5 (Local Osc),
6K7 (IF amp), 6H6 (2nd detector/AVC), 6F5 (1st audio), 6L6*
(driver), 6L6 *2 (push-pull audio), 6C5 (Target Tuning amp),
5Y3/5W4 * 2 (rectifiers). As with other 1937 Zeniths, the
chassis was designed to accommodate either metal or
metaglas tube types. Audio output is a room shaking 17W!

schematic in the Riders manuals lists a 6F6 driver tube.
However my unit has fitted a 6L6 which matches the markings
on its tube socket. Radio Retailing, July 1936, also lists a 6L6
as the driver. Curiously, in my radio the original socket of one
of the 6L6 output tubes is marked 6L6/6F6 (the sockets for
the other output tube and the driver show only 6L6). Was the
6L6 output tube socket inadvertently swapped for the driver's
6L6/6F6 socket at the time of manufacture? Given the
contradictory driver tube listings sited, it appears plausible
that the set was designed to use either a 6L6 or 6F6 driver.
Zenith 12U158 (1937)
All-Wave, Worldwide Zenith... The Radio with the Acoustic
"Fine woods selected with meticulous regard for grain and
pattern, and applied to a brilliant conception of cabinet
design makes of this remarkable console a jewel of
cabinetry. The center panel virtually sparkles with the rich,
variegated pattern of its walnut burl while inlaid narrow
bands of contrasting maple in the extended grille complete
the effect of sparkle and verve apparent in the entire
cabinet design"
Oct 1936, WV
Nov 1936, WV