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Vacuum tube alley

Discussion in 'Hobby Electronics' started by Trevor Wilson, Jun 4, 2007.

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  1. Back when I was a schoolkid, the place to go was Oxford Street, Sydney (long
    before it became the haunt of gay men and trendy eateries). J. Keep was the
    place to go. A little, wizened old man, with tobacco stained fingers,
    hunched over and a barking voice. The place was an Aladdin's cave of
    goodies. All sorts of relics from the PMG (aka: Telstra) and various arms of
    the defence forces. The prices were low and I always felt sorry for the poor
    old bugger, who seemed to be barely eking out a living. He owned half the

    Further up the road were the rip-off merchants - Deitch Brothers. More
    upmarket gear, but always interesting. Nothing was ever in my price range

    For the mugs, there was Radio House, where the prices were obscene.
    Eric Oppel likes this.
  2. Bob Parker

    Bob Parker Guest

    Yep, that's the Joe Keep and his shop I remember!

    Eric Oppel likes this.
  3. Chas

    Chas Guest

    Further up towards Taylor Square there was also Waltham's Radio IIRC,
    another disposals mecca.


    (To email me replace 'xxx' with tango papa golf)
    Eric Oppel likes this.
  4. **Waltham Dan - The Radio Man. I forgot about him.
    Eric Oppel likes this.
  5. wasp

    wasp Guest

    I remember him well, Trevors comment about him owning half the street
    had some basis of truth. There was a brass plaque above the door with
    J.Keep ELECTRICIAN engraved on it. When you went inside the shop it
    was mostly in darkness - I think there was a bare 25w bulb suspended
    above the counter and not much natural light coming through the shop
    windows because they were covered in perpetual grime.

    Deitch Bros were expensive. Further up the road was Waltham Trading
    Company which also sold war surplus, but at cheaper prices. They had a
    bargain basement downstairs that contained all sorts of interesting stuff.

    Down on the corner of York St was Martin De Launay (thanks for the
    photos Phil), a couple of doors further down was George Brown & Co in a
    basement shop probably where David Reid used to be.

    I also used to visit John Carr & Co in Haymarket who sold electronic
    parts for the OEM market. They later became Jaycar electronics.

    Out at Stanmore there was National Radio Supplies. At Enmore there was
    Tudor Radio which later became LE Chapman at Curl Curl after he closed
    the shop. Further down Parramatta Rd was Paragon Radio that sold war
    surplus. Out on the Princes Hwy at Tempe was Tempe Disposals (they had
    a fullsize WW2 searchlight mounted on the street frontage) and sold a
    lot of old Radar gear. In later years the searchlight disappeared and
    they began selling building materials

    Thanks to all those that have conributed to this thread, it's been
    interesting reading.

    Eric Oppel likes this.
  6. wasp

    wasp Guest

    I just remembered that was Clarence St (David Reid was in York St).
    Eric Oppel likes this.
  7. wasp

    wasp Guest

    My mistake, George Brown and Martin De Launay were actually in Clarence
    St as Phil correctly pointed out. David Reid was in York. It gets a bit
    hazy going back 40 years!

    More Photo's
    George Brown was roughly where the truck is parked on the footpath

    Another shot showing Martin De Launay and more distant view down
    Clarence St.

    You can also go here and get a larger copy of the photos - click on
    thumbnail and the next photo for largest view. (Enter the archive
    number in the search form - 024029 or 005901 and click search)

    Eric Oppel likes this.
  8. Bob Parker

    Bob Parker Guest

    And of course ACE Radio in Marrickville run by another Joe, a good
    bloke as I recall.
    I used to rummage around Tempe Disposals. Good for cheap 2nd hand
    fluorescent light fittings and lots of other stuff. :)

    Eric Oppel likes this.
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