General Electric 21T050UHF

21" screen, 1957
click on image to enlarge

Ever see one of these before?  I did.  Everywhere.  Or so it seemed for a while during my childhood.  I saw one in my own basement, another one in the neighbor's basement, still another one in another neighbor's living room...remember, this was already the early 70s and they were all still in regular use!  Within a few years however, my folks and at least one of the aforementioned neighbors had finally discarded theirs, but as the decade rolled on I encountered yet another two examples of this very same model while visiting with family/friends out of town.  One was resting in an attic, the other rusting in a shed.  I didn't see another one for thirty years.  For a while after becoming an eBay regular, it was increasingly frustrating every time one of those little two-tone GEs came up for sale.  And if I tried to describe this set to anybody, those sets were always the first thing they thought of.  "No, it wasn't a portable," I would say, emphasizing "there was no handle!"  Finally, one showed up on the 'Bay in the summer of 2006.  It's unrestored and appears to be almost entirely OEM...   

and yes, of course it works!  I mean, look at how the friggin' thing works for a fifty-year-old TV! 

It apparently had one service call in the past anyway:  there's a telltale burn in the CRT from vertical collapse. 

©2006, 2011 Phoenix Enterprises