BC-611 Handie Talkie reproductions from WPG
I bought this set second hand, and I’m really happy with them. These radios look just like the original handie talkies, even down to the simulated crinkle paint finish. They have an actual PMR radio built in, so you can talk on any channel you like, and this on just 3 AA batteries. This as opposed to the original ones that could only communicate on one channel, and only with radios fitted with the same crystals for the same frequency as yours, and using a 90 Volt (!) battery. So for re-enactment these are just perfect. I already had my working EE-8 field phone set, but they are not so quickly set up, and of course they require a cable to connect them. With these BC-611s, you can also communicate with other PMR radios, which is great for historic vehicle tours and events. I look forward to taking them along on our next event! (when they are allowed again)
This reproduction has been around since 2014, but I never wanted to order them from the US. It would have been expensive, with shipping and customs duties. Now I just a chance to buy a used pair.
If you want to use them for display on a mannequin or in a showcase, there are some details you need to correct first, mainly to replace all philips head screws with regular screws. Orginals may still be found, but I think it’s not worth it for re-enactment and actual field use, which is what these were made for. However, I do plan to darken the paint to make it look older, and to add some white paint markings of my own. In books about Market Garden, for example you see these radios with large numbers hand-painted on them (usually at the bottom), so I might do that. Then there’s the antenna. The antenna cover and chain are like the orginal, but the actual aerial is a bit different from the original, which wasn’t as shiny and was slimmer, longer and had a small metal ball at its tip.
If you want to know more details and see a side-by-side comparison of an original BC-611 and the What Price Glory replica, I recommend this article: http://www.90thidpg.us/Equipment/Reviews/WPGBC611/index.html
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