Styrene Queen of the Short-Waves:
A Cheyenne Mountain Confidential

 

 

 

SHOCKING COLD WAR REVELL-ATION!



Who knew? Only those with the need.

Twenty-Four Seven Three Sixty-Five during the 1960s, North American Aerospace Defense Command Assembly Teams stood ready to build authentic Revell brand plastic "Short-wave Radio" kits in a wood paneled Cheyenne Mountain rumpus room against that terrible rainy day when a monsoon of Soviet SS-9 warheads would make it difficult to play outside.

The kits were glued, not soldered -- facilitating assembly at a moment when minute-to-minute electrical service might prove problemmatic and all available flashlights were tasked with lighting The Button.

As anyone who lived through those tense times will recall, shortwave was where the apocalyptic action would be, filled with hysterical announcers describing scenes of destruction outside their studio windows in the worst fake foreign accents. By international agreement, shortwave broadcasting studios were banned from targeting lists, and rigorously-enforced international building codes resulted in studios capable of sustaining no more than cosmetic damage from a 60 megaton air burst close as that big tree over there.

Modeled after the classic plug-in coiled Knight Kit Ocean Hopper and updated with a massive slide rule dial decal, Revell's self-styled Styrene Queen of the Shortwaves failed to capture a significant share of the roiling entry-level civilian communications receiver kit market. Word quickly spread among young SWLs and would-be hams that the radio's tiny nosewheel struts were impossible to glue to the plug-in coils, or broke off the first time one changed bands. Subsequent attempts by Revell to repackage the receiver as a model of the secret successor to the X-15 rocket plane failed to ignite demand.

Few Revell Short-Wave Radios survive. Like many botched model projects, the receivers were often swiss-cheesed with BB gun fire with extreme prejudice, then doused with lighter fluid and ritualistically sacrficed on a backyard pyre when parents weren't home.

Editors Note: Dashtoons expresses utmost thanks to Carl WA1KPD for generous permission to share these remarkable photographs with our audience. While every detail of OUR Dash!Report cannot be corroborated, the Revell Short-Wave Radio is absolutely for real. CLICK HERE for WA1KPD's fascinating boatanchor photo site.

TNX AGN OM, you rock!