Back in the 1950s, the Radio Hat was a portable radio built into a pith helmet that would bring in stations within a 20 mile (32 km) radius.
With regard to my previous blog about the forthcoming Geek Hat Competition that is to be held at Design West 2013, emails have been zipping back and forth between me and my engineering chum Rick Curl, who is just the sort of guy you need on a wild and wacky project like this one.
For example, originally I had toyed with the idea of making the base of my hat out of pieces of thin brass sheet metal riveted together (I used to be a dab hand at riveting even if I "say so myself as shouldn't"). However, I'm now pondering the idea of using my little kiln to make a ceramic cap that LOOKS like it's made out of pieces of thin sheet metal riveted together. (I should point out that that Rick is currently a tad dubious about this approach.)
For his part, Rick is bombarding me with ideas about spark generators and smoke generators and plasma globes (I'll need a monster backpack just to carry the batteries).
Rick also just sent me a link to the Radio Hat page on the Wikipedia with as associated note saying:
"FYI Back in the late '50's my Dad used to have one of these. It was not uncommon for cars to stop in the street when he was out front mowing the lawn."
I'm sure it wasn't uncommon for people to stop and stare (grin).
According to the Wikipedia: "The Radio Hat was a portable radio built into a pith helmet that would bring in stations within a 20 mile (32 km) radius."
(Surely they were "taking the pith" :-) "It was introduced in early 1949 for $7.95 as the 'Man-from-Mars Radio Hat'"
Apparently the hat was available in eight colors: Lipstick Red, Tangerine, Flamingo, Canary Yellow, Chartreuse, Blush Pink, Rose Pink, and Tan (what, no "Spanking Pink"? How disappointing).
Well, you learn something new every day. I must admit that I would love to add one of these little beauties to my collection, but I just checked on eBay and nothing was to be found. Maybe one day…
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