In my recent blog, Mock Electronics: An Eclectic Emporium of Electronic Elements, I casually mentioned that as a young lad I used to enjoy building the "Take 20" projects in Practical Electronics magazine. This was because I was short of funds (and skill) and each of these projects required 20 or fewer components and cost 20 shillings or less (see also my blog on Pounds, Shillings, and Pence).
Well, you can only imagine my surprise when a reader called RadioNut (his username, obviously, not his real name
well, we can but hope) posted a comment saying:
Hi Max, great article but "Take 20" was a constructional feature of Practical Wireless, usually authored by Julian Anderson and, in later issues, David Andrews."No,"
I thought, "this cannot be."
But I sent an email to the original publisher of Practical Electronics, and he confirmed that this was indeed the case. My old gray brain cells are now obviously reduced to spluttering along on only two cylinders.
But wait, there's more, because an envelope from RadioNut
just arrived on my desk containing three issues of Practical Wireless
Ooooh, this takes me back. I just opened the first one from January 1972. There's no way to artificially replicate that 41-year-old magazine smell. This sort of magazine was so different back then. For a start it contains 96 pages (Good Grief, it's almost a book!). Also, in addition to the articles (this month's "Take 20, No. 32" is a Metronome project), there are so many incredibly interesting adverts in fact, there are 20 pages of adverts before you even reach the Contents List!
Looking at the adverts itself is a journey back through time the sorts of electronic parts and products that seemed so amazingly cool and futuristic back then with the entire magazine (apart from the cover) being presented in glorious techni-black-and-white (grin).
This is like taking a stroll down memory lane. I know what I'm going to be reading this weekend!
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