Words cannot describe the feelings that are evoked when you first get to see this work of art in person. I still find it hard to believe that the "Old Radio Gods" smiled at me so graciously when I discovered this radio among a lot of newspapers and magazines in an old neglected garage in southern Indiana along the Ohio River.
This is what is believed to be the only existing example of this magnificent ULTRA ART DECO designed model F-10 Midwest Radio Company console from their 1934 model year. I believe this could have been a prototype or a "one-off" because of a couple small details I discovered during the three-month restoration of this set.
The World's Fair was held in Chicago in 1933/34 and its theme was "A Century of Progress". There have been many art deco and moderne works that followed the fair, which makes me wonder if the creator(s) of this breathtaking design may have attended or studied the offerings at the fair. The Majestic "Smart Sets" were also of this era and had some very bold designs that were short-lived. They all exhibit mixed wood types, black lacquer accents, and small bits of chrome.
See the chassis page for pictures and details of the restored chassis.
The method of using a one-piece design for the front panel and then "veining" a design into the surface didn't come along until a couple of years later for other Midwest cabinets. The front panel has a "chevron" patterned ( large "V" ) walnut veneer making up the entire front that is decorated to give the illusion of a multiple-piece panel.
The cabinet has received a beautiful lacquer refinish and the chassis has been fully restored. This radio has 5 bands and requires a good external antenna and a ground for modest reception and performance. Buyer will receive a copy of a recommended alteration to the chassis that was suggested as a possible improvement to the radio's performance. This alteration was originally published in 1937 by "Radio Retailing's Tricks of the Trade" and has not been performed so this example is kept as original as possible.
Mark Stein values this radio at $7,500.00 in his "Pre-War Consoles" book, but I think that is a bit too low because of the extreme design and virtual nonexistence of this set.
approximate dimensions: 38" high X 21" wide X 11" deep