"Make Do and Mend" (alternately called - Modifications and Variations!) 

As the Civilian Wartime receiver was produced by over 40 participating manufacturers, one would reasonably assume that in the first instance they would have used parts that they had in stock up first rather than produce or purchase new. With that said the wireless trade were quick to produce lists of modifications for the service engineer’s use. Shown below is the one produced by the “Radio Marketing Service Engineer”

Other Modifications

One of the most noticeable other modifications that can be found made to the Civilian Wartime receiver was the addition of Long Wave after the end of the war. With the re-introduction of Long wave broadcasts in July 1945, several manufacturers made for sale to the general public, plug in adaptors or conversion kits which either swapped out the first valve, replacing with the adaptor or added the necessary components. Several manufacturers also converted the sets “in house”. Details of the conversion are listed below. As a broad guide, an easy way to distinguish a manufacturer converted receiver, the newly converted receiver was issued with a replacement brown dial instead of the usual yellow / beige. Shown here is the Murphy conversion as suggested in the August 1945 magazine.

Bush Radio was one of the manufacturers to make a conversion based on the suggested circuit.

Long Wave Model

As mentioned above, several commercial Long Wave add on adaptors were produced for the Wartime Civilian Receiver. This one pictured here being produced by I. Raleigh & Co. of London.

The adaptor costing £2 17s 6d including the replacement Valve. An advert for this adaptor can be seen in the December 1945 copy of “Wireless World”.


With a surplus of Civilian Wartime receivers on the market after the war, many were modified or used in other settings such as the War Department or even as a rental receiver. Shown below are several of the “other” receivers I have seen or have in my collection. My particular thanks to Mike Barker, member of the BVWS for the pictures of his AC/DC version.

War Department

Unfortunately having several War Department receivers in my collection, research has yet to identify where they may have been used or in what part of the War Department.

Radio Rentals

It was not uncommon for many sets of all types, after the war to find their way into the rental sector.    In 1945, Radio Rentals in an attempt to ensure a supply of radios after the war purchased the “Mains Radio Gramophone Ltd” Company in Yorkshire. Coincidentally the “Mains Radio Gramophone Company were also one of the 44 manufacturers who signed up to produce the Civilian Wartime receiver under the code of U31. Unfortunately I cannot say for certain but one would assume that this model was then a re-purposed U31, one would also assume by the date of the purchase of the Company and the fact that the R is stamped into the chassis, instead of the U, that this was made later after the war and was not already assembled surplus stock. Just my guessing but it all seems to fit together!

AC/DC Model

A very unusual conversion or production? but certainly a rare one. An AC/DC model which bears the label on the top - “The Property of the British Wireless for the Blind Fund”  

Short Wave Model

Again, a very unusual conversion to the Wartime Civilian Receiver. Pictured here is one that has been converted to have the addition of both Long and Short Wave reception as well as the original intended Medium Wave. This one I think has been “home” converted using the circuit suggested in the April 1948 edition of the “Practical Wireless” Magazine.

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