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Crystal sets 2012

On 27th of April 2012 the GARC held a Crystal set night with the aim of encouraging construction and experimentation in this interesting field. We had a full house with 18 people showing their crystal sets.

Winners of the GARC Crystal Set Competition 2012

The winners Left to Right

Most Bizarre – Dallas Jones VK3DJ who wrecked 10 cars to build his set.

Most Authentic – Derek Stamp who showed us his grandfather’s crystal set.

Best Beginner – Courtney Bryson VK3FGIR with her crystal set in a piggy bank.

Most Innovative – David Learmonth VK3QM who built his set from scraps whilst camping at Dereel.

Best Performance and Best Overall – Bert Gnaccarini VK3TU who probably hasn’t slept for the last 3 months.



Our MC for the night was Bruce VK3HAV. Bruce made sure we kept to the schedule.
The audience waits in anticipation.
Derek describes his Grandfather’s original crystal set.

Still working after all those years.

Lou VK3ALB demonstrates his double tuned crystal set. Note the separation between units.

A double tuned crystal set based on the tuggle circuit.

Don VK3BIG surprises the audience by connecting his crystal set to a loudspeaker so all could hear.

Don built a set originally described by Kingsley Love.

Dallas VK3DJ built a set almost entirely out of car parts and yes it worked.

The set comes with full operating instructions and JSA to ensure no one comes to harm.

Ken VK3DQW describes the important points of crystal set design.

Ken’s set used multiple tuned circuits and variable coupling to achieve outstanding performance.

Chris demonstrates Courtney’s VK3FGIR “Ham Radio” crystal set.

Rotate Porky’s nose to switch coil taps on Courtney’s set.

Jenni VK3FJEN tells us how she built her version of a 1924 crystal set.

Jenni VK3FJEN built a set that used tap switching and cotton covered wire.

Ray VK3FKIR shows us his homebrew crystal set.

Ray’s set works on the broadcast and short wave bands.

Michael VK3FMIC explains how he built his crystal set into a match box.

This was  Michael’s first attempt at building a crystal set.

Vanessa VK3FUNY built her crystal set into a replica telephone stand.

Vanessa also added a small inducement for the judges.

. . . . and just to put the icing on the cake, she made a second set.

Bruce VK3HAV describes the steps he took to restore his vintage crystal set.

Bruce VK3HAV restored his crystal set to its’ original glory.

Peter VK3KP explains the tuggle tuner circuit.

Peter’s set sported variable coupling and a tuggle tuned aerial circuit.

Ken VK3NW explains the use of a variometer in his design.

This was Ken’s first QRO design.

David VK3QM tells us about the various parts in his design.

David built his set after an evening of “inspiration” at Dereel.

Barry VK3SY tells us how much fun he had building his set.

Barry built his set into a sextant box.

Bert VK3TU tunes his tuggle inspired set.

Bert brought along a couple of sets and some spare galena & cats whiskers.

Ian VK3ZIB explains the difficulties faced by youngsters building sets in the 1920’s.

Ian’s set was based on a design that omitted the tuning capacitor instead opting for a variometer in an effort to save pocket money.

Cal VK3ZPK shows us a crystal set built into a pen.

Cal built a novelty set and a crystal set in a pen as well as bringing in his “Max Howden” 1920’s crystal set.