Zenith Model 6G601M "Universal" Portable Radio (1942)


This tube portable Zenith radio is not a TransOceanic. It was designed as a "companion" set to the more powerful and expensive Model 7G605 TransOceanic of 1942.

This Universal receives only the standard broadcast (AM) band, whereas the TransOceanic is a powerful shortwave receiver as well.

The two radios share the same basic cabinet design, with a patterned grille cloth on the left and a dial on the right. The sailboat grille design is common to this Universal model and a few first-run TransOceanics.

A sturdy leather handle is mounted on top and the case is covered in "airplane fabric," a durable coated linen with a pattern of contrasting tan and brown stripes. This radio was offered in two other fabric colors, plus brown cowhide and and a brown imitation alligator that's matches the original TransOceanic.

The tuning dial is black with white lettering and a brass pointer that's one of my all-time favorites.

Like its bigger brother, the 6G601M also sports the detachable WaveMagnet antenna with rubber suction cups.

Inside, you'll find six tubes: 3Q5G, 117Z6G, 1LH4, 1LN5, 1LN5, and 1LA6. The radio is powered either from 110-volt current (AC or DC) or from a massive battery pack.

This set is in pristine condition. The WaveMagnet looks like it was never even slipped out of its carrying clips.

Inside the case, I found the original operator's manual plus a little card advertising Zenith accessory headphones and pillow speakers. Zenith also provided a printed label where you could record your name and address, and this set's owner took that precaution. Minnie L. Martin, if you're still out there, I'm taking good care of your radio!

Please resist the temptation to cannibalize a 6G601M radio to get a sailboat grille cloth or other parts to finish a 7G605 restoration. These radios are worth owning in their own right. If you need parts, look for reproductions or a 7G605 junker set. There are still plenty of old radios and parts out there.

©1995-2023 Philip I. Nelson, all rights reserved