Posted 4 years ago
Okay, let's try this again.
Hi! My name is Rodney. I became interested in vacuum tubes a few years ago. It all started with one simple audio device, a ModWright Transporter Network Music Device. It uses vacuum tubes. I didn’t like the way it sounded initially because it came stock with new production vacuum tubes. I decided to purchase some vintage versions of these tubes and the sound improved so much that I fell in love with the art or practice of “tube rolling”. Even so, I still didn’t have any idea how much I would later fall in love with tube collecting.
One day a light went off in my head. During the process of going online and buying different tubes for my audio device I realized that many old vacuum tubes were not only highly valued but they were becoming very rare and even collectible. I thought to myself, I wonder if very many people have these in their attics and barns. So I put the word out that I wanted to buy old vacuum tubes. To my amazement I immediately started receiving phone calls from my neighbors. The tubes in the photos posted here came from a neighbor that claimed to be an antique dealer. I had never met him before but his home just so happened to be on the same street that I lived on. So I called a friend of mine that owned a truck and knew that part of town pretty well. Off we went to see this neighbor / antique dealer.
When I arrived I was greeted by an older woman and told that the gentleman I had spoken with was not home. Even though she didn't have a clue that I had made an appointment she seemed quite at ease and let me into her home. I was then instructed to go upstairs where I first noticed several young men just "hanging out". These were my neighbor’s sons. Well, everywhere my eye could see, and even where it couldn’t see, was junk, junk and more junk, or so I thought. Suddenly I realized that nearly every inch of the second floor of this home had vacuum tubes strewn everywhere, and I mean everywhere. My heart dropped, stopped and then starting beating really fast. Tubes were in the garbage cans, in the bathroom (sink / tub), on the floor (some broken), under the chairs and on top of furniture. The sheer number of tubes and the state of disarray that the place was in made me dizzy. I started scooping up vacuum tubes and placing them in every container available including garbage cans, plant holders, old tin cans, old shoe boxes and whatever else I could find to put them in so that I could transport them to safety. We ended up loading the back of my friend’s small pickup truck with this purchase from my neighbor.
When I got home I immediately started sorting them by brand and type and ended up with tubes strewn all over the place. At least there was a method to my madness.
Yes, this was how it all started. It was an exhilarating experience.
The rest is history. I also now have a Facebook page for tube collecting.