National SW-3: My Latest Project

The 1930’s National “Thrill Box” is an awesome regenerative receiver

I am trying to get mine up and running. I actually have two versions – one is the “All AC” model – or ACSW, and the other is the DCSW model – which can be used on AC or DC. Here is a nice page describing both of the units that I have:



This unit has two 6C6’s and a 27 tube, uses the “60-70” series coils, and does light up when I use the National 5886 “Doghouse” power supply. However, I did not hear anything. It might be because the Doghouse has 162 vdc and 3.5 vac, so I think I was just heating up the filaments (the tubes seemed to just have the filaments on). I am getting a power supply for this.


This unit has an 6D6, a 6C6 and a 37 tube, uses the “10-20” series coils, and seems to want 67 vdc, 135 vdc and 6 vdc for the filaments. This one came with no coils and a power supply that smoked when I turned it on. Its in better shape than the other, but not by much. To power this, I would need something like the ARBE III Battery Eliminator:

Because it might be hard to find these coils and the ARBE III costs $159, I think I might just transfer a couple cosmetic bits from this one to the ACSW and then avoid spending any more money on it – and also have a pristine unit (on the outside). The DCSW is also pristine on the inside, but I am not a collector and just don’t care. I simply want to get one to work.


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