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The NC-100 series was only going to require a three-gang tuning condenser and this was going to be centrally located on the chassis running front to rear with the power supply of the receiver on the left and the receiver circuitry to the right.This required the gear box to drive the condenser from the rear of the box.- Henry Rogers - March 19, 2012National NC-100 "MOVING COIL" Receiver from 1936 (sn 334-D, first production run) showing the original "art deco" design of the aluminum overlay front panel.These early receivers have a PW-D micrometer dial that has a bluish-gray Index dial and an inner Number dial that is red with white numerals.James Millen, National Co.'s General Manager and Chief Engineer, was one of the designers that insisted the best receiver performance was achieved using plug-in coils.But, how to effectively eliminate the valid arguments against plug-in coil use in a new product?Even post-WWII buyers could still purchase the descendants of the NC-100 in the modernized NC-240D receivers.This web-article details most of the various members of the NC-100 family and it became an extensive family (over sixty different variations) that grew as National up-graded and improved the receiver over its 13 years of production history.
The NC-100 Series "MOVING COIL" Receiver production spanned from 1936 up to 1949. Certainly the design of the "MOVING COIL" method for band change used in the NC-100 receivers impressed the commercial operators of the late thirties with modified versions being ordered by the Bureau of Air Commerce and the CAA for use in airports around the country (even as late as post-WWII.) The NC-100XA version impressed the U. Navy who ordered special versions with low Local Oscillator radiation that became the famous RAO family of WWII receivers.The HRO wasn't hassle-free though and Millen realized that for the SWL (Short Wave Listener) and intermediate-level hams, in other words, those who didn't have the experience or couldn't afford the 0 HRO receiver, there had to be a design that would provide the excellent performance of plug-in coils without all of the hassles and expense.- National's mechanical engineers offered a solution that solved most of the negatives of plug-in coils and retained most of the advantages.With the use of a movable cast aluminum coil box called a "catacomb," all of the coils would be mounted in individual shielded compartments with short contact pins mounted in molded insulators on top of the catacomb.A large band selector knob on the front panel of the receiver would turn a rack and pinion gear mechanism that would move the coil catacomb into place, thus engaging the proper coil set pins into short, fixed position, spring-contacts mounted under the tuning condenser in insulator blocks.
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Another portion of the design involved the PW gear drive used on the NC-100 series.