My wife and I took vacation in the Soviet Union in 1984, before its democratization.  Electronic calculators seemed nonexistent; typically a store clerk would "ring up" a sale on a wooden abacus.

     Radio airwaves were restricted.  I learned that most electronic equipment was built using tubes, not transistors.

     So I was surprised to find this transistor radio kit.  It uses four transistors.  The build characteristics and even the printing of the quaint and  hilarious instruction manual lack the slickness Western consumers are used to, but the circuit is an ingenious,  highly efficient reflex configuration.  It is clearly designed to round up every last electron to make sure the speaker gets full benefit.

     To view a high resolution scan of the full manual, click here.

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