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Jean-Yves Le Dû revives the airwaves of yesteryear
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Jean-Yves Le Dû revives the airwaves of yesteryear
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“Radio is a mystery: we see nothing in the air, and yet billions of pieces of information reach us… Isn’t that prodigious? Who knows Jean-Yves Le Dû knows that for him, this question is all rhetorical: the radio, this resident of Graces (22) has it under his skin. Retired for seven years from public works, this native of Plounévézien now devotes a large part of his free time to the restoration of old TSF (Wireless Transmission, Editor’s note) sets, unearthed in flea markets and other garage sales.

Youth hobby

“As a kid, I always wanted to know how it worked. I made galena stations, the first stations designed at the start of the 20th century,” he recalls. “Then I started to work, and I no longer had the time to devote myself to it. So once retired, I didn’t hesitate: I set up this little workshop with a friend and I set myself the goal of reconnecting with my childhood hobby. »

Some stations, produced in the 1950s, are true works of art. With the fashion for vintage, some now cost more than €1,000 (Le Télégramme/Laura Ayad)

A bridge between past and present

Armed with his passion and the advice given by a few veterans, Jean-Yves sets out to dissect these old stations of an outmoded charm, whose trunk, most often made of bakelite or wood, contains small lamps. To make them work again, he replaces the period parts with their modern equivalent, while keeping as many original elements as possible.

Jean-Yves Le Dû revives the airwaves of yesteryear
 |  Today Headlines
Unlike his competitors, Jean-Yves keeps a maximum of original elements, to keep the sound of the time which, if less qualitative, will delight nostalgics! (The Telegram/Laura Ayad)

A technique that they are more and more rare, in France, to favor: “Several of us repair TSF sets, but not many of us do it without emptying them”, wishes to specify Jean-Yves. “Most of my competitors are emptying the positions of their yesteryear technology to add today’s technology, while I keep everything that can be! In fact, I only add Bluetooth, FM and a USB port”.

Jean-Yves Le Dû revives the airwaves of yesteryear
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Jean-Yves Le Dû worships vintage radios (Le Télégramme/Laura Ayad)

There, it’s the sound of yesteryear that we hear… It gives me the feeling of going back in time

But then, what is the difference between the stations restored by Jean-Yves and the others? Just turn one on to realize it: the sound that escapes from it, if it does not transcribe the whole palette of tones, takes us back 80 years, to the time of “La Guerre des worlds” or the appeal of June 18. Even today, it is with a certain emotion that Jean-Yves lends his ear to seize this grain, recognizable among so many others: “There, it is the sound of yesteryear that we hear… That gives me the feeling of stepping back in time”.

Jean-Yves Le Dû revives the airwaves of yesteryear
 |  Today Headlines
This Radiocapte set, from the Célard brand, dates from the 1950s. One of the most original pieces in the collection of Jean-Yves Le Dû (Le Télégramme/Laura Ayad)

Another specificity of the sets restored by Jean-Yves: purists, if they wish, can thanks to them capture the long and short waves, on which some radio stations still broadcast, such as the BBC, RTL… or Radio China!

Fashionable vintage

If they are more and more rare to listen to the radio without going through the FM, many are however individuals who want to give a second life to their family radio set. Because at a time of planned obsolescence, vintage is still a recipe. To the point that today, Jean-Yves selects the requests: “I only accept requests from people who live in Brittany. Because otherwise, I really get way too many, and I’m not an industry: it’s still a hobby! he smiles.

Jean-Yves Le Dû revives the airwaves of yesteryear
 |  Today Headlines
“I only accept requests from people who live in Brittany. Because otherwise, I really get way too many, and I’m not an industry: it’s still a hobby! “Says Jean-Yves Le Dû (Le Télégramme / Laura Ayad)

Especially since some stations, in addition to being repaired, require aesthetic alterations: on average, Jean-Yves thus spends between 20 and 25 hours per TSF station, for a price ranging from 300 to 600 €, depending on the age of the model.

I am particularly proud to have found and repaired a drum set from the 20s

Always on the lookout for a collector’s item, he also continues to hunt for stations for his personal collection, which any auctioneer would swoon over: “I am particularly proud to have found and repaired a battery from the 1920s. At the time, the antenna was separate, so that this kind of set was reserved for the richest… And then, there is this German set, made under the Third Reich under the order of Goebbels, so that every German family is informed of the advance of the troops… We really don’t find many of those anymore”.

Jean-Yves Le Dû revives the airwaves of yesteryear
 |  Today Headlines
On average, Jean-Yves Le Dû works between 20 and 25 hours on the repairs of a TSF set, depending on the age of the model (Le Télégramme / Laura Ayad)

Transmit his know-how

Today, Jean-Yves only lacks one thing: “What I would like is to train someone. Show him how to restore this kind of position, so that this knowledge is not lost. Those who taught me are all dead today, and I would really like to pass on my knowledge”. Notice, therefore, to interested persons, those who, like Jean-Yves, observe our objects not for what they do, but for what they are: vestiges of a past to which we are all linked, and which must be saved.

Contact: 06 07 96 31 53 or via the website: radiocalypso22.free.
Fr

Jean-Yves Le Dû revives the airwaves of yesteryear
 |  Today Headlines
(The Telegram/Laura Ayad)



Jean-Yves Le Dû revives the airwaves of yesteryear
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