The FRG-7 is not scarce and you may find these pop up regularly on Ebay. Many of those are not operating properly and have issues such as burned out lamps, non-functioning modes, or loss of sensitivity. If you purchase an FRG-7 from many sellers, there is a good chance that it is not operating properly. We have tested this receiver and verified proper operation and that it is working with wonderful sensitivity and no known operational issues.
This FRG-7 comes with:
- a copy of the user manual
- copy of the sale brochure
- Gilfer catalog color page from the 1970’s
- interesting review of the FRG-7 seen in Practical Wireless in June of 1979
- review from WRTH when it was introduced to the market in 1978
- review from WRTH (World Radio & Television Handbook) 1980
- a CD containing a wealth of files with information about mods and specific improvements or operation notes concerning the FRG-7 receiver. This CD is not for sale and is intended to accompany this receiver into the hands of the new owner.
There is an input jack on the rear of the receiver to operate the radio off of a DC supply or car battery and an internal D cell holder to use the receiver for emergencies or for remote DXing. The nice thing is this receiver is thrifty on DC consumption and the designers of the radio allow for the dial lamps to be turned off to further conserve energy. With the front panel lamps turned off, the radio draws about 3 watts of current. Due to the versatility in being able to operate off of DC current (like from a car battery) and since it is thrifty on that sort of DC power supply, this unit is ideal for the emergency prepper who wants to have a stalwart communications receiver for emergency use.
For those of you who are not familiar, let us tell you what makes this receiver so special. The circuitry was developed by Dr. Trevor Wadley and later employed by Yaesu in this FRG-7. The shortwave receivers of the day were not very stable and typically there was a certain amount of drift when tuned in to a station. You can imagine how annoying or even frustrating this can be to have to re-tune the circuit from time to time, especially on military frequencies or weak signals. As a result, Dr. Wadley invented a drift cancelling loop that used triple conversion circuitry to achieve it’s goals. This was a leap forward in receiver technology and for about 25 years, this was considered state of the art technology. So advanced was this technology when applied to the FRG-7, that it allowed the user to zero into a frequency within 5 or 10 KHz. In today’s digital readout technology standard, this may not seem like an accomplishment, but back then during that time of listening, this was considered outstanding.
You can read a brief bio of Dr. Wadley here:
Another thing accomplished by the FRG-7 receiver is that it is highly sensitive…even by today’s standards. Back in the 1970’s when we listening to radio signals in our youth, we used a D*rake SPR*4 receiver for our listening before attending college. With that receiver, a special antenna, and some perseverance, we heard many remote foreign and even domestic stations. We can recall awaking one Monday morning and tuning in to KFI on 640 KHz when smaller stations were off the air for the weekly maintenance and was able to copy news from an AM station in Los Angeles despite being situated on the east coast. We notified the station and subsequently received a QSL card verifying my reception. At the time, we belonged to a shortwave listening club called SPEEDX and received all their monthly mailings. These mailings were essentially reception reports of various shortwave stations…many that were elusive or even intermittent. Anyway, the FRG-7 was always the most heavily used receiver of the time for DX reporting. It is a hands down DX machine that may not offer all the bells and whistles of today’s receivers, but it does it’s job well.
Something to note with these receivers is that they used a special bulb in the various dial lamps. There are at least 6 of these lamps total in the FRG-7 as they are utilized in the preselector for band selections and also in the main tuning dial to illuminate the frequency. Anyway, when they burn out, they are difficult to replace without a qualified person doing the installation. All of the bulbs in this FRG-7 light and illuminate adequately bright. Should they ever need replaced, the CD that we are including with this sale contains information about how to replace the bulbs.
The FRG-7 has many nice features and we won’t list them here as you can look at our pictures for this information. The coverage is for 500 KHz to 29900 KHz and thus it covers the AM, Ham, Marine, Shortwave and CB bands. Sideband reception allows you to listen in on ham radio operators, marine transmissions, or aeronautical or marine weather. As mentioned already, all of the knobs, switches and dials work properly on this FRG-7.
This receiver is still considered one of the finest receivers made and rates highly among collectors, DXers and shortwave enthusiasts in general. Yes, you can purchase a similarly priced contemporary receiver made out of plastic that has some bells and whistles not found on this FRG-7, but that is the fun of a vintage unit….to accept it as it is based on the prevailing technology of the day. Classic auto collectors don’t typically expect to find power windows, automatic transmissions, or CD player in a car that originated from the 60’s. Likewise, this unit does not have a sync detector or passband tuning, but manages great reception considering it’s analog readout. It is a highly sensitive consumer receiver.
In Fred Osterman in his book ‘Shortwave Receivers Past And Present’ says that this receiver is probably the best value in used receivers. Here are some reviews and additional notes:
http://www.dxing.com/rx/frg7.htm (copy and paste link in your browser window)
On the eHam website, you will note that the FRG-7 still rates a total of 4.7 out of a possible 5. This is amazing for a receiver that is now closing in on 40 years old. Here is the eHam review:
https://www.eham.net/reviews/detail/979 (copy and paste link in your browser window)
Thanks for taking the time to read through these FRG-7 details. We are happy to answer any questions you may have concerning the FRG-7. Please use the Ebay calculator to determine your shipping cost. This price includes all packing materials for a safe trip and insurance in the event of catastrophic damage or loss of parcel.
If you live outside the USA, you may also use the shipping calculator. We regularly ship outside the USA and have good experience in doing so having shipped to 101 countries during the past 19 years on Ebay. Just remember that you will be responsible for any customs, duties or VAT fees that your country requires. If you are not familiar with these costs, please check with your country’s custom’s office and local post office for information prior to making a purchase. Shipping will be via Priority Mail (typically about 14 days) or via Express Mail (typically 8 to 10 days) and Express Mail offers superior tracking.
The buyer is to pay via Paypal with payments are expected within 3 days after purchase. Ebay does not permit us to list other accepted forms of payment so we will refrain from doing so as we do not want Ebay to remove our listing as is their policy to do so. Please email if you have any questions.
Penna residents are reminded of their responsibility to pay the 6% state sales tax
Thank you once again for taking the time out of your busy day to look at this FRG-7 receiver and our Ebay listings.