The Bell model 5D5 was manufactured by Bell Radio-Television Corporation Ltd in 1956. It's part of the Bell Colt series.

Other radios based on the same chassis:

5 valve, dual wave (World Wave) mantle radio

Probably the first Colt-style chassis to have dual-wave capability, this was probably also the chassis used in at least the early Skipper 10 radios by Electronics Navigation Ltd

The only sighted example uses a toggle switch on the back - probably for tone.  The later 5W7 dual wave Colt uses a rotary switch on the back.  Assuming the toggle switch is factory and not something put in as a replacement later on, this might be (short of serial number analysis) the only easy way to tell them apart.

Bell 5D5 'Mercury'
Radio & Electronics - August 1956

The Bell model 5D5 is part of the 'Bell Colt' series.

There is considerable information on the main Bell Colt page about this long-running Kiwi icon.


Bell Colts ran from 1951 through until 1980 - the longest running model of NZ built domestic radio.  It saw many different engineering changes over the years, and the last few models dropped valves in favour of new transistor technology.

Please note that not all radios shown in this series were known as Colt's - the Planet, the Mercury etc were models in their own right - but they have a Colt chassis in them and so are included here as part of the wider Bell Colt dynasty.

The items in this series are

Technical Information

Valves (5): ECH81, EF89, EBC81, EL84, EZ80

Intermediate Frequency: 462kc/s

Frequency Bands: 2

Chassis Notes(most schematics can be clicked to download a full size version)

The valve lineup from the sighted example seems to include some 40-series valves - while the schematic indicates all 80-series.  This might be an early example of the model.

Bell 5D5 'Mercury'

Bell 5D5 'Mercury'

Instalbility modification - add a diode filter

Other documented models using this chassis (2 in total)

1956 Skipper 10 model 5D5 'Colt'