The Courtenay model 46 was manufactured for Turnbull & Jones Ltd by Radio Corporation of New Zealand Ltd in 1953, it was in production for 4 years.

Other radios based on the same chassis:

5-valve dual wave table radio - not that much fun to work on, and seemingly fragile as the author has found them to be quite problematic to get going with dodgy N78 output valves and burned out power transformers.  Also watch the dial glass as these are not always properly captive and can easily slip out and break.

The 45 and 46 were the last of the Courtenay line before Turnbull & Jones dropped out of radio sales, and with that the Courtenay brand passed into history.  An inauspicious end to a grand old name in NZ radio that stretched back some 25 years to a small radio workshop in Cornhill St where they were they had originally been made for Stewart Hardware by William Marks.  Marks, of course, went on to found Radio Corporation of New Zealand and the Columbus brand, and both Columbus and Courtenay had been in almost perfect lockstep since then - often just having a different cabinet and brand on the dial.

Technical Information

Valves (5): 6BE6, 6BA6, 6AV6, 6AQ5 (or N78), 6X4

Intermediate Frequency: 455kc/s

Frequency Bands: 2

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


  • 6BE6 (7-pin) and X79 (noval) have different sockets.
  • X79 can be replaced by ECH81 (noval) with socket rewiring.
  • 6BA6/W77 and 6AQ5/N78 are not direct replacements – the pin connections are different and will require socket rewiring. 

1953 Courtenay model 46

Columbus model 45 'Derby'Columbus model 45 'Derby'

General Construction Notes for Radio Corporation of New Zealand Ltd:

The first digit of the serial number typically indicates the year of manufacture of RCNZ chassis' (although not the decade - that requires a little knowledge of the valves, construction, etc). Sets from around 1934 onwards were often (but not always) constructed in a distinctive pressed 'baking pan' style chassis, seemingly unique to RCNZ.

Model codes beginning with a 0, for example the model 051, are Osram valve versions of the model without the leading 0. Technically the 0 should be an O (for Osram), however the digit 0 was used throughout the site before this fact was discovered.

The E suffix indicates a magic eye option is fitted (in models which were available with or without, such as the model 25).

A and B suffixes appear to be simply updates to the current model, R also appears to be simply an updated model ('R'edesign, perhaps?)

P indicates either a permanent magnet speaker version of a model which also came with an electromagnet speaker (the model 26 for example), or a portable model (like the model 694P).  This suffix was used in the mid 50's when Radio Corp was changing over.

N and M indicated miniature valve versions of a model which started with all (or a mix, ie: model 5) of larger valves. One of these two codes may indicate a transitional mixture of octal and miniature - clarification is required.

S often indicates a stereo model.  It can also indicate 'self-biased' in the transition period between back-biased and self biased sets where there were models with both methods employed (53S for example)

Finally, other suffixes and prefixes make occasional appearances in the RCNZ lineup - like the 66W (a variant of the long-running model 66) and the 75XA (a 10-valve version of the model 75 with a separate amplifier chassis).

Model nicknames are often sourced from either newspaper advertising, company literature or the NZ Radio Traders Federation official trade-in price books (Particularly Courtenay models from this publication)

In 1954, model numbering changed, to begin with the number of valves (ie: 501 - 5 valves, 1006 - 10 valves, etc) although the final 2 digits don't appear to have much significance.  Middle digits of 5 (portable) or 6 (mantle, including clock radio) are used on the AWA-designed plastic-cased sets.

Other documented models using this chassis (2 in total)

1953 Columbus model 46 'Derby'