Stories from the Gelka II – Tesla head unit
Tesla. This Chechoslovak manufacturer made a lots of products of consumer electronics, but socialism defined a bit too much the head units of the company. The idea behind them was excellent, but not the execution…
- Comrade Kuznyák, the motor of this tape recorder hasn’t been replaced.
- No, boss, it hasn’t been, indeed.
The worksheet shows that you’ve replaced it. Considering this, our comittee decided to punish you in some way: you cannot repair Tesla head units for a whole year.
Hearing that, I could hardly hide my smile, so I bowed when leaving the room. Only then did I start laughing. I could not wish for more: not having to struggle with Teslas for a year! Never a better way to be punished after my senior messed the worksheet somehow, and I was the one to be claimed for some engine of a tape recorder.
The masterpiece of Chechoslovak industry, Tesla was a damned construction. I suppose it was designed by engineers who have read everything exciting happening at that time in the field of consumer electronics, than created a thing – sometimes a progressive one, like TDA power amplifier. Unfortunately, this device could not be assembled properly from the products of socialist industry, so it turned out to be the most unreliable head unit of the world. Anyway, Tesla had to produce it, as it was an important item in the given five-year plan.
Compared to Teslas, Videotons were high-tech, extremely reliable products. What problems could Teslas have? Any problem, really. Like the instant loss of memory of radio stations. Having dried capacitors, or contact error. Some of them had to be compressed by pliers – sometimes it made them work for even a whole year. Above all, they were even expensive.
I remember, once Dezső Garas, one of the best actor that time, entered the shop with a broken Tesla. We repaired it, he brought it home – just to return in a few days again. We repaired the Tesla again, he brought it home… and came back in a few days really angry. ’Look’ he said. ’If someone asks me if it worth visiting a given theater for a play, I can tell him whether it worth seeing or not. What is your profession?’ My boss replaced his Tesla for a Videoton without a word…