Transistor Trans-Oceanics - Royal 1000 to R-7000

Note: Clicking on the small pictures in the body will bring up a larger (15-20k) one.

Royal 1000/1000D(-1)

Royal 2000 (companion)

Royal 3000(-1)

Royal 7000(-1|-2)/D7000Y


Leather & Vinyl cases for 1000 series -1 Power supplies 1000 and 3000 battery cases

Zenith was one of the first into transistor radios as well though the first transistor Trans-Oceanic did not appear until late 1957 for the 1958 model year.

Initially, Zenith used the "Royal" designation to indicate transistor radios as so the first was the Royal 1000. Advertising at work here since the 1000 was a nine transistor unit as indicated by the 9AT prefix on the chassis number for that year. The "T" was added to indicate transistor. Through the Royal 7000-1, Zenith chassis carried the model group "40" and varients (Royal 1000-D used the old leather group: 41, Some 3000-1's used 43).

Royal 1000 (D | -1) (1957-1963)

Introduced at U$250.00 in 1957, the 1000 was shortly joined by the $275.00 1000D which provided a new long wave (200-400kc) band (LW marking below AM on band select dial). In 1963 the 1000 became available as a "-1" which meant there was provision for an external 12v power supply which used a subminiature (3/32") phone jack. However the 1000D was discontinued in 1962 so is unlikely that any 1000D-1s were sold (never say never).

Other bands are similar to last 600s with the addition of a 13m band that was dropped on the 3000 and reintroduced for the Royal 7000.

The Budlong designed case is an elegant black leather and chrome combination though early units were plagued by shrinkage of the leather and pitting/blistering of the chrome. This problem was shared with the Royal 3000 but cured with the introduction of the Royal 7000.

Easily identified by the two horizontal knobs for volume and tone, many think the simple panel design of the 1000 series make it the most elegant of the transistor units.

While the two models, Royal 1000 and Royal 1000D are very similar, with only the LW band of the D setting it apart electrically, still Zenith made it easy to tell them apart externally: on the Royal 1000, the band at the junction of the front cover halves with the legend "All Transistor Trans - Oceanic" as well as the knobs and the lower face plate are of a chrome/silver color while on the 1000-D they are bronze/gold.

The removable wavemagnet was housed behind the latched rear cover door directly behind the tuning drum and over the bar containing the radio-phono switch and the RCA jack for the phono input. There is some indication that at the end of production when 1000s were being sold beside 3000s and the price was dropped to U$199.95 that the Wavemagnet and radio-phono capability were no longer supplied.(probably on chassis beginning 9HT...)

Other than the quality problem mentioned above, trouble areas include the perennial applique (silver/gold) falling off the knobs leaving plain black faces, cracking of the combination waverod/carrying handle, and failure of the battery operated dial lights (tedious to replace).

Earliest Royal 1000s may also be identified by the "Genuine Leather" markings in the black panels.

Chassis numbers known to have been used on 1000s are:

1000:  9AT40,   9CT40Z2, 9HT40Z2, 9HT40Z8
1000D: 9AT41Z2, 9CT41Z2, 9HT41Z2
A would correspond to the 1958 model year, C 1960, and H 1962, the latter two have been matched to observed speaker dates. In at least one instance (a 9CT41Z2 1000-D), the same number, 343048, was found stamped on both the speaker and the chassis. 343 is the EIA designation for parts manufactured by Zenith.

Note:While the 1000(-1) continued to appear in Zenith catalogs at least until 1968, the "D" was dropped folowing the 1962 model year. As such there probably never was a Royal 1000D-1.

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Leather Cases

There is some question as to whether the gray leather case was an option or a bonus bestowed on favored customers - at least I have never seen a price list for it. Beautiful and sleek when closed, it is rather awkward when open since the front cover does not fold as that of the radio itself, the radio must be removed for any access to the rear compartment and there is no provision for 12v connection on a -1 model.See case in open position or closed

On the front of the leather case is a silver Zenith logo containing three lines:

All Transistor
and on the inside of the front cover are the words "Genuine top grain cowhide".

There was also a transparent vinyl case for the 1000 series which was apparently included with the earliest units though it does not appear on the parts list (which does includ the instruction manual and service/parts/schematic manual).

Custom fitted for the 1000, this is a heat-welded plastic cover with cutout for the handle and two snaps on the bottom. The front cover cannot he opened without removing the case.

These cases can be used on the 1000 series only - the extra width of the 3000 prevents the front from being closed and the bandswitch cutout is in the wrong place as are the four round cutouts on the bottom of the case for the feet of the 1000 series.

There were cases made for the 3000 series in the hard grey leather of the earlier seies but with the extra width necessary for the 3000 and an oddly shaped cutout for the -1 option. The legend was also changed to

FM/AM Multiband

Later there was a black soft padded version made for the 3000 and this was also available for the Royal 7000 series

3000 case pictures courtesy of Jerry Straight.

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Battery Cases - Royal 1000 and 3000

Two battery cases were used on the 1000s, earliest being a two piece hard plastic unit that was attached to the rear cover and was held together with four screws. Later production and all 3000s used a removable soft plastic battery case that snaps together. Both use the same connector. Transition from the early to the late battery case appears to have been during the 1960 model year.

Care should be used when shipping 1000s and 3000s with the soft battery case as it is loose in the cabinet and a sharp jolt can cause it to strike/dislodge the transistors in that area.

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-1 AC power supplies

Late Royal 1000 and most Royal 3000 Trans-Oceanics (availability announced on December 2, 1963 - since the 1000D was discontinued after the 1962 model year, there were probably no 1000D-1 units made) were available with an optional socket and wall mount power supply. The power supply such as the p/n S-85875 consisted of a conventional transformer-in-plug unit rated at 12v dc/50 ma. When so equipped 1000 and 3000 units became -1s.

The odd element of the unit was that first it used a 3/32" sub-minature phone plug (to differentiate from the standard 1/8" minature phone plug), and second that the tip is negative while the ring is positive rather than the reverse as is much more common.

While universal type multi-voltage/multi-socket adapters may be used, often they are poorly regulated and a 800 ma supply set for 12v may actually deliver considerably more to such a light load. (My 3000 runs well with such a supply set to 9v - actual output is 11.4 vdc).

Original units will say "Zenith" on the head.

Royal 7000, D7000Y, and R-7000 units contain an internal power supply for both 110 and 220v. These need only a line cord.

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Royal 2000 (-1) AM/FM (1960-1965)

Like the companions to the tubed TransOceanic, there is one radio which may be considered a companion to the transistor TransOceanics. There were other radios (the Royal 780 for instance) which contained shortwave bands but the 2000 was the only Zenith to share the styling and heft of the TOs.

Inside, the nine-transistor 2000 has nothing in common with the TOs as the chassis is hung from the top of the cabinet and utilizes inductive tuning. There are two separate dials for AM and FM but unlike some other contemporary radios, they are ganged together.

Like the later R-7000, the tuning knob has a dual function with the inner knob providing on/off and volume control. The two silver knobs on the upper right are for AM-AFC-FM and tone.

Twin telecopic antennas (rabbit ears) provide gain for FM listening.

The hanging chassis makes room for a very large 4x6 oval speaker which can fill a garage without difficulty (mine does 8*).

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Royal 3000 (-1) (1962-1968)

The Royal 3000 traded the seldom used and short range 13M band for FM though the LW band of the 1000D became standard. The increased circuitry required for the FM band resulted in the final loss of the removable wavemagnet and caused a quarter-inch bulge of the rear panel. The other circuitry change was the loss of the radio-phono switch and the RCA jack became a tuner output to allow connection to a console amplifier/speaker system instead of an amplifier input, something which confused many people.

Unfortunately, the finish problems of the 1000 continued with the 3000 (or possibly just had not surfaced by the time the 3000 was launched).

When closed, only minor logo differences (large badge on front proclaims "FM") separate the 3000 from the 1000 but when open, the two smaller knobs are now stacked and the 3000 has a much finer grillwork. For some reason it does not seem as attractive as the 1000

While no longer supplied with the radio and not having room in the case for storage, the 1000 style removable Wavemagnet was available as a separate accessory and can be plugged in the 3000.

Again, the -1 refers to ability to accept external 12vdc power through a subminiature (3/32") phone plug.

The soft plastic two-piece battery case used in later Royal 1000s was also used in the Royal 3000 and 3000-1.

Chassis used by Royal 3000s are:

12KT40Z3, 12KT40Z8, & 12KT43Z8

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Royal 7000, -1, D7000Y, -1, -2 (1968-1979)

The last "Royal" is considerably larger and more powerful than the earlier units. The Waverod is now separate from the handle, a 110vac adapter is built in, and there is a new "Weather" band though on the first two models this was fixed frequency and crystal-controlled (on -1 the crystal was "user replaceable") while on the later D7000Y it became a tuned band.

The quality of the finish is remarkably improved with the first major redesign of the transistor TransOceanic.

Easily identified when closed by the size and when open by the four stacked knobs and new tuning meter above the knobs on the left side, the 7000 made an attempt to lure amateurs with adjustable RF Gain and CW BFO controls.

The most common (and probably most useful) is the D7000Y that was introduced in 1972. Not well known is that there were three different models of the last Royal, the D7000Y, -1, and -2. The -1 added a thermal limiter to prevent damage to the Trans-Oceanic if plugged into 220v while in the 110v setting. No schematic difference between the -2 and other D7000Ys have been noted so the difference is probably either cosmetic or procedural

Eleven bands were pitched, something that only became reality with the D7000Y: LW, 1.6-3.5MHz, 3.5-9MHz, 31M, 25M, 19M, 16M, 13M, FM, & Weather

Chassis used by the last Royals were:

7000:   18ZT40Z3
7000-1: 18ZT40Z
D7000Y: 500MDR70

Note: the order of chassis above is not a typo, the first Royal 7000 used the Z3 chassis while the -1 dropped the 3.

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R-7000 -1 -2: 1979-1982

The last of the TransOceanics, a complete redesign that was simply too little, too late, too expensive, and not digital. Abandoning the "electrical bandspread" that had been a part of the TransOceanic line since the first Clipper and attempting to provide as broad and continuous coverage as possible, what was previously full scale tuning now was represented by less than an inch of dial.

Now boasting twelve bands, six of which provided near continuous access from 1.8 to 30 Mhz (the gap between about 10.5 Mhz and 11.0 was probably to avoid the FM IF frequency) plus Long Wave, BC, FM, 108-136 Mhz, and finally 144-175 Mhz. The only dial bandspread was for "personal communications: 26.9-27.5 Mhz, understandable in light of the Citizen's Band craze that swept America in the days of 55 mph speed limits and before cellular telephones. To go along with this, one of the few accessories for the TO was a cigarette lighter cord to run the TO off of an automotive charging system while nestled in the center console of an RV.

An ingenious dual tuning knob provided some form of bandspread though the rubber cogged belts used in the first models made accurate tuning an exercise in frustration. This was corrected in late production (identified by chassis number 2WMR70 instead of the earlier 2WKR70 - usually found on a tag on the bottom of the unit) but the damage had been done.

Of particular interest to early R-7000 owners is that a replacement belt has been found - Goodyear p/n 72MXL012

Sharing the same basic box with the D7000Y, the four knobs on the front panel are now arranged in a square instead of being stacked and two large tuning meters on the right replace the single smaller one on the left of the Royal 7000. Airplane style red lighting of "important" areas replaces the soft blue-white dial used previously.

A 94 page "instruction book" accompanied the last TO in four languages - English, Spanish, German, & French.

Often referred to as the "Taiwan" model, the R-7000 was a Chicago design and parts were manufactured in the USA. During 1981, assembly was transferred to a new Taiwanese plant and some -1/all -2 R-7000s were assembled there from US parts.


All except -2: 12WKR70
R7000-2      : 12WMR70 

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R-8000 ?

Last design but never made it past the drawing stage. Said to have been intended to have digital tuning, the entire Trans-Oceanic program was canceled first.

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Comments and new sightings/corrections to Padgett ( app1 at 6007 dot us )