Start of a New Refurbish Project

On a recent ski trip down to Whitefish, we were contacted by the amazing couple behind The Coulee Cottage - Ky and Tanner. They were in the process of clearing out some old finds from their home and thought of us, curious to see if we wanted any of them to use in future lamps and lighting projects. As the ski trip came to a close, we packed up and headed home around the bottom of Glacier National park and up through the Babb border crossing to their home town of Cardston, AB. We hadn't met them before, and couldn't show up empty-handed, so we stopped at the duty free shop and picked up some Belgian Chocolate to take with us. Who doesn't love chocolate, right??

Ky and Tanner welcomed us into their home with open arms. They are truly incredible and friendly people, and are seriously some of the most creative minds we've met! If you haven't checked out their wood art, do it. Seriously. Go. Now. It is truly spectacular! You can find them on Instagram @thecouleecottage or online at

As we chatted and got to know them (and loaded up our already full vehicle with all the incredible finds they had for us), we learned that the cottage they call home was Tanner's grandfather's homestead, and is over 100 years old! Sitting out on the front porch was an old vacuum tube radio. As we were saying goodbye, Tanner spotted it and asked if I wanted to use it for something. Of course! Tanner told us about how this radio was his grandfather's, and he remembered sitting for long hours in the living room listening to it. It no longer worked, and the electronics inside were burnt and scorched from what was surely long years of use. As we thanked our new friends and parted ways, the story of the old radio stuck with us.

As we pulled into our driveway a few hours later and began to unload the car, I couldn't stop thinking about finding someway to say thank you to these wonderful people for their incredible donation. Then my wife threw in a suggestion - "I'd be neat if we could refurbish that old radio and give it back to them..."

"Of course!"

And so, here we are! We envision this blog as a way to share our creative adventures with you, and hopefully inspire you to pursue your own creativity. We'll be sharing our progress with you, details about some of our builds, and behind-the-scenes photos of just how it all comes together. And what better project to start with then the refurbishment of an old radio, destined to be reunited with an incredible owner and enjoyed for long years to come!

Our goal with this one is to bring it into the modern era, while preserving it's vintage vibe and feel. We'll be removing the old radio internals and replacing them with a hidden bluetooth speaker. To pay tribute to it's vacuum tube past, we'll be building a Nixie clock to mount within, it's tubes on display on top of the radio's body. Finally, we'll add a few filament bulbs to complete the project - we are a lamp company after all ;)

Thank you for joining us here, and we hope you find inspiration in our adventures! Watch for updates! If you haven't done so, subscribe to our mailing list, follow us on Instagram @emersonindustrial and on Facebook @emersonindustrialco to make sure you stay up-to-date on our future blog posts!

#Blog #VacuumTube #Radio #Vintage #Refurb #Refurbish