Louis E. Garner, Jr.

Lou Garner was a contributing editor for Popular Electronics for over 25 years. He wrote the lead article, "Build Your Own Bike Radio", in the very first issue of Popular Electronics (October 1954).  This told you how to build a four-tube battery-powered radio that attached to the bicycle handle bars. In the April 1955 issue he presented his vacuum tube version of the Theremin musical instrument. He redid this design with transistors in the November 1967 issue. This classic design was sold as a kit by SWTPC of over 10 years.

2N34 Germanium PNP Alloy Junction TransistorIn addition to construction articles he was given a column called Transistor Topics (June 1956). In April1955 a CK722 transistor cost over $3 and a bottle of Coca-Cola cost a nickel. Transistors soon cost less than a dollar and transistor project became common in every issue of Popular Electronics. The column was renamed to Solid State in 1965 and ran under his byline until December 1978. The 25th anniversary issue (October 1979) had his last column titled "Down Nostalgia Lane". He remained on the masthead until February 1980

His byline for his Transistor Topics and Solid State columns was Lou Garner, but he used his full name for articles.

This 2N34 Germanium PNP Alloy Junction Transistor is from Lou Garner's collection. The1954 Allied Radio catalog listed the RCA 2N34 for $13.40. (Transistor History 101 by Bob McGarrah)

In January 1972 Electronics World was merged into Popular Electronics. This "new look" did not go over well with many contributing authors (and readers.) Daniel Meyer, Don Lancaster and many other authors immediately started writing for the competing Radio-Electronics magazine. In June of 1972 Lou Garner moved to Radio-Electronics as the Semiconductor Editor. His State of Solid State column appeared there until October 1973, he returned to Popular Electronics in November 1973.

Before Popular Electronics was started Lou wrote articles for another Ziff Davis publication, Radio and Television News. (Wide frequency range square-wave clipper. March 1950)

Lou also wrote for other magazines. He wrote "How To Troubleshoot Your Projects" in the March 1961 issue of Electronics Illustrated.

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This page was last edited November 01, 2006