Detectron Model DG-5 "Claimstaker" (ca. 1950-1960)
The Model DG-5 GM survey meter, known as the "Claimstaker," was produced by the Detectron Corporation of North Hollywood, California. The company was founded (ca. 1949-1950) by Larry Cassingham and Jack Rondou.
The DG-5 was an inexpensive survey meter designed for prospecting. There was no visual display. It had audio, but that could only be heard by using headphones since there was no speaker. While it didn't have many features (heck, it didn't have any), it had the virtue of being compact and easy to use.
The photo above right shows the DG-5 with the case open so that the GM tube can be seen. The black glass tube, towards the lower right, is positioned immediately behind the detector window (four small plastic covered holes in the case). As the instructions note: "Your Detectron Model DG-5 is a sensitive radiation detector which will give you reliable service over a long period of time. The instrument will respond to radiation from all types of uranium and thorium minerals and will detect very small concentrations of them."
Detector: Thin-wall glass GM tube, Raytheon CK-1026
Audio: No speaker but connections for headphones
Size: 3 1/2" x 5 1/2" x 2"
Batteries: One 15, one 1.5 volt D cell
Price: ca. $60
The DG-5 only had two controls, an on/off switch and a button that had to be pushed several times to get the detector up and running.
- Cassingham, C. "Detectron and Larry Cassingham" website.
- Operating Instructions. Detectron Model DG-5 "Claimstaker" No date. ca. 1950s.