I started with the radical list in a children’s Chinese dictionary: Wang4 Wen2 Xin1 Xue2 Sheng1 Z4i Dian3 (旺文新學生字典, 旺文出版公司). Since there’s some dispcrepancy among radical lists, especially in ponunciation, I decided to use this list as a starting point. Also, it’s a really cool all-Chinese dictionary with 5000 of the most commonly occuring characters, stroke orders, and example sentences (sort of a more intense version of the Far East 3000). My version is pink with an elephant on the cover.
Then I went to Chinaknowledge to get the English meanings. Some of the definitions there seem a llittle off, so now I’m checking it against Zhongwen.com. Some of the radicals there don’t have entries, but you can sort of get an idea by clicking on the example characters that are listed under a radical.
I’ve checked out some books, but they’re all crap. I’m still looking for any other resources. And I think it probably makes more sense just to learn the 200 or so characters that form the basis of the classification system used at Zhongwen.com, instead of the radicals. I’m just learning the radicals so I’ll always be able to look up any character in a traditional dictionary, when I don’t happen to have my Palm with handwriting recognition nearby.