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 Post subject: Back Cover
PostPosted: Mar Thu 15, 2018 8:45 pm 
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Location: Maryville, Tennessee 37801
Is there a way to straighten and refurbish the back cover of these old radio's??


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 Post subject: Re: Back Cover
PostPosted: Mar Sat 17, 2018 1:47 am 
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Location: Charleston, W.Va.
Hi DeBaty,

Your original Zenith back cover seems to be in relatively good condition and its graphics are also good. Here is my suggestion on how to strengthen and stabilize it:

Prepare two pieces of good-quality flat 3/4" plywood, of equal size and slightly larger than the back panel. Cover one side of each of these with wax paper, to prevent glue adhesion. Flatten out the wax paper and secure it to the edges of the plywood panels with masking tape, making sure the wax paper lays flat with no wrinkles. Then dilute some Elmer's or TiteBond carpenter's wood glue about 50/50 with water, apply it liberally with a brush to the original back panel, allow it to soak in for several minutes, repeat if necessary until the back cover is fully saturated, but do not over-apply the glue. If necessary wipe glue from the surface very lightly with a damp rag (being careful with the printed graphics), then clamp it tightly between the two pieces of plywood. After a 24-hour dry the panel should be relatively rigid and ready to re-install on your radio.

The diluted Elmer's or TiteBond wood glue dries clear, but will cause your original back panel to darken in color. But this might actually restore it close to its original color, as it has probably bleached out somewhat over the years.

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 Post subject: Re: Back Cover
PostPosted: Mar Sat 17, 2018 3:03 am 
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Joined: Aug Sat 19, 2017 4:41 pm
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Location: Maryville, Tennessee 37801
Poston,

Thank you, I had thought about Elmer's Glue and water but never thought about using the sheets of plywood. I will try it and let you know how it works.

Darrell

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 Post subject: Re: Back Cover
PostPosted: Mar Sat 17, 2018 9:42 pm 
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Joined: Jan Thu 01, 1970 1:00 am
Posts: 4351
Location: Charleston, W.Va.
Darrell,
Bear in mind, when I made the suggestion to coat it with diluted glue and clamp it between two pieces of 3/4" plywood covered with wax paper, it was on the assumption that there is no loop antenna fastened inside of your back cover! :lol:

If this treatment does not result in enough rigidity, you could also consider gluing some thin strips of wood to the inside of the cover to reinforce it (such as 1/8" balsa wood from a hobby shop or possibly a wood paint stirrer ripped down to appropriate width.) In such a case, you could likewise clamp the reinforcement to the panel with the same two sheets of plywood.

I have used this diluted glue-and-clamp method on several cardboard radio backs with good success. I will be anxious to hear about your own results--please keep us posted.

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