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 Post subject: Re: Radio Restoration Diary 2 ( post photobucket)
PostPosted: Jul Mon 16, 2018 4:30 pm 
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A coupla more radios.

The first is a large-ish sized GE "Musaphonic" clock radio. I don't like these for a few reasons:

A: They're made out of a brittle polystyrene plastic that cracks and breaks very easily. The case is for whatever reason made out of 5 pieces. This case had issues and needed to be taken apart and repaired.

B: It has a phono input but the way that the user switches from radio to phono is via a strange volume pot I've only ever seen on this era of GE: dead middle of the pot there is a switch that turns the radio portion off, but the phono input on: Volume is increased in either direction. I ALWAYS somehow forget that and so, just like the last time I did one of these I couldn't figure out why I was getting no radio at all. An hour after reflowing solder joints, checking tubes and whatnot I remembered this had the weird volume control. Arg!

Anyway, looks like the across the line cap decided to have a party in there: I can imagine the sound it made when it let go:
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2: This pre-war GE. Not an amazing looking thing but the mirrored dial scale is neat. Its a 6 tuber and when it was done it is pretty sensitive. Has a weird antenna where there is a loop that slides out of a slot in the top of the cabinet, another that's on the back of the radio... Probably explains the good reception...

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 Post subject: Re: Radio Restoration Diary 2 ( post photobucket)
PostPosted: Jul Tue 17, 2018 4:21 pm 
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Not much to report today. I restored this 50's Panasonic 2-3 years ago and its been used in the library as well as a shop radio at the museum ever since. It had gotten all scratched up and the controls were getting dirty from all of the construction dust. So I took out the chassis, cleaned the controls and used plastic polish on the case. Not sure it will go back into "service" again or whether we will sell it. Guess I'll have to ask what the library guys think

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 Post subject: Re: Radio Restoration Diary 2 ( post photobucket)
PostPosted: Jul Thu 19, 2018 4:40 pm 
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48 hours till' radio day.
Here's two more sets. and of course I forgot to take pictures of their innards.

1: Large-ish table top Arvin. The radio was trashed when I got it with the case broken in several places. I'm running out of spray paint so I painted it a garish green color. Maybe I'll repaint it sometime. Anyway... FM works amazingly well for a late 40's set. In fact I have several Arvins with FM and they all work well on it.
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2: Another Hallicrafters set. Personally I find these a tad boring. But it was easy to overhaul and the original paint came out nice with a few applications of car wax.
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 Post subject: Re: Radio Restoration Diary 2 ( post photobucket)
PostPosted: Jul Thu 19, 2018 10:11 pm 
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Bob,

I like that color of blue. That's a good looking radio. Is that an original color or did you paint it?

Tom

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 Post subject: Re: Radio Restoration Diary 2 ( post photobucket)
PostPosted: Jul Mon 23, 2018 4:19 pm 
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Here's one of the what I'd call "Sympathy radios". I saved this from the huge pile of clunker radios sitting in our "flea market" out back of the building. Its a very loooong solid state Telefunken. It actually worked ok, amazing given the electrolytics were bulging and one spewing its innards. It was absolutely nasty with lots of crud encrusting the case and somehow the fake wood grain was almost all worn off.

Taken all apart, cleaned, re-capped, and painted white. I was super tired because radio day was the day before. So I forgot to take more pics.

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 Post subject: Re: Radio Restoration Diary 2 ( post photobucket)
PostPosted: Jul Wed 25, 2018 5:15 pm 
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More more more radios...

1: A somewhat smaller Telefunken. Probably a later model as the dial glass is plastic, which I tend to see on late model Grundigs and Telefunkens. Sort of a basic set and most of the caps were mylar so the electrolytics were all that was needed to replace.
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2: A very common Emerson. Yes- there's billions of these things but this one has about the most pristine and perfect bakelit case I've see in a long time.

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 Post subject: Re: Radio Restoration Diary 2 ( post photobucket)
PostPosted: Jul Thu 26, 2018 4:49 am 
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I like that Hallicrafters cabinet design. I bet it will sell quick.
White was a good choice for the T-funken. Good luck with the sale.

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 Post subject: Re: Radio Restoration Diary 2 ( post photobucket)
PostPosted: Jul Thu 26, 2018 8:40 am 
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Location: Nr London, England, SS1 3PT
Bob, you make me feel weary the number of sets you get through! And amazingly to me they find homes :)

Would the paint jobs stand the critical eyeball test? If so you have made it seem very easy. Alan D used to say view only from several feet, guess that's real life but with me its inches whilst I'm doing them.

Working on one that got started 6 months ago and may get finished about Christmas :D

antiqueradios.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=339879

Gary


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 Post subject: Re: Radio Restoration Diary 2 ( post photobucket)
PostPosted: Jul Thu 26, 2018 4:28 pm 
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Oh I'm 100% certain that anyone on here could absolutely pick apart the paint jobs I do. Most of these sets have cracks, a few chunks missing here and there and so on. They have hardly any collector's value. These are mostly sold to non-collectors at antique shows to folks who like that they can have a cool looking old radio and yet use their mobile phones to play their music through. I am getting better at not having runs and weird uneven areas but I will need to get a spray booth to make them perfect... All I know is that some of my wife's plants in the yard are now sporting a dusting of green, blue, red, yellow... etc. She hasn't noticed. Yet.


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 Post subject: Re: Radio Restoration Diary 2 ( post photobucket)
PostPosted: Jul Mon 30, 2018 9:59 pm 
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Two more radios done on Sunday.

1: A nice Lowe-Opta Meteor. This one worked fine but was 100% original. Just replaced the electrolytics, cleaned the pots, replaced the few paper caps it had and polish the woodwork. Also added bluetooth, and this is the radio featured in the how-to post about adding these.

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2: A small Zenith tombstone radio, donated to us by Mike ( Thanks Mike! ). It had a broken band switch shaft but we have a bunch of extensions at the museum so that was remedied. Someone had replaced the electrolytics but left the paper caps. After those were replaced the set works fine. The finish looked dried out and tired. Some oiling and some beeswax brought it back. I will have to find the correct missing knob.
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3: A set of these interesting Electrohome speakers. The covers are made of a fine wire mesh. Inside is the woofer and the tweeter, housed in an odd aluminum horn thingy.
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 Post subject: Re: Radio Restoration Diary 2 ( post photobucket)
PostPosted: Jul Mon 30, 2018 10:07 pm 
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I really like that Meteor Bob. :)

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 Post subject: Re: Radio Restoration Diary 2 ( post photobucket)
PostPosted: Jul Mon 30, 2018 10:21 pm 
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Thanks! Whats interesting to me is that to my ears it sounds better than most of the German sets I've worked on. Whereas turning the bass all the way up on most of the Telefunkens and Grundigs where the sound starts to become distorted and "fluttery" this one doesn't. A good, solid, room-filling sound quality.


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 Post subject: Re: Radio Restoration Diary 2 ( post photobucket)
PostPosted: Jul Tue 31, 2018 4:22 pm 
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One for today. Its a Emerson that was in pieces at the museum. It was missing the speaker, the entire front panel was detached from the front and it was missing one of the knobs. The front panel was glued back to the inner lip of the case, a correct speaker and knob was found, the case was polished and the chassis recapped. Now back in working order.

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 Post subject: Re: Radio Restoration Diary 2 ( post photobucket)
PostPosted: Aug Thu 02, 2018 5:13 pm 
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Here's an odd one. Its a 6 tube Sparton in a metal case and yes- the case is factory original. I thought maybe it was some strange homemade case made in shop class. This was sitting with a number of other orphan radios at the museum out back. Nobody bought it on radio day and it sat all day last Saturday in the almost-free stash. Well I decided to take it home.

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It has ALL kinds things wrong with it:
1: The speaker's coil was frozen hence no movement.
2: 35Z5, 50L6 and 12SQ7 were totally dead
3: Speaker was loosely sitting inside as the brackets to hold it were missing

So... turns out that several of the capacitors in the circuit were very much shorted and burnt looking. I wonder what happened. Maybe a lightening strike? Maybe some other catastrophic failure? Anyway after a recap and the replacement of the dud tubes it worked. I somehow miraculously had the exact same speaker in stock. New brackets were made from scrap metal and the new speaker mounted inside.
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The case was sanded down and repainted. The surround for the plastic lens had been glopped up with paint too so the plastic was popped out and the paint removed. Pretty sensitive little radio!
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 Post subject: Re: Radio Restoration Diary 2 ( post photobucket)
PostPosted: Aug Mon 06, 2018 12:19 am 
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Bob,

Can you think of a reason this radio had a metal case? Could it have been something of an industrial radio that was used in a school environment, something like that?

Tom

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 Post subject: Re: Radio Restoration Diary 2 ( post photobucket)
PostPosted: Aug Mon 06, 2018 12:34 am 
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No clue why it's made of stamped steel. It doesn't even have a real style. Just a homely metal case. But it's a bit better than your typical AA5, so why this exists is beyond me


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 Post subject: Re: Radio Restoration Diary 2 ( post photobucket)
PostPosted: Aug Mon 06, 2018 3:05 am 
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Yeah, I have one of those Sparton's with the metal case. The speaker in mine was not original. I was thinking that since it came out right after WW2 that it might have been meant for the military but the war ended before it could be released.


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 Post subject: Re: Radio Restoration Diary 2 ( post photobucket)
PostPosted: Aug Mon 06, 2018 4:25 pm 
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A few more.

We have another 20 days before a big antique show in Fremont CA and so enough sets need to be readied, and these are typically not radio collector type folks, so of course all of the sets must work and do so reliably AND usually they like to have bluetooth installed. So far we have a total of about 65-70 restored sets. I want to add at least another 15-20 more for good measure because the last 2 years of the show has resulted in us almost selling out.

We have a number of really nice, premium sets that were either deaccessioned from the museum's collection as well as a few that were donated by members for the recent radio day auction, of which did not sell. I cannot take credit for any of the work on these and as you will see with the first one the refinish jobs are very well done. All I am doing is going in and "refreshing" them a bit. As in making sure the pots are all cleaned and that bluetooth receivers are added and run through the Phono inputs, of which all of them have.

1: A large late-30's RCA.
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2: This isn't one of those sets. We had a swap meet and I wound up buying a lot of sets in the $5-$20 range that looked like decent enough sets to overhaul and resell for us at the show. Two were Crosley AM/FM sets. This one is sort of unusual in that it has a fake leather covering over a brown painted case. It along with a few of the other sets were clearly owned at one time by heavy smokers: Two of these so far have been coated with nicotine and tar. That said unlike many 50's FM sets these work REALLY well on FM, so the engineers knew what they were doing. Amazingly two so far just worked before the recap job. This and the other- not finished yet- were fully recapped and the sel. Rectifiers replaced with diode and compensating resistor.

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 Post subject: Re: Radio Restoration Diary 2 ( post photobucket)
PostPosted: Aug Mon 06, 2018 7:26 pm 
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Bob,

The RCA tombstone looks really nice. How much do you think it will sell for? If I had to guess, I'd say about $200-ish?

Tom

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 Post subject: Re: Radio Restoration Diary 2 ( post photobucket)
PostPosted: Aug Mon 06, 2018 9:26 pm 
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I'll have to confer with the other people I will be setting up with, but this particular market is pretty high-end so I'm guessing it will be in the $250-$300 level. Adding bluetooth makes them a great deal more appealing to the folks who buy from us: Instead of something that only gets AM, of which there isn't anything other than talk and news around here- they can play their own music on them. Whoever refinished this spent a great deal of time doing it, so I feel the price should be reflective of that.


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