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 Post subject: Re: 1953 Admiral Television help
PostPosted: Mar Tue 13, 2018 2:01 am 
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Joined: May Thu 14, 2015 4:15 pm
Posts: 1579
Location: Dallas, TX
I don't normally check the Antique Radios Discussion category so I didn't see your thread about getting the radios. That GE is the one to go with. The Zenith is pretty complicated, and probably worth more so maybe that one should wait until much latter. You can't always tell about the condition of the electronics by the state of the cabinet, so some of those plastic cabinet radios would have worked out good for you, also almost all the plastic cased radios are AA5's.
The isolation transformer could be useful when working on the GE because the radio doesn't have a power transformer. The Zenith probably has a transformer already so the isolation transformer would not help much.
An isolation transformer isn't the same as a dim bulb tester. An isolation transformer keeps you from being electrocuted or blowing up your test equipment while making measurements with the radio powered up.
A dim bulb tester decreases the possibility of damaging radios and TVs when powering up in the beginning.
Among other things to read is this information on Phil's Old Radios.
https://www.antiqueradio.org/begin.htm
You should also read some of the restoration articles about the various radios, especially the ones about radios from about the same year.
I use a 40 watt iron, it seems to work fine for everything except wires soldered to the chassis, and ther usually aren't a lot of those. I've got a 60 watt with a larger tip that most of the time I use plugged into a variac to lower the power to about 50% to solder larger stuff.

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 Post subject: Re: 1953 Admiral Television help
PostPosted: Mar Tue 13, 2018 2:12 am 
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Joined: Mar Sun 01, 2009 10:27 pm
Posts: 4980
Location: Ann Arbor, MI
A word about why you might need an isolation transformer.

Many radios and some TVs, mainly the ones without a power transformer, have one side of the AC power cord connected to the chassis. Now the power at the wall socket has one side connected to ground and the other side therefore has 120 volts relative to ground. When you plug in the radio, there is a 50/50 chance that the chassis will have 120 volts on it relative to ground. The output of an isolation transformer has no connection to ground.

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 Post subject: Re: 1953 Admiral Television help
PostPosted: Mar Tue 13, 2018 2:32 am 
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Joined: May Thu 14, 2015 4:15 pm
Posts: 1579
Location: Dallas, TX
A couple of more things I'll add.
You got a pretty good deal with those two radios. Ebay asking prices are not a good guide to value. The seller can ask anything and as P.T.Barnum is supposed to have said "There's a sucker born every minute". (Apparently he never said that.)
Don't rush! You will end up wasting money if you get ahead of yourself.
Read (and watch) a lot of thing about restoring radios. There are some differences in philosophies about working on radios and sometimes there is more than one way to do something.
The more you know about how things work, and the more experience you have, the fewer pieces of test equipment you can get by with. That's because you can make educated guesses about things you can't measure.
Some old salts can figure out what a problem is just by using a wet finger and a bent spoon! (Not really.)
Especially with simple radios it is cheaper to substitute in known good tubes than it is to buy a tube tester.
You won't get any points for the least spent on a piece of test equipment, you get what you pay for.
Good soldering skills come with practice.

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It's not the Destination, It's the Journey.


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 Post subject: Re: 1953 Admiral Television help
PostPosted: Mar Wed 14, 2018 1:09 am 
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Joined: May Thu 14, 2015 4:15 pm
Posts: 1579
Location: Dallas, TX
I discovered a good beginners guide to reading schematics on youtube. There are a series of videos.
Stan Gibilisco wrote a book that is available on Amazon but the videos are free, if you can stand the repeated mentioned of his book.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bIG8mqv ... Umd_9rNIIe
You could skip the transistor, MOSFET, logic gates and other episodes.

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It's not the Destination, It's the Journey.


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 Post subject: Re: 1953 Admiral Television help
PostPosted: Mar Wed 14, 2018 7:40 pm 
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Joined: Feb Mon 19, 2018 11:33 pm
Posts: 53
Location: Lafayette Louisiana
thank you to everyone here for the awesome mentoring. I am 10 of 44 into joernones series on the 31 Airline. He is teaching how to read and understand the schematics right now. I pulled my schematic up and I'm following along taking notes trying to understand. I do have some questions but they might be answered in the series so I'll hold them until I'm finished. Also I saved all the links in my favorites including the how to read the schematic series posted earlier. I am going to be picking up some tools this weekend and if I'm confident enough, I'd like to begin disassembling the General Electric. I want to post photos and add annotations to things I may have questions about if yall are okay with that. I have two posts going at once and I feel like since this one is more on the television I will continue on this one. viewtopic.php?f=1&t=336752


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