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 Post subject: Military Hallicrafter radios
PostPosted: Sep Sat 18, 2021 8:35 pm 
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Joined: Jul Sun 25, 2021 10:25 pm
Posts: 9
I have an SX-28 and an S-27 Hallicrafter receiver. I want to get them "Cleaned Up" before attempting any electrical restoration. I have opened them up and swept them well with 50 LB compressed air. I was concerned about using any higher pressure air because of causing any unseen damage. My question is, is there any cleaner or solvent that can be used SAFELY to clean the metal chassis and other metal parts?
There is a rough feel to some of the metal that would probably only be thoroughly cleaned by stripping down to the bare chassis, and this is not something I would live long enough to do. I have used De-Oxit in the past on smaller more easily handled radios, and it works very well.
I have looked for the De-Oxit, and I do not remember it being that pricey. The best I could find is 5ozs, for $22. Cosmetically, the radios are very clean, and will not need any paint touch-up. They have been inside of a home that is Air-conditioned for about 40 years. There are also 3 BC-610's, complete, that I am looking at. Any help would be appreciated.
Benny - W5TYZ


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 Post subject: Re: Military Hallicrafter radios
PostPosted: Sep Sat 18, 2021 8:42 pm 
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Joined: Feb Wed 12, 2014 4:25 pm
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Location: Southeast Kans. - KA0HCP
There are two generally safe cleaning solvents. Mineral Spirit and Isopropyl Alcohol (IPA).

Mineral Spirits are non-polar, typically remove other non-polar substances like oil, tar, waxes.
It typically leaves no significant residue and is safer than Naptha from an ignition perspective.

IPA is Polar and removes other polar substances such as water soluble chemicals. Unfortunately IPA tends to leave a sticky white residue, which is even harder to remove when used over larger areas.

Neither should be used on Bakelite.


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 Post subject: Re: Military Hallicrafter radios
PostPosted: Sep Sat 18, 2021 10:09 pm 
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Joined: Jul Sun 25, 2021 10:25 pm
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Thanks for the info. I'm still not ready for needing a cleaner, but I wanted to be ready.
Thanks again...
Benny - W5TYZ


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 Post subject: Re: Military Hallicrafter radios
PostPosted: Sep Sun 19, 2021 5:22 am 
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Joined: Oct Sun 15, 2006 12:57 pm
Posts: 7981
Location: Liberty, Missouri
My advise would be to use a pressure washer to clean that radio up, just remove the tubes. If you don't have a pressure washer you can go to the local DIY car wash. Remove the meters, and dials, and put a little piece of tape over the IF transformer adjust holes. If the power transformer is an open frame type tape a baggy over it. If it has end bells, try not to get water in where the wires come out.

I do this often with dirty boat anchors. I usually do it in groups, then leave them to soak in the hot sun, standing on one end or the other for a couple days, on up-ended trash cans or the patio table. This allows air to easily circulate throughout the chassis and the heat helps accelerate evaporation. It takes anywhere from a few days to weeks to complete work on a radio, so by the time you're ready to apply power its definitely dry.

This method is very thorough and quick. I make sure I give each tube socket, connector, gear, especially those split spring loaded types, and open bearing, a good squirt. Often the result is that the chassis looks virtually brand new. I enjoy working on these things but I don't like getting myself and the bench nasty dirty in the process. Let alone all the paper towels etcetera.

Here are some examples of before/after on a few radios. None of these took more than 5 minutes under the gun. :wink:

Image

Image

Image

Image
ClickThePIC

The results are often very impressive and a chassis looks virtually brand new.

Image

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 Post subject: Re: Military Hallicrafter radios
PostPosted: Sep Sun 19, 2021 1:30 pm 
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Joined: Jul Sun 25, 2021 10:25 pm
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Wow...That is a big difference. BTW I noticed some foam on the driveway in the cleaning area.
Are you using any kind of soap in the washer or have you presprayed the chassis before pressure
washing? I have a washer and it has a soap reservoir. Thanks for the very well done tutorial.
Benny - W6TYZ


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 Post subject: Re: Military Hallicrafter radios
PostPosted: Sep Mon 20, 2021 4:08 am 
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Location: Liberty, Missouri
Hi Benny, Yep I just use the pressure washer soap De Jour from Sams or Wally world or where ever. Some folks say that the tuning condenser should be removed, but I've never bothered and blast them "with reckless disregard" and haven't had any problems.

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 Post subject: Re: Military Hallicrafter radios
PostPosted: Sep Mon 20, 2021 4:59 am 
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OK Mike....Thanks for the claification.
BR


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 Post subject: Re: Military Hallicrafter radios
PostPosted: Sep Mon 20, 2021 7:30 am 
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Joined: Apr Sun 08, 2007 6:47 am
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Location: British Columbia
I haven't used a pressure washer as yet, but I usually start by cleaning the dust, mouse droppings, dead bugs, and other crud off with an artist's brush, and toothbrush, and a shop vac. If it's still grungy I follow that by washing with a TSP solution, and hot water, on a hot day, removing speakers, and dials, and sometimes the tuning cap, and any shielding that gets in the way. After scrubbing, I rinse it thoroughly with hot water, then put the chassis in a warm, dry place to dry for a week or more. I do all of this by pouring a plastic pail over the chassis, I do not immerse the chassis, I figure it offers more control of where the water ends up. This isn't with boat anchors per se but with any grungy chassis, Philcos, RCA, G.E, whatever.
Regards
Arran


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 Post subject: Re: Military Hallicrafter radios
PostPosted: Sep Sat 25, 2021 5:32 am 
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Joined: Jul Thu 29, 2010 5:35 am
Posts: 1400
Location: Simonton, Texas
I have had good results using Super Clean which I purchase at Wally world. I spray it on and use a parts brush and tooth brushes to clean the heavy stuff. I then rinse it off with a garden hose with a spray nozzle. Most radios come out looking like Mike's.

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 Post subject: Re: Military Hallicrafter radios
PostPosted: Sep Sat 25, 2021 9:30 am 
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Joined: Jan Thu 16, 2020 12:29 am
Posts: 1628
The reason this worked so well is that the residue on the chassis surface was most likely oil or nicotine based and the chassis electroplating had not yet failed. The high pressure water and detergent cleaned it off very well. But it pays to keep in mind that, on many other chassis, the poor appearance of them results from failure of the electroplating resulting in surface rusting, and no amount of hosing this down will cure it. The only way is by re-plating the chassis. It is also important if you do this sort of thing not to let water into mica tuning capacitors and other vulnerable places , also, ideally the water source should be de-ionized water or the residual salts will cause corrosion later. As usual, all is not what is seems.


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 Post subject: Re: Military Hallicrafter radios
PostPosted: Sep Sat 25, 2021 1:04 pm 
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Joined: Nov Tue 18, 2008 8:34 am
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Location: Hutchinson,Kansas
Rags, Elbow grease and WD40 works pretty good too!

I have seen pictures of Mike pressure washing radios and he has had great success with doing that but I just cant wrap my head around soaking those old radios with water............ :mrgreen:


Todd


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 Post subject: Re: Military Hallicrafter radios
PostPosted: Sep Sat 25, 2021 7:27 pm 
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Joined: Jan Thu 01, 1970 1:00 am
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Location: Gulfport, MS
A quick web search found this from Tektronics.

See attached.


Attachments:
Tek-wet-washing.pdf [96.08 KiB]
Downloaded 27 times

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 Post subject: Re: Military Hallicrafter radios
PostPosted: Sep Sat 25, 2021 9:19 pm 
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Joined: Oct Sun 15, 2006 12:57 pm
Posts: 7981
Location: Liberty, Missouri
I too highly recommend doing a DI water rinse as the last step in the washing process. All excess water should then be removed with compressed air, although a leaf blower could also be used.

To Acornvalve's comment regarding chassis condition, there is no amount of cleaning that will reverse plating and rust problems, as seen in this chassis of a Hammarlund 170. I was able to make the exterior of the radio look nearly pristine, but the chassis was a different story.

Image

Image

Image

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 Post subject: Re: Military Hallicrafter radios
PostPosted: Sep Sun 26, 2021 12:48 am 
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Location: Rockford, IL
Who would have know: a pressure washer :-)

I was always afraid of getting the cloth wire wet - it does dry well? If so this is easier than the toothbrush and q-tips method. I feel like restoration of radios is a military punishment akin to scrubbing floors with a toothbrush.


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 Post subject: Re: Military Hallicrafter radios
PostPosted: Sep Sun 26, 2021 12:38 pm 
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Location: Liberty, Missouri
Quote:
...I was always afraid of getting the cloth wire wet - does it dry well?...
Only if the cotton has been sanforized, otherwise it'll shrink! :wink:

Cloth wires dry fine, here's a pic of the bottom side of one of my AR88s after a power wash. the thing looks brand new.
Image

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