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 Post subject: Radio back replacement?
PostPosted: May Tue 10, 2011 2:33 am 
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Joined: Feb Thu 17, 2011 11:27 pm
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Location: Long Island, N.Y.
I would appreciate it very much if someone could guide me as to what to do about replacing a missing fiberboard/cardboard back (no antenna) to my radio? Does anyone make generic reproductions? I was thinking about cutting my own, but it just wouldn't look good solid. It would need difficult-to-cut slots in it. What do you guys do in a situatation like this?
Thanks so much,
Joe


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: May Tue 10, 2011 4:48 am 
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Joined: Jan Thu 01, 1970 1:00 am
Posts: 587
Location: Sedro-Woolley WA
http://www.retro-tronics.com/

Retro-Tronics: Reproduction Vintage Radio Backs and Engraving Services

We now reproduce backs for over 200 models and that number grows every month.

(Copied from their website.)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: May Tue 10, 2011 5:50 am 
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Joined: Dec Sat 23, 2006 5:49 pm
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Location: missouri ozarks
I make replacement backs out of tempered Masonite. I lay the radio down on the Masonite, draw around the cabinet with a pencil, then cut it out on a scroll saw. I think they look nice. Not totally correct, but that is of no importance to me. It is functional, though. I make slots or round holes for ventilation and that's about it. Good luck......GREG


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: May Tue 10, 2011 10:09 am 
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Location: Long Island, N.Y.
Thanks so much guys for your input!
Joe


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: May Tue 10, 2011 4:42 pm 
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Location: McPherson, Kansas
electra225 wrote:
I make replacement backs out of tempered Masonite. I lay the radio down on the Masonite, draw around the cabinet with a pencil, then cut it out on a scroll saw. I think they look nice. Not totally correct, but that is of no importance to me. It is functional, though. I make slots or round holes for ventilation and that's about it. Good luck......GREG

**********************
I do pretty much the same thing when one is missing. In fact, just did it for a Silvertone midget. I saved a big piece of "back" off a Lowry organ a few years ago, and it still has lots of "backs" left in it.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: May Tue 10, 2011 10:01 pm 
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Joined: Feb Mon 21, 2011 4:19 pm
Posts: 124
Location: San Marcos, CA 92069
I bought a sheet of "X-Board" backing board at Aaron Brothers for under $10. It is a 14 ply acid free cardboard that is very stiff. The sheet is 32 by 40 inches roughly 1/16 inch thick, enough for many radio backs! I cut it using a rotary cutter and a ruler and sputtered silver and grey spray paint to give it a molted look. Drilled holes and mounted the loop antenna on the inside, and attached it to the back. Looks great. I cut a simple X pattern with the narrow part of the X about an inch in from the edge of the radio.

Roughly like this:

Code:
__            __
|  \__________/  |
\              /
  |            |
  |            |
/  __________  \
|__/          \__|


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: May Wed 11, 2011 2:23 am 
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Joined: Jan Thu 01, 1970 1:00 am
Posts: 1553
Location: SOUTHLAKE, TX, USA
The Retro-Tronics backs are great. Perfect reproductions. Sure, you can make your own. When you factor in the cost of materials, labor and errors, the Retro-Tronics backs are a great find.
BOB


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: May Wed 11, 2011 6:44 am 
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Location: SoCal, 91387
There's no question that the Retro-Tronics backs look very professional, but their cost is maybe one-half to a third of what I usually pay for a Bakelite AA5.

I've made one out of Masonite so far, and it came out pretty good, for a Philco Transitone set.

_________________
\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\He Who Dies With The Most Radios Wins//////////////////


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: May Thu 12, 2011 6:52 pm 
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Joined: Mar Sat 28, 2009 8:27 pm
Posts: 691
Location: Georgia
I make my backs from 1/8" masonite tempered BOTH SIDES. It is also getting difficult to find in the traditional 4 x 8 foot sheets. The tempering helps to prevent "fuzzing" on the edges and also renders the material more ridgid.
I too use a scroll or band saw for general shape but use my high speed router table for slots and edge trim. I shoot them with two wet coats of lacquer if I want them to look really good.
If you are looking for cheap material then check out a frame shop that does picture matting. After they cut out large matts the inside of the matt is waste to them and they discard it and it is in various colors. eeprof


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: May Thu 12, 2011 10:27 pm 
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Posts: 3411
Location: Olympia WA USA
I just save the fiberboard backs from all the old rear projection tv's I junk out and use them.

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WB7ELC
Member: TCA & Steel Soldiers.
" Break down the wall"


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: May Sun 15, 2011 11:49 pm 
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Joined: Oct Wed 14, 2009 6:20 pm
Posts: 191
Location: Ponoka, AB
I make my backs from cardboard that I get from the local upholstery shop. The type that is stapled or tacked to low end furnature. It is cheap and very much resembles the original radio back material. The color is usually light brown, grey or dark purple. It is 1/8 of an inch thick. I cut it on a band saw and make the air holes with either a punch or cut them out with a forstner drill bit.

You can also snag some of this type of cardboard from any old dresser cabinet.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: May Sun 15, 2011 11:58 pm 
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Location: Long Island, N.Y.
I wrote Radio-Tronics and never recieved a reply. I really didn't want to spend a whole lot on one anyway. I will likely just make one using one of the ideas mentioned here.
Thanks again guys!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: May Mon 16, 2011 3:36 am 
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Joined: Apr Sun 03, 2011 5:36 pm
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Location: Montreal, Qc, Canada
let say you have a console cabinet with cardboard back, but it thore in two pieces.

Is it fixable? replacable?

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-Mars


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 Post subject: Re: Radio back replacement?
PostPosted: Aug Thu 09, 2018 11:40 pm 
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Joined: Oct Mon 12, 2015 4:44 am
Posts: 235
Are the Retrotronics people the only source of anyone out there who makes accurate reproduction back covers for vintage radios :?:

If anyone has anyone additional resources or another company who does the same work, please add that information to the this site.


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 Post subject: Re: Radio back replacement?
PostPosted: Aug Fri 10, 2018 7:34 pm 
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Joined: Jan Thu 01, 1970 1:00 am
Posts: 1184
Regarding potential raw material for the DIY nonauthenic / functional category, I would add peg board and old clip boards. Peg board is a bit thick, but comes pre- ventilated. Old clip boards are cheap and plentiful at thrift stores.


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 Post subject: Re: Radio back replacement?
PostPosted: Oct Fri 19, 2018 11:25 am 
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Joined: May Sat 23, 2015 3:05 pm
Posts: 270
Location: Winter Haven, FL
I made this out of automotive door panel backing that I bought from an auto upholstry shop. Proper thickness. color all the way through, water resistant, and didn't fray or seperate when I drilled it with a 1 1/4" hole cutter.
Image


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