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 Post subject: Arvin 61R19,29 project...
PostPosted: Jan Tue 29, 2019 3:31 am 
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Joined: Oct Mon 26, 2009 10:02 pm
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Location: Indianapolis, IN
Hello All,

Have liked the styling of this set since first seeing one---and having a Silvertone with same chassis, knew it would be a good performer... And it's small enough to fit within other sets on the crowded display shelves...

Recently saw this one on Ebay for a very reasonable "Buy-It-Now" with free shipping and quickly "hit da button". Received it today and other than needing a good cleaning and some scratching under tuning knob, it's in good condition. Applied power and it worked great with original caps---very good performance with good sounding audio for such a small set. Volume control a bit erratic and hope that DeOxit Faderlube will correct...

Does anyone know the difference between the 61R19 & 61R29 ??? Both numbers on label for this model... Couldn't find anything on-line.

Also---does the tuning knob simply pull off ??? Seems tight and the "bright" doesn't appear to be a screw...

Ebay pic below...

John


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arf 61r19 ebay pic.jpg
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 Post subject: Re: Arvin 61R19,29 project...
PostPosted: Jan Tue 29, 2019 5:55 am 
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Hey John good pickup! I too have one, and it worked great W/O any recapping. I've got a couple of button cells taped together, with a screw and bolt as a spacer, for it's odd voltage requirement. That seemed to be a favorite stunt with Arvin and Sears, apparently to get the radio owner to buy their brand of batteries.

You can see what the label in mine reads; apparently they used a comma between the digits in the model, the only difference being the color of the case.

AFA the dial, it pulls straight off. You should be able to do it with just your fingers, as the D shaped tuner shaft is short.


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 Post subject: Re: Arvin 61R19,29 project...
PostPosted: Jan Tue 29, 2019 4:13 pm 
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I have one of the Silvertones in ice blue. Don't remember if I've ever powered it up, yeah now I'll have to try it out.

As for battery sizes, I suspect that was Arvin's choice. Likely the round 9v were chosen as they are more compact, gives a bit more room inside for components or just to reduce size of radio. Apparently Arvin did switch to round battery beginning with '62 models, size wars were ramping up around the time these radios were designed. I remember in mid '60s both the rectangular & round batteries were common.


Here's my Silvertone 6309 posing with his little brother, both use round batteries.


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 Post subject: Re: Arvin 61R19,29 project...
PostPosted: Jan Thu 31, 2019 3:07 am 
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Joined: Oct Mon 26, 2009 10:02 pm
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Location: Indianapolis, IN
Thanks much for knob info, Richard---was concerned when it didn't come off easily !

Tom---does that Silvertone also share the same chassis ? Mine is an older set...

John


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 Post subject: Re: Arvin 61R19,29 project...
PostPosted: Jan Thu 31, 2019 5:49 am 
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I'm off to a bad year. :oops: Model number on Silvertone is 3209, meaning 1963 model.

Your radio should be a year or two older.

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 Post subject: Re: Arvin 61R19,29 project...
PostPosted: Feb Fri 01, 2019 3:03 am 
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Joined: Jan Fri 27, 2012 4:50 am
Posts: 27
Location: East Brunswick, NJ
Hi John,
If I remember correctly 61R19 set came in regular package and 61R29 is a gift package set.
Three models listed on the back cover of the radio (red, mint green and black pearl) are only half of the sets in check-mark series. Arvin also produced exactly the same sets in Moonstone and Black colors under American supply company name. And later, as they moved production to Hong Kong they released another check-mark set - Model 67R09, but it uses completely different board layout, electronic components and different (cheaper) finish on the front metal.


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 Post subject: Re: Arvin 61R19,29 project...
PostPosted: Feb Fri 01, 2019 3:23 am 
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Location: Indianapolis, IN
Hello Startuler,

Very nice collection---and thanks much for the information & pics ! Wasn't even aware of the American Supply and Hong Kong made Arvin versions.

John


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 Post subject: Re: Arvin 61R19,29 project...
PostPosted: Feb Sat 02, 2019 1:57 am 
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Yes that's a impressive collection of Arvins.

John, I did some research on my Silvertone vs the Arvins and except for one major difference, are mostly same. The Silvertone has a seventh transistor as AF amp. The RF, driver & output sections are nearly identical.

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 Post subject: Re: Arvin 61R19,29 project...
PostPosted: Feb Sat 02, 2019 4:22 am 
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Hey Tom---be interesting to compare the 6 & 7 transistor versions ! Imagine the weaker signals that the "6" receives would have more usable volume with the additional audio stage.

John


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 Post subject: Re: Arvin 61R19,29 project...
PostPosted: Feb Sat 02, 2019 5:23 am 
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John, I don't have one of the Arvins but I do have six transistor Silvertone 2203 and 2204(also is model 2202) that I'm 99% chassis is same as your 61R19. The 1961 versions(1202, 1203 & 1204) of these radios used rectangular battery while the '62 I have use round.

You do have me wondering if a difference will really be noticable.

I have five, six, & seven transistor versions of the GE lunchboxes, all with three transistor RF. Main difference is better audio quality, stronger bass and somewhat louder volume before distortion sets in. Especially noticable in the seven TR version that has both AF amp & driver. These sets have 4" speakers but with the 2.5" speakers of the shirt pockets, would it be noticable? I did briefly try the 3209 and it seems OK, but I dunno if either of the other two are up for the test.

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 Post subject: Re: Arvin 61R19,29 project...
PostPosted: Feb Sat 02, 2019 5:11 pm 
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After posting last night I opened the 2203(mint green) & 2204(red), same chassis as in the Arvins. I used the Arvin schematic and circuit board pictorial for test point location. Yeah that's right, 2203 dead & 2204 weak. Found speaker coupling cap all but open on 2204, hit the RF trimmer and buttoned it up. When I opened the 2203 I got a big surprise, :shock: it was missing the coupling cap between volume cont and audio amp. I looked closely at PCB, solder appeared orig. Still I'm thinking I opened it in past and pulled cap, I've been known to tap solder lands and extract parts as if I was pulling a tooth. Anyway I removed old solder, installed new 10mfd and it sprang to life(I'd already bridged cap in openings of missing part). Another RF tweak and back together. At that point I expired.

This morning I fed wiring for std 9v connector through earphone openings of 2203 & 3209. Since I only had two battery connectors I chose the 2203 as it no doubt has the edge on the 2204(yes I should fully recap these radios). As far as reception, the seven transistor 3209 isn't quite as sensitive as 2203 but extra transistor does improve audio. Possibly RF touch up would increase it's sensitivity. Where the 3209 really shines is it's vernier tuning, far easier to pinpoint stations.

Now that I've thoroughly muddied John' thread, here's something that may help. I also noticed tuning range seemed to be over extended, as I was receiving 1650 on both 2203 & 2204. When I looked at specs for 61R19, says upper osc setting is 1670. WOW. Was Arvin prepping for expanded band? :wink: Osc alignment for 3209 specs 1640.

Image

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 Post subject: Re: Arvin 61R19,29 project...
PostPosted: Feb Sun 03, 2019 3:38 am 
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Location: Indianapolis, IN
Thanks for the info & pics, Tom---always like an "active" thread ! Didn't realize that the Sears had vernier tuning---a great feature ! Think I've noticed the higher upper alignment freqs. in a couple other older transistor radio service docs and also thought it odd.

Got it done today---man, talk about quick & simple compared to that Zenith D7000Y !

Disassembled and detail cleaned. There was a lot of scratching from dirt between bottom side of tuning knob and aluminum face-plate. Very carefully used Novus-2 with Q-tip on tuning knob avoiding the reverse painted numbering which improved appearance, but didn't remove scratches are they're fairly deep. Used Mothers California Gold carnauba wax on the aluminum which also made it a bit better looking... There was also some type of dried putty in some of the tuning knob edge grooves which I carefully scraped out with a thin piece of flexible plastic which was folded over to fit between.

Was surprised to see the extra bit of engineering that went into the volume control knob---it actually has a tiny square steel plate embedded within bottom surface which engages control shaft ! First time I've seen that done---see pic below... And because of it, the knob still fits snugly (and should a long, long time !)...

Really like this little PCB and the oval transistors...

Carefully used X-Acto knife blade to lift edge of tight-fitting metal volume control cover so a "squirt" of DeOxit Faderlube could be injected---control worked fine afterward...

The IFT's were nearly dead-on, but a tweak of the ANT trimmer made a noticeable improvement. Since radio worked so well, decided to just bridge caps to see what happened---no noticeable difference whatsoever, so originals stay for now... Radio is a very good performer both sensitivity & selectivity across band and sound pretty good for small size. Am able to clearly pick up my "benchmark" low-power DX oldies station with listenable volume.

Pulled the Silvertone off of shelf for pic and comparison and it has somewhat different chassis and speaker to accommodate the "standard" type 9V battery. It also works well with original caps, but doesn't perform nearly as well as the Arvin---couldn't even receive my station today...

Project pics below...

John


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 Post subject: Re: Arvin 61R19,29 project...
PostPosted: Feb Sun 03, 2019 4:31 am 
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As usual, great work. With your black Silvertone we have the full set.

I did jump caps on the red radio, only one that made a difference was the speaker coupling. Was obvious the green one was strong from the instant it made a sound, I didn't try the others.

The audio output TR are 2N1059, same used in earlier GE P780.

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 Post subject: Re: Arvin 61R19,29 project...
PostPosted: Feb Sun 03, 2019 6:29 pm 
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Joined: Oct Mon 26, 2009 10:02 pm
Posts: 5730
Location: Indianapolis, IN
Thanks Tom !

Didn't even pay attention to the audio output transistor number---guess a junked set would be valuable for those parts...

Yes, it's neat to see all the color options for both the Arvin & Silvertone models in one thread.

John


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