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 Post subject: Re: Recabineting a radio on the cheap
PostPosted: Jun Sat 22, 2013 9:25 pm 
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I think it looks great.

If the trans doesn't fit inside the cabinet, you could always put it in an enclosure and have it outboard, like the supplies for some laptops.

The knobs do look a bit big for it, but if you could somehow cut the large flat part off of the tuning dial, maybe with a Dremel if you have one, they would scale down enough. You would have to devise a short pointer, maybe with a pin.

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 Post subject: Re: Recabineting a radio on the cheap
PostPosted: Jun Sun 23, 2013 12:47 am 
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The initial work on the back plate is done. I did pretty good, I only have 1 or 2 wonky holes. The tag location is approximate and may change depending on whether I can put the transformer in it. The Audio input will be mounted to a round piece of thin phenolic and epoxied to the inside of the back plate near the MP3/AUDIO INPUT ONLY. I will also give the tag a "patina".

Image

I did a quick drawing of the tube layout in autocad 2000 and then worked up the tag in excel.

I still need to drill holes for the screws, audio jack, and power cord.

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 Post subject: Re: Recabineting a radio on the cheap
PostPosted: Jun Sun 23, 2013 3:06 am 
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Flinx wrote:
what is the significance of the charcoal grey and fake tag?
The charcoal grey is for patina and the fake tag for kicks. :D
Whatever you think makes this look period correct.... just offering suggestions.

~ Mitch ~


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 Post subject: Re: Recabineting a radio on the cheap
PostPosted: Jun Sun 23, 2013 4:24 am 
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Why do you have that additional rocker switch located below the lamp?
Doesn't the volume control have an on/off sw as part of the same assembly?

Good job on the back. But couldn't you have just as easily sliced off and used the actual wood top that came on the box as a "back" and drill holes in it?

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 Post subject: Re: Recabineting a radio on the cheap
PostPosted: Jun Sun 23, 2013 3:28 pm 
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Pbpix wrote:
Why do you have that additional rocker switch located below the lamp?
Doesn't the volume control have an on/off sw as part of the same assembly?

Good job on the back. But couldn't you have just as easily sliced off and used the actual wood top that came on the box as a "back" and drill holes in it?


Since this was a clock radio the switch was separate from the volume control (part of the clock). Yes I could have used the original box top but then it would have looked like a craft box turned on its side. Also if I was going to cut up the old top I might as well make it look like a real radio and use masonite.

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 Post subject: Re: Recabineting a radio on the cheap
PostPosted: Jun Mon 24, 2013 2:18 pm 
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Great job, a labor of love.


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 Post subject: Re: Recabineting a radio on the cheap
PostPosted: Jun Mon 24, 2013 9:47 pm 
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Ok... Don't laugh. I know it is a bit on the garish side. But It was the only thing I could find ready made that had that "old timey" feel to it, and would fit. I picked it up at Ace hardware for the ridiculous price of $18.00 and it is a shower drain guard, but sssh don't tell anyone.

Image

It was a huge pain to mount it. there were 4 small tabs on the back to hammer down, I had to solder brass screws to the back of the "grill" which involved scratching up the surface, using acid flux and plumbing solder since rosin core would not do it. I had to modify the speaker to match the screw locations. There is the possibility that it could pop off at anytime since I do not have much faith in it being properly soldered (we will see). although it is not magnetic it seems to not be solid brass. When I scratched up the back i uncovered a nickel? colored metal.

SO! what's left to do?

The transformer.
Better knob and dial.
Dial markings (dependent on dial).
Finish the back

all the above may go slow but the transformer and back will probably be done late this week or early next. Knobs would probably take some time unless someone has something that they think would work.

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 Post subject: Re: Recabineting a radio on the cheap
PostPosted: Jun Mon 24, 2013 11:17 pm 
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poor little radio back had a hard life :)

Image

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 Post subject: Re: Recabineting a radio on the cheap
PostPosted: Jun Tue 25, 2013 7:29 pm 
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Amazing really...what you have done.

I wonder if for a dial face something like this could be surface mounted inside something like a metal o ring that has s groove/slot for glass...a makeshift deal that is similar to how wall clocks are made...some "ring" + dial face + pointer + glass.

http://www.radiolaguy.com/images/dialSc ... ialSmp.jpg


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 Post subject: Re: Recabineting a radio on the cheap
PostPosted: Jun Tue 25, 2013 10:32 pm 
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jimzinnc wrote:
Amazing really...what you have done.



You really think so?

Something strange happens whenever I build something from scratch. I have a general idea in my head, in this case I made no drawings or anything. I decided to build it on the fly with whatever I could find, scrounge, or buy. The strange thing is (and I am curious if anyone else has this happen) because I built it, looked at it intensely, and know every flaw I never see it the way other people do. My wife thinks it's amazing :D , my Dad (the engineer) thinks it is very cleverly built :D , I think of it as a varnished craft box with a radio inside :? .

That is not to say I do not like it or do not want it, I have just looked at it too much.

I brought this up with my wife, and she said that she had the same problem when she would sew dresses for herself. No matter how good it looked, she usually ended up giving it away, because she had "seen it too much".

Of course this does not mean I will not do more of these (different each time), and I will probably try to sell a few, but I wonder if Stradivarius felt this way about his violins? No I am not comparing myself to Stradivarius.

food for thought.

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 Post subject: Re: Recabineting a radio on the cheap
PostPosted: Jun Tue 25, 2013 10:41 pm 
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Location: 06457
Flinx wrote:
jimzinnc wrote:
Amazing really...what you have done.



You really think so?

Something strange happens whenever I build something from scratch. I have a general idea in my head, in this case I made no drawings or anything. I decided to build it on the fly with whatever I could find, scrounge, or buy. The strange thing is (and I am curious if anyone else has this happen) because I built it, looked at it intensely, and know every flaw I never see it the way other people do. My wife thinks it's amazing :D , my Dad (the engineer) thinks it is very cleverly built :D , I think of it as a varnished craft box with a radio inside :? .

That is not to say I do not like it or do not want it, I have just looked at it too much.

I brought this up with my wife, and she said that she had the same problem when she would sew dresses for herself. No matter how good it looked, she usually ended up giving it away, because she had "seen it too much".

Of course this does not mean I will not do more of these (different each time), and I will probably try to sell a few, but I wonder if Stradivarius felt this way about his violins? No I am not comparing myself to Stradivarius.

food for thought.

I feel the same way with radios, look at them for maybe a year and move em down the road. :)


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 Post subject: Re: Recabineting a radio on the cheap
PostPosted: Jun Wed 26, 2013 1:15 am 
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Location: SOUTHLAKE, TX, USA
FLINX:
Have been following this thread with interest. Bought that box at Michaels with a 50% off coupon, so it only cost me $2.50. A nice cabinet for that price, and the hardare can be used elseware!
1. Do you know what wood the box is made of? Probably Basswood?
2. Did you sand /seal the box before staining? If so, what did you use?
3. Noticed that whatever you used to fill the small hardare scew holes did not take the stain very well. The filled holes are quite evident in your stained pictures. Wonder if a tiny bit of glue in the screw holes before sanding would enable the sanding dust to fill the small holes with a compatible filler.
Thanks for your posts. Inspired me to give this a try.
BOB


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 Post subject: Re: Recabineting a radio on the cheap
PostPosted: Jun Wed 26, 2013 1:25 am 
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BOB BONCHAK wrote:
FLINX:
Have been following this thread with interest. Bought that box at Michaels with a 50% off coupon, so it only cost me $2.50. A nice cabinet for that price, and the hardare can be used elseware!
1. Do you know what wood the box is made of? Probably Basswood?
2. Did you sand /seal the box before staining? If so, what did you use?
3. Noticed that whatever you used to fill the small hardare scew holes did not take the stain very well. The filled holes are quite evident in your stained pictures. Wonder if a tiny bit of glue in the screw holes before sanding would enable the sanding dust to fill the small holes with a compatible filler.
Thanks for your posts. Inspired me to give this a try.
BOB


Not sure what wood it is made of, most of the stuff there is made of basswood so maybe?

I did sand, but not seal the box. I used 220 grit sandpaper and a minwax stain. I let it set 8 hours before spraying with 2 very light coats of varnish. Beware that the spray varnish may take up to a week to dry if it is sprayed on too thick. mine is still slightly tacky in some spots. Could be the brand of varnish I used, could be something else.

I did not fill the holes. I was to cheap to by a filler, any stainable wood putty should work.

Inspect the bottom of your box carefully mine had deep scratches in it.

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 Post subject: Re: Recabineting a radio on the cheap
PostPosted: Jun Wed 26, 2013 5:17 am 
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Here are some radios that will fit in the craft box:
GE C403D, C505B, and C506B, all the same radio just different colors, Vertical or horizontal mounted circuit board.
GE T126B, T127B, and T128B, all the same radio just different colors, slant mounted circuit board.
Image
Possibly might fit based on Pictures I found on line:
GE 935 vertical mount solder side to inside radio face.
GE T104A unknown mounting.
GE T106C vertical mount solder side to inside radio face
GE T129C unknown mounting.
It appears almost any cheap plastic GE radio can be used.

Any Midget 4 tube or Japanese midget radio might fit but I have nothing to prove that.

if anyone knows of any other radios with a chassis or circuit board that might fit in these dimensions 3 3/4"deep (excluding interlock pins) x 7"wide x 5" tall (could fit 6") let me know.

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 Post subject: Re: Recabineting a radio on the cheap
PostPosted: Jun Wed 26, 2013 4:59 pm 
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when Mouser says economy shipping they mean it. I ordered my transformers on 6-23-13 and they should get here on Friday the 28th. 5 days to go from Texas to Arizona via UPS :?

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 Post subject: Re: Recabineting a radio on the cheap
PostPosted: Jun Thu 27, 2013 1:48 am 
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Location: SOUTHLAKE, TX, USA
FLINX:
Mouser is about the best supplier. I can place an order and it will arrive in no more than two days! Prices and inventory are also best.
I don't use varnish anymore. Nothing beats a clear lacquer coat, brushed or sprayed on. I let the lacquer "cure" for a couple of weeks, then rub out with pumice/rottenstone, followed by a light coating of Buther's wax. The results, so far, have been quite acceptable. Now it's time to start working on that Michaels cabinet and search the garage for a "donor" chassis.
BOB


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 Post subject: Re: Recabineting a radio on the cheap
PostPosted: Jun Thu 27, 2013 4:26 am 
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Flinx wrote:
Ok... Don't laugh. I know it is a bit on the garish side. But It was the only thing I could find ready made that had that "old timey" feel to it, and would fit. I picked it up at Ace hardware for the ridiculous price of $18.00 and it is a shower drain guard, but sssh don't tell anyone.

Image

It was a huge pain to mount it. there were 4 small tabs on the back to hammer down, I had to solder brass screws to the back of the "grill" which involved scratching up the surface, using acid flux and plumbing solder since rosin core would not do it. I had to modify the speaker to match the screw locations. There is the possibility that it could pop off at anytime since I do not have much faith in it being properly soldered (we will see). although it is not magnetic it seems to not be solid brass. When I scratched up the back i uncovered a nickel? colored metal.

SO! what's left to do?

The transformer.
Better knob and dial.
Dial markings (dependent on dial).
Finish the back

all the above may go slow but the transformer and back will probably be done late this week or early next. Knobs would probably take some time unless someone has something that they think would work.


I would have cut out the center design, and used that as the grill cover.


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 Post subject: Re: Recabineting a radio on the cheap
PostPosted: Jun Thu 27, 2013 4:56 am 
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mrx wrote:

I would have cut out the center design, and used that as the grill cover.


What is not apparent is the size of the speaker and the grill.

The speaker is 4" in diameter and the "grill" is 4.5" so I could not cut it out.

xray vision turn on!
Image

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 Post subject: Re: Recabineting a radio on the cheap
PostPosted: Jun Thu 27, 2013 5:00 am 
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BOB BONCHAK wrote:
FLINX:
Mouser is about the best supplier. I can place an order and it will arrive in no more than two days! Prices and inventory are also best.
I don't use varnish anymore. Nothing beats a clear lacquer coat, brushed or sprayed on. I let the lacquer "cure" for a couple of weeks, then rub out with pumice/rottenstone, followed by a light coating of Buther's wax. The results, so far, have been quite acceptable. Now it's time to start working on that Michaels cabinet and search the garage for a "donor" chassis.
BOB


I used varnish because I had a brand new unopened can from who knows when.

The alternative was an old can of shellac, but I read that old shellac may not cure so I did not use that.

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 Post subject: Re: Recabineting a radio on the cheap
PostPosted: Jun Fri 28, 2013 4:07 pm 
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found these at Ace hardware, I will keep them in mind for future grills.
Image

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