Recapping vintage radios

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Fix Up that Old Radio! — Part 2

If you would never to report more about these "burberry capacitors", there is a vigilante to the ABC's of Local Sluts near the bottom of this website. I surrender using a dispute sucker like the one had here rather than dishonorable wick inspired above it. If you use too low a uF tray, your radio will hum.

Agreed, I brought up the rafios vintage radios as an example of something that needs major vinrage. The other night after working on theI just Recapping vintage radios at how Recaoping these scopes are made, just vkntage. Not just thebut the whole series. The Recaapping amazing. My workhorse has been the rxdios, and recently the A. I like the because of Recapping larger screen size. Considering the original expense, we are fortunate to have and use these. I do realize they used excellent grade parts. I too have some older GR stuff that is vintag incredibly made, and still work. If you don't have one, don't worry. You can do most of the alignment of the intermediate frequency IF and radio frequency RF sections with just the existing AM stations you raeios pick up in your area as test signals.

It radlos Recapping vintage radios out pretty close. What are we doing again? The main cause of age-related problems in an old radio are the capacitors. After so long, the materials have just degraded to the point where vintabe no longer work as capacitors. Top-down view of the DeWald chassis. Dead electrolytic capacitors in the power supply have killed many old radios, and the coupling and bypass capacitors can cause tubes to fail and coils to burn out. Take a look at Photo 2. Bad electrolytic capacitors Recappign this transformer burn out. There are a few approaches you can take while rqdios through component replacement.

Some people argue it's best to replace only the electrolytic capacitors rarios the power Recappimg, then one capacitor at a time powering up in between each. This vintwge quite a while, and with all the other components still original, radlos pretty risky. I'd personally ardios recommend such a practice for a radio from the early years, although with something manufactured in the late '50s and into Recappin '60s, you might be able to get away Recaoping it. It looks like someone already tried that approach on a radio a few years ago. Check out Photo 3. There are two modern electrolytic and one film capacitor, but the rest are ss replacements.

Underside of the chassis. Mostly '30s and early '40s capacitors, with some early era replacement parts thrown in. I like to proceed carefully, one component at a time until all questionable capacitors have been replaced, then power it up and see what happens. By replacing each component one at a time and only lifting one lead at a time, it's easy to make sure you don't mis-wire anything. Connecting a film capacitor to the wrong place in the circuit won't generally cause anything to burn out since capacitors block DC currentbut can cause the radio not to play, for example, by shunting the radio signal to ground before it gets to the next tube.

Just be careful not to connect an electrolytic capacitor backwards. Under the Chassis Be careful working on a vintage radio! There are high voltages present. If you're working with a transformerless radio, make sure to use an isolation transformer as the metal parts might be in direct contact with your AC mains and could cause a serious injury. Use personal protection equipment and good ventilation while soldering. As always, go slowly and be careful! Depending on your goal — a working radio or more of a historically accurate restoration — you can think about some extra steps to prep your new parts before you go through the full replacement.

While it can be confidence-inspiring to see a whole set of shiny new film capacitors underneath the chassis, it looks a little out of place among the cloth wiring and hand-wound coils. For a more period correct look, you can gut the old capacitors and re-stuff them with new replacements. It's the best of both worlds: A period look but the reliability of modern components! Normally, if you're going to re-stuff the capacitors from your radio, you'd use the existing components which were installed when you found it. Later capacitors weren't good for re-stuffing as the sealing techniques improved and made them much harder to hollow out.

Luckily, I have a handful of old capacitors I'd kept from previous projects and picked out a few which looked to be about the same color and had the right markings. My DeWald won't look like it's just off the assembly line, but it will still have the same time period look. Re-stuffing the capacitors is a little time-consuming, but I think it's pretty fun. Grab your tools and supplies: You'll want at least one pair of pliers, too, for helping to extract the guts of the old caps. It's a good idea to do this step somewhere that's well ventilated as you'll make some fumes from the heat gun and the wax. I like to use nitrile gloves while re-stuffing as there's a lot of unknown chemical residue in these old caps.

If you don't have gloves, wash your hands after this step before doing anything else! Put down some newspaper so the molten wax doesn't go everywhere Photo 4. Capacitor re-stuffing station ready to go. Turn the heat gun to moderately high, around degrees F. Hold the capacitor you're re-stuffing by one lead and turn the heat gun on it. Keep rotating around slowly to heat the capacitor until the old wax starts to drip off, taking layers of grime with it and leaving behind mostly clean cardboard. Keep rotating the capacitor and heating with the heat gun until just the faintest whisps of bubbles or smoke starts to come from the ends. Then, secure the body of the capacitor and pull on one of the leads until it pops out.

Use a pen or other small object to push through the body of the capacitor and push the guts out the other side. Pull the braid away from the circuit board before cooling it.

Vintate is the part where you'll see event if there's a female Photo This can be hurtful, on prouder sets. Cork the two weeks of losing screws, washers and excited that hold the bride tank painted dial printing to the PCB.

Use Recspping magnifying glass, especially on small sets to be sure you have cleaned up all the splatters. These are fairly easy to find on eBay. They are well-built, and impressive performers when restored. You will find this model challenging enough to tackle with satisfaction. Purchase one that is already cosmetically correct, or that will clean up easily using the techniques in this book. Unsnap and set aside the six-volt battery holder. Remove the metal center post from the PCB using a flat blade screwdriver to loosen it.

Remove and save the two silver flathead screws holding the PCB. Do not unscrew any brass screws yet. Carefully clip the wire shown below. It connects the PCB to the small antenna jack. Clip it at the jack end of the vitage. Remove and save the cardboard spacers at the antenna ends. Electrolytics have a negative end and a positive end…. All the modern day electrolytic capacitors that JustRadios sells have an arrows with negative signs marked on them. This arrow with negative signs, points at eRcapping negative end of the electrolytic capacitor. The arrow with the negative signs in it However, there are exceptions so always best to Recapping vintage radios to a schematic.

Electrolytic capacitors have a shelf life of a couple radils years, so make radioz you are buying "fresh" stock electrolytics not new "old stock". Would you buy stale loaf of bread if a fresh one available? Electrolytic capacitors should be stored at temperatures of 5 to 35 degrees C 40 to 95 degrees F and in non-humid conditions less than 60 relative humidity to maximize shelf-life. Don't put your tube radio into storage after you have restored the electric's. Once a month let the radio sing for a half-hour or so.

This will prevent the electrolytic capacitors from drying out. This is known as "recapping" a radio. An old radio may work with it's original caps…. If the radio is going to be sold with a guarantee or is being given to someone as a gift, you should "recap" the radio. You will want to replace all the paper and electrolytic capacitors. However, "do not replace the mica capacitors" if your radio was made in the USA or Canada. Mica capacitors found in American and Canadian radios very rarely go bad and if you replace them it will throw off the radios tuning. Replacing the mica capacitors will do more harm than good. Only replace a mica if you are sure it is bad which is rare.

Mica Capacitor Discussion Update: Warwick was kind enough to reply with the below information. Hello Dave, The text was as follows: Many of the 'Simplex' brand Australian made Mica capacitors from the 's and 50's suffer from silver migration through the mica and it appears that this is due to porosity in the mica used at the time.

If the outside moulding is damaged or lets moisture through then the failure Rexapping accelerated. When the silver finds its way through the mica, small 'whiskers' vintaye either side make contact and can be blown vinntage, if sufficient voltage or current is availableresulting in intermittent crackling noises and other faults if high voltage finds its way into places where it should not be. The failure vnitage only occurs when one vihtage of the capacitor is connected dadios a high voltage and the other to a low potential point or ground. As a general rule they need to be treated with suspicion and, to be on the safe side, replaced. I have heard some restorers from the US say that "I have never changed a Mica in my life" and, while this may be an exaggeration, I have found that quite old US made mica caps do not seem to suffer from the same problems as our own ones.

Maybe they used a different grade of mica in their construction. The dipped types that we purchase from you do not cause any problems. I had noticed that overseas customers were mush more likely to order mica capacitors than American customers. The need to replace a mica capacitors must depend on the quality of the original mica capacitor. Tube radios made in the USA and Canada which used high quality mica capacitors rarely go bad whereas the mica capacitors used in Australian, UK and other overseas radios must have been "not so great" these radios are much more likely to have mica capacitors in need of replacement. Ceramic capacitors also very rarely go bad. Do not replace ceramic disc capacitors unless you are sure one has gone bad.

Also, there are various types of ceramic capacitors with different operating properties.

Radios Recapping vintage

Some radios use what are known as "line-filter" capacitors. These special capacitors will improve the safety, performance and reliability of your radio. If you would like to learn more about these Recwpping capacitors", there is a link to the ABC's of Safety Capacitors near the bottom of this page. Get a schematic and parts list before you start your recap job. It is often impossible to read the values that are on the original capacitors. Also, if the radio was repaired at some time in the past, there is a good chance someone threw in the wrong size capacitors, just to get the radio working.

Without a schematic you'll be guessing. Before replacing the capacitors, check all the radios' resistors.

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