Author Topic: Ancient old Radio's: worth Restoring ?  (Read 7483 times)

Offline darrylo

Ancient old Radio's: worth Restoring ?
« on: April 16, 2012, 09:36:30 AM »
They are mostly complete with 1 or 2 valves missing.

They all look like they have water damage.





Are they worth restoring ?
« Last Edit: April 16, 2012, 09:43:17 AM by darrylo »
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Offline BarryD

Re: Ancient old Radio's: worth Restoring ?
« Reply #1 on: April 16, 2012, 09:53:12 AM »
I would say very worth restoring - Items like that command quite a high price, if you can find one to buy. If water damage, could be a labour of love however....
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Offline darrylo

Re: Ancient old Radio's: worth Restoring ?
« Reply #2 on: April 16, 2012, 09:58:50 AM »
btw they are westinghouse, fairbanks morse and Pilot.
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Offline Mars

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Re: Ancient old Radio's: worth Restoring ?
« Reply #3 on: April 16, 2012, 12:56:58 PM »
Pieter De Kock in Paarl restores old radios. He specializes in Philips Radios. He'll tell you if it is worth repairing or not. See his web site here http://www.philipsradio.i8.com/
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Offline Steerpike

Re: Ancient old Radio's: worth Restoring ?
« Reply #4 on: April 16, 2012, 01:43:01 PM »
If you plan on restoring it to sell, I'd say not worth it.
Collectors want restorations to be done VERY correctly, do it wrong and you've made the radio worthless except for R50 worth of spare parts.

If you plan on doing it up for yourself, to keep it, beautify your home and show to people, then very worthwhile. But it will cost a lot, and take a lot of time and research. Selling it then will never get you back the cost of what you put into it.

Offline darrylo

Re: Ancient old Radio's: worth Restoring ?
« Reply #5 on: April 16, 2012, 02:35:48 PM »
I cant see myself selling them on. Especially cosidering the effort required.

I fear I just dont have the skills for this. At the moment Im too scared to try power them up.

Maybe I should take the complete unit (Pilot) clean it up. change the coupling caps and see what happens?


If you plan on restoring it to sell, I'd say not worth it.
Collectors want restorations to be done VERY correctly, do it wrong and you've made the radio worthless except for R50 worth of spare parts.

If you plan on doing it up for yourself, to keep it, beautify your home and show to people, then very worthwhile. But it will cost a lot, and take a lot of time and research. Selling it then will never get you back the cost of what you put into it.
Always Looking for Heathkit, AVO and Leak
"I refuse to prove that my cables will make your system sound better", says the snake oil vendor, "for proof denies faith, and without faith, you will hear nothing."

Offline Steerpike

Re: Ancient old Radio's: worth Restoring ?
« Reply #6 on: April 16, 2012, 02:41:43 PM »
I fear I just dont have the skills for this. At the moment Im too scared to try power them up.
Maybe I should take the complete unit (Pilot) clean it up. change the coupling caps and see what happens?

The big can electrolytic is the one to be most worried about - usually 350V and about 3x40uF. Its the one most likely to explode, or destroy the rectifier valve.

Modern replacements easy to get and cheap (as single caps, small, can be hidden underneath, out of sight).

Offline charles

Re: Ancient old Radio's: worth Restoring ?
« Reply #7 on: April 16, 2012, 04:10:08 PM »
Dear darrylo,

Take your time to restore it, but keep all the replaced parts. 

Kind Regards

Charles

Offline darrylo

Re: Ancient old Radio's: worth Restoring ?
« Reply #8 on: April 16, 2012, 04:23:19 PM »
I'll definately take some time.
I think Ill strip out the most complete one and do some basic checks and bypass the caps with new bits for a start.

Dear darrylo,

Take your time to restore it, but keep all the replaced parts. 

Kind Regards

Charles
Always Looking for Heathkit, AVO and Leak
"I refuse to prove that my cables will make your system sound better", says the snake oil vendor, "for proof denies faith, and without faith, you will hear nothing."

Online Family_Dog

Re: Ancient old Radio's: worth Restoring ?
« Reply #9 on: April 16, 2012, 05:31:18 PM »
Way to go, Darryl!   :thumbs:

Ensure your replacement coupling caps are rated for at least 350v DC, or whatever the existing ones are rated at.


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Offline mahleu

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Re: Ancient old Radio's: worth Restoring ?
« Reply #10 on: April 16, 2012, 06:12:32 PM »
I've got a few of these, also sold a few. Never got very much, even for the nice condition working ones.

I do have a beautiful stereo unit at the moment with 4 speakers in it. Will take a couple of pics tomorrow, it really is pretty.
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Online Family_Dog

Re: Ancient old Radio's: worth Restoring ?
« Reply #11 on: April 17, 2012, 01:09:38 PM »
Here is an old Philips 930A radio that I have. It was given to me by an old school friend, it used to belong to his grandmother.

Pics are not of my actual unit but from the 'net. My unit has a ding on one side of the Bakelite-material cabinet, not sure if this can be fixed or not. One of the E438 valves (which means 4v filament, gain of 38) has an open circuit filament and I suppose I am unlikely to ever get one of those so I have toyed with possibly by-passing the audio stage with a simple IC audio amplifier.






Valve complement: 2 x E438. 1 x B443, 1 x C443. It covers the MW & LW bands and dates from around 1930 (although I thought it was older than this).

Interestingly, here is a youtube link to a video featuring this radio. Note the reasonably high-quality AM sound, marred by possible fluorescent-light interference. 
http://www.youtube.com/watch?gl=ZA&v=zQsHOZSNO1s

So this is a projection waiting for "one day"! ;)


-F_D

« Last Edit: April 17, 2012, 01:13:05 PM by Family_Dog »



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Offline handsome

Re: Ancient old Radio's: worth Restoring ?
« Reply #12 on: April 17, 2012, 03:29:57 PM »
the biggest issue I had with these old radios is most (of the very old ones) don't do FM only AM, ergo ones choice of listening is a tad restricted.....

Online Family_Dog

Re: Ancient old Radio's: worth Restoring ?
« Reply #13 on: April 17, 2012, 04:13:37 PM »
Aahhh... but that makes them even more desirable! FM only came on stream here in SA in the early 60s, these radios all pre-date that period.

Make no mistake, a decent TRF radio will give an FM transmission a very good run for its money - you'd be amazed at the clarity that such a radio could offer! The latter Superhet radios sported increased sensitivity and selectivity, but had nowhere near the tonal quality of a TRF radio, even on AM.


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Offline mahleu

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Re: Ancient old Radio's: worth Restoring ?
« Reply #14 on: April 17, 2012, 05:56:20 PM »
Haven't tried it yet, need to give it a good clean up first and rewire the monkey wiring...


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