BiState Vintage Radio Repair, LLC, offers repair and refurbishment service on all makes and models of antique console, tabletop, CB, and ham radios that were made before approximately 1970. BiState is also ready and able to service your vintage guitar or PA amplifiers. If you have anything old and electric that's not working, BiState Vintage Radio Repair, LLC, may be able to help. We have successfully repaired vintage Mixmasters, lamps, and a Model T and other classic car radios.
Sorry, we're not equipped to accept credit/debit cards. We're VINTAGE; we accept VINTAGE payments in cash. As technological as we get is accepting checks, money orders, or winning lottery tickets.
PLEASE NOTE: Some internet search engines indicate that we accept credit cards, but this is incorrect. As you know, they can't put it on the internet if it's not true. (That's a JOKE!! We're being facitious!) But, then again we didn't put it on the internet, and we're too vintage to know how to fix it!
This (left) is humor.
This (below) is real.
Estimates for total cost (including parts) will be $30. Estimate charge will be applied to the repair charge; otherwise estimate charge is non-refundable.
Effective April 15, 2019, estimate charge will be $35. This will apply to units brought in after that date; previously-pending repairs will remain at $30.
Each unit is individual and unique and requires a unique repair. Gary's experience enables him to estimate how much time each restoration will require, and the parts needed for each unit will differ. Cost for refurbishment will vary for each electronic piece depending on the requirements for that repair.
How much is my radio worth? What would my phonograph be worth if I get it fixed?
Sorry, we are not appraisers. Some pieces are collector's items and some are not. Value depends on what something is worth to someone. Generally we advise people that if the radio has not been meticulously restored and unless it is an especially rare or collectible item, if someone offers you $25, take the money and run.
Why does it seem like the repairs are expensive?
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) no longer requires that technicians who repair radios be licensed and certified. However, our technician, Gary, does possess these qualifications, which includes a First Class Radio-Telephone license. Gary continually keeps his knowledge and skills updated by maintaining membership in The Radio Club of America (RCA) and the American Radio Relay League (ARRL) (which produces a monthly magazine), and he is also a member of the Quarter Century Wireless Association by maintaining at least 25 continuous years as an active amateur radio operator (commonly known as a ham).
The training and testing that Gary completed were not easy. Membership in the Radio Club of America (RCA) includes rigorous vetting to ensure members are serious professionals that are interested in and capable of making improvements in the radio field.
We have had HiFis, consoles, stereos, and more brought to BiState Vintage Radio Repair after being serviced by someone else. Sometimes a unit is brought in for repair after someone has tried to "fix" it him/herself. These repairs require undoing the "fix" that didn't work, and then starting over to discover and repair the actual problem. We have discovered unsafe wiring splices, grease and lubrication applied over dust and dirt without cleaning, and numerous other various quick, but short-lasting, fixes (that didn't fix the problem at all). The service you receive from BiState Vintage Radio Repair is neither quick nor short lasting.
You are paying for this service, training, and skill. This isn't Emmit's Fix-It Shop in Mayberry. You are paying for the best possible repair and refurbishment that can be done on your radio or phonograph.
Examples of work that almost always needs to be done to an old radio and/or record changer (phonograph), even if it's been well taken care of, include:
· new power cord
· replacement of wax-encrusted paper-type capacitors
· full general cleaning
· idler (drive) wheel
· cam wheel
· RF & IF alignment
· changing resistors that are out of tolerance
· replacement of any other components as required
· replacing tube sockets as needed
· replacing components such as power transformers or IF transformers
· rewinding oscillator and RF coils
· replacing as needed dial cover, speakers, knobs, grill cloth fabric
Your vintage piece will receive more of a restoration than a mere repair.
(See our Before and After page.)
This painstaking, time consuming, and thorough.
When your item leaves here, it will be BETTER than new! When it was new, it was assembled on a conveyer belt or assembly line. Your phonograph or radio will be given individual tender loving care.
This is how Philo made radios in the 1930s and '40s:
Model 048 Set Testers being assembled, Philadelphia, 1933.
This is how Philco serviced radios in the 1930s and '40s:
This is how Gary services Philco radios and all the other brands that he works on:
Gary works on one piece at a time, by hand and by himself. He accesses components by reaching into a console, not by assembling them before the cabinet is built around them.
Public domain images acquired from the Philco Radio Historical Society/philcoradio.com and used with permission.
Labor rate is $50 per hour.
Effective April 15, 2019, labor rate will be $60 per hour. This will apply to units brought in after that date; previously-pending repairs will remain at $50.
Parts are an extra charge and subject to 8.1% sales tax.
Work is guaranteed for 30 days from the date that the customer picks up the unit. EXCLUSION: Turntable motors are cleaned, lubricated, and checked for correct operation, but they are NOT rebuilt. Therefore, turntable motors are not included in the warranty. EXCEPTION: If a Voice of Music (VM) turntable motor needs repair, that can be accomplished and will have a 15-day warranty.
The owner of the electronics is responsible for pickup and delivery arrangements. Sorry, we don't have the capacity for house calls. Any piece that has not been picked up 90 days after notification of completed refurbishment will be considered abandoned.
NOTHING LEAVES THIS SHOP UNLESS
IT IS IN
METICULOUS WORKING ORDER!
Repairs are done to a degree that we would want the item in our own home.
For items newer than approximately 1970, please contact our friends at Alpha-Tech in Richmond Heights [St. Louis], Missouri. 314-645-5250
We also do NOT repair jukeboxes of any age.
For jukebox repair, please contact our friends at
Grand America Jukebox.
We do not work on cell phones or flat screen televisions of any age.
Restoration of your wood cabinet is also
available separately and upon request.
Radio/Phonograph Cabinet Refinishing may be arranged by an independent cabinet refinishing expert, with whom we have worked for a long time and who will treat your cabinet with the same care we treat your electronics. All cabinet refinishing will be done at the refinisher's location. This separate service includes:
- color and luster as close to original as possible, unless otherwise requested
- restoration of broken or missing ornamentation
- replacement of veneer (as needed)
- careful hand sanding and refinishing