BiState Vintage Radio Repair, LLC
Fixing vintage electronics since 1974
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Before & After Photos

February 9, 2021
What happens when a General Electric radio's antenna looks like this:




You rebuild it.  Start by taking it apart:


Then you rebuild:




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June 17, 2020
With a big shout out to our friends at Laser Concepts, here's today's before and after picture.
This is the dial face of a Philco 50-1421 radio.  Visit laserconcepts.biz
for a multitude of lasering and engraving needs and great gift ideas!




May 29, 2020
Here are some projects that have been worked on during the craziness of the Corvid-19 pandemic.
Broken hinge for Stromberg-Carlson


RCA K105 was brought to us after the customer had had some work done by a hobbyist.  Gary's head exploded!  We are not badmouthing anyone else's work, but this is not how we do things.  Gary never uses electrical tape because it will fail and unravel.  The incorrect resistors were installed, causing the radio to smoke (and would have been a burn-the-house-down hazard).  Here are a few before, during, and after pictures of the project.
Before:


The spring installed on the dial prevented dial rotation throughout the full bandwidth.





During:



At some stage this transformer was so hot, the tar boiled (and leaked).  This will be replaced.


The chassis has been cleaned down to the bare metal.  Normally at this point, Gary would have given it a fresh coat of paint, but this chassis bears some original stickers that is is desireable to remain intact.



After:










August 22, 2019
The original back of this Emerson radio was worn out.  This is how it was replicated!  Even with more air holes to breathe better!





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August 21, 2019:  This is a customer's Zenith Trans-Oceanic radio.  His dad bought it for him ≈ 1952 & he's now 77 years old .  He took it to two places previously to have repaired.  One had it for months and did nothing and charged him $20.  The second place called him to ask how to plug it in!  We are appalled (even outraged) on behalf of our customer for having to put up with such shoddiness before finding the right place!

Before:

Electrical tape was wrapped around the base of the antenna to keep it from wobbling:


Unauthorized spacers placed under the transformer:



Lots of dust and dirt that will be cleaned:



Regular household string used as dial cord.  This will be replaced by proper dial cable:



During:

All the components disassembled and laid out on the workbench:



Starting to look better already!



Something got too hot!  The source will be found and corrected:



After:

It's working great now!  Gary even added an LED dial backlight:


Looks a little cleaner now!







No more electrical tape on the antenna!



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August 14, 2019
Well, this is just SHOCKING!  This is a transformer from a Sparton 25 (circa 1931) that somewhere in its past life had some overheating issues and melted the wiring, even exposing some bare wires.  Gary was getting a little JOLT when he touched the chassis.  Given this right circumstances, this could be an electrocution hazard.  Bring your old radios to us to make sure they're safe in your home!!  Gary has replaced all the wiring (which you can't really see because he already reinstalled the transformer).






This is a 1942 Automatic Radio Company Tom Thumb Portable radio that is a work-in-progress for a customer.  There will be more before & after pictures as it progresses, but what do you think so far?  The original is cardboard; the reproduction is metal.



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March 14, 2019
We welcome new challenges!  A customer is restoring his parents' 1968 General Electric console stereo.  We have never re-created a modern (modern by our vintage standards!) escutcheon before, but we're doing it!  Here are the before pictures:





Well, WE are not doing it, but we know people! 

Here are the after pictures:




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December 2018
This is why you should have a professional technician work on your radio.  This is a 1930s Philco cathedral radio. 

We never (ever!) use electrical tape!



We barely know where to start addressing what's wrong with soldering a tube in place.



Connections should not be twisted together but joined smoothly with the correct type of solder.



Yuck.



We've never actually seen Scotch tape holding a dial face in place before!



We'll bet the speaker sounds lousy with Scotch tape on it, too!



There are several washers or spacers made out of some sort of rubber and obviously hand cut.  These are clearly not OEM, or approved!



Standby for some "after" photos!

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1959 Edsel






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1939 General Electric H-116

The restoration of this radio is underway.  With just a little to work with, we can have a dial and escutcheon replicated!  We can accommodate special orders and custom requests, too!



Escutcheon and dial before:



After:




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1931 GE Model T12


Before


 


After:  replaced grille cloth, disassembed and cleaned chassis, rebuilt with new wire, rebuilt and replaced capacitor pack (original capacitor pack defective due to melted wax), replaced power cord and power supply filters.























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Sylvania Y45C20

Before




After:  Replaced rectifiers and capacitors, disassembled, readjusted and reassembled tone arm, replaced cartridge and stylus, motor mounts, power cord, mounted correct speaker.






Almost looks new!!




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1931 Screen Grid cathedral radio

Before



During


After





You don't get a "repair"!  You get a "restoration"!!  Trust your heirloom to us!

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A big shout out to our friends at Laser Concepts!  Dennis and Melissa took a broken escutcheon and recreated it.  Our artist, Steve, completed it by painting it gold.




Before:



After:  Added new legs, replaced grill cloth, replaced the broken escutcheon.  (These are just the changes to the appearance.  There was a lot of mechanical work done on this machine, too.)



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Even consoles/record changers/hi-fis that have been well taken care of have 50+ years of gunk.  This piece was serviced somewhere else and was greased and lubed over the dust and dirt.  This is NOT how BiState Vintage Radio Repair services your beloved piece!



All components of YOUR radio or record player or equipment will be cleaned like new and refurbished before it leaves BiState Vintage Radio Repair.  Often it'll be better than new because when it was new, it was built on an assembly line.  Now it will be refurbished by Gary painstakingly by hand!


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Before:














The cabinet on this 1953 Zenitheatre is in good shape, but the electronics, not so much.  It is being fully restored to like-new function for a customer.

After:
www.youtube.com/watch

The record being played is called "Hula Blues" and is available for sale in our shop!



This is what Lost in Space looked like when we watched it in 1966 in black and white!  This Zenitheatre is now fully restored and better than new!
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