Recovering an Iconic Classic

Kevin Christopher 
Antique Radio Hobbyist
 

 

March 28, 2013


 

March 22, 2013

We made all the checks to be sure the remote control receiving unit is working properly. The two capacitors with the black residue proved to be good, and the residue is old glue used to keep them in place. There are four relays and five tubes in this unit. Obviously the relays are for the four functions. Also, under the chassis are four reeds which vibrate when a signal is being received. Not sure what their function is. See the first two pictures.
 IF IF
Next we  return to the handheld unit. In picture 3IF we see a measurement of the frequency it operates at. Each function has a slightly different frequency centering around 22Mhz. It is transmitting on all four functions. We install the wrapper from the original battery on the new replacement lithium ion battery we made up. Overall, the originality is is as close as possible.
The receiving sub chassis uses a wire antenna to pick up the signal. On the cabinet this wire is under the bottom frame. We attach a wire to the antenna terminal. At this point we know both the balance functions will not work. This is due to the motor problem on the balance control. Previously, when we powered the volume motor from the power supply we know it was somewhat noisy. Being a sealed unit, there is not much we can do about that either.
With the main chassis operating on an AM station and the volume at a comfortable level, we are ready for the test. We depress the volume down push button. The moment of truth is at hand. We hear relays operating and the volume control rotates counterclockwise and then the set turns off. Depressing the volume up push button, the set turns on and the volume increases. We drive the control to full volume. Loud!!! Then we reduce it and turn it off. After trying this several times we are confident the remote system is working well.
Something to consider… The remote receiver unit (the sub chassis) remains powered up all the time. There is a toggle off-on switch located on the side of the chassis that will only be accessed from under the cabinet. In order for the power  and volume function to work remotely, the master power switch must remain in the on position. The remote operates the off-on switch on the volume control. With the master power switch in the off position, the remote functions will work, but nothing will happen.
This is clairly a monumentally clair moment in the life of the Clairtone. Hopefully, the operation of the Clairtone has been clairly clairified.
As soon as time permits, we will be putting the units in the cabinet and restoring it to operating condition. A little assistance will be necessary.
Many thanks  today to Maisie and Ashley who helped with getting the sub chassis removed from the cabinet.
Kevin
February21, 2013
There was an annoying scraping noise from the platter after it was fully assembled. Close inspection revealed the center spindle was tipping to the right and slightly loose. We find one of the mounting screws on the spindle bracket loose. From the screwdriver marks on the screw it appears it was worked on in the past. After tightening, the noise disappeared. Next a couple of operational checks. In the first picture we are using a strobe card to check the speed. It is good. In picture 59 we look at the stylus. It is slightly bent to one side and is worn a little. We won’t worry about it. Next we hook the changer up to an amplifier and speakers as shown in picture 60. The sound is great considering the temporary speaker elements we are using.

February16, 2013

February 15, 2013

I looked at the Clairtone beauty. It is a beauty. A keeper!!! You need to pass on my thanks to Ash for helping me with power and also taking it apart. It is well put together, and in such a way that it is serviceable.

After getting the chassis out and the bottom off I found the circuit breaker was open. Several readings I made with the ohm meter were questionable. Didn’t want to power it up, but then I managed to reset the breaker. We applied power and it lit up, but smoke erupted from a resistor. At that point I decided to take the chassis with me.
I will make some more checks tonight. I have two other projects on the bench, but I can delay them a little.
First impressions of the chassis are good. The tubes used in the audio section are premium types and the best quality. The circuitry is nothing but the best, such as multiple drivers, parallel push pull outputs, etc. I am impressed with it. There are inputs for any number of optional components such as tape decks, TVs etc.
Stay tuned, or should I say, keep vinyl on standby, for a late night report.
Kevin

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