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Vintage Radio (domestic) Domestic vintage radio (wireless) receivers only.

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Old 3rd Dec 2011, 1:35 pm   #1
merlinmaxwell
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Default A Cautionary Tale

I have my EKCO U354 wired to an inline switch so I can turn it on, make a cuppa and listen to 'Today' in the mornings before going to work. On one morning this week SHMBO asked a question so I turned the volume down and forgot to turn off the radio. Returning home I went to switch her on (for PM this time) and found it already on and not working.

The UY85 rectifier had gone short twixt heater and cathode and had been lit up like an christmas tree all day. This melted the case a bit, caused the DM70 heater to blow, two resistors to fall apart and the 100 Ohm section of the dropper to go O/C. Luckily no fire and after replacing the dead bits working again.

I think I will fit a dial lamp.
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Old 3rd Dec 2011, 1:47 pm   #2
Leon Crampin
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Default Re: A Cautionary Tale

I have one of these as a bedside radio...

With all of my radios which I use frequently and which incorporate a mains switch in a potentiometer I do two things - to avoid potentiometer wear and to increase safety:

Fit a switched 13A plug with a neon to the radio and use it. Fit a 1A HRC fuse to BS1362 to this plug.

The fuse would not have saved your radio in this case, but being in the habit of turning it off at the plug would. The 1A fuse did once save a mains transformer when I had a UU6 rectifier fail short - anode to anode.

Leon.
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Old 3rd Dec 2011, 1:54 pm   #3
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Default Re: A Cautionary Tale

One solution to this problem is to fit a resistor at the bottom end of the volume pot so it isn't possible to turn the sound down completely.
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Old 3rd Dec 2011, 2:05 pm   #4
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Default Re: A Cautionary Tale

Fitting a switched plug wouldn't work in my case, the socket is round a corner out of sight. I have tried to find an inline switch with a neon so far to no avail, mind you the new DM70 is so much brighter and may save the day in the future.

I am pleased it was an easy fix because of all my radios it is probably the most pleasant to listen to what with no audible hum or hiss unless you plonk your ear right next to the 'speaker and a very clear tone for the spoken word.

I always fit a 1A fuse to my mains radio plugs, good advice worth repeating.
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Old 3rd Dec 2011, 2:07 pm   #5
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Default Re: A Cautionary Tale

What about a mains timer so it can only be on for say half an hour at a time.

Al
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Old 3rd Dec 2011, 2:11 pm   #6
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Default Re: A Cautionary Tale

Quote:
One solution to this problem is to fit a resistor at the bottom end of the volume pot so it isn't possible to turn the sound down completely.
Good idea, but I bet one day I will want it just a smidge lower! And one at the top so it can't be turned up too far, I find all things with a volume control go up too much. This makes gentle adjustment of the volme difficult. Adding a top resistor can move the used bit to a clean bit of a noisy pot and let modern lower value pots i.e. the ones you can get these days be used for repairs.
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Old 3rd Dec 2011, 2:16 pm   #7
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Default Re: A Cautionary Tale

I keep posting in the middle of other posts...

Quote:
What about a mains timer so it can only be on for say half an hour at a time.
It WILL turn off at the wrong moment, I could wire it to the lighting circuit with one of those adaptors to keep it in period, now that would be a big pilot lamp.
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Old 3rd Dec 2011, 2:31 pm   #8
Alistair D
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Default Re: A Cautionary Tale

As an idea of what I was talking about I modified the timer in the picture by disconnecting the motor wire from the input side of the switch and connecting it to the output. All I have to do is rotate the time dial until it switches on. It times through the selected on time and stops at the end. I use it mainly for fast charging batteries.

Al
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Old 3rd Dec 2011, 3:32 pm   #9
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Default Re: A Cautionary Tale

I like that very much. I and others in Slave Manor always leaving phones, ipods and AA cells sitting on the charger for far too long. An elegant solution.
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Old 5th Dec 2011, 4:29 pm   #10
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Default Re: A Cautionary Tale

Would be nice to have a separate ring main in the house feeding sockets that switch off when the house is not occupied, for things like TV's, radio's, phone chargers, computers etc.

Of course there are always execptions where things must be on all the time, but I'm sure a solution like this is feasable.

Dave.

EDIT, or hows about using the mechanical timer from an old microwave? 1 hour and works exactly as you want it to.
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Old 5th Dec 2011, 4:49 pm   #11
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Default Re: A Cautionary Tale

Must admit I'm not keen on using very old, especially AC/DC equipment in vulnerable situations. It's just a thought but if a customer had asked my advice I would have felt it my duty to explain the risks. I would not have been happy allowing my late mother, living alone to use on a full time basis, AC/DC receivers which often lack even a fuse for protection. It could have burned the house down with disasterous consequences. Is it worth it just for an old radio? Regards, John.
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Old 5th Dec 2011, 5:51 pm   #12
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Default Re: A Cautionary Tale

Oh dear, Now this is just odd I over the weekend have done the exact same thing with an EKCO U353. It lives in my office at the company warehouse, I was listening to it on Friday while doing some odd jobs in the office, i must of turned it down but not off when the phone rang when i came in this morning before i switched the lights on i saw the magic eye glowing at me, fortunately no harm done the set had not got hot and worked fine with the volume turned back up, sobering thought of what could of happened though. it is now plugged into a time switch set so it will only power on between the hours of 8am to 6pm.

Jay
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Old 5th Dec 2011, 6:45 pm   #13
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Default Re: A Cautionary Tale

It gets worse, I left my P 20 B on top it's bottom is now a bit bent. Only noticed tonight.
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Old 5th Dec 2011, 10:47 pm   #14
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Default Re: A Cautionary Tale

In my book safety trumps originality and my sets get fitted with internal fuses: F500mA for AC sets and T315mA for AC/DCs. Also handy if I ever wanted to put 'vintage' un-fused plugs on them.

- Joe
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