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Messages - TC Chris

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Sightings / Re: 1959 Magnavox Stereorama
« on: Today at 02:19:23 PM »
The Stereorama shows up in the fall 1958 Magnavox catalog.

Here's an upsidedown picture of mine, note the different legs/base.

Your base is better looking.

Chris Campbell

Wanted / Re: Need a few 10" alnico speakers
« on: Today at 11:21:08 AM »
My theory on the Heathkit console was that the speakers had to be somewhat related in price to the cost of the console free, a curbside find). I need to diagnose the channel that doesn't work and get a new stylus for the Shure cartridge and make new backs for the speaker enclosures.  But first I would need to extract it from the garage, WAAAAYYY back there beyond the V-M 566-B console  and the iceboat and a couple bicycles hanging like bats from the roof trusses.  Some day.  But basically, for a free console, the first priority is making it work and being faithful to authenticity requirements is secondary.  Then there is the challenge of finding a place for it to sit and play.  These toys sure take a ot of space....

Chris Campbell

OK, I found it.  Look on p. 7 of the 1959 brochure in downloads--it's "The Stratford," and specifically the version shown in the B&W inset photo.

Chris Campbell

The mono Magnasonics had lift-up lids.  I don't have a photo of mine at hand, but here's an identical 1956 one from online.
I can't find a good front view but they are either square or slightly taller than wide.  That's why I was wondering if the one in question was maybe an early stereo version.  The Magnasonic was a budget console, although mine is outfitted with two 12" speakers and two 5", mounted coaxially, and a big amplifier with push-pull parallel 6V6s.

Chris Campbell

Music / Re: Country music concerts
« on: Today at 12:37:12 AM »
The commercial producers fail to grasp the difference between loud and excruciating.  At home, I do like a bit of loudness now and then.  Same in the car.  But it's not painful.  Excruciating is painful. 

Part of the problem is that it's easy to do it today.  We have enormous amplifiers and huge speaker banks that can put out vast amounts of noise.  Somehow  the people who put shows on have lost the distinction between "can" and "should."  We do not need to be deafened to enjoy music. 

It's especially puzzling when bands are hired for events like wedding receptions.  You've got a big group of people, many of whom are related, and probably living all over the country.  So they all come together for a big event, and pretty soon the band sets up and plays at excessive levels so all conversation stops.  Me, I'd rather have a chance to talk to people I haven't seen in a long time, or maybe to some new acquaintance.  To be fair, I guess it's OK when the music starts a bit later and the young folks want to dance.  At a wedding last summer they did that, and it was outdoors and the neighbors were tolerant, so those of us who wanted to chat could retreat far enough to reduce the sound levels. (That wedding was a niece's and I performed the ceremony.  I got ordained online for one niece's wedding  and it worked so well that two more asked me to do theirs.) When you're stuck indoors, there's no defense except stuffing your ears with tissue or leaving. 

The last commercial arena concert I attended was Bruce Springsteen a long time ago.  It took a day for my ears to stop ringing.

Chris Campbell

Chat / Re: I finally learned......
« on: Today at 12:20:35 AM »
It's not so much lack of interest as complete befuddlement.  On my old computer I could capture YouTube performances onto my iPod.  Then at some point it no longer worked.  I do have a little video of Ernest Tubb singing "Waltz Across Texas" and Hank Snow singing "A Fool Such As I." 

I'm not much of a fan of buying music online (i.e., downloading).  I like my physical copies--CDs or LPs.  But a while back I broke down and bought a modern classical music composition by download because that's the only way it was available.  So I paid a few bucks and downloaded into my computer's iTunes.  Think I could transfer it to the iPod?  Think again.  I got so desperate that I actually read Apple's online instructions.  They basically said "drag and drop."  I have dragged and dropped until I'm blue in the face and nothing transfers. I even had a teenager try to do it for me, the last recourse of computer-challenged old people.  He couldn't do it either (but to be fair, I think using an iPod was a bit too old-fashioned for him.  I should have tried a 30-something).

Maybe I'll try that conversion site you linked and see what it can do for saving YouTubes.

Chris Campbell

Wanted / Re: Need a few 10" alnico speakers
« on: February 18, 2018, 08:11:37 PM »
Last month Parts Express had 10" rubber-surround speakers on sale @ $15 (ceramics).  I bought a couple to restuff the Heathkit console.  Seemed like a good price and they don't have failure-prone foam surrounds.  I haven't heard them yet but they look good.  I could send a photo (kinda odd way to audition speakers, looking at a picture, no?).

Chris Campbell

Magnificent Magnavox / Re: Magnavox Identification Help Please!
« on: February 18, 2018, 07:39:05 PM »
I might be all wet here but it kind of looks like a Magnavox Magnasonic.  (1956 & 1957 catalogs in the downloads section of the forum) If it is they had 2 12" woofers and 5" tweeters.  20 Watt amp.  It was entry level but still a Magnavox.  Do you have any other pictures, maybe under the lid?

The early mono Magnasonics were narrower, although the general design was similar.  I have a '56.  Perhaps this was a slightly later, early stereo Magnasonic?

Chris Campbell

Chat / Re: Current project
« on: February 18, 2018, 07:36:50 PM »
Typo in my reply.  Hit send in haste, repent at leisure.  I meant "busy."


Chat / Re: Current project
« on: February 18, 2018, 07:35:31 PM »
  Looking good, makes my arm tired thinking about it!

 Where did you find that grille cloth?

The grille cloth came from q-masters (my receipt shows "") on the ARF thread for supplies for cabinet restoration:

My strategy was to check out all the offerings and choose the one that matched the original, unfaded portion best.  I found one that had a similar pattern and pretty close color match as well.

And don't y'all get too bust congratulating me until it's done--the next step is rubbing out with pumice & rottenstone. That's complicated a bit by all the shapes and corners, with many opportunities to rub right through the varnish.  Otherwise stated, there are many opportunities for bad language. @#%&$)!!!  But if it works right then I'm all grins.

Chris Campbell

Chat / Re: Current project
« on: February 16, 2018, 06:41:40 PM »
I'll add some updated photos. The first one is the GE console radio after removing the old finish, gluing veneers,  and restaining. The second one is after multiple cats of varnish, with the new grille cloth propped up inside to show what t looks like.  The cloth is pretty close to what the original looked like, in color and pattern.  The next step is rubbing out the varnish with pumice & rottenstone. 

Chris Campbell

Other Solid State Console Brands / Re: Packard Bell RPC-66
« on: February 15, 2018, 08:43:31 PM »
Nice write-up.  I usually assume speakers, a mechanical and fairly durable part of the device, are not at fault.  I do have a marine Radio Direction Finder that i use as a music source on my local sailboat (it has an FM band).  My brother gave it to me--got it on a boat he bought.  It would play along just fine and then die after about 5 min.  Turns out the speaker voice coil was opening.  Very odd behavior. 

My only Packard-Bell gear is a ca. 1949/1950 FM tuner, a little 2-gang device of no special value.  It was my college tuner and hard a hard time receiving the "underground" FM station about 30 mi. away.

Chris Campbell

Other Tube Console Brands / Re: Need Info on this G.E. Console.....
« on: February 15, 2018, 08:34:36 PM »
Very cool the way the turntable rotation stops as the record falls.  How is the rumble/wow performance?

Chris Campbell

Chat / Re: Fitbit
« on: February 15, 2018, 08:31:14 PM »
Too soon old, too late smart.  Wow, did I ever discover the truth of that saying.  When it's too late to avoid your really stupid errors in life, you have to look forward and control those things you can control.  For me, it's diet and exercise.  I've got a pretty good diet and lots of exercise.

Why?  Well, I want to live long enough to restore all my cars and radios and phonos, and to enjoy them after that.   I'm aiming to live to 100.  Meanwhile, I'm still working full-time at age 70... and riding the bike to work.  Last night during our current Big Thaw (about 41 degrees at 8:30 or so) I went out and repacked the bottom bracket--the crankshaft--on my faithful Winter Warrior bicycle, the one with fenders and studded tires.  Something is getting crunchy.  Turns out it wasn't those bearings, although a repack didn't hurt them.

Chris Campbell

Chat / Re: Fitbit
« on: February 14, 2018, 09:34:42 PM »
I've got the little clip-on variety that measures steps and derives calories and distance from that.  It's not the fancy wrist variety.  I've had it for several years now.  I like knowing my daily step count, even though it's very predictable.  I have a job where they pay me to sit, so I have to get some movement in other parts of my life.  I tend to average about 12-13,000 steps/day except on weekends, when sometimes I'm lazy (except for X-C skiing in the winter, or cutting grass in the summer).

Now that I'm an old guy I can be eccentric as hell.  I ride the bike to work all winter (studded tires from Finland, fenders) and have a walking route that I do every day after work (in the dark in winter; now it;s getting light).  We need to build activity into our lives, at least those of us with bad dietary and smoking decisions as young people. 

I could drop the Fitbit now, but its nice to have some routines in life.

Chris Campbell

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