Author Topic: Magnavox 1ST616 Restoration  (Read 4952 times)

electra225

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Re: Magnavox 1ST616 Restoration
« Reply #60 on: July 31, 2016, 02:31:58 PM »
I got all the parts back into the cabinet without much problem.  A misstep here and there, but I had pictures and diagrams to back me up.  I cleaned up all the painted interior parts with Windex and Simichrome.

I wet-sanded the cabinet with 600, 800, 1000, 1200, 1500, and 2000 grit paper.  Then I polished with burlap and Simichrome, followed by a coat of Johnson's paste wax.  I used burlap as my polishing medium rather than a terry cloth towel. 

There is sanding and polishing mud still on the cabinet that will be removed.  I need to complete the work on the electronics and install that, and figure out what I'm going to do with the back.  The lighting in my shop is not good for photography. 

I am beyond pleased with the outcome.  I got the gloss I wanted, I eliminated the polyurethane "plastic" and learned a lot and had a ball doing it.  My wife is thrilled that I "let" her hot rod the grille cloth, her specialty.

I now have a genuine, hand-rubbed oil finish, pretty close to what was on there when it was new, done with polyurethane and shellac.
If it ain't broke, call me.  I can break it....

Larry H

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Re: Magnavox 1ST616 Restoration
« Reply #61 on: July 31, 2016, 03:02:41 PM »
Looking very nice.  Guess you aren't too far from the finish line.
--Larry

Consoleman

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Re: Magnavox 1ST616 Restoration
« Reply #62 on: July 31, 2016, 03:41:40 PM »
Stunning!
Mark

electra225

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Re: Magnavox 1ST616 Restoration
« Reply #63 on: July 31, 2016, 04:42:11 PM »
Thank you both.

I have caps ordered for the electronics.  Actually, I have electrolytic caps ordered.  The rest is done.  I am in the process of tinkering with the changer to figure out what, if anything, I need there outside of a drive tire, motor mounts and a stylus.  I believe I'm going to install two stereo (LP) needles.  One for playing 45's and one for LP's.  I won't play 78's on it.

I need to redo the felt slides on the lids and replace the stops.  The wiring to the MPX adapter still needs to be cleaned.  Little things like that......

I'm open to opinions on the black grille cloth.  I personally like it, as it compliments the black grooves cut into the cabinet.  My wife hated the original cloth for some reason.  It is hard for me to make changes like this, though, with a totally clear conscience.  I'm pretty much an "all original" type person, although this stereo was so bad, I felt I could play with it a bit, with little to lose...... :-\
If it ain't broke, call me.  I can break it....

Larry H

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Re: Magnavox 1ST616 Restoration
« Reply #64 on: July 31, 2016, 07:04:21 PM »
The black grill cloth looks great with the cabinet.  Your wife has good tastes....    I like the bright polished brass ornaments on front of the cabinet too.
--Larry

electra225

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Re: Magnavox 1ST616 Restoration
« Reply #65 on: July 31, 2016, 07:25:27 PM »
Thank you, Larry.  I appreciate that.

Actually, what I did to the brass trim was to sand it with 1000 grit and leave it au naturale.  Ken suggested that I not polish them totally bright.  The brass trim is clean, not highly polished.  I'm glad you like the look.

There are little trim pieces on the top end of the little speakers.  Those trim pieces are anodized mystery metal of some type, probably aluminum.  I could not make those brighter unless I painted them, which would look totally hokey.  So the brass trim could not be polished very much without those looking dull and old.  I had to strike up a happy medium......
If it ain't broke, call me.  I can break it....

electra225

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Re: Magnavox 1ST616 Restoration
« Reply #66 on: July 31, 2016, 08:11:35 PM »
I have a thought I'd like to share without belaboring the point...

There is a hesitancy within the "old radio" hobby of using polyurethane finishes.  I have long appreciated the benefits of poly.  And, I'll admit, I 'm not a fan of lacquer.  It cracks, falls off, is fairly delicate, easily damaged.  But it is easy to work with and very forgiving.  I will have to admit, after working poly on this project, I can see the position of the "lacquer only" way of thinking.  Polyurethane is not a "fast" finish.  Lacquer dries quickly and can be worked almost as soon as it is dry.  Poly has to cure.  It "dries" via a chemical reaction that takes place when the material comes into contact with air.  Runs and sags are a major faux pas when you are spraying poly.  They take forever to dry, and, if large enough, may never totally dry.  If you sand into a sag, the finish may roll up and leave a crater in the finish, which must then be filled somehow and refinished.  Don't ask how I found this out.  However, when you get done with a successful polyurethane finish, about the only thing that will potentially damage the finish is fire.  The normal ravages of time and everyday living have no effect on it whatsoever.  It is a totally cat-proof finish.  It is flexible and moves as the wood breathes. 

My next refinishing project will be a shellac and lacquer job on my Philco 38-12.  I want to see how shellac and lacquer work together.  Then, if that works well, I want to refinish my Philco 40-180 in shellac and lacquer.

Fortunately, Magnavox did not use lacquer, at least in the stereo era.  They used a shellac based finish that we have discussed previously.  Should my Concert Grand or Imperial suffer an "owie" and have to be partially refinished, I believe I would not hesitate to use the procedures and materials on them that I have used on this little Concerto.  A poly over shellac finish, to me at least, looks and feels like the finish Magnavox put on at the factory.

Another little tidbit of experience is this.  I would not recommend using a stripper on a Magnavox instrument that is being refinished.  Magnavox had its own formula, apparently, for the different finishes it used.  Magnavox mahogany is the most gorgeous mahogany ever put on furniture, in my opinion.  But if you try to match Magnavox mahogany to mahogany stain by nearly any manufacturer, it won't match.  It is way darker and redder than most mahogany.  If you use stripper, the grain filler and stain may disappear.  The stain was sprayed on with at least one coat of finish after the cabinet had been grain filled.  What I would do instead is to use a refinisher.  This will remove the finish and not bother the stain or grain filler.  Since many Magnavox finishes require at least some alcohol to remove the shellac based finish, alcohol will not likely affect the stain or grain filler, since they are oil based.  I finally found stain for this project that was dead nuts on, but I was extremely fortunate.  I have no idea what it would take, short of having stain computer matched, to match the finish color on my CG.  Since Magnavox cabinets were hardwood, they did not have to resort to using toners to hide cheap or dis-similar woods.
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Harbourmaster

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Re: Magnavox 1ST616 Restoration
« Reply #67 on: August 01, 2016, 07:42:56 PM »
That's looking great!


The dark cloth sets off the black pin lines nicely. The sliding tops turned out excellent!


I suspect that the little metal trim pieces on the grills are some form of "Brite Dip" like what is used on Automobiles and any attempt at polishing them would simply destroy the finish. Best to clean them and leave them alone.



-- Aloha, Ken

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electra225

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Re: Magnavox 1ST616 Restoration
« Reply #68 on: August 01, 2016, 08:17:39 PM »
Thanks, Ken.  I put those little trim pieces thru the dishwasher. 

Black grain filler is the bomb for eliminating (actually hiding) a black water stain.  After that was done, the rest of the operation on the lids was straightforward.  Eight coats of "running off the edges" polyurethane, sanded between coats with progressively finer sandpaper.  The final coat got sanded with 1200 grit thru 2000 grit, then polished.  You can see by the reflection of the window frame that the finish looks like glass.

This is the only set of sliding lids that I have that are actually veneered.  I thought at first that these had been photofinished, but that turned out to be in error.  These were just nasty after somebody attempted to refinish them. 

Since I have worked with these lids, if I had a set of photofinished lids that needed a new finish, I would veneer right over the photofinish and put whatever finish on them I liked.  They are flat and easy to clamp.  They would be a snap to trim the veneer on.  I have avoided instrument with damaged photofinish in the past.
If it ain't broke, call me.  I can break it....