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  • Voyce
    Experienced
    • Oct 29 2022
    • 124

    Radio silence

    First, a hat tip to the forum TRL for providing two SB radio service handbooks. A must-read start if you are looking at an original radio issue. (See, for example, '59TbirdRadio94MS-Manual.pdf (squarebirds.org).)

    Second, a hat tip to Rosie for their posting thread - 1960 static bonding clip needed - Squarebirds, Rocketbirds, and Fifties/Sixties Ford Discussion Forum.

    A final hat tip to Pat in MA for his posting - Powergen generator to alternator upgrade - Squarebirds, Rocketbirds, and Fifties/Sixties Ford Discussion Forum. Those images clearly showed how to mount a noise suppression capacitor (NSC) on the VR junction block.

    As with many adventures in Birdland, this trip started with a cosmetic impulse. Would it not look nice to buff the radio faceplate with a cleaning/polishing rouge and to return the look of the lower radio access panel to match the exterior paint? (It reminds one of Billy Crystal's tribute to Fernando Llamas, “Darling, it’s better to look good than to feel good.” See https://youtu.be/tRcdFXQzXK4.)

    Not feel good? Let us consider, the ’60 Bird had a radio that played all six of our local AM radio stations just great, as long as you did not start the engine. Do that, and you got the cacophony of engine rpm static playing through the speaker.

    Prior to the cosmetic impulse, a reading of the handbook revealed that perhaps the missing NSCs on the VR and the ignition coil were at least part of the cause. Reading the Rosie thread revealed perhaps it also was the missing noise suppression clips from the cowl.

    The missing NSCs were replaced. However, the clips were not. Rather, I chose to mount a braided grounding lug/lug cable on the driver side, mounted between the hood attachment fasteners and an existing fastener on the body. Why mess up the paint?

    Result? You still do not start the engine if you want to listen to the radio.

    Back to looking good. With the access plate removed and the fascia plate gone, why not take out the radio tuner and give it a cleaning?

    Once plucked from its station, the upper and lower stamped metal access panels were removed. A gentle application of compressed air for the gross cleaning was followed by the liberal application of a spray fluid electronic cleaner to the guts.

    The final move was a mildly abrasive cleaning of all the electrical contact points and both the antenna cable plug end and the antenna plug receiver socket.
    After cobbling it all together and back into place, Fernando was right. Darling, it IS better to look good!

    A check of the radio function in ACC on/engine off mode revealed all was working as before. So, in for a penny in for a pound, why not fire the engine up and see what happens?

    Wow, it is clear as 1950s tech could make AM radio reception, even with the engine running. Static gone.

    Fernando, it is even better to look good AND to feel good, truly it is simply marvelous!
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