My Favorite Cleaning Supplies for Radios

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My Favorite Cleaning Supplies for Radios

Post by Dr. Radio on Thu Oct 04, 2012 9:16 pm

Thought I'd share this, these are my favorite cleaners for getting the ugly, mucked-up, filthy, disgusting radios looking and smelling nice again. Very Happy

I also use them for my other hobbies (old phones, old clocks, automotive restos)...

For plastic cabinets, (after all of the innards have been stripped out)....to get out all the dead bugs, cobwebs, soot on the "ceiling" mouse pee and poop, I like to use Simple Green original formula:

http://www.simplegreen.com/products_all_purpose_cleaner.php


I usually buy the 1 gallon jug, and then dilute to a higher concentration and put it in a high powered spray bottle to blast the nasties out. I will warn you, I find this stuff really dries out the skin on my hands, so I try to always wear gloves. I've also used un-diluted simple green as a safe paint stripper. For plastic cabinets that have over-spray or drips from "house painting projects", a soak for a couple hours loosens tough paint and stains.

For gooey messes (great to remove sale price stickers, Goodwill stickers that state "May not work, for parts only", etc, nothing cuts it like De-Solv-It:

http://www.orange-sol.com/household/index.html

If the Simple Green doesn't work, after a good washdown with regular water, I then get out the De-Solv-It.

For nasty stamped steel chassis, I like this stuff to pull the grime, dust and cigarette smoke residue off:

http://goophandcleaner.com/products/orange-goop/

I like the squeeze bottle of the non-pumice Orange Goop. It's hands friendly too as it doesn't have all the nasty petroleum products the other types have.

Lastly, to "restore" a wood cabinet, I use simply a "rough" paper towel and this stuff to pull dirt, grime and smoke resisdue out of the laquer's and coatings without trashing the original work;

http://www.permatex.com/products/automotive/hand_care/hand_care_hand_cleaners/DL_Permatex_Blue_LabelCream_Hand_Cleaner.htm

Other tips; whenever using more then one cleaner, I neutralize the first one by using plenty of water to avoid any chemical reactions between products that could dull or damage original pieces and parts. Any of the above products and good soft-bristled tooth brush can work wonders on items you wouldn't even want to bring into your garage! Embarassed

Smile



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Re: My Favorite Cleaning Supplies for Radios

Post by Guest on Fri Oct 05, 2012 1:34 am

I spent some time in London at a chintz china convention (under protest) with my girlfriend and learned they use lamp oil to clean dried-on price stickers. I find it works well with many other materials and have not run into any type plastic which is hurt by it.

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Re: My Favorite Cleaning Supplies for Radios

Post by Dr. Radio on Fri Oct 05, 2012 2:10 am

Lamp oil huh?

Sounds like the suspicious equivalent to what my parents always would use around the house here in the states......Ronson Lighter Fluid!
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Re: My Favorite Cleaning Supplies for Radios

Post by willy3486 on Fri Oct 05, 2012 9:20 am

As far as stickers goes wd40 will take stickers off. I saw a bakelite radio at a meet that looked new. I asked the guy how he was able to get it that good and he said he used the goop that has been mentioned. I had a radio that the tuning cap assembly was so rusted it wouldn't turn. I would drop a few drops of brake fluid on it to get it loose over a few days. It got it loose and I was able to get the radio to play. I don't use it much on radios but if I have steel that is rusted I will use the electrolitic rust removal method on rusty steel. Its the way to remove rust by putting the rusty piece in water and using a battery charger to remove the rust.

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Re: My Favorite Cleaning Supplies for Radios

Post by Guest on Fri Oct 05, 2012 10:27 am

When removing rust from metal here is a link I've found;

http://antique-engines.com/electrol.asp

I got everything needed to set it up and may do this in the next week. I'm sure it will be great for auto parts but not so sure about tuning capacitors...LOL

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Re: My Favorite Cleaning Supplies for Radios

Post by willy3486 on Fri Oct 05, 2012 12:25 pm

I may have got you confused by my early morning rambling. I didn't use the electrolsys for the tuning cap. The bearings in the tuning cap had rusted so i dripped a few drops of brake fluid on them to loosen them.I would let it set then try the next day. When I could get it to move then I would work it back and forth carefully until it was free. After they were loose I sprayed it down with contact cleaner.

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Re: My Favorite Cleaning Supplies for Radios

Post by sprman on Sun Oct 07, 2012 12:41 pm

ATF fluids the best for breaking things rusted free better than anything out there. Sprman

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Re: My Favorite Cleaning Supplies for Radios

Post by Resistance is Futile on Mon Oct 08, 2012 6:22 pm

Lamp oil is kerosene, another good one is mineral spirits.
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Re: My Favorite Cleaning Supplies for Radios

Post by Guest on Mon Oct 08, 2012 6:27 pm

Resistance is Futile wrote:Lamp oil is kerosene, another good one is mineral spirits.

Well is is but..... it doesn't smell as bad as Kerosene! Smile

I have had good luck with mineral spirits but doesn't is melt certain plastics? Question

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Re: My Favorite Cleaning Supplies for Radios

Post by Resistance is Futile on Wed Oct 10, 2012 3:18 am

I have some mineral spirits (Stoddard solvent ) and it now comes in plastic containers. So Test first I guess.
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Re: My Favorite Cleaning Supplies for Radios

Post by Bill Cahill on Wed Oct 10, 2012 8:20 am

I find that some plastics can handle more than others............
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Re: My Favorite Cleaning Supplies for Radios

Post by Guest on Wed Oct 10, 2012 7:13 pm

I've found just straight lighter fluid a good solvent for adhesives on most plastics, as it does not dissolve them. I have found 91% isopropyl alcohol to be good for cleaning silver tarnish. Use it with a suitable toothbrush. (one that does not soften nor melt in it.) I keep a few scraps of different plastics around to test new solvents on. I picked up this habit after a salesman left a new solvent at the shop to try with the radios we repaired. It worked nice! I used it on 4 HT600 radios and they cleaned up great. about an hour later after we ordered 2 cases of it, the housings on the radios began to crumble apart and thebattery contacts began to short out at the crumbling base. We had to dump them in a waste basket and throw them outside. What a mess!! affraid

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Re: My Favorite Cleaning Supplies for Radios

Post by samd on Thu Jan 03, 2013 8:05 pm

Speaking of removing paint (latex, specifically) and general grease and grime: a soaking in hot water and dishwashing detergent (not dish soap) will remove an amazing amount of stuff. Ever wonder why your hands feel "slippery" when the powder gets on your hands? Base… I'll second the use of S-Green, too; very useful cleaner. Watch it with the brake fluid around paint! Also, watch it when using locking compounds (Loctite) around some plastics… It can cause some plastics to crumble.


Last edited by samd on Thu Jan 03, 2013 8:08 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Typos)

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Re: My Favorite Cleaning Supplies for Radios

Post by Dave Allen on Sat Mar 02, 2013 11:14 am

For rust removal I like plain white vinegar - I soak small parts in a cup full, scrub with a toothbrush occasionally, and pour it back into the jug for use next time. I've found that phosphoric acid (Metal Prep, Naval Jelly) converts rust to hard grey crud that can be very difficult to remove. Sometimes I use vinegar to as rust remover, then a water rinse, then dip into phosphoric acid to create a rust resistant iron phosphate paintable surface.

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