RCA 8T64

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RCA 8T64

Post by Wildcat445 on Tue Feb 19, 2013 8:30 pm

I have an opportunity to buy one of these units. Since I am not smart enough to figure out how to add pictures to my post, I will try to describe the unit as best I can.

This thing is an RCA Victor model 8T64 tv, am radio, 45 rpm and 78 (33?) rpm record changers, with a 14" (?) tv set. It has both the FM converter and UHF converters, both external units, included in the sale. The cabinet is in good enough condition that the finish can be thoroughly cleaned, with refinishing not necessary. The owner told me that it "powers up" whatever that means. Upon further questioning, the owner advises that the picture tube lights and that the radio works well. The record changers both "need a needle", but that could mean just about anything. Suffice it to say that neither record changer works properly. The owner is sort of a hobbyist, and bought this thing from a local estate with the intention of restoring it. His health has failed, and he is unable to restore it himself. From what I can see, there are three seperate chassis. The tv chassis, the radio chassis, and a power/amp chassis. I inspected the unit with the back on, so my inspection was somewhat limited. The amp chassis appeared to have two 5U4 rectifiers, and 4 6V6 output tubes with at least 4 smaller tubes. The radio tuner has at least 6 tubes, and I counted 17 tubes in the tv chassis. It appears to me that the tv sound is fed to the amp and that to a 12" speaker. Other than dust, the chassis (s) are clean, with no gooey stuff leaking or any rust. I think I can safely assume that the CRT, flyback x-former and the unobtanium stuff is in usable condition. From what I can tell, the unit is pretty much original, with not even a serviceman's sticker anywhere. Most of the tubes that I could identify were RCA. I can get this thing for $50. I realize that these tv combos are not terribly collectible, but I want one, it is less than 5 miles from my house, I have help to load and unload, and the wife is down with it. This will be my first foray into the realm of restoring an old tv. What say you, experts? My guess on age was the 1949-1951 era. How close am I?

Please, don't beat me up for wanting to buy something that you personally would not mess with. I just need an idea of proper procedures to employ that will yield the best result. The radio and amp chassis should not present a challenge that I have not seen before. The tv chassis is a different kettle of fish for me. Plus the FM and UHF converters. Since this combo is basically in working condition, I figured that it might be an easier restoration and one that I could accomplish successfully. Thanks for your time and input.

Regards

WC

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Re: RCA 8T64

Post by Bill Cahill on Tue Feb 19, 2013 9:18 pm

Got any pictures of it? I'm not familiar with that model.
What tv chassis number is it?
Bill Cahill

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Re: RCA 8T64

Post by Wildcat445 on Tue Feb 19, 2013 10:33 pm

I am, hopefully, going tomorrow to pull the back and get a beter look see. I don't have any numbers or other useful information. I realize that this thing is a fairly huge tv/radio/ 2 turntable combination. Supposed to be 1950 model. I can't do pictures. No matter what I try, it won't work for me. I am going to write down everything I can find. I really think that this may be a fairly easy resto. The guy called me this evening and swears that he was wathching it as we were talking. Kinda makes me nervous that something may be getting scorched running it without proper servicing.

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WC

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Re: RCA 8T64

Post by Bill Cahill on Tue Feb 19, 2013 10:47 pm

The model doesn't add up. With RCA usually the 8 at the beginnisn would make it 1948, which can't be right.
In 1950 models started with 6.
Are you sure it isn't a 6T84?
That model I have. It's a 16" round tube tv, has an am radio with a fourty five changer mounted on top, and, below that a 2 spd. changer.
That uses the KCS 48 chassis, which RCA also incorrectly labeled KCS 47.
That was a mistake.
It is a very invlolved chassis. If it does play, that's in it's favor. But, it will need alot of re capping, and, radio chassis will also need re capping. It was a budget modell, so, hope you can save the original finnish, as, if you strip the finnish on front doors, you will not be happy. That beautiful grain is photo finnish.
I would'n't pay more than say a hundred bucks tops for it, either.
Can it be made reliable? Yes, to an extent.
But, KCS 47 series sets at best, were somewhat troublesome.
I'm not saying don't get it. I'm just saying Nothing RCA made was easy. and, if you think you are going to get by with just a few parts, you are in for a surprise.
Bill Cahill

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Re: RCA 8T64

Post by Wildcat445 on Tue Feb 19, 2013 11:10 pm

Bill, I am sure sorry. I transposed the numbers. It is a 6T84. And you described just about what is there, with the exception of the FM and UHF converters. No big deal, I am sure, but I thought that those converters were neat, especially since they are both genuine RCA.

I figured that it would need a total recap, even if it had been partially done, or completely done in the past. If for no other reason, experience and to be sure of what had been done.

You did not say, but is my thinking that there are three chassis correct? Looking at this thing without removing the back is kinda like working on a car engine with the hood closed. The set was in the guy's living room, with stuff on top, and I hated to impose too much until I was sure I was more interested. I wanted to find an old tv to fix up, and RCA was my second choice. I passed on a Dumont setup similiar to this RCA a year or so ago, and have kicked myself ever since. One that "kinda works" should be preferable to a totally dead one, at least for a rookie to work on. Thanks for your interest and input. I'm sure there will be lots more questions.

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WC

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Re: RCA 8T64

Post by Bill Cahill on Tue Feb 19, 2013 11:20 pm

Nope. In it's original form it was a two chassis set. AM radio , and, amplifier on one chassis with fourty five player.
Is the fm tuner seperate, or, is it in cabinet? I'd really like to see pictues of it. If it is a real factory addition, and, not a hack job, at least, the added fm tuner is unique.
On uhf conversion, my question would be is it a seperate uhf converter, which RCA did sell, or, is uhf concentric with vhf? If later, at the least, the vhf tuner would have been replaced.
Is this et rectangular? If so, it has been changed from original.
I'd really like to see pictures if I may. Thanks.
Bill Cahill

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Re: RCA 8T64

Post by Wildcat445 on Tue Feb 19, 2013 11:44 pm

Both the FM converter and the UHF converter are seperate units that plug in. They are sitting on top of the cabinet, at the present time. There is, apparently, connections on the radio for the FM converter, and the UHF converter hooks into the tv antenna connections, and then the antenna hooks into the converter. I assume, (but don't know this for sure) that you turn the main tv tuner to channel 3 or 4 to operate the UHF converter. There may even be a "channel" on the tv or a position on the selector to allow the UHF converter signal to enter the tv tuner. These are questions that I hope to answer by a closer inspection. I hate to appear so ignorant here, but this is my first experience with something like this, and I have lots to learn.

It appears that the 45 changer is mounted on top of the radio chassis. Where is the amplifier part of this thing? With only two chassis, as you said, it does not appear to me that there are "enough parts" to make the thing work. Where is the audio output section? On the tv chassis? If that is the case, I may pass. In that case, if the tv did not work, the radio and everything would be useless. The radio works. And what I saw of the radio chassis, it looked too small to contain the audio section. And I do distinctly (I think. But I also wrote the model number down wrong!) remember seeing a couple big rectifier-size tubes and some 6V6's. What was I looking at? This thing is too straight and in too good of condition to be some type of Franken project. What I was looking at was under the radio chassis. What kind of output tubes does this have? Thanks, again, Bill. I really need to find a schematic, so as to not put anybody to a lot of extra trouble. Thanks, again, Bill. I really need to get a better look at this thing. You have given me a lot to go on.

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WC

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Re: RCA 8T64

Post by Bill Cahill on Wed Feb 20, 2013 3:34 am

There are three octal tubes on top of the radio chassiis. 5Y3 rectifier.
and, two 6V6 audio output.
It uses two pre amp tubes. Oneis a 6AV6 for inverter on audio output stage. Ther as pre amp for everything.
In order to use the fm tuner, the tv input would have to be disconnected. It has Three input juacks. Two on back, one for tv, other for two spd. changer, and one on top front for fourty five changer.
Spekaer is connected to output stage theough a p p transformer in side radio on top of chassis.
The tuner has no dedicated channel for UHF. These are wafer tuners, and, it must be set to channel 3 for UHF tuner.
Is the UHF vonverter a U70 in a mahoganny case?
That seemed to be the most popular one. I have one for static display, but, I had one of these when a teen ager. In my opinion, they don't work all that great.
If you get it, and, don't want the fm tuner, I'd be interested in purchasing, or trading for that.....
It isn't their best amplifier. Operates under less voltage, so total audio output is approx. 6 watts maximum.
I find the treble on mine isn't great, but, bass is decnt, as is the mid range.
The best tuner was used in their more expensive model, which I have forgotten the model of. It had an am fm radio, and, put out up to 12 watts of power.
In all of these two chassis'. RAdio and, amp in one. They were amazingly compact for their time.
Speaker is a 12" 400 cycle full range almico PM speaker.
By the way. There is a 6AV6 on top of tv chassis. Don't let this fool you. It is used as a AGC amplifier.
This appears to be the only model that used that. The large reisistor on top of chassis next to that tube is a B+ dropping resistor for that tube.
The original picture tube is a 16GP4 round metal picture tube. It is held in the front plastic mask by special V shaped steel brackets on either side going to yoke, magnet assembly on neck of tube.
If it has a rect. tube, it's been updated. Then,, it would depend on how good a job they did on the conversion.
One was shown onARF that was a hadk job, and, they converted it to a 21" rect. To do that they had to chop away much of the case molding in front.
It was a mess.

Mine has a copper plated chassis for tv., but, they did a poor job plating, and, due to a coal operated furnace , coroded most of the copper, and, cadmium plating underneath.
I know alot about these sets, and, can give alot of information.
Bill Cahill

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Re: RCA 8T64

Post by Bill Cahill on Wed Feb 20, 2013 3:36 am

Hmmm. I'll have to look at schematic. It might have an fm jack on back as well.
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Re: RCA 8T64

Post by Wildcat445 on Wed Feb 20, 2013 1:05 pm

Thank you very much for all that good information, Bill. I have a call into the guy, and have not heard back from him. It is raining cats and dogs here, IN THE DESERT!, so the project may get put off for a prettier day.

I talked to the guy last night. The "thing" I saw down under the tuner chassis, that made me think that three chassis belonged to this set, was an amplifier that he was going to kluge in and give the thing more "oomph". It is just sitting there, is not wired in or anything like that. It goes with the deal, so I have no idea what it is. It has two 5U4 rectifiers, parallel push pull 6V6 output, and is mono. It might be interesting to mess with. The tv and radio have not been tinkered with. I do not know the model numbers on the converters. I was aware of the upscale model with AM-FM radio and more power. I do believe that model has Parallel push pull audio. That was the one I really wanted, but, if I can actually get this one, it will have to do. If I understood the owner correctly, there is a jack on the back of the tuner chassis that the FM converter hooks to. Then the UHF converter hooks to the tv antenna connections, the tv is turned to channel 3 or 4 and that allows use of the UHF converter. From what I saw, the converters were in wood grained cabinets, probably photo finish (?).

If I understood your post correctly, the radio and the tv each have their own power supply. A 5Y3 for the radio and a solid state (selenium ?) rectifier for the tv. Apparently the tv audio is fed to, and amplified by, the amp for the radio/phono ? I really wish I had paid more attention to the selector knob. I know that there is a phono, radio, tv, selection and maybe a couple more. All I cared about, initially, was that the knob was there. All the knobs are in place. I will get a better look at this set and a lot of my questions will likely be answered. Thank you so much for your time and interest. I am getting psyched.

Regards

WC

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Re: RCA 8T64

Post by Bill Cahill on Wed Feb 20, 2013 1:29 pm

No. TV uses a 5U4 rectifier.
No, UHF converter doesn't plug into radio chassis.
If it has the fm jack it's for an fm tuner.
UHF converter connects with antenna system to tv, and, tv gets tuned to ch. 3.
No, the big one didn't have parallel 6V6 tubes. Just push pull.
so, they did tend to get tortured a might on deluxe model.
RCA only made one model that was actually a true hi fi at that time, and, that wai in 1946, a completely different model.
Now, that one really sounds great. I know a collector that has one, and, it's wonderful.

Speaking of sound, Hope you don't mind if I temporarily steal your thread.
I have a keeper i'm not getting rid of. It's a 1947 Magnavox three way comb. with a 12" tv, am fm sw radio, and, two speed changer.
It has PP parallel 6V6 output tubes, sports a three way speaker system with a 15" woofer, a 4" mid range, and, a 4" tweeter.
Now, there's fantastic sound!!!!!!!!!
I can hear frequencies I didn't even know existed on alot of music.
It is FANTASTIC!
I have to get back on that baby, and, finnish it.
O.K. your turn again.
Bill Cahill

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Re: RCA 8T64

Post by Bill Cahill on Wed Feb 20, 2013 1:43 pm

Is this your set? I have one record changer out right now, so, you won't see that.

And, Now, as prommissed, here are some pictures. Now, remember, technically, this is a tv. However, I'm not yet working on tv. I just finnished work on 45 player, and, radio. The two speed changer is presently out of cabinet for repairs.








The cabinet has sustained some dammage from moving some years ago. Grill work in front was broken, and, not all pieces are there.
Case was dirty, as was entire piece.
I re capped radio, including electrolytics.
I replaced resistor on dial lights.
I had to replace cartridge on 45 player, as crystal had been broken.
I have a re built Astatic 62-1 orig. style replacement cartridge in it. That one also had a broken crystal.
I had it re built 15 years ago.
Radio plays fairly well. It's AM only.
Mr. Detrola, Dennis, who was the last owner, had recently gotten the tv to play, and, had a fairly good picture, said it still needs re building.
Caps are dynamite ready to blow.
Two speed changer, you can see part of it on floor by cabinet in one picture, has a shorted motor, which overheats quickly, and, a dead cartridge.
While I'd say the cabinet had been well taken care of by original owner, they did as little as they had to. Picture tube had been replaced in early 60's, but, was on its' last legs. I've replaced it.
Mr. Detrola replaced yoke some years back, which he said original caught on fire.
Flyback may have been replaced.
Some of the tubes are original.
The cartridge, cycling cam, and, idler wheel had been replaced in the late 60's by original owner.
Her kids used it for several years after that in their own bed room.
When Dennis picked it up some years back, it was still in that room.
The machine doesn't have great treble, but, has very good bass, and, plays well.
It uses pp 6V6 output tubes. Amplifier drives a 12" 400cycle full range permanent magnet speaker.
Amp in radio chassis is also sound for tv.
Bill Cahill

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Re: RCA 8T64

Post by Wildcat445 on Wed Feb 20, 2013 2:00 pm

That's the one. The wood graining on the doors is a little different, but the basic setup is the same. I have no idea about the record changes on the one I am looking at. The owner says that they "need a new needle", but that could mean anything from actually needing a new needle to being totally junk, with everything fried and having been run over by a freight train. They look good enough to be in good operating condition. This thing seems to have been well cared for. It has not been stored in a chicken coop in the Midwest for 40 years, like some of the junk I have fixed up has been. It was sold new, and used all its life in the Desert Southwest, so corrosion on the chassis should be minimal. I am planning to take this thing a step at a time, should I actually be able to get it. Since it at least somewhat works, that should be a leg up on a successful restoration. I figured that I would tackle the tv first, then finish up with the radio chassis. Since the tv actually works with the radio, I may have to do both chassis at the same time. The CRT appears to attached to the chassis and comes out with it?

Thanks for the pictures. Maybe during this process, I will also be able to learn how to post pictures.

Regards

WC

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Re: RCA 8T64

Post by Bill Cahill on Wed Feb 20, 2013 7:28 pm

No. Picture tube attatchesw to the cabinet. Not the chassis.
Wish you could get me some pictures.
Bad needles would mean dead crystal cartridges. The fourty five player will need dismantling, a cleanning, a new cycle cam, a new idler wheel, motor grommets, greasing, lubing, and, adjusting.
I reccommend Gary at VM enthusiasts for the new parts.
Bill Cahill

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Re: RCA 8T64

Post by Wildcat445 on Wed Feb 20, 2013 7:46 pm

I just got back from the "viewing." I am bailing out of this deal.

First of all, the "third chassis" that was sitting in the bottom of the cabinet was some kind of a musical instrument amplifier, maybe from an organ or something. It has two 5U4 rectifiers, Parallel push pull 6L6 output and several 6EU7 smaller amp tubes. The guy had the idea that this piece of junk would make a good amp for a tv. The amp does have some big iron and usable tubes. Otherwise a parts piece.

The first thing I noticed when I pulled the back was the picture tube brightener hanging off the neck of the tube. We turned on the set, and it does work. Sort of. The screen was not filled out with a black line at the top and bottom. When the brightness control was advanced, the picture bloomed considerably. My conclusion is that the CRT is on its last legs. The brightness control has to be run fairly dark to see a picture. The cabinet is fairly nice, like I thought earlier. The chassis is really clean, and the plating is still there and nice. The turntables turn under their own power, but both cartridges are dead. The radio works. Everything looked pretty unmessed with except the brightener. I really feel at this time that I am going to pass and hold out for an example with a good CRT. And an AM-FM radio. They are not rare. I should have pulled the back off in the first place and saved everybody a lot of time. I learned something, so all is not lost. He offered it to me for $40, but I still passed. I don't need the parts or $40 worth of fire wood. Thanks for your help. The next deal will be better. He decided, for some reason, that he does not want to sell the converters with the tv. On to the next deal.

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WC

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Re: RCA 8T64

Post by Bill Cahill on Wed Feb 20, 2013 7:55 pm

Actually, for fourty bucks, it's a bargain. Picture tube isn't causing the blooming, and, short vertical. That's being caused by all the bad paper , and, electolytic caps. I don't call the booster a deal killer.
Right now, the set is overloaded from bad caps, and, bad electrolytics.
Rebuild that before you decide on picture tube. Really, for the amount, you can't go wrong. Looks like a win win to me..............
Bill Cahil

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Re: RCA 8T64

Post by Wildcat445 on Wed Feb 20, 2013 8:06 pm

That is an interesting prospective. Where would I find a picture tube for this thing? I guess I need to change my way of thinking. I would not buy a radio (probably) that had, say, a bad power transformer. So you would actually buy this set, go through all the trouble of recapping and servicing everything, THEN worry about the CRT? I realize that the short vertical is either caused by bad caps or an inadequate power supply (bad caps again, I guess). I always thought blooming was a sure sign of a bad CRT. I may be learning more than I baragined for.

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WC

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Re: RCA 8T64

Post by Bill Cahill on Wed Feb 20, 2013 8:10 pm

Blooming is caused by low high voltage. Both power supplies are over loaded from bad parts.
For the price, it's really not bad. Of course, I haven't seen the set, either.
Trust me, the problems you mentioned are power supply problems.
Set needs total re building.
Hey, if you don't like it, you can send me the gutts, and, I'll put them with mine.......
Bill Cahill

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