General Electric RP-1590-A Stereo

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Re: General Electric RP-1590-A Stereo

Post by Wildcat445 on Sun Dec 28, 2014 7:02 pm

Everything torn apart so I can wrestle with the chassis and make repairs.



The bottom side of the chassis.  You can see the filament circuit, starting right under the white jumper wire, following thru the three tubes.



The common trace, starting just below the white jumper wire and going to that first 7189 was where the filament circuit was open.





The decision was made to hardwire the entire filament circuit.  The red wire is for the positive side.



The white wire added to the common side.



This operation gave us filaments once again.



All that work was more than the supervisory puss could handle.



Conway Twitty and Loretta Lynn on the old turntable.  I have it set on 45 in order to get it to work on 33.



The front panel of the stereo with speakers, crossover caps and the little pilot light, glowing brightly.



You may notice the fancy soldering iron I am using. It actually is an old woodburning iron. I got three of them in a box of junk one time at an auction. It works really slick when working on PCB's. I would hate to have to solder #6 wire with it, but it works very nicely here. It has a point that gives even heat without overheating the board. You may go ahead and chuckle if you would care to.

WC

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Re: General Electric RP-1590-A Stereo

Post by 75X11 on Sun Dec 28, 2014 7:49 pm

Those boards look worse as built than the alarm boards I have told you about. With them having been heated enough to discolor they would be easily subject to fracture.
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Re: General Electric RP-1590-A Stereo

Post by Wildcat445 on Sun Dec 28, 2014 8:18 pm

The board in this stereo is better than the original one.  It is pretty crispy looking.  It was no problem to hardwire what little I did.  I see what you mean about reflowing traces.  I was not using enough heat initially.  I'd like to hardwire the entire chassis, but that will be up to the owner.

WC

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Re: General Electric RP-1590-A Stereo

Post by Ragwire on Sun Dec 28, 2014 11:32 pm

You know I wonder how some of the early PC boards vary so much in durability. Chemistry and heat/use/corrosive environment, I suppose. I am finishing up a 1962-63 Westinghouse AM/FM plastic tabletop receiver right now, and the PC board is like new. I don't think it was used much, actually, and obviously not stored in a barn. The insides were dusty but just about perfect. Some of the others I have worked on are crispy critters.
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Re: General Electric RP-1590-A Stereo

Post by Wildcat445 on Mon Dec 29, 2014 12:12 am

I have read accounts of the problems that GE, specifically, had with PC boards back in the day. My luck with them has been fairly good. This particular instrument, both the original and the replacement, suffer from fairly poor cabinet ventilation. The tubes in the amplifier put out a tremendous amount of heat. The amplifier is covered with a perforated metal plate, and that is covered by a plywood cover that is trimmed with tolex. This holds the heat in. There are two holes in the bottom of the cabinet, about an inch and a half in diameter, for ventilation. If the cabinet is placed on a flat surface, these ventilation holes are blocked off. My experience with repairing PCB's is fairly limited, since all I have with PCB's is little AA5 radios. I have repaired traces and even replaced a tube socket once, but nothing like this thing. I have NEVER, in all my life, had an issue with the filament circuit in a transformer power supply. Series heater strings, yes. GE is alleged to have made the poorest quality PCB's, RCA had their moments, particularly in TV chassis, and Admiral is reputed to have better PCB's due to their being thicker and better supported. The high voltage and higher current circuits in this amplifier will likely end up being hardwired in an effort to stave off problems in the future. The components are so crammed into this cabinet that, after restoration is done on the cabinet, it will be difficult to remove components for repair without scuffing up the cabinet.

WC

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Re: General Electric RP-1590-A Stereo

Post by 75X11 on Mon Dec 29, 2014 9:28 am

Just remember the prime consideration of that time was to get product on the shelves by any means necessary without regard to its' longevity. Just sell them another one then.
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Re: General Electric RP-1590-A Stereo

Post by Bill Cahill on Mon Dec 29, 2014 9:58 am

Home entertainment stuff by GE was never considered high quality, and, was subject to many problems. GE was the one company we had in the shop the most often for repairs....

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Re: General Electric RP-1590-A Stereo

Post by Wildcat445 on Mon Dec 29, 2014 11:17 am

I can say that if this instrument had not been a family heirloom, I probably would not be attempting to get it running again. This thing needs one of everything. I know the owner and also know that we can work thru any remaining problems and still remain friends. He is going to have a fortune in this thing by the time we are done. I have a GE Swingline stereo at home, and the tubes in it hang upside down on a PCB. IIRC, it has a 50DC4 rectifier, a 12AX7 and 35EH5 output tubes. I know now what to expect on it.

WC

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Re: General Electric RP-1590-A Stereo

Post by Ragwire on Mon Dec 29, 2014 3:37 pm

Bill Cahill wrote:Home entertainment stuff by GE was never considered high quality, and, was subject to many problems. GE was the one company we had in the shop the most often for repairs....
We used to call them "general defective."

WC, have you thought about getting a PC board kit and etching a new one? Just a thought...
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Re: General Electric RP-1590-A Stereo

Post by Wildcat445 on Mon Dec 29, 2014 4:28 pm

No, I haven't. That is WWAAAYYY above my pay grade! My hands and eyesight and patience are not good enough for a project like that. Hardwiring this chassis appears to be working okay. This has already been more of a project than I hired on for. This simple little stereo makes my big Magnavoxes seem like child's play in comparison. How GE could take a simple system and make it so hard to work on is beyond me. If there was a way to make something simple complicated, GE used it on this stereo. I have officially retired from working on scorched PCB's in anything after this one is gone. Until the next project comes along, I suppose. Rolling Eyes

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Re: General Electric RP-1590-A Stereo

Post by 75X11 on Mon Dec 29, 2014 6:08 pm

I guess it wants to retire after 50 years in the music business. Very Happy
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Re: General Electric RP-1590-A Stereo

Post by Bill Cahill on Mon Dec 29, 2014 7:38 pm

I tried to leave a reply, and, it timed out five times. Now, I forgot what I was going to say.

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Re: General Electric RP-1590-A Stereo

Post by Wildcat445 on Mon Dec 29, 2014 10:22 pm

I have started on the record changer this afternoon. Compared to a Collaro, this thing is pretty simple. The motor and turret are mounted on a bracket that SHOULD come off in one piece to make it easier to change the motor mounts. There is a screw, about 1/4 of an inch long with a stripped Phillips head. So I will have to do this the hard way. That little bolt is not coming out. I have it all jimmied up now, and it looks pretty hacked. I have the motor out and apart. The motor in this changer is an Alliance. I haven't figured out how to get the end of the motor shaft off so I can separate the bearing yet. I have not found a set screw. The rest is pretty simple. Not much to do really. I have some pics, and as soon as I get them on my computer, I'll share. I have to send the drive tire in to get an exchange. This stuff is getting like car parts with cores.

WC

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Re: General Electric RP-1590-A Stereo

Post by Dr. Radio on Mon Dec 29, 2014 11:08 pm

Kudos Mr. Cat. Quite the project you have there.

In regards to the printed circuit board, this style was the GE "corporate standard" for consumer stuff. I could see that a mile away from your pictures. It wasn't an issue with "early" pcb designs, it was the minimalist corporate design--"soft" composition resin/fiberglass and just enough solder. It's no wonder it caused you grief (like me and so many others thru the decades).

Please let us know what the celebratory first record that will be played when completed. Very Happy
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Re: General Electric RP-1590-A Stereo

Post by Wildcat445 on Mon Dec 29, 2014 11:55 pm

The first celebratory record is unknown at this time. I will keep you posted. Good to hear from you again, Doc. Very Happy

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Re: General Electric RP-1590-A Stereo

Post by Bill Cahill on Tue Dec 30, 2014 10:16 am

That shaft was never intended to take out. Just put the entire bearing, rotor, and, all, in carbeurator cleaner. That's what we used to do. And, the bottome bearing as well.
Don't make the project any harder than it needs to be. They are a simple motor to work on..........

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Re: General Electric RP-1590-A Stereo

Post by Wildcat445 on Tue Dec 30, 2014 9:15 pm

Got it. Thanks, Bill. We are coming along nicely. Waiting for parts.

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Re: General Electric RP-1590-A Stereo

Post by Wildcat445 on Wed Dec 31, 2014 4:57 pm

Just for reference, I used 20 gauge bell wire to hardwire that chassis on this amplifier. Someone asked, so I wanted to share with everybody. Sorry that I forgot to mention that detail. I got the bell wire at our local Home Depot.

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Re: General Electric RP-1590-A Stereo

Post by Ragwire on Thu Jan 01, 2015 12:10 am

Wildcat445 wrote:...How GE could take a simple system and make it so hard to work on is beyond me. If there was a way to make something simple complicated, GE used it on this stereo...WC
Not just radios. I used to be a major appliance serviceman--more than twenty years ago now--and their washers and dryers were the worst of the worst to do anything to...except for maybe the old style Speed Queens (remember those?) but those were already scarce.
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Re: General Electric RP-1590-A Stereo

Post by Bill Cahill on Thu Jan 01, 2015 7:12 pm

Speed queens were not made by GE. That's why they were so good...
But, expensive...
I once had a speed queen. Nice machine....
GE deliberately made their things hard to work on....
Look at one of their best eexamples. The famous, or, is that the infamous GE Locomotive tv????

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Re: General Electric RP-1590-A Stereo

Post by 75X11 on Thu Jan 01, 2015 8:05 pm

My folks had 1 GE TV. Lightning struck it in 1959. Mother nature made that one hard to work on. Very Happy
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Re: General Electric RP-1590-A Stereo

Post by Wildcat445 on Mon Jan 05, 2015 3:53 pm

The parts I ordered from VM Enthusiasts should be here shortly.  In the interim, I decided to post these pictures from the disassembly and repair of the turntable thus far.  This picture if of the motor.  Notice how much gunk has built up on the turret.  Also notice how low on the turret the drive tire has been running.  This has caused the speed to fluctuate.  Correct motor mounts and proper adjustment should allow the drive tire to ride more in the center.



A little cleaning with lacquer thinner on the drive system.  Notice the tapered bolts on the motor.  There are actually different mounts for stereo motors and monaural motors on VM (Voice of Music) changers, and they used two different brand motors, General Industries and Alliance.  This one is an Alliance.



I will finish cleaning this up with fine sandpaper. Notice the junk on the rag.



We have been discussing Magnavox hardwood cabinets.  And Drexel.  Notice who made this cabinet.  None of the above!



The drive tire.



How I rewired the amplifier.  Hopefully this will eliminate having so many problems with lifting traces.


Nasty motor mounts.



The motor is apart.  Notice how much black goop is on the motor shaft.  This crud is what causes motors to run slow and run warm.  This stuff gets cleaned off and the motor given a good shot of turbine oil.



This is the victim, minus the platter.  A VM model 1247.  The tone arm looks like it would weigh 20 pounds, but it is really quite light.  This type GE changer was sometimes equipped with a system to clean the dust off records automatically.  I believe there was a little blower that run air down a tube to the needle.  Fortunately, this changer was not equipped with that system.  This tone arm appears to track quite nicely.  It does need the tone arm pressure properly set, as it had been considerable lightened to accommodate the magnetic cartridge.



The platter.



The Alliance stereo motor for the GE/VM changer.


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Re: General Electric RP-1590-A Stereo

Post by Wildcat445 on Mon Jan 05, 2015 6:01 pm

I received my parts in today's post. I have not opened the box yet, but, since the order was mailed Saturday from Michigan, this is pretty good service. I'm glad Gary is there. He makes this type project lots easier. I am still fairly new at phonograph repair.

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Re: General Electric RP-1590-A Stereo

Post by 75X11 on Mon Jan 05, 2015 6:31 pm

Sure is a difference in workmanship between the changer and the PC boards. Good thing they sent out for the changer.
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Re: General Electric RP-1590-A Stereo

Post by Wildcat445 on Mon Jan 05, 2015 7:06 pm

Comparing a VM changer, allegedly simpler, to a Collaro, allegedly British-built and necessarily complicated, is a night and day difference. The rotor on the motor in the Collaro is almost bigger than the entire motor on the VM. The jury is still out on how well the VM ultimately works.

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Re: General Electric RP-1590-A Stereo

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