1950's RCA 45 record player

radio, tape, stands and accessories
spittenkittens
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1950's RCA 45 record player

Post by spittenkittens » 21 Dec 2014 03:11

I restored this little guy a few years back with new caps(had someone else do it) and I replaced the cartridge with a Sonotone 65T. The tubes are the originals as far as I know. After some adjustments (and cleaning) it works like new. The sound is much better than I thought could come from a little unit, and actually has some decent bass.
I have a stack of 1946 Christmas records on there now. It was work all the work and money to me. The am radio works but there are no am stations close by except the coastguard ocean conditions report. :)
There are 3 tone adjustments, all on one knob which control the on and off too.
The turntable underside is copper plated. There were a well made and solid machine.
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Coffee Phil
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Re: 1950's RCA 45 record player

Post by Coffee Phil » 22 Dec 2014 03:20

Hi Spittenkittens,

Looks good. I love that electronics from my childhood. I have the same changer which I restored about one year ago.

[album]27481[/album]

I need to put up a newer picture of it. After this picture I cleaned up the turntable platter. The brass disc was attached to the plastic platter with double sticky tape. I thought it was anodized aluminum and would never look better than the picture but it turns out to be brass and polishes up very nicely.

I kinda went nuts with it tweeking the platter bearing in an attempt to reduce rumble. It is good enough in that regard for mono but it still needs work for stereo. It is usable in stereo but I can hear the rumble.

I installed a stereo magnetic cartridge and a relay to preserve the muting in stereo.

Phil
spittenkittens wrote:I restored this little guy a few years back with new caps(had someone else do it) and I replaced the cartridge with a Sonotone 65T. The tubes are the originals as far as I know. After some adjustments (and cleaning) it works like new. The sound is much better than I thought could come from a little unit, and actually has some decent bass.
I have a stack of 1946 Christmas records on there now. It was work all the work and money to me. The am radio works but there are no am stations close by except the coastguard ocean conditions report. :)
There are 3 tone adjustments, all on one knob which control the on and off too.
The turntable underside is copper plated. There were a well made and solid machine.

spittenkittens
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Re: 1950's RCA 45 record player

Post by spittenkittens » 22 Dec 2014 03:45

I like how compact they are, and they have some charm to them. That red cap on the spindle is cool. The Bakelite case polished up almost like new. They made some cool amps the the changer too. I could only get a stereo cart for it but I wired it mono. I read that one of yours was the first use of a "rca" jack. And vm has parts for them. I'm into mine a little more than I wanted to but it was worth it in the end. Might be good for another 50 or 60 years.

Coffee Phil
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Re: 1950's RCA 45 record player

Post by Coffee Phil » 22 Dec 2014 05:28

Hi Spittenkittens,

The stereo cartridge is probably the best choice. You don't have to worry about ruining stereo records with it.

Yes VM is a great resource for working on these things. They are good people to deal with. Most of the parts to rebuild mine came from them.

I believe the RCA connectors predate these machines by a few years. I have a 1940 Wards Airline console radio which has such a jack on the back. It is for phonograph, FM, or television. My parents bought it when I was little more than a baby. That radio is going to be a future restoration project.

Phil


spittenkittens wrote:I like how compact they are, and they have some charm to them. That red cap on the spindle is cool. The Bakelite case polished up almost like new. They made some cool amps the the changer too. I could only get a stereo cart for it but I wired it mono. I read that one of yours was the first use of a "rca" jack. And vm has parts for them. I'm into mine a little more than I wanted to but it was worth it in the end. Might be good for another 50 or 60 years.

Big B5515
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Re: 1950's RCA 45 record player

Post by Big B5515 » 23 Dec 2014 02:37

Coffee Phil wrote:Hi Spittenkittens,

Looks good. I love that electronics from my childhood. I have the same changer which I restored about one year ago.

[album]27481[/album]
Think I might have one of these stashed in a shoebox in the basement (if all the parts are still there). Picked it up and started to check it out it for someone who asked me to look for one, only to hear that he found one already restored with the radio. Never did anything else to it (at that time, it needed an idler and stylus). Had all but forgotten about it.

Coffee Phil
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Re: 1950's RCA 45 record player

Post by Coffee Phil » 23 Dec 2014 03:30

Hi Big B,

Well get it out and get it spinning! If you are interested I'll look for the string of the saga of Hugh and myself acquiring and bringing back to life our respective RP190 changers and post the link.

Phil
Big B5515 wrote:
Coffee Phil wrote:Hi Spittenkittens,

Looks good. I love that electronics from my childhood. I have the same changer which I restored about one year ago.

[album]27481[/album]
Think I might have one of these stashed in a shoebox in the basement (if all the parts are still there). Picked it up and started to check it out it for someone who asked me to look for one, only to hear that he found one already restored with the radio. Never did anything else to it (at that time, it needed an idler and stylus). Had all but forgotten about it.

Big B5515
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Re: 1950's RCA 45 record player

Post by Big B5515 » 23 Dec 2014 07:30

I suppose someday, I'll try to get around to it. I also have a Garrard 4-HF L project I've been meaning to clean up and build a better plinth for. Just can't seem to get motivated on it either. Hopefully, I'll get started on it this winter. I've got no shortage of rainy day projects, just places for them. I'd sell or give away several of them if I wasn't such a packrat.

Coffee Phil
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Re: 1950's RCA 45 record player

Post by Coffee Phil » 23 Dec 2014 08:35

Hi Big B,

You appear to have same affliction as me. I see that you have an Edison cylinder machine. You may be a resource for me. I have some pieces of an Edison Standard which I am trying to make into a machine which will play cylinders. I have the base, mandrel, lead screw, and the stump of the "arm" carriage. No spring motor, or gearing. I have the mandrel spinning nicely driven with a floppy drive motor. The plan is to attach an arm to the remains of the carriage which will accept an SME headshell. If I use Tom's gearing I'll need the two speed conversion set. The guy who sold me the pieces which I have wants a fortune for that.

One more project.

Phil
Big B5515 wrote:I suppose someday, I'll try to get around to it. I also have a Garrard 4-HF L project I've been meaning to clean up and build a better plinth for. Just can't seem to get motivated on it either. Hopefully, I'll get started on it this winter. I've got no shortage of rainy day projects, just places for them. I'd sell or give away several of them if I wasn't such a packrat.

Big B5515
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Re: 1950's RCA 45 record player

Post by Big B5515 » 23 Dec 2014 11:37

I haven't picked up any Edisons recently, but they could often be found reasonably. I have seen a few recently while checking antique stores for records. You might come across another basketcase machine with the parts you need for less than a sought after conversion set. I don't have any parts machines, but have 3 complete working 2\4 minute machines, a Home b with kit, Standard d, and a Fireside a. I picked up an ACT 2 reproducer (in picture on standard) with a Stanton 500 cartridge for electric listening\ recording. It came with 2 custom styli, but a 78 stylus would probably work ok, at least for 4 min BA and other celluloid cylinders (it could possibly damage wax cylinders). The arm \ headshell would need to pivot some to account for shrunken or imperfect cylinders as well as move vertically for out of round cylinders. Had thought of electrifying the Home (reversibly) as it has some spring motor wear and considerable flutter.

Coffee Phil
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Re: 1950's RCA 45 record player

Post by Coffee Phil » 23 Dec 2014 18:33

Hi Big B,

I noticed the electric pickup in your picture. If I didn't see that I would have been afraid to mention my plans. Some folks who are into these machines can get upset at such sacrilege. My plan is to build a pivot base to slide on the part where Tom's carriage used to slide and braze it to the stump. I have no confidence in my ability to weld cast iron. On that I'll come up with some sort of pivot for the little straight DJ arm (from KAB) which has the SMA type connector. If a 4 minute gear set doesn't come up at a price which I'm willing to pay I'll drive the lead screw with a DC motor, Rabco SL8 like. Should be at least as good as Rabco's bathtub stopper chain.

Phil
Big B5515 wrote:I haven't picked up any Edisons recently, but they could often be found reasonably. I have seen a few recently while checking antique stores for records. You might come across another basketcase machine with the parts you need for less than a sought after conversion set. I don't have any parts machines, but have 3 complete working 2\4 minute machines, a Home b with kit, Standard d, and a Fireside a. I picked up an ACT 2 reproducer (in picture on standard) with a Stanton 500 cartridge for electric listening\ recording. It came with 2 custom styli, but a 78 stylus would probably work ok, at least for 4 min BA and other celluloid cylinders (it could possibly damage wax cylinders). The arm \ headshell would need to pivot some to account for shrunken or imperfect cylinders as well as move vertically for out of round cylinders. Had thought of electrifying the Home (reversibly) as it has some spring motor wear and considerable flutter.

Big B5515
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Re: 1950's RCA 45 record player

Post by Big B5515 » 29 Jan 2015 06:37

Well, I decided to dig out that 45 changer and it seems to be as I left it and all the parts are all still there I think. Looks a little rough but fixable I suppose. The cartridge appears to have gotten broken though. Any suggestions on cartridge and replacing or having the idler rebuilt? mine is model 9-JY.
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Coffee Phil
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Re: 1950's RCA 45 record player

Post by Coffee Phil » 29 Jan 2015 09:07

Hi Big B,

Here is a string covering the acquisition and restoration of a couple of RCA changers:

viewtopic.php?f=18&t=60526&hilit=RP190

Hugh and I were each doing our respective machines. Both he and I got most of the parts from the VM guy Gary. Hugh went with a stereo ceramic cartridge and strapped it to mono. I used an inexpensive magnetic and converted the machine to stereo.

The machines which we are working on in this string are RP-190s which are second generation machines. You have the first generation RP-168 which is a bit more complicated but will drop and be playing the next record in one revolution of the platter. I was intimidated by the RP-168. I think I remember Hugh saying that he is currently doing an RP-168 and it isn't much more difficult than the RP190.

Keep us posted.

Phil


Big B5515 wrote:Well, I decided to dig out that 45 changer and it seems to be as I left it and all the parts are all still there I think. Looks a little rough but fixable I suppose. The cartridge appears to have gotten broken though. Any suggestions on cartridge and replacing or having the idler rebuilt? mine is model 9-JY.
SANY0058a.jpg
SANY0060a.jpg

Big B5515
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Re: 1950's RCA 45 record player

Post by Big B5515 » 27 Mar 2015 05:20

Well, I finally ordered the idler, motor suspension grommets, and the mono cartridge to hopefully resurrect my changer from VM (also a couple AT3600 type 78 styli and a 89t for a Califone). Maybe, after 18 years, I'll finally get it working. One thing I cannot remember is whether there was a nylon sleeve that went on the metal pin that engages the cam on the underside of turntable. If there was, I think it was about worn away when I found the changer. Gary didn't suggest any other parts, and I didn't see It's manual in the VE library, so I guess Ill see what happens. It needs cleaning again (18 years of dust), but everything is still free and lubricated from when I found it.

spittenkittens
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Re: 1950's RCA 45 record player

Post by spittenkittens » 27 Mar 2015 15:24

It only has a 1/2 watt amp and a tiny speaker but big sound. It is a lot of fun. I spent more on restoring mine than I planed but it was worth it in the end. And it changes records in hyper speed, compared to larger turntables.
You can tell back then they made things to last. Chris Cuff has many good you tubes videos on this unit on utube here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nidrflnyvcU
I could not find it right off but he has disassembly all the way through to restored. Maybe the part you are asking about is here somewhere. He was a big help to me in restoring mine.

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Re: 1950's RCA 45 record player

Post by Big B5515 » 28 Mar 2015 05:11

Mine is just a mono add on changer with no amp, and is the older RP-168-1 mechanism. Hopefully, Gary receives the old idler I mailed this morning, so my order will be shipped. I think I've put this one off long enough, although I still have the Garrard 4 HF, and Little Bear phono preamp improvements on the to do list (among other projects).

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