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Old 9th Aug 2018, 5:50 pm   #1
OldTechFan96
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Default Roberts R707 Cabinet Advice

I recently bought a Roberts R707 with a rough cabinet. The chassis worked without any trouble.

The base looks to have been ruined by water or acid. It is soft and flexes. A total write off.

The rest of the cabinet looks like it can be salvaged.

What should I do about the base? Would it be worth trying to remove it and using it as a template to create a new one?
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Old 12th Aug 2018, 2:47 pm   #2
jonnybear
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Default Re: Roberts R707 Cabinet Advice

You could as you said in your thread carefully remove the base and use as template, or you could try soaking it in a watered down solution of PVA placing aluminium over exposed wood and clamping with a piece of wood either side removing turntable and leaving until completely dry before sanding.
This has worked for me in the past on a few items. Looks like it has been lovingly owned by a painter.
John
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Old 13th Aug 2018, 5:42 am   #3
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Default Re: Roberts R707 Cabinet Advice

A lot of these sets suffered module failure quite early in their lives and were relegated to a loft while young and still in good condition. Id' look for another set which is not working but in good cosmetic condition and make a good one out of the two.
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Old 13th Aug 2018, 7:26 am   #4
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Default Re: Roberts R707 Cabinet Advice

I can't be sure without checking but I think I have a case in my loft for one of these. I had a spares set for years that slowly became more and more incomplete. I am pretty sure the remains went in a box into the loft but it's possible I could have disposed of it.

If you want to replace the case rather than repair what you have let me know and I will get the ladder out and have a look!

If it's any use it is yours for the cost of the postage.


Rich
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Old 13th Aug 2018, 8:29 am   #5
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Default Re: Roberts R707 Cabinet Advice

There are solutions available for treating rotten wood which not only kill the fungus but also harden the remaining timber. Whether the result would be better than using PVA in this case I don't know.
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Old 13th Aug 2018, 12:46 pm   #6
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Default Re: Roberts R707 Cabinet Advice

Thanks for the advice!

I'll carefully try and remove the base and soak it with a water and PVA solution.

slidertogrid, I appreciate your offer. If restoring the cabinet fails I will take you up on your offer.
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Old 13th Aug 2018, 9:28 pm   #7
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Default Re: Roberts R707 Cabinet Advice

I removed the base but it delaminated into its constituent parts.

I have made some measurements and will try and recreate the base. I'll have to find some wood.

The TT base looks to fit in its own recess. I'll need to think about how to form this.
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Old 13th Aug 2018, 9:41 pm   #8
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Default Re: Roberts R707 Cabinet Advice

How about using two half-thickness sheets, one plain and the other with the tt cutout?
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Old 15th Aug 2018, 4:27 pm   #9
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Default Re: Roberts R707 Cabinet Advice

Sounds like the perfect excuse to buy a router

Using nothing more complicated than a scrap of thin ply or MDF, a circle-cutting jig can easily be made. By setting the depth of the router cutter, a recess for a turntable is an easy job. If it helps to inspire you, have a look at this page (about half way down): http://www.markhennessy.co.uk/audax/construction.htm

Guiding a router along a straight edge will give better results than cutting with a hand saw (or at least, me when using a hand saw ). I use my routers for most woodworking operations.

If the base had come out in somewhat better condition, you could have used it as a template for the replacement. Cutters with bearings on the bottom are perfect for that.

The original would have been birch ply (can't remember if it's 6 or 9mm). Not always the easiest stuff to find these days - B&Q and the like don't stock it. Be careful with some of the alternatives, as ply varies enormously in quality. MDF would be easiest to machine, even if it's not exactly "period"...

Like Rich, I almost certainly have a spare case - perhaps with a poor grille, but otherwise OK. Maybe even with a decent handle IIRC. So all is not lost.

Mark
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Old 21st Aug 2018, 3:47 pm   #10
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Default Re: Roberts R707 Cabinet Advice

I bought some wood and some glue yesterday. I'll have a go at making a base soon.

The comment about a router is noted.
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Old 25th Aug 2018, 1:03 pm   #11
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Default Re: Roberts R707 Cabinet Advice

I am making good progress with the base. Now I am re-gluing the rexine to the base. Pictures will follow when I'm finished.

The screw that attached the aerial to the base was stripped so I had to break it free. This left part of the screw inside the aerial. How can I remove it? Less than a MM of screw protrudes out. I could drill it out with a fine bit.
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Old 26th Aug 2018, 11:10 am   #12
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Default Re: Roberts R707 Cabinet Advice

The cabinet is now finished. Here are some before and after pictures.
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Old 26th Aug 2018, 11:12 am   #13
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Default Re: Roberts R707 Cabinet Advice

More photos:
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Old 26th Aug 2018, 11:38 am   #14
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Default Re: Roberts R707 Cabinet Advice

The wood for the base I bought was 6mm thick compared to the 7/8mm of the original. So I used a slice of the original base which had a cutout for the TT base.

The new base was glued in place and held with some panel pins. The old segment was glued with PVA and clamped.

Cut outs were made for the hinges using a rotary tool.

The rexine was straightforward to reglue. More PVA and clamping.

Finally, the rear door was screwed into place. The screws were a bit rough.

To do:

The battery holder and TT base need to be installed. The teak ends need to be treated. I usually use teak oil but I would like to try Danish oil for a change. I think it gives a glossy finish.
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Old 27th Aug 2018, 9:33 am   #15
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Default Re: Roberts R707 Cabinet Advice

Hi

It's good to know that the R707 has been saved. The cabinet is looking great and the result has been well worth the effort.
It's very satisfying bringing back a rough condition set, more so than better condition examples.

Regards
Symon.
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Old 4th Sep 2018, 4:30 pm   #16
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Default Re: Roberts R707 Cabinet Advice

More progress:

The teak ends have been refinished with five coats of Wilko's own Danish Oil.

The perished grommets between the front end and the chassis have been replaced.

To do:

I have bought a thin ladies belt to fashion into a replacement handle. The width of the original was 1.7cm vs the 1.5cm of belt that is on order.

Does anybody know the length of the original handle?
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Old 4th Sep 2018, 10:14 pm   #17
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Default Re: Roberts R707 Cabinet Advice

Hi.

The teak ends are looking great.

The handle is not the easiest thing to measure when it's insitu but I reckon the length is about 470mm. Bear in mind it must be possible to move the handle to both the front and back of the radio as well as in the normal carrying position.

On my radio it is fairly tight to shift the handle to the front and the back. If I was making a replacement handle then I'd probably make it fractionally longer to make it easier to position it. Having said all of that, the original handle is quite stiff and therefore not that pliable to move it to front and back. The replacement belt type handle may be more supple so you may not need to increase its length by much.
One possible way to assess the correct length would be to do a trial run and make a thick card strap then once the optimum length is established, use this as guide for the handle.

Regards
Symon

Last edited by Philips210; 4th Sep 2018 at 10:27 pm. Reason: typo
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Old 6th Sep 2018, 2:43 pm   #18
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Default Re: Roberts R707 Cabinet Advice

Thanks for the suggestion Symon. I tried a length of 47cm and that turned out to be spot on.

The radio is now finished.

I was not able to remove the screw end from the aerial base so I've strapped it in using cable ties. It will do as long as I'm careful.

Thanks to those who contributed to this thread!
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Old 6th Sep 2018, 5:32 pm   #19
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Default Re: Roberts R707 Cabinet Advice

Just had a look at the original photos. Splendid result and a real labour of love.


Alan
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Old 6th Sep 2018, 10:41 pm   #20
Philips210
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Default Re: Roberts R707 Cabinet Advice

Hi OldTechFan96.

That's come up well and a very satisfying result.
Just wondering if you have the small plywood strip that fits into the slots on each side of the cabinet. It's needed to prevent the two 6V lantern batteries from moving about.

Regards,
Symon.
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