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Old 4th Aug 2011, 10:53 pm   #1
PJL
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Default Philips V5A - never again

Definitely not for the faint hearted and not one you are likely to want to try again. However, a radio without a chassis is one that just has to be tried.

Stuck at the first hurdle, the wavechange knob screw would not budge. After much swearing, heat, penetrating oil and sweat, still no joy, so I asked for advice on the forum. I discovered the screw was threaded through the shaft and could not be drilled out. A very kind forum member then offered me a set of replacement knobs so I resorted to butchery and hacksawed the original knob off.

We talk about the guts of a radio and in this case that pretty much describes how they look as you pull out the intestinal string with the components dangling off in odd places. The remains of the rubber sleeving, which could have been applied with a wallpaper brush, bringing the parallel further to life. So it was out with the carboot bargain reel of PVC sleeving which sadly only contained enough for one V5a.

The Rola speaker is a deluxe substitute and a tight fit. It's a completely open arrangement and was almost solid with surface rust. I took the magnet off the back, derusted, applied some oil and put it back together and surprisingly it works a treat.

A little advice for my readers, If the only tool you own is 3 in one oil, it's best not to try servicing your radio. The wavechange switch was deep in a tar like mix of oil and soot and I had no alternative but to strip it down to clean it. This is not easy in a set where the switch is treated as a carrier for all RF parts which are wrapped around like a blanket.

I did think I should re-align the IF but the instructions seemed to be for a completely different task "warm the outer coils until the wax softens by means of a soldering iron...the coils should be moved along the former...taking care not to break the fine connecting wires", maybe instructions for disarming a land mine?

After several goes at squeezing the guts back in place, I finally got to the point of switch on and you will never guess what? Designed by a madman, assembled by 3in high fairies that can thread wires into impossible places, this completely insane radio worked perfectly first time.

OK, I then had to take it apart to fit the dial cord and that is another long and painful story.
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Old 4th Aug 2011, 10:55 pm   #2
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Default Re: Philips V5A - never again

Philips sets are always a bit different, but that really does take the biscuit. That is probably rare because so many were written off by engineers at the time!

Cheers,

Steve P.
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Old 4th Aug 2011, 11:00 pm   #3
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Default Re: Philips V5A - never again

That's what I used to call a 'pigs breakfast'

You sometimes wonder about the mindset of someone who designs something like that. Certainly their mental stability is brought in to question!

Well done for sorting it anyway. Generally I don't mind Philips sets but I don't think I'll be adding one of those to the collection!



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Old 4th Aug 2011, 11:25 pm   #4
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Default Re: Philips V5A - never again

Well done! After that, everything else will be a doddle. What are you going to tackle for your next challenge?

Oh... and could you please post a picture of the front of the set, so that I can recognise it and not buy it if I see one?!
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Old 5th Aug 2011, 12:49 am   #5
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Default Re: Philips V5A - never again

That sort of work on any set wouldn't be easy, let alone one of those!

You're a brave man, well done!
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Old 5th Aug 2011, 8:02 am   #6
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Default Re: Philips V5A - never again

Well done that man !

One thing you can't accuse Philips of is creating just another 4-valve-plus-rectifier set. With no chassis, the depth of the set is very little, so you could quite easily put one on a mantel piece - not many sets you could do that with.

Someone once described the V5 /V7 models as having been assembled using a shovel, which I think sums it's internal appearance up nicely.

TTFN,
Jon
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Old 5th Aug 2011, 8:41 am   #7
mark pirate
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Default Re: Philips V5A - never again

Well done
I think the "designer" of that set was on drugs, I know Philips produced some weird and wonderful products over the years, but the V5A must rate as the most strange!

I nearly bought one a couple of years ago, but due to its poor condition, walked away....

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Old 5th Aug 2011, 6:11 pm   #8
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Default Re: Philips V5A - never again

Nice work PJL. I think I won't buy one either. Here's a link to a pic of the front of one:

http://www.radiomuseum.org/r/philips_v5a_v_5_a.html

Gus.
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Old 5th Aug 2011, 9:45 pm   #9
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Default Re: Philips V5A - never again

Oh my goodness... I think that the Black Country Museum have one of those, awaiting restoration. I'll leave it to one of the other volunteers!
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Old 6th Aug 2011, 8:02 am   #10
G4XWDJim
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Default Re: Philips V5A - never again

I started a V7 many years ago and after getting more bitumen on my hands than re-roofing a shed causes I did just enough to get it working ok and passed it on to someone eager to end up with black hands.

Well done on yours. It looks good despite the design.

Jim
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Old 6th Aug 2011, 11:40 am   #11
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Default Re: Philips V5A - never again

Nice work and brave too. I spent a happy minute or so clicking between the 'before' and 'after' pictures in delight.

Glad to see a few more balloon valves back as I think that's one of the endearing things about 30's radios that was usually lost post-war. My Ultra 22 had a hideous Marconi rectifier valve in it (which was incidentally flashing over) and that had to go for an original UU60 balloon type obtained at considerable expense.
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Old 6th Aug 2011, 10:03 pm   #12
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Default Re: Philips V5A - never again

As a Dutch Philips collector I can confirm that this one is a strange made radio.
Only the pointer drive-cord construction is a very stupid construction inndeed.

The speaker on your picture is not the original (philips) speaker, I'm affraid.

I don't understand the "happy negative" reactions to this beautifull radio.
If you know how to repair pre-war radios it should be no problem at all to repair a radio like this V5A(Or V6A/V7A).
Every singel part can be taken out very easy.
The drama of the wire isolation is common with philips pre-war radio's,.... that's true.
But with good new isolation socket, these radio's are very safe and it looks superb !
The problem with the knob, I have not heard before as far as I know.
So that's shure not a typical V5/6/7problemm .

The very dirty black-hands story, sounds to me a bit like 'kick the bucket' .

Everyone who know this radio and have restored one before, knows that this radio is worth every minute of work:
It works great, sounds great , it looks great!
Every singel part is to restore easy without problem's.
Thats far more than I can tell about other mark radio's who have often much more serious and typical problemms.

It's a strange build radio, that fits perfectly to this pre-war supermodern cabinet design.
It 100% shure is an "easy to restore radio" .Only the pointer drive-cord is a very stupid construction.

After restouring my V6A, I like this radio very much!

I hope you have got a more honnest point of vieuw about this special (for that time) radio.

Best regards ,
Ben Dijkman

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Old 7th Aug 2011, 12:34 am   #13
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Default Re: Philips V5A - never again

Yes Ben, the replacement speaker is a very good quality Rola model which works very well with the set.

The construction is of a high quality and it was a very futuristic design. Quite compact yet with a large speaker and big easy to read dial. It is very sensitive and selective although the IF bandiwdth is limiting the high frequencies a bit.

I like it very much too but it has taken quite alot of work to restore. All of the black capacitors were very leaky and the wet electrolytics were dried out. The resistors were mostly within tolerance although a few had burnt out due to leaky capacitors. I haven't tried to disguise the new capacitors as the yellow sleeving is a little bright anyway.

It had an AC/PEN in the set which has a low gm so I have fitted the correct Mullard PEN4VA and Philips 1821. The other valves look original although the volume control is a replacement.

I will post a picture of the front once I have reattached the cloth. It was hard work, but if it was easy it wouldn't be worth doing...I still won't be doing another though!
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Old 7th Aug 2011, 6:53 am   #14
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Default Re: Philips V5A - never again

Pity about the lack of the original speaker in it's little cloth bag. Those speakers really are good quality and give a great sound. The V5 was Philips answer to the Philco Peoples Set that resulted in a challenge from the government of the time to produce a decent cheap radio 'as they do on the Continent'. The performance of the V5 certainly outstrips the Philico 444. Regards, John.
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Old 7th Aug 2011, 12:00 pm   #15
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Default Re: Philips V5A - never again

Wow that is some mad radio and as others have said, you're a braver man than I. Well done!
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Old 7th Aug 2011, 12:24 pm   #16
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Thumbs up Re: Philips V5A - never again

This radio was in a very bad shape..
These oxidated iron parts are a crime to clean nice in my uppinion
I would not have bought a radio in this bad shape .
From that point of vieuw you did a great ,..great job!
This speaker will give this radio even a better (bass) sound I shure beleve.
The rotten isolation and bad leaking capacitors and dryed-out elco's are standard
to pre-war philips radio's.
After restouring these , Philips radios have normally less to zero technical problems.
Even without much specific technical knowledge, you can easy fix pre-war philips radio 's.
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Old 7th Aug 2011, 4:59 pm   #17
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Default Re: Philips V5A - never again

Well done PJL

That is a remarkable transformation, from a wreck to a really nice art-deco radio and despite their weird internal construction these are really nice sets to behold IMHO.

I have a near identical Philips "Theatrette" V7A to restore here, fortunately it's in rather better condition internally, it's original (bar one capacitor) and more remarkably, it still works.

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Old 7th Aug 2011, 7:15 pm   #18
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Default Re: Philips V5A - never again

From my phrase " A Pile To Palace",Superb job!

David
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Old 23rd Jan 2015, 2:21 pm   #19
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Default Re: Philips V5A - never again

Quote:
Originally Posted by PJL View Post
Definitely not for the faint hearted and not one you are likely to want to try again. However, a radio without a chassis is one that just has to be tried.
Well I've just bought one and I'm going to give it a go.

Anyone know where I can get some/buy some paperwork from?

Cheers

Ian
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Old 23rd Jan 2015, 4:14 pm   #20
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Default Re: Philips V5A - never again

Available here: http://www.service-data.com/product....87/6195/t14887
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