The First Launch Of My R-390A/URR

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Chuck Rippel's Technical Resource Directory
KK4DF Restoration Resources
R-390A Frequently Asked Questions
Miltronix R-390/R-390A Restorations

Since March 7th, 2003, I owned an R-390A/URR receiver said to be in nonworking condition at the time, but I didn't power it up until July 10th. During that period of time, I replaced two missing 5814A tubes and their tube shields, replaced an open 3TF7 ballast tube, restuffed the can capacitors, and replaced two of the problem capacitors in the IF deck chassis. After doing this, I decided to power up the set for the first time, videotaping the procedure as it went. Fortunately for me, the process was a success, and thusly yielded some interesting pictures, which I will share now. Note that I could do very little about the light levels in the room at the time, but I was able to increase the brightness a bit using Photoshop.

Here is a picture of me introducing the video, dictating what I am about to do, and what equipment I am going to be using for the procedure.

In this shot, I am beginning to turn up the Variac to see if the microswitch on the function control is working. Luckily for me, it is doing it's job.

Here you can begin to see signs of life coming to the receiver, as the dial lights begin to glow dimly. This is with the function switch set to AGC, as attempting to turn up the Variac with the switch set to STAND BY produces a buzzing.

Here is the set with full line voltage being applied to it. The VOM to the far left is reading around 1A being drawn by the set, which is about normal. There is no sound coming out of the speaker connected to the receiver, which is taking audio from the Diode Load point.

After twiddling with the knobs a bit, I manage to get static from the speaker. I decide to tune around a bit, to see if I can receive any signals.

At this point, I am hearing faint sounds of WBCQ's station identification announcements. I turn to the camera and yell, "I'm getting WBCQ!," and soon note that it is coming in at 7,424KC, instead of 7,415KC where it should be.

At this point, I decide to change bands to see if I can get any of WWV's signals (usually found at 5, 10 or 15MC). I am unable to get more than slight traces of any of them (most likely due to the time of day, as well as my subpar antenna), so I keep tuning around, during which I hear some foreign-language broadcasting stations.

At one point while tuning around, I come across a foreign-language station doing a station identification message, which has plenty of music. Due to the use of the Diode Load point, I get plenty of surprisingly-loud sound booming from the speaker, and proceed to adjust the volume on the receiver.

After this, I decide to do some tuning on the AM broadcast band. I manage to get WRKO (680KC) somewhere around where it should be, though turning the KC change knob causes the frequency to shift without the dial moving (I later found that the Zero Adj. knob had to be turned all the way counterclockwise, not clockwise, to be in the normal position).

Me doing the closing statement on the video: "Well, as you can see, it's a beautiful thing! For now, this is Adam Vaughn, signing off."