Troubleshooting 600-series TransOceanic problems

Peter Wieck of supplies the following information:

Typically, there are three reasons why any given miniature-tube T/O does not play.

These are:

1. Burnt out tube (all but the 600-series uses 5 tubes in series, the 600 adds a ballast(50A1)).
2. Bad selenium rectifier.
3. (MOST COMMON) A dirty bandswitch. All the signals go through the BC section of the bandswitch, so if this is weak or dirty, nothing from any band.

Add to these three, several less common problems:

1. The headphone jack is dirty, and the shorting tabs are not making contact.
2. The Line/Battery switch is not making correct contact.
3. With the 600-series, the connections on the cord-reel are corroded or broken.
4. Again, with the 600-series, the right-angle plug is broken at the join between the plug and the cord.

The first thing to do with any T/O, even before it is plugged in is to clean the coil-tower and band-switches. DeOxit is best, but R/S tuner-cleaner (the cheap stuff... you do not need the added red dye and perfume) will do the trick. Thoroughly saturate the band-switch and work it briskly. Then do it again.

Then test the tubes. All of them. BE VERY CAREFUL with 1.4V tubes, making sure that you DO NOT plug them in or pull them out with the tester turned on.

Reserve the 1L6 aside and insert a 1R5 for all testing purposes. If you have a problem, you pop a $3 tube, not a $30 one.

If you have the skills and wherewithall to remove the chassis, do so and clean the volume pot & tone switches. This is not necessary for testing, but generally helpful.

At this point, if you have good tubes and a clean bandswitch, and a good 50A1 ballast (also an expensive tube), you may try the radio on a variac. You should get *at least* some noise, if not a playing radio at around 85-90V or so.. It has been my experience across now about 15 of the 600 series radios that there are seldom (never seen one in this series) bad filter caps.

If you still have nothing, then you need to remove the chassis for further tests... another long post. But with the general cleaning of the band-switch, other switchgear, and good tubes, you should be there for most common problems.

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