Flea Markets, Radios

Sony ICF-304L Radio – Rescue

I found this Sony ICF-304L Radio at a local flea market. I already have its bigger brother (Sony ICF-404L) and seeing this smaller version, I was very curious!

The radio looked like it had a very bad life. Scratched everywhere, crusty deposits (construction material?) inside of the battery compartment, greasy dusty deposits on the knobs and buttons. Obviously the seller tried their best to clean but could not reach everywhere.

Table of Contents

Once I realized something was rattling inside – I reluctantly put it back. Too much hassle I figured. But seller was looking and yelled: 20 cents! I figured, for 20 cents, oh well … is too low price to not have it. I mean I didn’t know I can still buy things for 20 cents ?! So I bought it.

A look around

Few photos with the radio, as bought:

Fixing the rattle

Once home, I wanted to have a closer look – fearing that the rattling inside is due to the ferrite rod antenna being cracked:

Sony ICF-304L – Rattles

Discovered that the rattling was indeed the ferrite rod antenna, but not because it was cracked, but because the glue gave up:

Sony ICF-304L – Loose LW antenna

The radio worked just fine.

I had a hard time deciding what glue to use. I would prefer not to use Superglue – it would make future removal of the antenna more difficult, if needed. I settled for melting few beads of wax, but was afraid of not melting the plastic. Used the hot air gun, the thinnest tip with the lowest air speed and at the minimum temperature, at 100C. I don’t know if this is the right way but it seems to have worked fine – no plastic was melted :). The little paraffin wax beads melted and started dripping just fine:

A look inside

More photos from inside the radio, including the dirty bottom. Radio is built around Sony CXA1019S IC:

Few more touches

a) the crusty white deposits were easy to clean with soapy water.
b) found a screw that was totally rusty. I left it a day covered in Fertran, cleaned its support with alcohol and re-installed it. I put silicone grease on all screws going back into radio.
c) I straightened the antenna which was also bent.
d) I could not clean the rust on the front grill, but I “wetted” an old toothbrush in contact cleaner and gave the grill a slight scrub, in an attempt to prevent further rusting.

Straightening the antenna:

Cleaning the gunk away

At least is cleaner 🙂 and does not rattle.

A cute little radio without AM band, just LW and FM.

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