Crawls Backward (When Alarmed)

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Hickok 288X Signal Generator Restoration Completed

A week ago I thought this project might not get out of the rut it had gotten stuck in.  And now it's done!

Here's the Hickok 288X Universal Crystal Controlled Signal Generator restored back to health.

I'm looking forward to using it, especially since I now have a dedicated tap to run to a frequency counter.  I ran the lead (the blue one) through one of the ground jack holes in the front panel.  Didn't have to modify the unit at all to install it.

This was pretty much state-of-the-art for test gear in the late 1940s.  If you were a repair person and you got one of these new, you'd be pretty excited.

Remember that broadcast FM was new technology, and the FCC had just standardized the FM standard that was used.  FM radios were beginning to hit the market, and a repair shop would need an FM generator to work on them.  This one covered AM and FM in one shot.

I'm fortunate to have the frequency dial scale window.  There are a lot of 288s out there without them.

Note how the scale is yellowed.  Parts of it are actually still white; I'm guessing the yellowing happened on areas that were exposed to the light more.  Again, most of them look like this.

I love those acorn nuts!  The hardware cleaned up well I think.

Art deco meets functionality.  Really cool.

The FM sweep control - it's also the on/off switch for the entire unit.

Those knobs are art.  Art, I say!

I touched up the pointer knobs with a little off-white paint.  The markings were pretty much gone.

This was the kind of restoration I really like to do - a 'sympathetic' restoration.  Replace what's needed to make it function, clean it up, and do the minimum needed cosmetically to make it look like a nicely cared for vintage piece.  And it can be used on a regular basis.

So what's next on the bench?  I have radios coming out of my ears - most of which I've forgotten about.  I also have three (!) acoustic guitar projects, a bunch of effects pedals, and one of my dream guitars all waiting in the queue.  Too bad I can't take six months off my day job!


Post a Comment 3 comments:

  • Sven Nyström said...
    April 3, 2012 at 4:30 PM
    I never knew how badly I need one of those old Panasonic radios until I saw them on your blog. Now I search for them on ebay when my wife doesn't see. Gaah - I need one!
  • Anonymous said...
    April 27, 2014 at 11:29 AM
    I have one just like this one, are your interested in buying it?
  • Yr Fthfl Blggr said...
    May 6, 2014 at 7:39 PM
    No, thanks, one is enough!

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