Ever had one of those days where you should be catching up on work, correspondence, and projects, but instead you find yourself outside, in front of a radio and just enjoying a long listening session?
Yeah, that’s me and that’s today.
How did it all happen?
Well, this morning I dropped an RF adapter behind a shelf and, in the process, picked up my Sony ICF-5500W that was standing in the way. It felt a little light because it had no batteries inside.
Next thing I know, I’m loading the ‘5500W with C cells and heading outside.
It’s a gorgeous day, so I thought it might not be a bad idea to energize the caps in this benchmark solid-state radio and check reception outdoors. Besides, it’s a perfect way to do my bit for Social DXing, right?
The ‘5500W was performing flawlessly, so the next thing I know I’ve passed a good hour band-scanning and doing a little daytime DXing.
The ‘500W is truly a remarkable mediumwave receiver and I love the fluid “tuning experience” of the analog dial. The audio, of course, is brilliant and perhaps that’s why I can’t let go of it (nor the Panny RF-2200).
So am I the only one playing radio today instead of doing work–? Tell me it ain’t so! Please comment!
I spent this morning doing a lot of work around our property. When it was time for a break, I turned on my trust Sony ICF-5500W and tuned to WTZQ: one of my favorite regional AM braodcasters. Though WTZQ is over 30 miles from my home, any good AM radio, like the ICF-5500W, can receive their 1,000 watt signal with ease.
As luck would have it, when I turned on my 5500W, WTZQ started playing Love Me Do by The Beatles. It sounded absolutely amazing via the 5500W’s internal speaker: full-on, rich AM audio fidelity! Absolutely brilliant!
I cranked up the volume so our local black bears could enjoy.
I relaxed a good half hour, and caught up on reading the latest two issues of RadCom with my ICF-5500W playing WTZQ in the background.
Sometimes it’s the simple stuff that starts one’s morning off the right way.
Friday, I brought home an untested, slightly grimy, Sony ICF-5500W. I purchased it through Goodwill for $20.
I crossed my fingers as I put three C cells in the radio and turned it on. Fortunately, I was rewarded with brilliant audio. I tuned the ‘5500W on AM/mediumwave and heard CFZM, 500 miles to my north, and Radio Reloj, 860 miles to my south. A quick scan on the FM dial revealed that I could also hear all of my local benchmarks. Whew!
Other than the dial needing a little calibration, and DeOxit on a few pots, it’s in excellent mechanical shape.
I started cleaning the radio last night using Q-tip cotton swabs and a vinegar/water solution.
I’d like to restore the hard plastic chassis’ original shine, though.
I was tempted to reach for some Armor All, but stopped myself short. I know it would give the ICF-5500W a nice shine, but would it cause any long-term damage to the black plastic or clear dial cover?
I know there are vintage radio restorers among the SWLing Post readership. Can someone offer advice on what’s the best product to use (or not use!) on my ICF-5500W?
If you have experience, please comment!
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