Restoring an Antique Radio

Clamping and gluing the support board for the radio chassis
I am in the process of restoring an old Stromberg Carlson radio circa 1946. I posted photos in a previous post showing the front of the radio. The original lacquer finish is coming off on the radio and it needs to be refinished which I will do with lacquer thinner and re-staining..

Gluing the veneer on a side panel
These photos show the back of the radio and the work that needs to be done before I actually strip the finish. I am using carpenter's glue with clamps to re-glue the veneer to the back frame and a longer clamp to reattach the support board for the radio to the frame of the cabinet. Once the clamping and gluing is completed I can proceed to the stripping stage. You can see from the first photo that I have taken out the radio chassis and the speaker to make the job a little easier for me in the long run.

I tried a little lacquer thinner yesterday on a test section and found that the fumes are such that I will need to have a lot of ventilation if I am to proceed further. Plus, I will have to apply it with a brush rather than dab it on with a paper towel.

Once the stripping is done, and I think that will be the most labour intensive stage, I can move onto the staining, sanding and final finishing. My plan is to use lighter walnut stain for the cabinet and darker walnut for the edging and base plate.

I also plan to replace the decals and the grill cloth. I know that I will not be able to find the original cloth and I am hoping that a reproduction grill cloth that approximates that era will suffice. My goal at the end of the day, is to restore it to it's classic state knowing that it will not be 100% original.

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