The Predicta from Heck

This Predicta was sent in by Mike. This poor thing has certainly had a hard life having previously come into the hands of a novice repair person and having been struck one or twice with a varnish moistened paintbrush.


The customer has elected to have the cabinet refinished. These cabinets present quite a challenge as they are a composite of real wood and artificially woodgrained masonite which we call a “photo finish.” Basically it’s a woodgrain pattern which is screenprinted onto the masonite. The same goes for the burlwood grain on the front. Our cabinet man, Lance, is going to apply a thin layer of real wood veneer to the top, as well as a thin layer of real burlwood veneer to the front in order to match the surviving woodgrain on the side of the cabinet.


Introducing tonight’s luminaries, including from right to left: The Leaning Tower of Impedance, Electrolytic standing in as vertical feedback capacitor, “Stairway to the Stars” Couplate, (she’s a little ungrounded but not completely detached) and last but not least, Resistor; playing the part of Fuse. The show will certainly be delayed as it appears the Union of Tube Manufacturers has gone on strike.

It’s not bent, that’s just character. Fortunately, none of the control shafts are broken!


Part of what I enjoy about this job lays further beyond simple repair and restoration. It’s bringing things back into their original state after years of neglect. Un-doing what has been done; originally with good intentions but has snowballed into a flaming inferno with a bent frame.

I really understand though. 30 years goes by and someone ends up with an “old tv” or old stereo of whatever it may be. Do whatever necessary to make it work! It’s like a 30 year old sports car. Dad passes it down to his son; at which point it really is only a “used” car with no specific collector’s value. The son modifies the suspension, changed the rims, adds a larger than life spoiler, cuts the dash opening out to install a new Spark-o-Matic sound system and is happy as a clam! Great for him, but unfortunate to the restorer, who, many more years later, endeavors to return the now collectible car back to it’s original state. Unbend that frame, weld in those rockers, take out GM Goodwrench small block 350 and replace original block.

I almost forgot: authentic replacement speaker with genuine ripped cone. Placed in such a way to dampen the output level to a comfortable whisper and bend a certain coil on the main board. Sure lines up nice with that original opening, doesn’t it? 🙂

Updates as we progress!

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