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MG TD TF 1500 - AM Radio needs help

I have an AM positive ground radio in my 1952 TD. It turns on and makes noice, but no music and or speaking from it until I touch the antena. Then it sounds like it did 40 years ago when I purchased it. I have checked the antena to make sure it is grounded, and it is. Anyone out there know what the problem might be?
Thanks for all your help solving my issues in the past.
L M Levin

My guess would be either broken center lead in antenna wire or no ground. When you touch the antenna and it works are you also touching metal on the car?
Can you try running a temp wire to known good ground with maybe some clip leads?
David Sheward

Louis -- Have you checked that the antenna plug is making a good connection to the socket inside the radio? When you touch the antenna you are using your body as additional antenna and so possibly the increased signal is then able to jump a gap and the radio then plays.

Just my two cents worth.
R. K. Jeffers

How LUCKY you are to have an AM radio which emits neither speaking OR music.
G.E. Love

On all AM radios you should have a tuning pot to balance/tune the aerial. This then makes the aerial signal alot stronger. The pot is sometimes labeled ant or peak or other things and is generally accessed from the rear or through the front panel
I would try this first by twiddling it to and thro. Set the radio to receive your favourite station and twist the pot until best reception.
Sorry got involved on your BBS cos I was bored.
LOL. Regards.
Robert (Bob) Midget Turbo

Thanks for all the imput. I cleaned the ground to the antena and it still did not work inside my garage. We took the TD for a ride this afternoon and the radio played like it did when new. I also checked it again in the garage and it works. Who knows what is going on, at least it works.
Thanks again for the advise.
L M Levin

What Bob midget Turbo said is almost correct. The adjustment is a mica trimmer capacitor in the antenna matching circuit. Not a pot. The trick I used was to tune in between stations at the high end of the dial. Then tune the trimmer for maximum background noise. If you don't do it this way the AGC (automatic gain control) comes into the picture and tends to level out the noise so the peak is not very noticable.

How do I know all this. I earned my spending money in college repairing auto radio's. Was a great learning experience. In those days there was essentially no FM. It was all AM and radios were repairable, new tubes, capacitors, vibrators etc.

R. K. Jeffers


Bob has it just right. Made part of my college money the same way.

Safety fast,

Jim H.
53 TD
J. M. Haskins

Speaking of the old valve radios (as the Brits refer to them), there was one in the TD that I had during my senior year in high school. Of course the radio didn't work, so a friend of mine and I hauled it out of the car and took it to a local radio/TV repair man to have it fixed. A week or so later, he called to say that the radio was ready to be picked up. My friend and I went over to get the radio, which was on the repairman's bench. He turned it on to demonstrate that id was indeed working and while we were waiting for it to warm up (probably a full minute - instant on thy are not), my friend said that since it was a British radio, maybe it only picked up British stations. I knew just enough about radios at that time that I didn't think that was true and stated so. About that time the audio came up and the radio just happened to be on a station where the announcer was interviewing a British gentleman. I'm sure that the look on our faces at that point was rather comical as it left the repairman doubled over laughing.

It was driving that TD at that time, that I learned that a radio in an MG is a pure waste of time. Cheers - Dave
David DuBois

G.E and David you are both correct, the radio is not much good when driving, but at the stop light it is nice to have people look and wonder about the old time songs playing on the radio. We have an AM oldies station here in town so it is easy to enjoy the music on an AM only radio.
L M Levin

This thread was discussed between 24/10/2009 and 26/10/2009

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