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Assistance repairing an old, irreplaceable boombox

Discussion in 'Troubleshooting and Repair' started by controllermouse, May 27, 2016.

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  1. controllermouse


    May 27, 2016
    I'm brand new to this forum; to be honest, I'm kind of at my wit's end, and hoping someone can help me out.
    I'm trying to fix something that, to anyone else, would be a 'toss and replace' item, but which must be repaired. Because of its nature (a 13-year-old Philips AZ2055 boombox; probably retailed for about $30 when it was new), I can't find any info to help me diagnose it. There are parts with no labels inside, such as the large transformer that appears to consistently put out 10.6VAC, so I have no way to know if it's working properly or not.
    I'm an electronics repairman by trade, but I work mostly with either very mechanical things (slide projectors, etc), newer things that have techn manuals available, or purely digital things that just require swapping boards (i.e. LCD TVs, iPhones, etc.) Trying to repair something like this, when the obvious voltages seem to be correct, is a little out of my league.
    Now, a little background on why this is irreplaceable: my customer is an inmate in a prison serving a 40-year sentence. Since being imprisoned, the rules changed, forbidding inmates from having any devices that emit sound. His boombox was grandfathered in. He can keep it until he's released in 30 years, but he cannot replace it.
    Opening it up, it's been pretty badly brutalized by the prison guards; the AM antenna was violently ripped off the analog board, cracking part of the board and at least one trace in the process, the control wires to the cassette player were chewed up badly and mended (presumably by the inmate) with masking tape. The plug where the main AC power plugs into the board had the solder joints broken from being messed with. This was the suspected cause of failure, but I've re-soldered the joints, with no luck. Attempting to power via 'D' batteries is also fruitless; it simply acts as if it has no power, which eliminates the transformer, but doesn't shed much more light on the matter.
    If it were available, I'd simply buy another boombox of this exact same model, and replace any needed components from that. Unfortunately, I can't find one, and have no way to know if any other models had compatible parts.
    In the words of the letter the inmate wrote to me: "These sorts of 'noise making machines' are grandfathered in here, and we're not allowed to replace them, so once they're done, they're done. Suffice it (and sadly) to say, my radio is easily my most important possession"
    Can anyone out there help me in fixing this for him? I can't let him down. I have a DMM but no scope. Thank you.

    Attached Files:

  2. controllermouse


    May 27, 2016
    Actually, after much online searching, I've found a similar model (AZ-2045) which looks identical from the outside. I've gone ahead and ordered it; if it doesn't have the parts I need, I'll post again seeking help, but I should be able to scavenge anything I need.
  3. 73's de Edd

    73's de Edd

    Aug 21, 2015

    Sir controllermouse ? . . . . . . .

    Hey mate . . . . . . . . yer gotta goes to the Netherlands fer that kinds of service info:

    Will this get you off to a good start . . . . . . . . . .?

    The unit cost 70 bucks new. . . .unless a sticky finger discount was involved..

    Le Schematique . . . .clip


    73's de Edd


  4. shrtrnd


    Jan 15, 2010
    I'm thinking along the same lines as everybody else.
    If you can't figure out what's wrong with it, buy the same model off eBay if you can find it and swap-out the guts.
    Or, what I would do, is get a working model with boards that will fit, and install the new assembly in the old housing.
    A boombox is a boombox is a boombox. As long as the outside is the same, the inside was simply 'repaired'.
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