Seeburg Jukebox Restoration, Part 6

Time for a Seeburg Jukebox update.  I’ve been remiss in posting updates.  The restoration of the cabinet is finished (photos coming in a few days) and I’ve moved on and recently finished working on the record playing mechanism.

Mechansim playing its first record after being restored

Even though the amplifier is not ready yet and even though the mechanism is not mounted inside the cabinet, I couldn’t help putting a record in  and playing a song.

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Seeburg Jukebox Restoration, Part 5

Remember this from a previous post?

A damaged piece of molding that had to be rebuilt.

Well, as I was installing it, it broke.  I fixed it again, then it broke again.  Repeat 2 more times.  The old wood was just too weak.  So I took a piece of maple, cut and carved an entirely new one from scratch.

New Molding to replace the 3x repaired broken one

Time consuming, yes.  This small piece is only about 5 inches long, but it’s been holding up progress on a lot of other things.

Another task that was holding up progress, and one I had been dreading, was installing the new mirrors on the front door.   But Dave came and gave me a hand or two.

Front door with new mirrors and new grill cloth

In the above photo, the door frame is not done being repaired, but it gives a good idea what it will look like when finished.

I’m happy to get these two obstacles behind me.

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Seeburg Jukebox Restoration, Part 4

It seems like very little forward progress is being made on the jukebox restoration project, despite the time I’m putting into it.

A lot of things are fighting me.  Interestingly, it’s not the old stuff that fighting me, but the new stuff.  I’ve been really disappointed in the quality of reproduction parts from Victory Glass.

  • The side plastics are not cut the same way as the originals, which will cause me to move the side chrome pieces up a little.
  • The speaker grill cloth is not like the original which causes it to show the imperfections in the metal behind it because it’s highly reflective.
  • The blue mirrors have a crinkled reflective background rather than a smooth reflective background.

A “reproduction part” should be a faithful reproduction of the original, not something that only vaguely resembles the original.  Unfortunately, Victory Glass is the only game in town (the world).  And I imagine the demand for reproduction jukebox parts is falling as most of the old jukeboxes have already been found and restored.  When I was restoring my Wurlitzer, I don’t recall these issues.

Another thing that has been fighting me, are the stains, paints and finishes.  The overall quality has really gone down since the last time I restored a jukebox.  A lot of this has to due with environmental regulations that limit the evaporative solvents used in a product.  Nothing is very durable.  Also, I suspect that a lot of it due to the corporate mentality of using cheaper chemicals.  I had to redo a portion of the wooden cabinet twice now.  I’ve redone parts of the metal selector panel nearly 10 times or more; I’ve lost count.

Slowly things are starting to move towards going back together.  I’m glad I took a lot of photos before I took things apart so I can go back and  look at how things go back together.  I wasn’t expecting the cabinet to be apart this long.

A damaged piece of molding that had to be rebuilt.

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