The brackets, front and rear case panels and the case itself go together pretty easily. There is a bit of juggling to get these little plastic spacers mounted onto the bottom of brackets but it is doable. I have to say that the front does look really nice. The main part of the front is a piece of wood, nicely stained and oiled, and the bottom portion is an aluminum panel with the old style logo screened onto it.
Here is how it looks with the front panel
All of the screws both for the components and the case are supposed to have star lock washers. I had plenty for the components with a few left over, even after I dropped a couple. It’s a different story for me with the case though. I’m short 6, assembled without them for now, maybe i’ll be at the hardware store and remember to get a few extras.
The back panel is a mirrored piece of 1/4″ plexi, I guess so that the red LED which is pointed to the back can be reflected back toward the front from inside. Kind of a neat touch.
Few shots completely assembled
I think it does look pretty classy.
Now for the bad news. I plugged in a speaker, turn it on and although I’m getting power and the click of power in the speaker, I’m getting no radio. It did work the other evening prior to the case assembly part. Not sure what it is yet, I did find one capacitor lead that had broken off and I fixed that but still nothing. The antenna is still connected it looks like and I see nothing else obvious. Though I’m sure that with the fiddling around getting the case pieces on I must have broken some connection somewhere. Also I’m thinking something could be shorting out, there are some nuts on the bottom of the pc board which are very very close together and I watched for that when assembling but I am going to have to check all of that again too.
I am hoping to get it sorted out soon and am pretty sure is going to be some broken connection/lead. I think that is the least successful part of this kit, the mechanical connections. They are difficult and touchy. If this is intended for folks who haven’t worked with anything like this before I’m afraid that they may be disappointed or frustrated with these. Were I to know this before starting I may have opted to solder the connections. As it is, if I can’t find the problem I’m thinking to remove components 1 by 1 and solder them instead (to the bottom of the board though which is where the solder pads are exposed. Ultimately I feel that this would be much more successful as a solder kit, or if it must be no solder then it needs an easier and more resilient connection method.