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The Miltronix website is gone

Discussion in '"Boat Anchor" & Classic Equipment' started by WI0H, May 25, 2012.

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  1. WI0H

    WI0H Ham Member QRZ Page

    I am thinking about having Rick Mish at Miltronix do a restoration of my r90a, but his website seems to have disappeared. Does anyone know if he's still working on these radios? If not, is there anyone else still doing r390a restorations?

    Any help would be appreciated.
  2. KO6WB

    KO6WB Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Yes there is and he is listed on a site dedicated to restorations of the R-390A. Check here;
    Another site;
    You might try this one.

    Chuck Rippel, WA4HHG
    2341 Herring Ditch Road
    Chesapeake, VA 23323
    (757) 485-9660
    Repair and restoration of Collins R390, 75A-3, 75A-4, KWS-1 and 32-V series. Please call first to arrange to send your radio or cabinet.

    Hope this helps
    Last edited: May 25, 2012
  3. N9NNL

    N9NNL Ham Member QRZ Page

    Rick Mish - Miltronix - in Akron, Ohio
    He restored 2 each R-390A's for me earlier this year.
    I drove to his home and left them there for 2 months and later picked them up.
    I'm listening to 20M SSB on one now. Works great. He's an outstanding individual with immense practical experience.
    We spent many hrs together and he took me through the units and their refurbishment step-by-step.
    I understand that he acquired some R392s recently and has restored them.

    His e-mail is
    I sent him photos of the R390A units and discussed the restoration by phone before I drove there from my home in the Chicago area.

    Hope this helps.

    Mike n9nnl
  4. KM1H

    KM1H Ham Member QRZ Page

    Better bring plenty of money, neither come cheap but do a museum quality job.

    Several others do excellent receiver work but dont get into cosmetics very deep which really raises the cost.



    I just had Rick do a restore on my R392 and I was his LAST project. He has gone out of business, shutdown his website and turned off the phone that was used to contact him. The downturn of business is forcing him to scrap out inventory that people will not buy because of stability of the design of the receiver. I've forgotten which model, but he's no longer able to afford to perform his life's work. We had a couple of long conversations and it darn near is breaking his heart that he will no longer be able to continue. I don't know if he would do your r390a, but you might send him a letter. I would and I would send him the money up front as well as anything extra you could. I really hate to see a resource like him having to shutdown. He does outstanding work.
  6. N3WNG

    N3WNG Ham Member QRZ Page

    Miltronix R-390a reman service

    Just wanted to reply that I was the second to last project for Rick (R-390a). Yes, I also had several conversations with Rick and could hear the discouragement in his voice. From what he told me, he was looking for something to occupy his time/provide an income outside of the Miltronix work, but he did not rule out ever touching one of these old radios. The last conversation I had with him was about a week and a half ago.

    I know when he was doing mine, he was like a kid in a candy store - you could sense the excitement he felt in restoring it. When he was finished, it was the candy store going out of business.
  7. N3WNG

    N3WNG Ham Member QRZ Page

    Howard Mills is a SUPER guy to deal with. Did a 75a-4 a few years back. Will be back to purchase from him again soon. Can't go wrong with Howard.
  8. K6JPA

    K6JPA Ham Member QRZ Page

    Rick is still doing radios. He is currently doing my R-391. He does excellent work. I have three sets that he has already done (R-389, R-390, R-390A), and am beyond happy with each of them. His work is first-class all the way.
  9. K8HU

    K8HU XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    Chuck Rippel and R390A's

    Actually, how about this, accurate as of 10/16/12.

    The AMSAT address has been dead as has the phone number. However, restoring R390A's is NOT dead ! Have done about 5 in CY 2012. There is a small waiting list, I'm keeping it that way. I still do the same level of detail and have a few new work arounds. What has changed is getting parts. Replacement PTO's are almost non-existent. That means if you have a COSMOS PTO and the end points are long, I may be able to correct that, maybe not. Noisy/popping IF decks are a problem. Its usually an arcing IF can OR a filter. Changing out IF cans is quite a job but I have LOTS (Hundreds) of NOS Spares from my trip out to EAC about 10 years ago. Replacement power transformers are getting harder and harder to find ! The 26Z5W's run very hot and are known to short. Many times, that takes the HV secondary of the transformer out and should that happen, good luck finding a transformer. This is but one more good reason to solid-state your power supply.

    Keep those radios running !

    Chuck, WA4HHG
  10. N8WWM

    N8WWM Ham Member QRZ Page

    This photo just makes my stomach queasy... R390 bites dust.jpg
  11. K9RJ

    K9RJ Ham Member QRZ Page

    This is shocking! Do you know where and when this was taken?
    Harris K9RJ
  12. W9GB

    W9GB Ham Member QRZ Page

    Chuck Rippel has those details (I think that is photo from his web page),
    but as I remember it was 1990s in Norfolk, Virginia area, as the US Navy was scraping older ships.

    After Reagan's 600 ship Navy in 1980s; the end of the Iron Curtain/reunification of Germany in 1989; and Iran/Kuwait War in 1991 -- the Navy began reassessment of its global fleets and ports.
    Maintenance costs on these ships (1930-1950 construction) became a budget burden, so scrapping began as well as a new fleet building program over the past 2 decades.

    On the west coast, the Ghost Fleet was stored in Suisun Bay.
    Older ships stored there, were also scrapped. At Philadelphia Yard, I saw some larger ships stored in there 1996/1997, but many were in bad condition.

    Fair Radio Sales acquired some R-390A receivers in this period via US military surplus auctions.
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2012
  13. N8AFT

    N8AFT Subscriber QRZ Page

    Miltronix Is Still There

    Contact Rick Mish @ 419-255-6220. taking work and has radios to sell.Taking my R388 to him saturday.says he's taking any and all Collins. May do work on others if you have manual, you'd have to ask Rick...73 de n8aft lane:)
  14. WB5WSV

    WB5WSV Ham Member QRZ Page

    Hey, guys, I was told that when they shut down the DEW line stations they would stack equipment - including R-390's - on nearby frozen lakes in the winter and then place bets on what day the ice would thaw enough to send the whole pile to the bottom.

    Some of that stuff might be rather well preserved, down in that cold clear water. Could be the radio equivalent of those buried Spitfires in Burma.

  15. N8AFT

    N8AFT Subscriber QRZ Page

    Rick Mish in Toledo is very much still in business.Picked up my repaired and realigned R388 and my R390A Saturday morning.I dropped off an R390 for rebuild as well saturday.
    He currently also does a front panel refinish and relettering using semi-gloss black.Had him do the A as well as the speaker, looks impressive indeed. lane
  16. WI0H

    WI0H Ham Member QRZ Page

    Thanks for the heads up, Lane. I contacted Mr. Mish last night and will be sending my receiver out to him soon. Sounds like I will be able to swing by Toledo on my way back from Dayton and pick it up.

    I will keep everyone posted as to how the restore goes.
  17. WI0H

    WI0H Ham Member QRZ Page

    I picked up my r-390a from Rick Mish on the way home from Dayton, and I am very pleased with the results. I had him focus on the internals rather than the cosmetics (which were in pretty decent shape anyways), and now this radio sings. I've put it head to head with my Perseus (a Dayton acquisition), and a WJ-8718a I recently had brought up to spec by PCS Associates, and it more than holds its own. Thanks to Rick for doing such an outstanding job with my radio. She's definitely a keeper.
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