Recommendations for cleaning nicotine

Discussion in '"Boat Anchor" & Classic Equipment' started by VE2GCE, May 8, 2019.

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  1. AI3V

    AI3V Ham Member QRZ Page

    Put me down for ordinary household cleaners (409, windex,simple green, orange cleaner- I've used them all with equally good results) hot water rinse , and a nice warm place to dry.

  2. K6LPM

    K6LPM Ham Member QRZ Page

    The hottest distilled water and Dawn dishwashing soap followed with hottest distilled rinse.
    As noted be cautious of washing away the lubricants within potentiometers and various bearings and tuners.
    Also be cautious with solvents around IF cans and tunable slugs that utilize wax to seal or hold such slugs in place etc....
    Pure anhydrous isopropyl alcohol makes for a good strong degreaser solvent and for stubborn cleaning such as ink and pen or adhesives, acetone in very localized areas that can tolerate such powerful solvent.
    Compressed air to blow away copious amounts of water or other solvents but be careful not to push vapor or liquid further or deeper into knooks and crannies such as deep into transformer windings or other locations where moisture may not so readily evaporate and will likely remain and condense.
    Slow warm air dry all remaining moisture alongside with either large bags filled with silica desiccant, bags of dried minute rice or magnesium sulfate.
    Last edited: May 11, 2019
  3. KA9JLM

    KA9JLM Ham Member QRZ Page

    Also, Don't blow air on cooling fans and let them free spin out of control.

    A DC fan can generate voltage and smoke the fan control driver.
    K6LPM likes this.
  4. KA5SDC

    KA5SDC Ham Member QRZ Page

    I have never done this type of cleaning so I want to make sure I understand what is being recommended.

    You are saying I can remove the housing and simply wash a boat anchor with warm, distilled water and then let it dry completely before powering? The only heat I could apply to dry would be from a (hair) blow dryer. I guess I am overly concerned about components getting wet. Want to make sure I do not do something very dumb for lack of understanding.

  5. K7TRF

    K7TRF Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Don't worry about getting; resistors, capacitors, transistors, diodes, tubes(which I generally remove anyway as they're easy to remove and easier to clean around the sockets once you remove them), switches, connector, most inductors and transformers wet as long as you dry them out completely before applying power. Do worry about getting lubricated components wet as well as meters. Sure there are exceptions like be careful with inductors wound on cardboard forms, the cardboard Christmas tree style terminals used in some vintage rigs as solder terminals to hang a bunch of components (Drake used these and some others of the era).

    But if you're cleaning with something like a wet rag and aren't completely reckless you can get a lot of stuff wet as long as you dry it out again. If you completely immerse the rig or hose it down then you want to inspect more carefully and remove assemblies or components that would soak up water, have their lubricants flushed away or otherwise get damaged with complete immersion (e.g. analog meter movements).
  6. KE0ZU

    KE0ZU Ham Member QRZ Page

    I typically remove ALL dials, and meters.

    I remove tubes

    I don't totally immerse radios because I don't want to fill up A.C. power, modulation, and interstage audio transformers with water, and when spraying, I make an effort to not not spray water into them.

    Rinse with distilled water from the grocery.

    Use what ever you have, hair dryer, leaf blower, compressed air... to blow off all excess water.

    Then allow to dry thoroughly for at least 2 or 3 days. In the sunshine, under heat lamps, in the oven, or whatever you might have.

    First step when its put on the bench is to lube ALL control shafts/bushings, bearings, contacts, and connectors, with either good quality oil, or Deoxit, as appropriate. The controls should be easily operated, and contacts should be noise free.
  7. VE3CGA

    VE3CGA XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    The brown will come off with the cleaners suggesred, spray9, fantastic, etc
    The smell will take more. Anything that gets warm or hot will release an that odour.
    A couple times I've used brake cleaner to get everything off some components that I didnt want to risk get wet
    but you have to be careful not to get the solvent on things like dials, faceplate lettering, some plastics. also you have to get the solvent out of places that will trap it and then evaporate while leaving a minerals coating. Use with caution
    I had a TS520 that although it was operational, was unusable due to cigar stink. I was able to clean it quickly and used my air compressor set very low. Not much makes me gag but that sure did. If you do this you have to work very very quickly but in the case of the stinky 520, it worked with no damage and best of all no stink.
    Probably better things to use, but components that get warm or hot will continue to cook the tar if its inside them
  8. VE2GCE

    VE2GCE Ham Member QRZ Page

    Has anybody tried using a hand held steam cleaner (such as Bissell 39N7H Steam Shot) ?
    I have to dig mine out and give it a try.
    WB2GCR likes this.
  9. N4MTB

    N4MTB Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Be careful with brake and choke cleaner, they can damage most plastics. If you need something strong then I would recommend Mass Airflow Sensor Cleaner, it is plastic safe.
    K6LPM likes this.
  10. VE2GCE

    VE2GCE Ham Member QRZ Page

    I put the linear on the air yesterday and it works well.
    I only did a dry cleaning of the interior.
    I was worried the tube heat would release the nicotine smell, but fortunately that was not the case

    Working with previously smoker owned equipment is the best argument against smoking.
    If that much nicotine gets on the equipment via secondary smoke, one can only imagine how much gets into your lungs via primary smoke.
    Last edited: May 22, 2019

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