Stromberg Carlson Modernized

Stromberg Carlson Modernized

Warren Peace

Project Category:

Project Level:

Project Time:
8-20 Hours

Project Cost:
$100 – $500

Project Description:
I picked up a Stromberg Carlson 130-L floor radio at a local second-hand store. I have a soft spot for old radios. They are works of art, unlike today’s black metal boxes. It is now powered by a class a/b 150-watt amp fed by a hybrid tube preamp and Echo Dot streaming Spotify Premium. Everything but the Echo is powered by a surge protector plugged into a TP-Link Smart PLug for voice on/off. Isolation foam covers the inner walls of the cabinet and the speakers rest on isolation mats to mitigate resonance in the old cabinet.

Design Goals:
I wanted to keep the look of yesteryear and add modern sound to it. I also didn’t want the speakers in the cabinet to be permanent. The cabinet is easily upgradable since nothing is permanently mounted. Some of the scars have been left on the old veneer to retain its story/character.

Driver Selection:
I used Paul Carmody’s Overnight Sensations designs for a solid sound and bang for buck ratio.

Enclosure Design:
The enclosure is per Mr. Carmody’s design.

Enclosure Assembly:
I committed antique radio restoration blasphemy and stripped the original finish off the old cabinet. I restained to appear as close to the original as I could. I finished it with 5 applications of tung oil – 0000 steel wool rubbings between coats.

Crossover Design:
Crossovers are per Mr. Carmody’s design.

I am happy with the way it turned out. My living room now has a beautiful radio for some easy listening.

About the Designer:
I am a communication strategy Marine Corps gunnery sergeant. I manage the flagship social media accounts for the Corps.

I spend my free time in my garage building things. My grandfather was a woodworker, and so is my father. I am not as into as they are, but I picked a few things up. I like woodworking, but I also used metal and electronics.

Retro Radio

Previous build:

Project Parts List:

Dayton Audio DNR-10 10 Ohm 10W Precision Audio Grade Resistor
10uF 100V Electrolytic Non-Polarized Crossover Capacitor
Dayton Audio DMPC-0.22 0.22uF 250V Polypropylene Capacitor
Dayton Audio DMPC-4.7 4.7uF 250V Polypropylene Capacitor
Banana Speaker Plug 2 Pair
Dayton Audio BPA-38G HD Binding Post Pair Gold
Dayton Audio DNR-1.5 1.5 Ohm 10W Precision Audio Grade Resistor
Jantzen Audio 0.15mH 20 AWG Air Core Inductor Crossover Coil
Jantzen Audio 0.90mH 18 AWG Air Core Inductor Crossover Coil
HiVi B4N 4″ Aluminum Round Frame Midbass
Dayton Audio ND20FA-6 3/4″ Soft Dome Neodymium Tweeter
Dayton Audio APA150 150W Power Amplifier
1lb bag Polyfill
Douk Audio Nobsound NS-10P Mini Vacuum Tube Preamp
Audio Hi-Fi Stereo Pre-amplifier Treble & Bass Control
Riverstone Audio – Tested/Matched Pair (2 Tubes) 7-Pin GE JAN 5654W Fully-Tested Vacuum Tubes – Upgrade for 6AK5 / 6J1 / 6J1P / EF95 Audio Amplifier Tube – GE 5654W tubes – Platinum Grade Pair
Echo Dot 2nd Gen
Kasa Smart Wi-Fi Plug w/Energy Monitoring by TP-Link – Control your Devices from Anywhere, No Hub Required, Works with Alexa and Google Assistant (HS110)
Studio Solutions High Density Studio Monitor Isolation Pads Pair For 5 Inch Monitors

1 comment

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  1. 1

    Nice job! I just picked myself up a radio similar to that, but it is missing the face plate (where it has the radio station numbers, tells you what band your on, etc)! Could you send me a photo of yours? I’d like to replace it so I can know what station I am tuning into!

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