Fisher 500c tube noob

Discussion in 'Fisher' started by Carbon13, Feb 4, 2019.

  1. Carbon13

    Carbon13 Member

    Messages:
    82
    Location:
    Toronto
    As I'm sure you all know, this hobby is a slippery slope. Started out with speakers, then vintage turntables, then onto some excellent vintage receivers and now I've finally made the jump into tubes!

    I picked up this Fisher 500C this past weekend, it was in great cosmetic condition and the guy demo'd it and it sounds terrific. He wasn't super technical, said he had some work done but was not exactly sure what.

    What I'm looking for is some advice on what needs to be done on this. Looking under the hood it looks to me like some of the caps were replaced. I did notice the Siemens selenium rectifier(?) which I've read about on here, so that probably needs to go. I don't know if the cans have been done and the tubes look like a royal sampler of brands. I want to also swap out those speaker terminals with some newer ones that will accept banana plugs (really hard to wire those when in the wood case).

    I'm not an electronics guy per se but I can use a soldering iron if I have clear instructions and am pointed in the right direction (I've rewired tonearms, soldered cross-overs etc). If it's out of my skillset then fine, I'll find a local tech to take it on but I'd like to at least go in armed with some knowledge on what it needs. Thanks!
     

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  2. chip18sw

    chip18sw Active Member

    Messages:
    420
    Location:
    Dayton NV
    Wow cool!! Best advice is take your time and don't ... blow it up! If it has already been recapped, then that's great! And yeah the Siemens selenium rectifier's should have been replaced when the other work was done??

    But there are folks here that can get you thru that! In the meantime, I'm pretty sure you will find this site quite interesting and useful. :)

    https://antiqueradio.org/Fisher400Receiver.htm
     
  3. Lo-Fidelity

    Lo-Fidelity AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,125
    Location:
    Houston
    I'd say you have a keeper on your hands. Beautiful face plate and all the brights are there. There has been a lot of work done. All those blue and black capacitors are new. There are other things I see that have been upgraded as well. Those speaker wire connectors are not original.

    Someone will be along soon enough who can give you a better read on what else to look at. There are a ton of 500 restoration threads you can read and compare back to your unit, but it appears a lot of the work is done already.
     
  4. Carbon13

    Carbon13 Member

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    82
    Location:
    Toronto
    That's a great site! Thanks! I'll try not to blow it (or myself) up :yikes:
     
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  5. Carbon13

    Carbon13 Member

    Messages:
    82
    Location:
    Toronto
    The initial sound of this amp is enough for me to say this is definitely a keeper. And it looks really sharp IMO, very classy. I just want to make sure that it's safe and in a state of repair that will provide a long life of lots of everyday use.
     
  6. thornev

    thornev Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    765
    Location:
    Mid Hudson Valley, NY
    Carbon - I was in your shoes 1 year ago - a noob who had only the desire to do something cool with a vintage stereo - a 500-C. Today I have restored/upgraded a 500-C and a KX-200 and I'm loving listening to them. My advice is to read, read, read, especially this Fisher forum. You can learn so much from what the "gurus" have posted. Arm yourself with information, make a plan, take your time and ask questions when you're unsure. Be ready to spend some money on tools and components. You're going to love the results with a Fisher. Thorne
     
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  7. rufleruf

    rufleruf Poor Impulse Control Subscriber

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    1,197
    Nice example - I like the big caps! I could be wrong (frequently am) but I think your tuning and speaker select knobs are the not the original style - look like 550T type knobs to me. Post a close up? I probably can help you with originals if they are indeed incorrect

    It appears the electrolytic cans are original - you may want to consider replacing - the sound improves a bit when you do.
     
  8. Carbon13

    Carbon13 Member

    Messages:
    82
    Location:
    Toronto
    Yes! Sharp eye! Those two knobs don't appear to be original. In addition, I figure the "blank" bright on the treble knob is for the tuner. I've ordered a couple brights with lines to replace it and the speaker selector but of course I need to get the original bakelite knobs for both tuner and selector. If you have those I would definitely be interested!!
     
  9. thornev

    thornev Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    765
    Location:
    Mid Hudson Valley, NY
    Those speaker and tuner selector knobs look original to me. They aren't supposed to be the same as the bi-ring knobs on the bottom row. Do they have an extended ridge where the brown pointer indicator is?
     
  10. Carbon13

    Carbon13 Member

    Messages:
    82
    Location:
    Toronto
    Yes, they aren't supposed to be bi-ring but still not original I don't think. They both have non-beveled brights, the selector bright is more silver, selector rib indicator is angled and I don't think that the tuner is supposed to have a raised rib indicator on it.
     
  11. larryderouin

    larryderouin Turn it UP, POP? PLLUUEEEZZZZZEE Subscriber

    Messages:
    22,205
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    The Selector and Tuning knobs are from a 1965 or Newer FISHER Hybrid Console, or Solid State Amp or Receiver. I did my standalone 800c with Solid State knobs about 6 years ago, and while it looked a little strange, it grew on me quite fast. I still like it with the newer knobs on it.
     

     

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  12. thornev

    thornev Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    765
    Location:
    Mid Hudson Valley, NY
    You're right about the tuner knob - no raised rib.
     
  13. Carbon13

    Carbon13 Member

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    82
    Location:
    Toronto
    I think I can live with the selector, albeit with a more brass looking bright. But the indicator rib on the tuner knob bugs me.
     
  14. Carbon13

    Carbon13 Member

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    82
    Location:
    Toronto
    Closeup
     

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  15. fred soop

    fred soop Super Member

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    The lower knob is from the SS era but what is the upper knob with the straight rib? I thought they all had tapered ribs.
     
  16. thornev

    thornev Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    765
    Location:
    Mid Hudson Valley, NY
    Both knobs have a squared-off cap. A 500-C original has rounded caps.
     

     

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  17. Carbon13

    Carbon13 Member

    Messages:
    82
    Location:
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    Ok, I'm starting to make a list of to dos:

    Cosmetics- cleaning, replace non-original knobs if possible

    Selenium rectifier

    Large cans

    New tubes (all?)

    What else? Top priority is to make it safe.
     
  18. thornev

    thornev Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    765
    Location:
    Mid Hudson Valley, NY
    Everything I did was to improve its longevity and improve its sound. I created several threads in this forum during my 500-C adventure. Search for threads created by "thornev" if you're interested. Thorne
     
  19. Rockyhill

    Rockyhill In the meantime, which is a groovy time Subscriber

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  20. Catmanboo

    Catmanboo AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    608
    Location:
    Atwater, ohio
    I wouldn't replace tubes unless they're sub-par, that'll get real pricey real quick. Best to Hit the fisher forums & see what to do to make it last longer & NOT EAT THE OUTPUT TUBES! Those are like gold, especially if oem Fisher- marked ones. Big can problems can make all kinds of bad shiite happen. As far as the bias rectifier, (Siemens unit on inside of chassis), I have 2 500c's. One had low bias voltage out. That got a new bridge rectifier in its place, the other one is still in spec, so I left it alone. These things aren't hard to work on, but get a schematic & service manual copy so you'll understand what's going on prior to digging in. I'd steer clear of the MPX adapter & tuner/I.F. stages,though. This is the place for all advice & info you'll ever want. Pay close attention to Larry Derouin, Dave Gillespie, Fred Soop, & a few others on here I can't think of right now. These guys live & breathe this stuff (hope you guys don't mind a plug for your accumulated cranial contents!) And welcome to the Fisher tube club!:bigok:
     

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