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Bracing IKEA EXPEDIT or KALLAX cabinets for greater rigidity when used with a turntable

The inevitable problem, too many records. Turntable and amplifier on top Like many record collectors around the world, I have a number of IKEA cube cabinets from both their EXPEDIT (older) and KALLAX (newer) ranges. These are easy to make, cheap to buy and perfect for record storage. The system comes flat packed and uses bolts and dowels to hold the system together. If you follow the instructions  the system is strong and should not collapse. You can augment the joints with PVA wood glue for extra strength. My turntable sits on top of an EXPEDIT 2x4 cabinet, laid along the long side, with some felt feet to support it from the floor, and you can use KALLAX in the same way. It's been great but has two problems I wanted to address : 1) Because the system has no back panel, the records  can be pushed too far back. 2) While the structure is strong and fairly rigid, there was some lateral movement. With heavy equipment on top, I found that if I nudged or knocked either top side, this all
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a vintage Sonab 85S / Yamaha CP-500 turntable

The Sonab 85S turntable You'll see from this blog that I'm interested in vintage audio equipment , especially turntables and speakers. I keep an eye on ebay for potential bargains, and saw this turntable listed quite close to me and for a very good price, £60 buy it now, including 45 adapter, dust bug, DIN adapter, record clamp and a very nice Shure M95 cartridge. Condition listed as very good and with the original sonab headshell. I've been interested in this deck for sometime, as to my eyes , it's a particularly nice design, with the very simple tonearm and deep chassis. I was aware that the model , from the late 70's was a cooperation between Swedish manufacturer Sonab and Yamaha. I don't know how much was contributed by which firm, but the same deck, or one very similar is also to be found as the Yamaha CP-500, though typically in teak rather than black. There were two Sonab models , the 75 and 85, the former being a manual  deck, the latter an automatic, an

Restoring 1970's Audiomaster Image Two speakers

 I routinely search ebay for bargain HiFi gear, usually once great brands now rather forgotten. A recent search yielded a pair of scruffy looking speakers but I recognised the old name of Audiomaster. They had been one of the 50+ UK speaker manufacturers that existed during the 1970's into the 1980's along with the likes of Tangent, RAM , griffin etc. Audiomaster were one of the first brands awarded the LS3/5a licence - the right to make speakers to that BBC specification, no mean accolade. The speakers in question were in a poor state, the tweeter looked heavily corroded, the bass unit had tears in the rubber surround, there were no grilles and the cabinets were quite scratched, but the seller made this all very clear. I put in a very low bid,  and won them for £3.  Collected from the nearby Town and the seller was great, collected and set about trying to restore them. First off after a bit of research I think these are Audiomaster Image Two speakers. The complex crossover hav

Extending the life of an old IBM Thinkpad X.41 laptop

When travelling I use an IBM Thinkpad X.41 from 2005 ,the model is described  here The original spec was : Processor: Intel Pentium M LV 758 (1.50GHz, 90nm technology, 2MB L2 Cache, 400MHz FSB) Wireless: Intel PRO 2200BG or 2915ABG, Bluetooth optional OS: Windows XP Home/Pro Screen: 12.1″ TFT XGA (1024 x 768) RAM: 256MB or 512MB PC-4200 DDR-2 SDRAM (Upgradeable to 1536MB Max) Hard Drive: 1.8″ 20GB, 30GB, 40GB or 60GB @ 4200RPM Battery: 2.5 hr (4-cell) 5.7 hr (8-cell) (extended-life battery option adds 3 – 4 hours of life on top of quoted numbers for each respective battery) Ports: 2 USB 2.0 (1 IBM Powered USB 2.0), Infrared, expansion bus (for optional ThinkPad X4 Ultra Base Doc); external display; AC adapter; RJ-11 modem port;RJ-45 ethernet port; audio: headphone/line-out, external microphone. Slots: 1 PCMCIA card slot, 1 Secure Digital card slot Dimensions: 10.5″ x 8.3″ x 1.06″ (w x d x h) (with 8-cell battery it’s 10.5″ x 9.3″ x 1.06″) Weight: 2.7lb with 4-cell battery, 3.2lb with 8

Cheap ,easy and quiet LP record cleaning with "ultrasonic" and vacuum phases

Fixing a Karcher pressure cleaner that no longer dispenses detergent

I decided to clean some bikes during this unprecedented period of isolation, and got out a Karcher pressure cleaner we purchased some years ago for cleaning our decking. We have had it for 4 years, it works fine and creates a powerful spray which blasts the dirt off, and has a mode which dispenses detergent at a lower pressure first to fully soap the item, be it car or bike or garden furniture etc. However while the pressure hose worked fine I could not get any detergent to dispense. I checked the bottle which inverts onto a connector with a rubber seal. All appeared fine. I looked online via google and  remembered that the detergent only dispenses when the nozzle dial on the gun part is turned down to the 'Mix' setting. However I tried this and it made no difference. There are clear pipes which deliver the detergent from the bottle dispenser via a dial which sets the amount. I could see no movement through these pipes I decided to open the Karcher w

Repairing a Bosch microwave oven with a rusty door

I'm ashamed to say that recently I noticed rust developing at the base of the microwave interior glass door panel, and the paint flaking. Cooking items like potatoes releases a lot of moisture , which probably should be wiped away immediately to avoid this, but when you are preparing a meal and everything you forget (or I do at least). The Microwave is a Bosch and has a face plate so it fits into a recess in our fitted kitchen. I looked into replacing the door but Bosch do not supply this as a spare, not could I find a donor oven online. A whole new oven would be around £300, which seemed a lot for a problem that might be fixable.  I read online about Rusty Microwave ovens, and advice ranged from " It'll be fine " through to " immediately remove the oven and place in a lead lined container at the bottom of the sea " type of response. Filtering the informed advice from the hysterical took a while. In the USA you can purchase Microwave oven pain