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Thread: Radio Knob Design For A 67 BJ8

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    Jedi Warrior pkmh's Avatar
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    Radio Knob Design For A 67 BJ8

    Hi All!

    Looking at my dash, the only real issue left for me to resolve aesthetically and as a 'purist-want-to-be' in life has to do with knowing what was the correct radio knob design that came with the 1967 BJ8. Half my knobs were missing when I purchased the car back in 2013 and the 67 Healey I had before that had different style knobs so I was left with not knowing what the true story was.

    I wish to also note here that there are a other reasons why I have created this particular thread, and for whatever it's worth...

    A. To reiterate, my question to all as to what was the correct design profile of the radio knobs used for the 67 Healey. (See photos of what I've received, attached);
    B. To express my appreciation to a fellow Healey owner (Thank you, John from Upstate, NY), a person I met during the summer at a Healey show, who was generous enough to mail me this particular set of radio knobs, and;
    C. To demonstrate one possibility of how it is possible to repair/restore plastic knobs like these (a technique similar to what I have already applied to in restoring my steering wheel). Please see remaining photos and sketches.

    I believe this type of repair is one of the tiniest I've ever encountered, but still took time to do it, together with preparing my sketches for record (which I drew up first, then implemented...Something I virtually never do). Finally and hopefully, these knobs are the correct type. But regardless, better than not having so no loss to me!

    Left Photo - Radio Knobs, as received.
    2nd From Left - Radio Knob (tone), Shown as Finished Restoration.
    3rd From Left - Metal Dow Placement.
    4th From Left - *Inner Scaffold Fitment (coin).
    5th From Left - Arial View of Finished Restoration (Shown in Foreground).
    6th Photo - Record Sketches With Notes.

    * - For outer Scaffold, I made a sample mockup of typical section of exterior 'reeding' of knob and placed in position prior to pressing epoxy into void (like pouring concrete in a constructed mold).

    Anyway, thanks in advance and I hope all can enjoy the slide show!

    Paul
    67 BJ8
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by pkmh; 12-29-2019 at 11:21 PM. Reason: revised sketch photo

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    Yoda
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    Re: Radio Knob Design For A 67 BJ8

    Here's the radio that was in my BJ8. I've heard some/most radios were installed by dealers, and most were made by Motorola.

    radio.JPG

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    Jedi Warrior pkmh's Avatar
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    Re: Radio Knob Design For A 67 BJ8

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob_Spidell View Post
    Here's the radio that was in my BJ8. I've heard some/most radios were installed by dealers, and most were made by Motorola.

    radio.JPG
    Thanks Bob, I also have the same radio and from what I see of your knobs, they look identical to what I now have. Feeling relieved!

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    Re: Radio Knob Design For A 67 BJ8

    You have the correct knobs, and big props for your patience and skill in restoring them so nicely.
    Reid Trummel
    Editor, HEALEY MARQUE magazine

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    Obi Wan RAC68's Avatar
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    Re: Radio Knob Design For A 67 BJ8

    Hi All,

    When picking up my new BJ8, with a radio installed, it had the same plastic knobs as presented in your left most picture. The radio was a quite plain Motorola transistor radio with no push-buttons, and its sound and reception was OK with the top raised. About a year or so later, I traded a friend for a BMC radio and it came with knobs having silver metal outside and black painted concaved centers. I was told they were off of a Chrysler 300 but neve verified the fact and they did fit nicely in providing better design consistence with the rest of the dash.

    Over the years, I have seen many different radios installed in Big Healeys and just as many different knobs designs fitted. For the most part they were made of black plastic. However, as for my original plastic knobs, I was never sure and saw no consistency to their design and the that of the rest of the extensively redesigned interior/dash of my BJ8, and I kept the Chrysler knobs on the BMC radio until the point of converting to a Negative ground.

    I applaud efforts of maintaining originality but must admit that when receiving my New Healey, I was quite disappointed with the presentation of its original Motorola radio. When installing my Acura Bose sound system, I did my best to make sure it fit with the design of the interior.

    Just my thoughts,
    Ray(64BJ8P1)

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    Jedi Knight Healey Nut's Avatar
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    Re: Radio Knob Design For A 67 BJ8

    Two BJ8s here 64/67 and both have BMC radios .
    Attached Images Attached Images
    "If it aint broke ....dont fix it "
    " Thats not an oil leak ..........its a special automatic British rustproofing system "
    Best Healey in show ABCD Ottawa 2013
    Best Healey in Show Boot n Bonnett Kingston 2013

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    Re: Radio Knob Design For A 67 BJ8

    Paul--

    Nice work and beyond the nice repair I admire the style of your drawing.
    I have always envied those who can make two-dimensional images seem three-dimensional.

    Best--Michael Oritt
    1954 Austin-Healey 100 Le Mans
    1959 Elva MK IV Sports Racer
    1961 Ginetta G4

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    Re: Radio Knob Design For A 67 BJ8

    Very nice work.
    About TV Shows-
    "...you really can't restore a car in 10 days. I don't want to watch a race where people have to restore it in a week. It's not going to drive, and those cars never work. In real life, it takes years to get it right. " Jay Leno.

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    Re: Radio Knob Design For A 67 BJ8

    Quote Originally Posted by Healey Nut View Post
    Two BJ8s here 64/67 and both have BMC radios .
    No offense, but those knobs are, um, shall we say, not very attractive (IMO, of course). The radios Paul and I have have 3 functions: tuning, volume and, I think, tone (one of the larger, inside knobs is a 'dummy,' and I don't see any provision for the latter with those knobs (maybe they're aftermarket?).

    What appears to be the main difference is the bezel/surround; Paul's and mine have a plain black piece of metal with a sort of black krinkle finish, while that one looks to be chrome; like I said I think the radios may have been dealer install, with different dealers choosing different models.

    I turn my radio on maybe once a year, just to see if it's still working.

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    Jedi Warrior pkmh's Avatar
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    Re: Radio Knob Design For A 67 BJ8

    Thanks Reid, Mike and Vette for your encouraging critique and thanks to everyone else for their constructive criticism. Very much appreciated!!


    I am glad that this was one exercise I was able to overcome, leading to a positive enough outcome. Satisfactory results doesn't always happen for me the way I want them to turn out, but having that little knowledge and some skill (from past experiences coupled with some luck) makes it rewarding and ready to go forward onto that next challenge in life.

    Thanks again!

    Paul

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    Re: Radio Knob Design For A 67 BJ8

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob_Spidell View Post
    No offense, but those knobs are, um, shall we say, not very attractive (IMO, of course). The radios Paul and I have have 3 functions: tuning, volume and, I think, tone (one of the larger, inside knobs is a 'dummy,' and I don't see any provision for the latter with those knobs (maybe they're aftermarket?).

    What appears to be the main difference is the bezel/surround; Paul's and mine have a plain black piece of metal with a sort of black krinkle finish, while that one looks to be chrome; like I said I think the radios may have been dealer install, with different dealers choosing different models.

    I turn my radio on maybe once a year, just to see if it's still working.
    Bob,

    As a follow up to your comment about the radio knobs not being very attractive...I just installed them and, uhm...your right! They are not very attractive (but if only you knew what I had before).

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    Re: Radio Knob Design For A 67 BJ8

    I took a photo of this radio in a Healey. In my opinion, one of the nicest BMC radios I've seen. Beautiful knobs and faceplate. Was this radio installed in a Healey at the factory or is it from another BMC car, don't know.
    AH radio.jpg
    1964 BJ8 phase II

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    Re: Radio Knob Design For A 67 BJ8

    Yeah, that's a nice one. Must be the 'upscale' version. Note the frequencies increase from right to left; guess that's how the Brits like them.

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    Re: Radio Knob Design For A 67 BJ8

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob_Spidell View Post
    .... Note the frequencies increase from right to left; guess that's how the Brits like them.
    Of course they do; they drive on the other side of the road.
    John, BN4

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    Jedi Warrior pkmh's Avatar
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    Re: Radio Knob Design For A 67 BJ8

    Quote Originally Posted by AUSMHLY View Post
    I took a photo of this radio in a Healey. In my opinion, one of the nicest BMC radios I've seen. Beautiful knobs and faceplate. Was this radio installed in a Healey at the factory or is it from another BMC car, don't know.
    AH radio.jpg

    That is a nice radio!

    My first picture below is a British Leyland FM/AM Radio I had in my former Healey...
    P1010007.jpg
    Now I have the one that seem most typical. BTW, Notwithstanding some further cleaning required, I went ahead and installed the restored knobs and that is the only way they go on, so I hope I have it right.

    Restored Healey Radio Knobs Installed.jpg

    Paul

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    Re: Radio Knob Design For A 67 BJ8

    Paul,

    Odd that your first Healey would have a "British Leyland"-labeled radio since BL wasn't founded until after big Healey production ceased (last regular production BJ8 made December 21, 1967; BL founded January 17, 1968). Well, maybe the car was slow getting shipped to the USA, and BL was lightning-fast getting some radios with their new name on them made and shipped to the USA distributor ... theoretically possible I suppose, but seems really unlikely that a BL radio would be original equipment in a big Healey, even if dealer-installed in the spring of 1968. Could they really have had "British Leyland" radios made and shipped to distributors so quickly? Or maybe that simply isn't the original radio in that car. You said it was your first Healey, not that you were the original owner.

    Regarding the "correct" orientation of the larger, rear knobs, I am going to post a reference that I believe is wrong! This brochure shows them backwards to just about every one of them that I have seen in the wild (on many, many cars, at many club events over a period of decades). They fit on either way (I have a couple of those radios, and they do on mine), and I maintain that the drawings in this brochure are simply an erroneous "artist's rendition," just as there are mistakes/non-original features in the artwork in the sales brochures. However, if you want to take this as gospel since it is an orignal publication, I guess no one could blame you:

    Radio Brochure 1.jpg
    Radio Brochure 2.jpg
    Reid Trummel
    Editor, HEALEY MARQUE magazine

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    Jedi Warrior pkmh's Avatar
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    Re: Radio Knob Design For A 67 BJ8

    Hi Reid,


    Thank you for providing the "incorrect" way of installing the tone knobs. Yes, I agree that they would look better if flipped, or shall I say (hopefully appropriate), look more "voluminous" or stacked. Is it possible that the knobs I do have are, in fact, designed for a different radio? I say that because for those tone knobs I have to work, they would have to have what I refer to as plastic slip-on extensions (See quick sketch).


    I can create the new extensions easy enough. Not sure if or how the volume/tuner knobs are going to end up seated. In other words, I need to determine if I have enough length on the radio's spindles(?) to make all this work. I will investigate.

    As for the British Leyland radio on my former Healey, That car was manufactured sometime in January, 1967. My current Healey was manufactured in late October, 1967 and actually sold in 1968 as a leftover 67 (not as a new 68 - too bad!). Funny, I can see the Leyland radio on my second Healey for sure, not the first. I was not the original owner of my first Healey nor the original owner of the second. I can only guess the Leyland was installed sometime after the January 1968 date on the first Healey. But thanks for that info! Good to know!

    Paul
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