Date: Fri, 16 Jan 1998 05:51:53 -0500
From: "John M. Jeakle"
Subject: DML: Re: Craig Tape Deck Flexible Circuit
I also have repaired the tape deck using a time consuming method but it will restore the flex. circuit so that the cassette door will work. Using an ohm meter and magnifying glass, locate the breaks. With a razor, scrape away the coating to bare copper. Tin the copper. Solder in place very fine wire or a piece of copper used for etching printed circuit boards. Coat with shellac. I removed my flex. circuit, checked and repaired all areas that were cracked. Any areas in the coating starting to fail but with good copper, just coat with shellac. Remember that shellac will not flex so do not coat the whole flex. circuit.
More Permanent but no-so-quick way:
You can also hardwire around the flex circuit with backplane wire and a fine soldering iron available from Radio Shack. Depending on the kind of wire you use the door may or may not open anymore. Given the condition of the average DMC tape deck, this is no great loss.
Les Huckins took the time to improve on this out and document it. Here are a couple of photos and a description of what he did. The secret was in the wire.
To effectively repair the display on the Craig radio, the flex cable must be replaced. This photo shows where the break occurs in the flex circuit.
To do this two things are required, number one is the ability to solder to printed circuit boards (advanced soldering). Second item is very flexible wire. Suggested wire is sub miniature, 18 strand #44 soft copper, made to flex continuously. The plastic insulation is also a special (limp) compound to aid in flexing. In removing the front bezel and top cover, note the 4 screws in the front are smaller than those on the top cover. Unplug the flex cable (just pull it out). The display rod is swaged in place on the left, gently pry it open enough to release the rod. The return spring must be released from the chassis tab (where it's cemented in place) in order not to stress it during removal from the display assembly. Note the amount of tension on the return spring and it's location at the display. Cut the flex cable off near where the crease (break) has occurred.
Solder about a 3" length of wire to each of the 16 connections on the back of the display.
Per the picture, place them in order and cement them to the vertical metal pieces on the back. I use Radio-TV service cement but it's not critical, Duco or a lot of others should work as well. Per the picture, general, not critical, routing of the wires. I use a film of cement on the wires where they exit the display to keep them in order until soldered to the radio. As each wire is readied to be soldered in place it's pulled loose from the cement film. How long should the leads be? It's not critical, the wire is very forgiving, however, after doing several, this is my choice.
With the display now back in place, rod back but not swaged yet, spring connected but not cemented yet, the display is slightly forward of it's normal position. Measure out each wire in turn, soldering as you go, so that the wire just reaches it's companion spot on the top of the radio, not tight, just sort of a lazy fit. That's pretty much it. Observe the very small amount of flexing before you put it all back together.
Connect it to a power source, make sure it lights as it should. Tighten the swage, put a drop of cement on the return spring at the tab. This should be the final solution to this particular problem. As to the wire, it comes in minimum 100' rolls, if you want to try this I'll sell you enough to do one. If you want to take up this repair as a business, I'll give you the name of the vendor and the number of the wire. If you would like me to make the repair for you e-mail me: jhuckins(AT)cybersurfers.net
Les Huckins May 2001
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