Thread Number: 45238
original 60s Amana RR
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Post# 662824   2/27/2013 at 15:02 (1,914 days old) by firedome (Binghamton NY & Lake Champlain VT)        

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are the original Amana RadarRange microwaves circa 1968-ish worth messing with? An aunt has one in family since new, it has the old circular twin dials instead of buttons, and in very nice shape. Should we grab it to replace a cheesy early 90s wood-grain Toshiba? Are parts even available?

Post# 662825 , Reply# 1   2/27/2013 at 15:08 (1,914 days old) by Maytagbear (N.E. Ohio)        
I don't know about parts, I do know performance, however

I think it's well worth grabbing. Someone I have known for a long time, but who is not always in my kitchen was amazed that I had my 1986 Radarange.


Post# 662835 , Reply# 2   2/27/2013 at 15:31 (1,914 days old) by norgeway (mocksville n c )        
100000000 times!

Better than anything new!!!

Post# 662860 , Reply# 3   2/27/2013 at 16:24 (1,914 days old) by PhilR (Quebec Canada)        

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Roger, I have a microwave oven like that. Just don't expect it to do everything well!

Early ones don't have the defrost feature and their grilles are hard to keep clean (there's no glass in the door).

And if you don't want to keep it, grab it! I'd buy it to you!



Post# 663068 , Reply# 4   2/28/2013 at 14:53 (1,913 days old) by firedome (Binghamton NY & Lake Champlain VT)        
thanks for that info Lawrence Hans & Phil!

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i think I will try to snag it, a bit more research shows it's a 1974 RR-4D, the first Amana model with Defrost. Internet research shows yours might be a RR-2 Phil, even older, and has the Blue "Light" bar while RR-4's was White. This one is very nice shape and has all the books with it. Will post pics if/when I get it.

Love those d/w's Phil, 'specially the Pank one!!! sweeeet!

Post# 663072 , Reply# 5   2/28/2013 at 15:04 (1,913 days old) by danemodsandy (The Bramford, Apt. 7-E)        

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The RR-4D is a very desirable vintage Radarange; you won't regret buying it if it's in good shape.

I have one, but it sadly needs work, and I'm not qualified to do it.

Post# 663085 , Reply# 6   2/28/2013 at 16:32 (1,913 days old) by firedome (Binghamton NY & Lake Champlain VT)        
Apparently RR-4D

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Magnetron is NLA, but, like older tube audio stuff, capacitors can often (ie always eventually) go bad, and apparently is known to happen on these, if that's the problem, Sandy, it's fairly easily rectified as it's just a matter of desoldering the old one(s) and soldering in another(s). Most Illinois caps I use on old amps run 1-2$ ea. max. A schematic is helpful, if available, and if one comes with this one I can copy it.

Post# 663095 , Reply# 7   2/28/2013 at 17:03 (1,913 days old) by kb0nes (Burnsville, MN)        
Many repairs are simple

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on these older microwaves as there weren't a lot of parts to fail. Pretty much a timer a big high voltage transformer a couple rectifier diodes a filter capacitor and the magnitron. Often the failure is just a fuse or a bad interlock switch.

Unlike electrolytic capacitors in old audio gear the oil filled high voltage capacitors in microwaves don't fail due to age. Even if exact parts aren't available I'm sure parts could be substituted, perhaps even a magnitron if you could find one with the same mounting flange. The rectifier is likely the most fragile part of these earlier ovens. If the oven has variable power then there is a Triac and its control circuitry in there too.

Sandy, its fair to be hesitant to poke around in a microwave that is under power. But there is nothing dangerous inside if you let it sit unplugged for a few minutes (short the terminals on top the capacitor with a screwdriver to be sure). Look around for a fuse that is blown etc., the failure may be obvious!

Post# 663120 , Reply# 8   2/28/2013 at 18:52 (1,913 days old) by danemodsandy (The Bramford, Apt. 7-E)        

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The major problem with mine is a badly delaminated inner door assembly; the plastic fasteners that hold it together have snapped.

So far as I can determine, in the entire history of NLA, this part is the most NLA ever.

Post# 663126 , Reply# 9   2/28/2013 at 19:29 (1,913 days old) by firedome (Binghamton NY & Lake Champlain VT)        

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sounds like time to look for a parts donor... a concept that has gotten me in major trouble with vintage cars - anyone need a nice rust free hood off a 1966 SAAB 96?

Post# 663145 , Reply# 10   2/28/2013 at 21:14 (1,913 days old) by hydralique (Los Angeles)        
firedome . . .

I don't need a hood off a '66 Saab 96, but I sure understand the logic behind buying a parts car because you just have to have one NLA assembly . . . I once bought an entire car just to get the headlights, LOL.



Post# 663180 , Reply# 11   3/1/2013 at 00:24 (1,913 days old) by tolivac (greenville nc)        
Oil film,paper caps

BEWARE-WARNING-even if the equipment is off and has sat for awhile-oil caps can store a charge.-Unlike electrolytics their internaL LEAKAGE CAUSES THEM TO EVENTUALLY BLEED OFF.OIL CAPS HAVE VERY LOW OR NO INTERNAL LEAKAGE-SO THEY CAN RETAIN A CHARGE.Deal with these in our transmitters.And-unused spare oil caps should have their terminals shorted with a peice of wire-oil caps can build up a charge even when out of circuit and not used.So take the advice in one of the posts-short the cap termnials before touching it and preferably keep the terminals shorted while handling the cap.Microwave oven caps can have 1200-2400V on them so that is enough to hurt or even kill you.And the magnetron tube is acually more likely to fail before the oil filled caps.Oil caps can last a very long time.And older ones can have PCB oil in them.If you spot a ballooned or swelled oil cap-its bad.And if that cap was recently run-it can rupture and spill hot oil on you.So let the cap cool before touching it.Oil filled caps are great-but they are dangerous unless handled properly.

Post# 663255 , Reply# 12   3/1/2013 at 10:41 (1,912 days old) by firedome (Binghamton NY & Lake Champlain VT)        
The PCBs in old oil caps

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are also quite carcinogenic. Even Electrolytics can discharge enough voltage to be dangerous if fairly recently recharged by powering up the appliance, ie not sitting for a long time, and those should also be discharged as detailed above.

I'm told these old RadarRanges are quite durable and reliable, far more so than new junk, and many are still in service out there. Weight is around 90 lbs!!!

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