We Have A Couple of Predictas!

It had to be about 1990 when Rhonda suddenly got the urge to own a couple of Predicta Televisions.  Seeing that we were in the video business, it seemed appropriate.  Somewhere on Melrose Blvd. in Hollywood, she found a couple.  Neither one of them worked so they had to be sent to some guy in Burbank that specialized in fixing them.

TV Company of North Hollywood.
5622 Lankershim Blvd.
North Hollywood, CA 91601

(818) 769-3833

Wayne & Bill
9 am to Noon.
( I don't believe this place is around any longer)

It was Saturday February 13, 1999 and my back was out.  I decided it was time to get the Predicta up and running.  The first thing I did was take the back off of the set.  It was full of webs and dirt.  I knew I had my hands full.

I carefully started removing the tubes, one at a time and writing down what the guide on the inside said as opposed to the labels on the tubes.   As is typical for old televisions, there were several substitutions.

After a bit of surfing around the Internet, I found that one could buy a complete set of tubes for a very small amount of money.  Most of them were 2 or 3 dollars.  Why try to check them when I can replace them all!  Here is a list of tubes and some tube sources.

It only took a week or so and I had a complete set of tubes in my possession.  Here is a copy of my order confirmation.   My new tubes looked to have been old stock, never used, but old.  In any event, they were just what I wanted.  My next job was to clean out the old chassis.  Windex, paper towels and my scuba tank with a blow-off nozzle in hand, I moved the chassis out on the patio and gave it a good cleaning.

A week later, the tubes showed up.

A little study and I started plugging in all the new tubes.

My inside tube location label was a little damaged.
But I did find another piece inside..

Finally, it was time for the acid test.  I tried turning it on.  SMOKE!  Too bad, back to the Internet for a schematic.  After some searching I found this site:  http://www.electronix.com  .    $13.95 later and I had a schematic on order.  It was www.electronix.com  that did a great job getting me what I needed.

Now I wait for a few more days.

Finally everything had come in and the Predicta had been sitting in the living room as you see it above.  It is time to get the thing running.  It was time to get together the old team.  I needed help.

By now, July 1999, Richard Friedel had moved in across the street from me.   Richard was the Vice President of Engineering for FOX Television.  That would be a good place to start.  My livelong friend Koz (Greg Kozikowski) is also close by living only about 20 minutes away.  Koz is one of the only people I know that knows what every circuit does in a tube television chassis.  Since the three of us met in 1973, now several decades ago, we have fixed just about everything we have laid our hands on.  This would be my "dream team"  I think it is time to have a BBQ, get the guys over and find out what is wrong with the Predicta.

So the BBQ was set up.  I made the call and soon we were all in the living room pouring over the SAMs that I had found.  I had, for some reason, not ordered a new Horizontal Output 12DQ6A and had mis-ordered two 6BZ6 instead of the required 3BZ6.  (6 volt tubes were not going to work in a circuit designed for 3 volts.

We put the old tubes back in those spots and turned on the TV -- NOTHING!

Now we get out the Simpson!

We quickly found out that there was no B+.  The next check was sad.  Sad because we didn't have a replacement part for this.  The Fusistor was blown.


The Sams says that this is a special Philco part.  Where was I going to get the real thing?

Again I again hit the Internet.

Greg Cravener  <gregc@tubesandmore.com> suggested I contact David Weddington -- "The Predicta King"

That is the job for Tuesday, July 13, 1999.

Again I waited for information.  Finally I got word from David Weddington, by telephone, that the fusible link was not replaceable and that, in his words, "every set leaves here with one" the only replacement was a 5 ohm, 5 watt resistor.  I asked him if he would recommend that I also use a fuse and he said it would be a good idea.

A trip to the local electronics shop and a gift from Koz provided me with what I needed.

My Replace FUZOHM
(A 5 Ohm 5 Watt Resistor and 2 amp Fuse)

It took a few trys as the first fuse I tried was a 1/2 amp slo-blo.  The tubes lit up and I started hearing sound from the speaker.  Suddenly, nothing.  I checked the fuse and it was gone.  I dug around the shop for a while and found my assortment of fuses.  All I had was a bunch of fast acting fuses.  I tried a 2 amp and it worked again.  This time, after several seconds, remember you have to wait for those old TVs to warm up, I got a picture...

I finally got the TV running on Saturday afternoon about 2:00 on August 21, 1999.  Just in time for "Soul Train".

Well, that's the end of the story, for now anyway.  I am sure that I will have to fix this set again.  I now have all the contacts and so do you.  It is a blast to turn the Philco on with a DSS feed.  Who would have ever thought that it would be operating from a signal from space.  I have almost finalized the house wiring system and therefore I have a nice RF feed for my wonderful old TV.  Everyone else can now enjoy it.


Buying Philco Tubes


OnLine Tube Substitution Guide




Picture Tubes

Predicta Sites