Whoops

Re: Restoring and old Neve desk
« Reply #80 on: January 09, 2017, 07:12:27 PM »
What?????

You used Black XLR's instead of the vintage Chrome ones?

Bad Job API!

 :P


API

Re: Restoring and old Neve desk
« Reply #81 on: January 10, 2017, 11:09:26 AM »
Ha!  ;D

For some reason i could not find these old style Neutriks in silver with gold contacts.
The plan is/was also to change them all to new ones since they are now close to 60 years old!

And yes, this deak was built way before phantompower became standard.
It would be quite easy to build it in and maybe mount a switch on the scribble strip by the faders, but i dont want to ruin the looks with a non-standard switch there.
I will leave that to the new owner of the console.

ruffrecords

Re: Restoring and old Neve desk
« Reply #82 on: January 10, 2017, 12:09:09 PM »
And yes, this desk was built way before phantom power became standard.

When I was there in the 70s there never were any phantom power switches. A desk could be fitted with phantom power which would be wired directly to all mic input XLRs. Phantom power was supplied by a single module that contained a simple switched mode power supply that that doubled up the 24V dc supply. Nobody worried about non-phantom powered mics being connected to mic inputs with phantom power.

I remember going to the first session at the Who's Ramport Studios with their new Neve console which I designed. They miced up the drums and monitored the result but it was terribly distorted. We discovered the phantom power supply module had failed. So me and their tech removed it and hooked up a bench supply to the the connector so Roger Daltry's first solo session could go ahead.

Cheers

Ian

nielsk

Re: Restoring and old Neve desk
« Reply #83 on: January 12, 2017, 04:23:41 PM »
A little late to note, but they used a color code on the buss bar pins, as I recall red is to a buss resistor and white is straight to / from the buss

API

Re: Restoring and old Neve desk
« Reply #84 on: January 12, 2017, 04:49:09 PM »
A little late to note, but they used a color code on the buss bar pins, as I recall red is to a buss resistor and white is straight to / from the buss

I think its the other way around, at least in this desk.
All the inputs via a resistor is via a white terminal and the outputs to the busses are via a red one straight from the bus wire.

Btw,  your transformers are on their way! Will send tracking tomorrow.

API

Re: Restoring and old Neve desk
« Reply #85 on: January 13, 2017, 04:44:46 PM »
When I was there in the 70s there never were any phantom power switches. A desk could be fitted with phantom power which would be wired directly to all mic input XLRs. Phantom power was supplied by a single module that contained a simple switched mode power supply that that doubled up the 24V dc supply. Nobody worried about non-phantom powered mics being connected to mic inputs with phantom power.

I remember going to the first session at the Who's Ramport Studios with their new Neve console which I designed. They miced up the drums and monitored the result but it was terribly distorted. We discovered the phantom power supply module had failed. So me and their tech removed it and hooked up a bench supply to the the connector so Roger Daltry's first solo session could go ahead.

Cheers

Ian

Wow, history lesson right there!
Must have been fun times Ian.

Can i ask you a technical question Ian?
In my desk there are three solid copper square bars.
One is for B+ and the other two are both for B- and in my 1883 (routing module) schematic it mentions signal B- and power B-.
Why where they separated in the frame?
They are connected underneath the centersection where there is alos a connection to the frame.
I guess it have to do with noise figures but do you know?

API

Re: Restoring and old Neve desk
« Reply #86 on: January 16, 2017, 05:16:25 PM »
Ok, time for another update!

This time i am attaching the new scribble strips with the fader numbering to the frame.
These are attached to the ISEP rails withouth any screws at the top, instead they use a kind of easy but ingenious system to be secured to the frame.
It requiers a little work, but looks oh so nice.
Hard to explain in words so i will let the pictures do the talking!


Here is the original scribble strip.
As you can see it has a piece of aluminium attached to the back of the plastic with one bolt at each end sticking out.
So after the plastic strip came back from the engraver i cut a piece of aluminium that was a few mm smaller than the plastic all around.




Then i cut the holes and countersink them so my bolt is flat with the surface.




I then secure the bolt with a nut and recheck so the head is still flat with the surface.




I then add my glue to the head side of the aluminium piece and join it with my plastic strip and clamp it down.




Voila!
Here we have the new scribble strip for channels 1-8.





Now i just add the smalle metal rectangles, drop it into place, twist the rectangles so they rest on the underside of the ISEP rail and secure the bolts.
This makes for a very tight connection and looks great from the front as well.



Alls set and ready to move on to the next 8 channels!




It is of course important to select the plastic and aluminium thickness so you get the correct thickneess when laminated.
This have to correspond with how low the ISEP rails sits in the frame where the strip is going, you do want it lay flush with the faders and aluminium surrounds.
Also on the longer part above the groupfaders i used three screws instead so there would not be any lift in the middle.

API

Re: Restoring and old Neve desk
« Reply #87 on: February 06, 2017, 04:31:11 PM »
Its time for another update, have been doing alot of work and is now more or less done!
Will try to do one post per day this week so you can see what happned in the final stages of the restoration.

But first i wanted to share one more pic from the last post, this is shot underneath the engraved scribble strips so you can see how they are attched to the frame.




Now it was time to do some work on the patchbays.
They were in good condition for their age and when taking them out for visual inspection they all looked good but some cleaning was needed of course.




I started with removing any unused cabling, the aim was to get as many free patchpoints as possible for external equipment




For all the outboard i soldered in several long Mogami snakes into the patchbay.
The original "Line IN" patchpoints were sacrificed for more outboard space.




When all that was done and i had cleaned each and every one hole and connector (which took hours!) it was time to redo all the labeling for the patchbay.
So i tool out the original labels and got to work.
I used a similar font ( not until later i realized that Neve used Helvetica for all their labeling) which was close enough but printed it slightly fatter.






Here they are attached to the patchbay again.
I did reuse the original (and somewhat broken) plastic overlays to keep the original vintage look.




When that was done i started to do some small but important restoring like painting new lines in the fader caps.
Its small details like this that realy helps shaping the look of the desk in the end.






API

Re: Restoring and old Neve desk
« Reply #88 on: February 06, 2017, 04:56:31 PM »
One thing that had bugged me since i started this restoration was that there was a modification to the input of the bus summing 1272 amps.
For some reason the input cables for group 2 and 3 had been switched over and this was clearly not original.




The strange thing was that when sending to bus 2 or 3 the signal did show up on the correct group/bus.
Looking at the schematic the order of the buses on the output of the 1883 module group 1-4 should appear on connector 2 pins A-D.




I scratched my head a bit and had a look inside one of my 1883 modules and it turns out they were not wired according to the schematic!
They were  instead wired bus 1-3-2-4 to pin A-B-C-D on connector 2....
So i had another look at the outputs of the busbars (the red isolated turrets) where the feed for the 1272 group amps were taken and it looked like someone had been there as well with a soldering iron...
Following cables and comparing cable labels (I do not have the original wiringschemes for the desk i am afraid) i did realize that the busbars were in the same order as on the schematic i had.




Now i was not realy sure what was going on and did email Blake to see if he he maybe knew more....and of course he did!
So, what he told me was that in the old days of 4 channel Neve desks the routingmodules were indeed wired 1-4 since in the controlroom there were four speakers (for quad sound) where the back left speaker was group 1, front left group 2, front right group 3 and back right group 4.
This meant that if you were just using the front speakers for stereo you had group 2 and 3 as your stereo bus and this was how my desk was wired originally.
This was later changed around to 1 and 2 being the frontspeakers.
If you remember back to the start my 1883 routing modules were not original to this desk and of course were wired to the later standard and that is why everything was a bit f**ked up.

So instead of rewiring all the 1883 modules i did actually change the busbar wiring to the 1-3-2-4 scheme and redid the wiring at the back of the group 1272´s.




This took some time to figure out but i learnt alot along the way!

API

Re: Restoring and old Neve desk
« Reply #89 on: February 11, 2017, 06:36:19 AM »
The week came and went and there was no time for new posts, but now the weekend is here so back to "work"!

It was decided with the buyer of the desk that he wanted some additional inputs, he have a Studer 169 desk that was going to be used for effects returns that he wanted into the main 1-2 bus.
He also owns a Burl Mothership where he will sum stems from ProTools where he also wanted the output from that into the main bus.
So time to pull out the holesaw!

There was some unused space at the left backpanel (looking from behind) behind the patchaby underneath the main bus outputs.




I added four (yes, black!) female XLR´s and also changed out the 1-4 bus output ones for goldplated Neutriks.




The wiring on the backside was a bit tight so i decided to extend a few cables.




Here everything is soldered back in place




Of course i had to do a fancy nameplate for these extra inputs....




One end of this mod is in now in place and it turned out pretty nice!




Then at the other end these four inputs need to go to the busbars in the proper matter.
There was some space underneath the producers desk so i mounted a metalplate there and mounted four Marinair 31267 transformers and soldered all the cabling to those.




Here are the connections to the main busbars.
There were a few unused connections but i had to add two more which was no problem, you just need to adjust the gain of the bus amps to compensate for the additional busresistors.

I learn this mod from another Neve desk that i own which is a 12 channel extension to a larger 8048 desk.
I have the original schematics for these two desks and this is the way they were connected to together, so i copied this circuit with transformer loading and busresistor and it turned out perfectly in this desk as well.


« Last Edit: February 11, 2017, 06:46:00 AM by API »


API

Re: Restoring and old Neve desk
« Reply #90 on: February 11, 2017, 06:56:52 AM »
I just wanted to show what it looks like underneath the faders and how they are connected.
Here is also the TB switch which caused me alot of troubles in the past.
I had a massive crosstalk across the four busses (-30db on the other three buses when one of the was used).
All unused busses needs to be connected to earth when not used and since the switch is wired to there is a fixed tone across the busses when TB is activated there is also a chance that signal can go backwards from one bus to another if the buses are not earthed properly.
It took me a long time to figure out (thanks again Blake!) where this fault was and it was that the busfeed from the tonegenerator was not grounded properly becuase of a dirty switch.
Now the buses are dead silent again.




Here is also another pic of all the interstage transformers that are mounted in the desk and also the solo relay.
These were not marked up and since i do not have the original schematics for the desk it took me some time to figure out what they all did.
Now i know.





API

Re: Restoring and old Neve desk
« Reply #91 on: February 14, 2017, 05:13:48 PM »
Time to add some woodwork!

I had some of the original woodwork from the console so i could measure them and get all profiles layed out on paper.
The sideparts were missing so there i had to guess a bit on how the radius was cut, but i think i did pretty good.

The original wood was mahogny but since its close to impossible to get good mahogny these days i settled for teak.
Not the cheapest either but i realy like how it looks.
I settled for an oiled finish even though they were originally laquered, but it would be easy to get them laquered later on if th enxt owner would want that.

I started with the front armrest.
Here again i opted for all wood instead of a padded one, just my personal preference.

First we clamped down the piece in place.




Then we attached all the woodscrews in the countersunk holes in the front rails.




Looking good!




Then we did the exact same thing with the backpiece




And again the same with the top




The wooden sides are attached directly to the outer black panel that cover all screwholes etc in the inner sidepanels.




Fits like a glove!




At this point i think we are finally getting somewhere....!



ruffrecords

Re: Restoring and old Neve desk
« Reply #92 on: February 15, 2017, 03:48:53 AM »
Starting to look like a proper Neve again.

Cheers

Ian

API

Re: Restoring and old Neve desk
« Reply #93 on: February 15, 2017, 07:13:41 AM »
Ok, time for the VU meter panel build..

I wanted to have induvidual meters on every channel, not something that Neve did originally, but if i could do it i wanted to.
Originally there were only five meters, one for each group plus the FB/Echo/etc common meter and they were whitefaced Simpson meters at this point in Neve history.
The original whitefaced meters are close to impossible to find but the USA made yellow faced ones are somewhat more common, except for the smallest version that just barely fits over each channel slot.
But i searched Ebay and other places for close to three years (!) and finally got all the meters together.

Here you can see both the original white and yellow faced meters together.




Some of the meters i had found had some engraving into the plastic cover which i tried to remove but it did not look to good.




I contacted Simpson that is still around (but do not manufacture this VU meter anymore, but many others with the same casing) to see if i could buy new covers for the meters.
I could but they were very expensive, like $30-$40 each, so what to do?
My solution was to buy some very cheap DC meters on Ebay that used the same casing as the VU meters and just swap the clear covers, problem solved.




I started with sourcing many VU buffers from JLM audio and built them up.
I figured it was best to use buffers since i was adding so many meters to the desk, even though there were no buffers originally.




I added small soldereyelets and mounted them to the meters and did some tests and calibrations.




Then i started to prepare all the wiring for the power.




While doing this i had already left my lasercut VU panel to my painter to get it sprayed in the original RAF Blue/grey color that i had sourced from an old local paintguy that knew how to mix it.




I mounted the meters but it was then decided that we should add peakleds to each channel (not my choise) since the buffer cards had the circuitry for that anyway, so i had to get the handrill out and drilled out the panel for the led lenses.








Then i wired everything up






Here is the whole panel all wired up and ready to go into the console.




For the groups i used the original wiring (which is taken from the Monitor/Playback selector) and for the channels i took the signal post fader from each channel.
I had pondered if i should do a pre/post switch for the VU, but i figured it would be to much work and not sure where i should have put the switch to make it look good either so i scrapped the idea.







API

Re: Restoring and old Neve desk
« Reply #94 on: February 15, 2017, 07:17:59 AM »
So, now the frame is finally complete and ready!!!!!
And as Ian said above, its finally starting to look like a real Neve console again.
I am superhappy with the result and i think it looks spectacular, if i may say so myself.

Now time to move on and finish off all the 1272 and 1883 modules....













thomasdf

Re: Restoring and old Neve desk
« Reply #95 on: February 15, 2017, 08:10:53 AM »
I just peed myself...

Re: Restoring and old Neve desk
« Reply #96 on: February 15, 2017, 09:16:29 AM »
Hi

What a great work !!!
At some point you will need to change your pseudonym from API to NEVE...
 :)

Best
Zam

musika

Re: Restoring and old Neve desk
« Reply #97 on: February 15, 2017, 09:34:32 AM »
Really like the teak wood that you used...  it's an awesome rebuild !!!

Moby

Re: Restoring and old Neve desk
« Reply #98 on: February 15, 2017, 11:39:27 AM »
Really amazing! Bravo!

L´Andratté

Re: Restoring and old Neve desk
« Reply #99 on: February 15, 2017, 01:24:01 PM »
...and i think it looks spectacular, if i may say so myself.
Nothing but the truth...

I hate stating the obvious, but this is thread is the essence of  8)
Strictly amateur since 1973...