1952 sonomatic

krinkov58

Active Member
I'm doing a 12v conversion on a 1952 Roadmaster and am wondering if anybody has experimented with the wiring i.e. kept the look stock but wired with maybe an hidden input for an iPod, maybe a pre-amp and obviously more speakers? I'm thinking a pair of speakers in the front doors and two in the back shelf behind the rear seat, perhaps?
Also...maybe using the speaker grill for a/c?
 

McGuireV10

Active Member
Editing my original response, because I realized you were talking about simply replacing the stock radio but keeping the look.

The only place I've seen that done is at the site linked below, and it's a vast amount of work. He basically uses the knobs and push buttons to control an XM radio, if I remember right, and a PC to drive a 2-line LCD screen that replaces the original AM face.

http://55buick.com/Carputer/carputer.htm

I've been tempted to go to extremes like that, but my stock radio works extremely well, so I may trade it to a friend who is hardcore about authenticity and just use the faceplate from his broken radio to fill the hole and "keep the look", then hide an amp and new speakers for an ipod type hookup. (And if I'm feeling ambitious maybe I'll re-use the broken radio knobs to power the amp and control volume, who knows.)

It's interesting that you mention using the old speaker grille as AC vents. That's what I'm planning to do. I want the interior to appear stock when I'm done but there's no way I'll drive a car without AC in Florida!

You know, I've also looked at products like Secret Audio and their "classic" head units, but I don't think they do a very good job of nailing the look, and their stereo equipment is somewhat sub-par and very expensive for what you get. Oh well.

If you decide to tackle this in some way, post up what you do, I'd be very interested. I'll probably start on mine later this coming summer.
 
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dio

Member
modern sterio

i placed what i did to my car audio in the nostalgic forum under original look. you might find it of interest for your '52 also...
Dio:shield:
 

krinkov58

Active Member
Think I know what I'm going to do...the radio chassis is 10x10x7", plenty of room for pretty much anything although I definitely want to keep the Sonomatic face and the 5 BUICK buttons, maybe chop the radio preset connecting gear and assign each one to a membrane switch that corresponds with an iPod remote...still mulling this one over.
By the way...how do the heater and light switches come off the back of the dash grill? The cigar lighter and vent cables were a breeze but I'm having problems here with these last two. :confused:
 

dio

Member
first.... you have to pull the knobs... if they pull... you will see a small hole in the knob ....it takes a hex or allen....remove the retainer, then pull the knob...afterwards you will see the shaft the knob was on....the vents have a nut around the shaft, i think the others r the same( i did this and put it all back together already)i think it takes a deep well socket,i used a very long skiny tip flathead screwdriver and pushed on the nut to work it off ( very slow). they should pull out from the back,...... also your grill piece has 6 to 8 7/16 nuts on the back. if you pull your grill first it helps... i will have to snap some shots of the 53 for ya:bgrin: ----------------------------------------------------------------------------
also i know a pearson local who will rebuild 6v tube type radios.
hope this helps
Dio:shield:
 

krinkov58

Active Member
Yeah the grill is loose now, the knobs came off with the allen wrench and the vent pulls look like they come off with that one nut in the back...it's just the lights and defroster knobs I'm perplexed about. Cigar lighter came off easy enough though.
Posting some Sonomatic pics...
 
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