As I previously mentioned, I bought a vintage stereo and one channel in the receiver was dead, which made having a stereo that couldn’t play stereo pretty worthless. But I had only spent $10 on the receiver, so what.
Well, I contacted my local vintage sound establishment, selling vinyl, CDs, 8-tracks, even reel-to-reel music, as well as old stereos and speakers. They have a repair tech on staff, which is pretty awesome. I explained my situation to him and what I had done so far. He said if my initial diagnostics were correct, repairs of that sort usually ran $75-$125. Hmmm. There’s a bench fee of $25 whether or not I choose to fix it. Hmmm.
So here I was in a position that could have me spending over 10x my purchase price to have a functional stereo receiver. Hmmm. I have a small problem with admitting defeat, especially if success is attainable. I like the stereo quite a bit and admittedly, I have the funds I could spend on it. But that’s exactly why there is a word called “spendthrift”. Blah blah blah, ROI, foolhardy, 10x expenses. But I like it, doesn’t that account for anything? And what of waste and our disposable society? Shouldn’t I make an effort to repair instead of replace?
To convince myself… actually, I was already convinced. To make myself feel better, I thought up an analogy to my situation. What if you found a kitten and took it to the vet. The vet charges you a bench fee to look at this kitten, then says it looks like your kitten has worms. If it does, you’ll need to spend about $100 in meds to get it back to health. What are you going to do, put the kitten down? Throw it away? It’s perfectly repairable and would provide years of happiness.
Yesterday, I took my kitten to the shop and today I got the diagnosis. It was just a blown fuse – a cheap fix. Totaling about $30, nearly all of which is covered by the bench fee. The doctor offered a warning, though. Fuses usually don’t blow without a reason, but being a 30-yr old device could play a part. Fuses guard electronics against larger damage. So a blown fuse may indicate a bigger problem, which may manifest in the coming months of regular use. If that’s the case, it will require further troubleshooting. Or, I can just keep changing out fuses until I get sick of doing that.
So, hooray for me. Now I begin the hunt for an aesthetically compatible CD player. I have a couple options, one of which I just saw yesterday. If it’s still there, I’ll snag it until I get a better one. The other, better-looking choice is much less common. I’ve seen it on Ebay for $100, but I can hold out for a cheaper opportunity if I have a workable system for the near-term.