Looking to fill this hole in the dashboard ===DONE!!

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pinballlarry1

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Trying to keep the beast truck mostly original, I am not an audiophile. If you have a working original U63 am radio (or am/fm radio) I would be interested in your asking price shipped to zip 59901.
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pinballlarry1

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bought one from EBay for $20.50, looks ok, working condition unknown so we shall see......
 

Nasty-LSX

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Awesome, hope it works out.
 

pinballlarry1

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AM radio arrived today; inspection has begun.
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No obvious signs of electrical damage, no burned components, no cracked solder joints. Neutralized some mild corrosion of bottom of the circuit board, almost looks like water dripped in. Painted top and bottom covers. Illumination light bulb works. The only real problem so far was the tuning mechanism would not turn, slide or move due to dried up lubricant. The tuning knob can be turned, but the stuck mechanism is protected by a friction slip clutch under the worm gear. After many years of use, one day it just stops moving and needs cleaning and relubrication.
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I cleaned all the dry crud out and sparingly used teflon super lube on the gear and parts that move.
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Turns and slides easily now. Even the 5 channel selector push buttons can be set as designed. Used over 50 Qtips to clean out the insides.
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Since we received 3" of snow in my driveway today, installation in the truck will have to wait. If anyone has an extra black (power) and white/gray (front speaker) connector for the rear wires, I would be interested in buying them. I have only found blue, black and white sets on the internet for $36, I'm too cheap to spend that much for bench testing. Probably have to use alligator jumpers as a last resort.
 

mtbadbob

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I have an '84 GMC parts truck I can check tomorrow. Hell, it may still have the am radio! I wish I would have seen your post sooner, I live down by Helena and can get stuff shipped to you in a couple days.
 

kkgp81

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You can also put in a block off plate there. Someone in the for sale section was basically giving one away. I have one on my counter to install on a truck that was hacked so going to install it then put in a blue tooth hidden unit.

link to the one in the sale section
 

pinballlarry1

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The beast AM radio lives! Unable to post the short video with sound so you will have to add your own audio in your head.
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Works fine and sounds ok. I did not have to do any electrical repairs, it worked as is, just clean and lube. We shall see after I reinstall it in the dash board. Weather is in the 40's now and snow is 95% gone. Going to reinstall the truck batteries soon and fire it up.
 

pinballlarry1

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Tried to install the AM radio today, the black and white wire connectors are present and correct, the center dash speaker is present and looks ok, but someone hacked off the antenna cable about one foot below the windshield connector. A nice clean cut, makes no sense to me. Now I have to buy a new antenna cable, but they are cheap, just more delay!

UPDATE: The fun continues! Someone before me reversed the yellow wire (12 volt + when key in RUN) and the gray wire (instrument panel light 12 volt +) in the black connector. This gave me the illumination light inside the radio when the truck runs, but no radio until I turn on the lights. UGH. Just a simple swap of the wires in the black connector and now it works as designed, and the wires colors match the correct position. Just waiting for the antenna cable to arrive.
 
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pinballlarry1

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Everything ready to reinstall, just waiting on the antenna cable, should be delivered Friday. Just need to make the time!
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UPDATE: Spent 30 minutes installing the radio and bracket but found that plugging in the black and white connectors in back is a bit difficult for my fat hands. After 15 minutes of trying, I gave up with bloody hands and arms from all the sharp things behind the dash. Will try again tomorrow when I am calmer.
 
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pinballlarry1

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Well, I took some damage to the right hand and arm, probably 25 pokes and scraps, but the AM radio is installed, and it works.
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Works but doesn't sound very good over half volume. Even tried adjusting the antenna trimmer pot above the tuning shaft. And a new antenna wire and windshield snap connector. Looks like I will be replacing the dash speaker someday! Also rerouted the heater wires from the switch up and over to the firewall using the metal fingers under the dashboard. Cleaned and lube various things while they were exposed. I thought I was all done after 3 hours and ready to celebrate, then I noticed a puddle on the passenger's floor. Hell, I didn't lose that much blood I thought, turns out to be coolant oozing out from behind the heater box. Next project is now set for me, gathering parts and repair data, lots of great stuff on this site. Never ending fun!
 

Finkaire

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Knock on wood, think I’ll shut up. Haven’t done a heater core yet on the PU, at least its not some German POS haha! As for the radio, you were expecting? Sorry, they just sound terrible. Put a Retrosound on your Christmas list, you wont regret it, guanteed!
 

GTX63

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I try to reinstall the factory radio whenever possible, working or not. None of them are close to comparable in sound to a modern set up, but I like the look of factory OE. So, while I prefer listening to the engines over the tunes, those times I want some music, I throw a $20 Bluetooth tube on the dash and tap on Spotify. Voila!
 

pinballlarry1

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LAST UPDATE!! IT'S FINALLY DONE!! DO NOT LOOK IF YOU HATE DASH PAD DESTRUCTION WITH METAL CUTTERS!!
Since my dash pad was very bad and horribly cracked and crumbling anyway, I decided to just cut it away and replace the speaker without removing the dash pad.
This was not my first choice of repair methods, I realize it is lazy, low quality, but price and time won out for now.
Future plans in a couple of years will be to replace the entire dash pad and cleanup the instrument cluster and lighting, etc. I need to save up and get the correct stuff ordered.
Anyway, I butchered the area around the speaker to get it out, pretty easy job and it is now clear why the sound was horrible:

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Local Autozone had this generic and inexpensive ($14) speaker in stock. Includes brackets, screws, wire terminals:
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I just couldn't bring myself to buy a $60 OEM speaker yet, will get one later for dash reconditioning. Very happy with the quality of the Metra speaker and the 4" by 10" brackets that made it fit exactly like the original speaker:
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Butchered hole in dash pad, I cleaned up the edges and plan to put a piece of perforated metal over the speaker:
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It now sounds good enough for my local AM radio station! Still cannot post a video.
Side note, I did find the fiber optic cable that goes to the ash tray tangled up with the heater defrost cables, someone has been doing stuff behind the dashboard before me.
 
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