Sunday, January 30, 2011

New Stereo

Hi All, While waiting for my new brake cylinder I also ordered some other goodies, including a new stereo. Due to the vagaries of USPS and EmPost the brake cylinder still wasn't here so we're off the road still. So in order to cheer myself up I thought I'd fit the stereo. There was an original British Leyland twin knob one fitted but somebody had snapped the aerial and it was AM only so it's pointless. (Sorry about the focus, this is a crop from another photo. MUST remember to take photos before I start next project !) Once out it's no great surprise it didn’t work well. This is the new unit, specially designed for old cars. It’s a RetroSound Classic model. As it's designed for old cars the centre body is small, so no CD, however there is jack on front for iPod and also a media card reader. You can adjust and position the control knobs where ever you like, so a bit of assembly needed to get this far. Cropped off the DIN harness connections and soldered on a Lucas style bullet and then as I'll not be running permanent power (Battery Isolator fitted) I twined both powers together. Then a nice big eye for earth, a proper crimping tool was a recent purchase and works nicely. The antenna runs inside the wing, partly through a cut out from inside the bonnet and partly inside void accessed via a removable mud panel in the wheel well. The old speaker was a single coil 4 ohm speaker mounted directly to the trim in the passenger foot well. I've gone for the same location but I am using a dual coil 4+4 ohm speaker so will be louder. I've also done the job properly and mounted it with proper brackets so it's not just dangling on plastic trim. This is the new unit in the hole in the steel support structure behind the dash, all wired and connected. However the unit relies on the being bolted from the front to the dashboard. There is a replacement facia that comes supplied and took me a long time to figure out that I would have to glue this to the dash. Sadly the instruction manual just refers to "multiple options for custom mounting" and no clear instructions. In case you've goggled and ended up here, this is how I did it. Now on all in, tested and working, just to put it all back together ! Foot well lining with speaker, the grill is original. Media card reader, USB and jack input sockets all nicely mounted out of the way in the glove box. And all finished. Doesn’t look that different really, but guess that's the point. But it does work and sounds great, not sure for 120 kph but certainly enough for cruising around town. Any comments, questions or other abuse please leave a comment. Cheers, Richard B. Next . . . . . Hopefully the master cylinder to get back on the road.


  1. Mr Bailey, you have too much spare time. Surely your poor wife can find better ways to fill your time around the house ;0)

  2. Ha Ha Ha.

    Evening work while wife is watching "Lovies go to post office" or "Lovies learn to drive" what ever the latest BBC period drama is called.

    Haven't you got a floor to sand or something.

  3. I've got a Retro Sound for my '69 MGB but electrical wiring is something that confounds me.

    If someone points out "this goes here and that goes there" I can follow... but just to show me a wiring diagram and say "here, follow this" and I'm lost.

    Is it as simple as wiring the power wire from the radio to the power to the car (brown??) and then attaching the ground to something metal... and then twist the speaker wires together??

  4. Yeap Kevin that's pretty much it, it's not rocket science.

    Black = Earth so just get a good ground to the body.

    Red = Constant Power (for clock etc) so "need" to be permanent power.
    If you don't have a battery isolator then white will give permanent power.
    BUT I recommend a battery isolator so this means without complex tricks you have to reset the clock and station each time.

    Yellow = Main Power any power that is handy, DPO had used one of the hazard switches but I went into green.
    As I have isolator both the red and the yellow are joined and take power from the cars harness on a green.

    Richard B.

  5. I know I'm late to this post but I'm exactly in the same boat trying to install the same radio in my 76B. After much searching this is the best solution so far.

    Could you tell me what kind of glue you used and if the radio is supported somewhere other than the face plate. I'm thinking of gluing some Plexiglas on the inside of the dash for added support, what do you think?


  6. Hi Bill,

    I think I just used some two component epoxy glue (and I gave the bits a rough sanding to help the glue key).

    The radio is also supported at the back with a steel perforated strap. That is actually what holds most of the weight. The fascia is more for positioning that weight bearing.

    What I have done seems to work fine for my car.

    Hope this helps.

    Richard B.

    1. Great, and thanks for the info.

      I'm away for a few weeks but I'll takle it when I get back and let you know how it goes.

      Possibly add a few pictures if I can.


      From Canada by the way...