Steampunk Headphones Project Page
Under construction!
There is a trend of converting old vintage headphones for use with modern devices such as MP3 players and portable CD players and transistor radios. It would be a shame to sacrifice a good functional pair of vintage headphones for this, but there are plenty of nonfunctional old headphones around, so I will put together a couple of pairs of these and post the project here.
Basically what you do is to take a pair of vintage headphones (preferrably nonfunctional ones) and remove all the inside parts including coils, magnets and diaphragms.

Above is a pair of common, consumer grade late 1920's radio headphones, with no significant collector's value and not in working condition. It would be a shame to sacrifice a good working pair of vintage headphones for a mod.

Then you find some elements that will fit inside the housings.

This is a pair of modern stereo headphones, minus the little foam cushions. They were in good working condition and sound nice on an MP3 player. Inexpensive but work well, so good canditates for the donor parts.


The earphone units just popped right off of the headband.
 


Next, remove the earcaps from the vintage headphones to expose the parts in side. If the earcaps are stuck, heat them up with a hair dryer for a couple of minutes.
 


Unscrew the retaining nuts and just pull out all the guts. Send the inside parts to me if the headphones were in working condition and I will pay the postage.


Here are the empty housings with all the parts removed.


Figure out how to secure the new phone units inside the vintage housings. Use some foam padding to take up the empty space and keep the phone units from moving around.  I also put a little piece of the foam cushion in front of the earphone unit so you don't see the uniot through the hole in the ear cap.
 


You will have to either cut the wire, and then resolder it after threading it through the hole in the vintage housing, or if you can get to the place on the new phone unit where the wire is soldered on, you can just unsolder the wire, then thread it through the hole in the housing and resolder it to the unit.


I used some heat shrink tubing to insulate the soldered joint.
 


Tie a knot in the cord as a strain relief.
 


Position the new unit in the houising and screw on the earcap. I put a little piece of foam cushion on the phone unit before screwing on the cap.
 


Here is what the finished units look like.
 


Here is the completed set of headphones, ready to plug in and use.

Here are some links where these projects have been posted:
 

The Steampunk Workshop Page

Email to scott@oldheadphones.com

These are classic radio servicing books all in very good condition. Shipping extra, but at actual cost.

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