Any repair information is intended for professional repair shops only.
Users of Freeplay equipment should not attempt any repair which involves any disassembly. Some of our older products were driven by powerful springs which, if allowed to unwind in an uncontrolled manner, would be dangerous and could cause injury. Never remove covers from such devices.
This product has been discontinued and is no longer supported. We do not carry out any repairs.
My Ranger no longer functions even when plugged into the mains/ wall outlet. Also, the radio was not holding a charge preceding this.
If the battery was faulty then the radio would run directly from the mains adaptor. The radio would also run while winding is performed. Try the following:
1. Check if the radio works while winding. If so then battery and /or DC socket and / or main adapter is faulty. Otherwise the radio is faulty
2. If winding charges the battery then faulty DC socket and /or adapter
The aerial keeps working loose and falls over.
A drop of superglue on the thread of the screw should resolve the problem.
The tuning and volume buttons seem to be 'slipping'. Something is sticking.
It sounds like a mechanical issue that probably will appear obvious if the radio is opened up. It should be easy to fix by anyone who can operate a screwdriver. Possibly the spline holding the volume knob onto the volume pot is worn - a bit of glue on the spline will sort that out. The tuning is clamped onto the tuning shaft with a spring that might have relaxed and just needs a squeeze with some pliers to get it right again.
The tuning knob can be turned but it doesn't actually move the little indicator on the display screen (not tuning anything).
The radio needs to be opened up and the tuning shaft spring tightened (if it's a geared tuning).
The charger plug will not go into radio so I cannot charge it.
The charger for the Ranger is such that the connector does not fit all the way inside the radio. It will still work. The charging indicator light on the left hand side of the winder should illuminate.
Can a car charger/ cigarette lighter adaptor be used to charge the Ranger?
Yes it can just as long as the plug is the same and the output is rated the same as the wall block (6v 100mAh). We do not sell these though.
I dropped my Ranger in the bath and it stopped immediately. Will it ever work again?
The Ranger is not waterproof, however, it may well work after drying.
When tuned in and left on a station it drifts off the station and when turned off and switched back on again it has lost its tune.
It could be that the battery pack is running really low. It would be expected that the volume would also decrease significantly. Plug in the AC adaptor and see if the problem still persists. If the adaptor doesn't make a difference then the radio is faulty.
I've fully charged my radio, however, when I switch it on to full volume it is playing very low.
Check the volume with the AC DC adaptor plugged in (and switched on). If the volume is now good then the batteries are faulty. (You can try and do a reconditioning charge by winding the crank for 10 minutes (1 minute at a time) and see if there is any difference). If the volume is still low then the radio is probably faulty.
Can you advise why my charger is not working?
There is a fuse inside that acts as a 'over temperature' fuse. If it "blows" then it cannot be repaired.
My Ranger radio starts and stops by itself for no reason.
It seems that the radio (volume control) is always switched on. There could be 2 reasons:
1. (Most likely) Most of our products have a low voltage cut-out. When the radio battery runs flat then the radio switches itself off (to prevent battery running totally flat). Running totally flat reduces battery life. Note that the volume control is still in the on position.
To reset the low voltage cut-out (and switch radio on again), the user switches the radio off, and after a few seconds switches it on again
The Ranger does not have a low voltage cut-out. So when the battery runs totally flat, it stops working because the battery voltage is too low for the radio to work.
The solar panel then puts energy into the battery, and after a while the battery charges up a little, enough for the radio to start working again.
This process repeats itself
2. Could also be faulty volume control (unlikely)
Can you advise me how I can obtain a suitable screwdriver to open the case - the screws seem to have a three-part slot.
The very early models had these triangular slots in the screw heads (Later models had normal phillips heads).This only happened with the very first Ranger model. It's a special triangular custom screwdriver. A flat screwdriver can also be used but it needs to be of a size that is identical so that it fits one face of the triangular screw.
My Ranger Radio's tuning button no longer 'tunes'. Can I fix it? Or where can I get it fixed?
You should be able to fix the problem by opening the casing and tightening the tuning shaft spring. The spring is circular and clamps the actual tuning knob on the inside. You need to check that the rest of the dial mechanism and pointer moves freely. If something else is jammed then it will give the same symptom.
Just recently the tuner has got stuck half way down. Can this be fixed?
It is probably the circular clamp inside the radio. This clamp sometimes can lose tension. It needs to be "bent" slightly closed. Once the unit is opened then it can be seen as a silver ring by the tuning knob on the inside of the case.
I've dropped my Ranger and now the sound that comes from the speaker is tinny and I have to play it at full volume in order for it to be audible. Is there anything I can do to fix it?
Unfortunately, this is not reparable.
Recently, the winding mechanism has become increasingly more noisy and difficult to wind.
It's most likely some fouling in the alternator assembly. Best option is to open it up and take a look for some obvious obstruction. You may need to remove the rotor cup from the alternator to check.
Can you confirm that 3.6v AAA 600mAh battery pack is correct for the Ranger as my faulty ones are 1300mAh and AA.
The very first Rangers used AA, however this was then changed to AAA (to decrease cost). The smaller pack has some foam on the side so as not to rattle in the battery holder. Either will work correctly.
The aerial is fine it just keeps falling out of its socket. How do I repair that?
If the end of the aerial looks "brass" in colour then the screw that holds it in place is probably missing. The screw head is normally visible on the rear of the radio. If the aerial is broken (IE part of it is still inside the radio) then replacement is the only option. The Ranger is no longer supported. Take the radio and the remains of the aerial to a radio components supplier (RS components is one) and to match by diameter and length of antenna.
My radio will no longer charge or play from the adapter. The charging indicator no longer illuminates.
The problem lies with either the DC socket connection or the charger. If you can test the charger on another product or test another charger on the radio, this will determine which one is fault.
The volume has suddenly started to drop so that the sound is barely audible. The same problem occurs when playing from the charger.
It seems like the volume control is faulty. Try the following: Rotate the volume control rapidly from fully anticlockwise to fully clockwise about 10 times. Check if this helps. If it does not, then it's not user repairable.
The battery doesn't hold a charge anymore; do I need to replace it?
Rechargeable batteries deteriorate over time, especially if drained nearly completely (to extend the life of your battery, limit how often that happens). However, in many cases they can be "conditioned" back to life. This can be done by administering several vigorous 30-second wind cycles followed by a full charge with the adapter. Alternatively this can be done by letting the product run from the battery until it stops, and then, with the product turned off, fully charging it using the wall adapter.
My Ranger came supplied with an adapter, however, I need a replacement.
You will require a 6v 100mA adapter with 1.3mm centre pin positive with a regulated output.
Where can I find the instruction manual?
Download Ranger manual.