Micdoctor's Mailbag

Part of participating in the e-community is that I get a lot of email, either pertaining to an auction item, parts, repairs or maybe just about anything at all. I am going to post the best of the mailbag here.

Sent: Wednesday, March 2, 2006
Subject: "A few questions about my "new 55SW"


I recently purchased a SHURE 55SW...the mic is in great shape(cosmetically).The only problem i see so far is that the cable was ripped out...I have included pics(7 of them)..

pic#1-is there supposed to be three wires or only two coming from this cable...

pic#2-there's only 2 sodering points on this three prong (unit)is that correct?

pic#3-you know what this is...

pic#4-this switch has two wires coming from it(is there supposed to be three coming from it?)

pic#5-bottom of mic..

pic#6-mic in great condition(may need a polish)

pic#7- I opened the mic and as you can see there's a piece of folded paper towel holding the cartrige(shock mount)together..it's a good thing I'm replacing it...question-is this part what picks up the sound?

i know this seems like alot of stuff to be asking you about but since SHURE recommends you I trust you have the right answers..your in my favorite sellers and contacts....Please let me know what you think of this item..and the questions....


Micdoctor reply:

Jeremy is keeping me busy with questions, both here and via eBay messages. I will do my best to provide answers to what i can.

Pic#1, there should be 3 wires in the cable. Plus and minus signal wires, and ground shield.

Pic#2, there are supposed to be three soldering points. Pin 2 is signal +, pin 3 is signal -, and pin 1 is ground.

Pic#3 is the male insert for an amphenol type connector.

Pic#4 shows the correct wiring arrangement for the switch. Only two wires go to it.

Pic#5, everything looks fine with female connector and threads.

Pic#6 shows that the mic is in good shape, with negligible scratching and pitting.

Pic#7 is an example of a kluge to hold the element in place when the shock mounts are rotted. I can't tell from the pic if the lower support piece is there, but am assuming it is. Looks like you will need a set of shock mounts from Micdoctor Mart.

All in all, it looks like you got a nice 55SW that needs a little refurbishment to be good as new.

ADDENDUM: Jeremy ultimately bought a 55SHII and sold this mic on eBay. I bid on it, but lost.

Sent: Monday, August 8, 2005
Subject: "Just received and installed a refurb kit"

Name = Jeff Ziesmann/ WNKR Radio

Art- Received the blue foam/shock mount kit today for our trusty Shure 55SW. This near mint microphone is still used by our station on remote broadcasts and as a second microphone as needed in our control rooms. For a while years ago, I used it as the main on-air mic at an AM station. It is complete with it's (original?) bright red cord with the amphenol connector. It has always worked perfectly.

As with most of these, we had a foam/shock mount rot problem that your parts were able to completely cure. 15 minutes with a screw driver, a brush to clear away to rotted foam dust, and reasonable care in handling the vintage insides was all that was required. She looks fabulous and- electrically- is as good as new and ready for the next forty years of service. Retirement to a showcase is out of the question for this workhorse of a product!

Glad to see somebody out there is as interested as we are in keeping worthy older items working and preserved.

Micdoctor reply:

Thanks for your purchase from the Micdoctor Mart, and for sharing your installation experience. It is great to see how many of these antiques are finding a second life in another century.

Sent: Monday, March 21, 2005

Need the right person to create a custom mic stand for the singer of my band. Please check out www.livingsyndication.com to see what we're about.

In a similar fashion to Jonathan Davis of Korn's mic stand, created by H.R. Giger (Aliens, etc.), I'd like to incorporate a custom mic stand into our live show. I'd like something in the vein of a spinal column slinking up to the mic from the floor. Hopefully you could utilize polished aluminum.

I look forword to hearing from you soon. Please don't hesitate to inquire on any level about what it is I'm interested in, I have many good ideas, just no one to make them reality. If you don't do this sort of work, I apologize for wasting your time, but if you could help point me in the right direction, I'd be greatly appreciative. Thanks again.


Micdoctor reply:

I could only dream of an opportunity to persue such a project. I had three pix of the Korn stand that I downloaded a year ago. The Giger stand was so .. perfect.

I will examine my talents and resources and see if it within me to tackle this project.

Sent: Monday, March 7, 2005
Subject: "How do I know what's new on the site?"

Hi Art - I've been enjoying your MicDoctor website for over a year now. I periodically check back to see if you've added something new, but when I do, I sometimes have trouble finding the new additions. For example, in looking today, I find that the site was updated on March 2nd, but in looking around I can't find where the "new" part is. I just wanted to express my confusion and give you something else to think about :-).

I've also joined the Yahoo Group and enjoy that too. Someday I'm hoping to send you my SW-55 for a refurb. Thanks for having a cool website and discussion group. All the Best, Gary

Micdoctor reply:

You are right, Micdoctor is like a meadering aimless web site. I meant it to be that way. If you look at another of my sites, Hipscope.com, you will see navigation, and a list of most recent additions. I am working on a redesign of micdoctor site, which might actually make some sense. It all just takes precious time.

Sent: Monday, August 23, 2004 3:41 PM
Subject: big al again

I just bought this sw on ebay for 50 bucks I want to try some crazy cool looking silk to go into this mic. I will let you know what parts or if i need you to fix er up.

Thought of the day!! My soundman told me that Jagermeister on a singers breath will destroy and eat up the foam in a mic. Of course I use silk not foam.

Best Wishes,

Big Al

Micdoctor reply:

How did I let that one slip by? Maybe because the guy spelled Shure as Sure? That's o.k., the UPS man brought me a 55s today that will be featured shortly.


Hey Art... Here's a photo of then end put on my 55SW. Have you seen these??

(Elvis DNA...toooo funny!!)

I just had my 55SW converted locally to a male XLR end, now any ol' XLR cable will work. I have found a few N/O stock conversion ends as well. This for sure is cheaper, and any cable will work, and it seems to be a easy fix to get an old mic up and running!! (if it's just a cable holding ya back!)

I did want to ask you, YOUR opinion on this, I know this changes the 'originality' (that the right word?) of the mic somewhat,...but is it THAT serious of a change. The mic is basically still the same, just upgrading the tyep of cable that can be used.
Rick Evans

Micdoctor reply:

chicken, egg, egg, chicken. you got what you needed.

i have seen some "conversions" that were well done, some just " * Rigs"

if you are buying it for use and fun, then conversion is fine.

it would adversely affect the collectible appreciation value. basically there is a window of prices that 55's sell in, unless you can get an elvis dna sample out of the silk.

i keep a couple in pristene original condition, and have a bunch that are to play with and sell. and i always want more.

i hope this answers your question.


Thanks for your prompt delivery. I received the 5 sets of windscreens and shock mounts. I reworked my first 55S last night and they were just what I needed! I appreciate the service you provide. It makes it just a little easier for the rest of us to keep these classic examples of Americana alive and well. Regards, Mark

Micdoctor reply:

Thanks for the positive feedback on the refurb kit. I will work on the 55C mounts next week.

I hope you don't mind but I gave your "shocks" a plug in my latest listing. If you have a problem in any way I will retract it. Go to 2576480174 and take a peek. I love the thing. I can only make one more at this point.

I have to talk to you about parts. I need a spring wire wrap for a 55S if you have any spares kicking around. I could also use a Shure logo - the little round one that goes on the front. You know - the "S" with the resistor in parallel.


Micdoctor reply:

Hey Steve, I will take free promo wherever I can get it. I am glad that you are satisfied with the SM55 replacement shock mounts. I have refined the technique so the next generation will be better than the first. Thanks!

Doctor! Doctor!

Sorry I always wanted to say that. I think it is sooo cool that you are fabbing shock mount replacements for the 55's. I took one apart and was going to spec a material for it and then have them die cut or cut them myself. Getting started was the hard part. As a stop-gap measure, I wrapped some foam tape around the top post. I have 2 '55's I bought with no connector/stand mount bases that need shock mounts and I have an older 55 (reddish-brown silk) that is nice...a little pitted. but needs mounts more than the other two.

So tell me...what other 55 stuff do you have for sale? I think I'd like to try a set of the foam screens. Do they fit in the 55S body? - How think is the foam? Does it work like a traditional wind screen? How much?...so many questions.

Steve Crater

PS. I'll attach a "Polaroid" of the older 55S.

Micdoctor reply:

Steve is quite a character and has purchased shock mounts and foam from the Micdoctor stash (soon to be offered in my store). Nice looking display of mics there, and a handsome child, to boot.

Sent: Monday, November 10, 2003 12:09 PM

Im looking for a Shure pre 1951 black label CR in mint condition. Do you have?
Regards - Christer

Micdoctor reply:

No , not this time.

i have bid on every element that has come up lately, and lost most, except for some shure dynamic cartridges.

i will keep my eye out and put your mail up in the micdoctor mailbag. maybe someone else has one (that they will part with is another ?)

Sent: Thursday, October 30, 2003 7:06 PM

!!!God vendiga to Spain and America
troski ca.lo (gallufo@hotmail.com)

Micdoctor reply:

hello my friend,
come and sign my new guest book.

are you enjoying your (Cheetah SM55) microphone?
i was sad, and had to make a new one to replace it..

!!!God vendiga to America and Spain

Submitted via eBay seller contact:

Sent: Monday, October 06, 2003 2:13 PM
Subject: Question for seller -- Item #2562194806

this is a nice mic, i bought 2 on ebay a few months ago at 10 bucks each new... wish you the best...jimsi

Question from: jimsi_us
Title of item: Shure Microphone 515SDX Dynamic Mint mic

Micdoctor reply:

hi, jimsi, thanks for the input. you got a great deal, and made me think what the heck was i doing selling it.

i am glad it closed with no buyer. it stays in the collection.

Name = Brian
email = coastratic@cros.net
Comments = Hi there. Thanks for the great info on your site. Looking foward to future updates and additions. Anyway, just came across a site that sells mic cables with 3-pin Amphenol type connectors for the some of the shure 55 mics. They have new and sometimes used too. Just thought I'd pass it along to you.


Brian =o)

Micdoctor reply:

Thanks for checking in. Yes I know of oaktree, i sent another gentleman there , he bought a pair of cables and wrote back how happy he was.

at 55 bucks a throw, they are a little out of my price range. i have located some of the holy grail connectors by buying other old shure mics that the cable was included. am currently making up a couple of new ones, some more shock mounts, and have 4 sm55s in various stages of refurb along with EV, American, Astatic.

It takes a lot of time to update the site, post and deal with ebay deals, stock my own store - and make new stuff. but i love to do it.

This note came in via the contact form.

Name = ove sandberg
email = ove.sandberg@chello.se

Comments = Hi ! Im wondering if you have any Astatic JT30 or 200 grill, or Shure Bullit grill for sale ? Im bulding myself a bullit mic in wood,and have need for a grill to complete the mic !

Best Regards Ove Sandberg Sweden Europe

My Homepage:http://www.bluezilla.nu/vintagemics/

Micdoctor reply:

i am sorry for the delay, the email got lost. i check email on 3 machines.. anyway, i don't have what you are asking for. i had just lost a bid on a bunch of mics that would have been perfect.

here is an astatic 200 currently up for bid

and lastly, i looked at your site. very nicely done.
i hope you dont mind if i put your email and link on the mailbag page

and email me a pic when you get your wood mic finished, please.

If anyone reading this has what he needs, please share!

installed the mounts and the cartridge is nice and firm. I can imagine that vibrations are damped also. Do you happen to know if the shock mounts dampen any resonance in the mic itself, by their physical character? I guess not since it's so heavy. Are they primarily to protect from dropping etc.? (from S.H.)

Micdoctor reply:
your install looks good.
yes, the shock mounts to provide isolation from low frequency noise. stuff we may not pay attention to, but will show up in feedback on stage or as hum in a recording. thanks for taking the plunge.
your mic will be featured in new mailbag feature i am putting up on micdoctor.com today. come visit later...

Hola Mr. I am repairing two mikes shure 55s. One of them is the shure 55w brotters, very ancient, I am doing the winding of the thread of the capsule, so(then,since) this coffee with a dash of milk(cut), he(she) can say all the honmios to me has the winding? THANK YOU I am the funny man of Spain, and am a watchmaker and this of the mikes gives me to him(you,them) well ok .... we prune to interchange opinions, also I do violins, permit him(her) to ask VD TO WHICH HE(SHE) DEVOTES HIMSELF(HERSELF) OF WORK OUT OF EBAY? If he(she)believes that it is an impertinecia mia it(he,she,I) does not answer(do notanswer) myself, up to(even) always. (from L in Spain)

Micdoctor reply:
I need a translator.
I put this through the babelfish translator, and the results were even more undecipherable. I have been communicating with this new pen-pal, even giving him a reference to an eBay'er that didn't want to ship to Spain. She didn't budge, and even mentioned it in her relisting.
I say BOYCOTT this auction!

okay...how's this for a first...

this is the one i repaired to show to my friends and test the reaction...since it's purple...came back with the idea of doing the next one in pink! i went to a store here for the right silk...nothing to find in a musicshop, but several choices in the fabrics store...i see on your site you chose some nice printed fabrics...

i do believe it takes you quite some hours to completely restore the mics...i had this one in excellent shape except for the fabric and the shockmounts and that took me quite some hours to get rebuild and cleaned and looking like it does now in the pics! (Tommielee in Netherlands)

Micdoctor reply:
Tommielee is another penpal, who came forward and asked if I would ship there. I hedged and said sure..then he was outbid by L in Spain. We have exchanged several emails, this is the first of his that I will post.
His mic is featured on his "soft-launched" site, www.niftyfifty.nl

The Mailbag will be updated frequently to share community questions and input. Thanks for stopping by.

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    Art Graham
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