Refurbishing a 1940's Air Ministry Headset

1 minute read

March 2010

I specifically bought this headset to go with my AD8882B. I admit that this is not the sort of headset that would have been used in an airborne situation, but the high impedance of three thousand ohms makes them ideal and they are the same vintage. The chamois covered muffs had seen better days, one had been patched and the rubber showing it’s age. Although intact, the cable was untidy, especially at the ear-pieces where it had been pulled out and the binding around the Y-split was badly frayed.
The first thing that I did was to scrape all the perished rubber off the steel head-bands and re-cover them with heat-shrink-sleeving. The rubber block looked ‘past it’ so I decided that it would look better if I covered it in leather. A piece of chamois leather intended for drying cars was cut up and my wife made an excellent job of recovering the muffs. The cable was re-tethered inside the earpieces and small rubber caps were fitted over the ends of the newly covered head-bands.

The same wax-impregnated cord that I used for binding the wiring in my A.D.8882B was used to re-bind the Y-Split in the old cloth-rubber insulated cable with satisfactory results. Despite their rudimentary style, these 70-year-old headphones are very comfortable to wear. The sound quality is excellent too.