Several vintage radios use soldered tags on the circuit board to physically set the security code, rather than the code memorised in a 'chip'. Others use a series of diodes. Known as hard-wired or 'hard-coded' models, in many cases these codes cannot be recovered but can be DIY reset, and allow the original radio to be retained and working when restoring a classic car.
Please be clear, for several of the listed models we DO NOT offer to supply the exact unlock code for your radio. We supply information that will enable you to physically reset the radio to a code we give you, if you're confident and reasonably handy with a soldering iron.
Our service is personal, not automated. We often need to provide additional assistance on these which can be time consuming, but our help comes at our normal price of £7.95. However, we do not offer any refund in the event that you are unable to unlock the radio for whatever reason; apologies but please be clear on this.
Thank you a lot for swift reply and, what's more important, the right answer. The radio works again. Jiri - Alpine CM5905, BMW E24 635Csi
Bit of a challenge with a wood burner and exacto knife, and my bumbling soldering skills, but got it done and the radio works perfectly. Thanks very much for your help. John - 1995 BMW 540i, Alpine CM5903L
Kevin, that worked like a champ! Thanks again! Mike Wagner - Blaupunkt Boston SQR49
Kevin, tried to fix the radio today... and it totally worked! This is awesome! Thanks so much! Jim Paris - Blaupunkt Malibu CR42
It worked! Thank you so much! Michael Montijo - Alpine CM5907 in 1987 BMW 325e
In many cases, the radio code is set according to which of several pairs of tags/pins are soldered (joined). The codes of these radios often cannot be decoded using software; any database of the codes that may have existed is long gone. In many cases these old radios remain of value if fitted to a classic car the owner wants to keep as 'standard'.
Our information allows you to reconfigure the tags to set a new code. This will require involvement from your side - at least to remove the cover of the radio to get a photo of the circuit board inside. In many cases you or someone will need to be able to use a soldering iron to resolder/reset the tags.
You will need to pull the radio from the dashboard to read the model number and in order to remove the lid of the casing to check the current tag configuration (or configuration of the diodes used in some models) and send us a picture - you may want to do this after we send some information to you, as we include pictures of the PCB to enable you to find the tag board.
Some of these radios can be fiddly to remove, requiring that you first remove one or more trim-plates or small plastic panels to reveal screws that need to be released, but others will more simply need extraction keys inserted into the visible holes/slots in the front facia.
PLEASE NOTE: If you are not comfortable opening up the unit and using a soldering iron, we strongly recommend that you take the unit to a car radio service agent to avoid damaging the circuit board.