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Roland JD-800 sticky keys service / repair
Old 1st January 2010
  #1
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Roland JD-800 sticky keys service / repair

Roland JD-800 sticky keys service / repair

Heres a very quick guide to sorting out the infamous Roland JD800 'Sticky key problem'
As you are only allowed 10 images, im sorry if it is not too clear.



Remove the 8 screws located under the ‘ROLAND’ logo on the back of the JD800. then the 2 screws on the underside of the JD and the 3 screws at either ends (top image). The top facia of the synth will open up like a bonnet revealing the circuitry and keyboard (a strap on the left hand side prevents the lid/facia from falling back)




The keyboard can now be removed. Firstly, gently prize out the ribbon connector that connects the keyboard to the motherboard (top image). Using a side-to-side motion (don’t force it!), then unscrew the 6 gold screws running along the top of the keyboard chassis (bottom image), and the 5 screws underneath the synth (holding the keyboard steady)




The whole keyboard assembly should slide forward easily now. Before taking apart the keyboard, its best to lay it face down on a towel or soft cloth (keep a dish handy for small parts)

On the back of the metal keyboard chassis, there are 5 black strips securing each octave of the keys. Remove 1 strip and the one octave of keys at a time. A knife or flat screwdriver can be inserted under the strip to gently prise it off. (Bottom image)




After the strip has been removed, each key can be taken out by gently pushing it out. (After each key has been removed, take out each corresponding metal spring clip that is underneath the key, and put it somewhere safe. Put all the keys in order, upside down on a piece of board. (bottom image)

At this point, you should be able to see the ‘Red glue’ that is causing the sticky key problem. I found in my case, all the problems seem to emanate from the glue leaking from the ‘black keys’. The glue had dripped down onto the damping strip & between the keys themselves. (see below)




The ‘Red glue’ can be cleaned easily from between the keys. The glue that has fouled the damping strip on the other hand (top image), has to be gently scraped off with a scalpel. I found some of the glue had been absorbed by the damping strip. I was able to cut it out, and then ‘fluff up’ the resulting hole. If the damping strip were too heavily saturated with glue, it would be a better idea to replace it (if Roland can still supply this).

Once all the glue has been cleaned away, it’s worth cleaning the contacts. Just remove the 5 grey rubber contact suspension mats and clean the whole strip with a light tissue doused in cleaning fluid. (Be careful removing these mats, as the small rubber securing cones can tear easily!)

The keyboard section can now be re-assembled and tested.

I found that putting a thin layer of hot glue over the ‘red glue’ in the black keys could prevent further leakage in the future. But not too much as to make the key too heavy.

Hope this is of use to anybody experiencing similar problems.
_______________________________________________________

Update:

Another problem regarding the JD800's keybed is dead keys.

Sometimes removing the 5 grey rubber contact strips and cleaning the contact rail can bring a dead key back to life, but from experience, I found replacing the strips completely was a good and relitavly cheap cure. Be aware that the top octave rubber strip is longer than the lower 4 octaves. I found as a quick test, that taking off a suspect strip (marking the dead key first) and then replacing it tempararily with one from another octave would show whether it was the strip itself of the contact rail that needed attention.

I sourced a new set of strips from our good friend Senso at vintage_planet


Text / images copyright Flat Earth 08.04.2007.
Old 23rd March 2011
  #2
Gear Maniac
 

cleaning JD800 key mechanism from epoxy glue

I have a JD800 here which is generally in a good shape, except for the notorious epoxy issue, which when all over the keys sticking them together and going over the metal chassis under the keyboard as well .... The synth receives and plays midi so I guess it will work ok once I refurbish the keyboard.

Ideally, I'd like to drown the entire mechanism in some kind of fluid which will dissolve the glue and wash it out, but still keep the plastic and metal parts (keys and circuit board) intact. Is that possible ? any other suggestion of how to refurbish and recover the keyboard from this disaster ?

Thanks!
Old 24th March 2011
  #3
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I did a post on this subject ages back here

In regards to the removal of existing red glue, after cleaning away the leaked mess, I just applied a thin layer of hot glue around the edge of the weight to stop any more leaking. Its a bit of a labourious job doing all the keys, but to this day my JD's keybed is a good as new. No glue issues at all. thumbsup
Old 24th March 2011
  #4
Gear Maniac
 

Oh yes, saw that post on the Don Solaris thread already. What do you think is the best way of dissolving that glue ? The keyboard is severely damaged by it, no contact at all and most keys are glues to one another :/ Will hot water do the job ? or maybe some other combination of cleaning fluid or solvent ? I guess the entire contact mechanism under the keys is all "glues" as well...
Old 24th March 2011
  #5
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One trick I learned from servicing Waldorf Waves is that isopropyl alcohol will loosen hot glue (thanks to JL at Cantos for that one). If the red stuff is hot glue leakage, try isopropyl alcohol. If not, try various non-destructive things like Windex and Simple Green.

Harder stuff (Goof Off) and severe stuff (Goo Gone) will attack the plastic on the keys, either taking the finish off or actually deforming them.
Old 24th March 2011
  #6
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Its such a long time ago I did it, i've forgotten what I used

I think I scraped the worst off with a scalpel and dialuted the sticky leftover with alcohol and cotton buds.

Sounds like your one is in much worse condition than mine. I would suggest taking one key out and experienting on a small area. I wouldn't try something like asatone, as that may damage the key itself.

For larger areas of glue, you could try loosening by heating carefully with a hairdryer and wiping it away with cotton buds.

That red glue was designed by the same person who made the Polysix Ni Cad battery! heh
Old 24th March 2011
  #7
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Flat Earth that was an excellent thread. I have two X8P's (one I have owned for over 35 years) and I haven't experienced that problem on either of them (yet).
When I get some time I will check them both out and maybe do the hot glue treatment as a preventative measure.
Old 24th March 2011
  #8
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Just realized it was a JD800 not a JX8P. I have a JD800 too, so I'll look at it for the same problem.
Old 24th March 2011
  #9
Gear Maniac
 

OK I took the keys out (well not all of them are out yet, some are stuck and barely move) and soaked them in hot water, the glue immediately melts, very ugly . The entire circuit is all loaded with that red ugliness, I guess I will have to do the same with the keyboard chassis and circuit board, anyway, no solvent is needed here, only (very) hot water.

I'm currently in the process of soaking every key, removing the glue off it with a knife, and wash with soap. Once they are all done, I plan to stick some kind of metal pieces under the ones which lost their metal plates, and glue with (stronger!) epoxy. Then go over each place when I see a reminiscent of the red epoxy and pure some lock-tight transparent glue over it, so it doesn't melt.

Still asking myself how they placed the metal reed used instead of the standard springs under each key. Flatearth, did you have any issues when putting all keys back ?
Old 24th March 2011
  #10
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If you are in australia, roland will sell you a replacement key bed at their "cost" which is about half the normal price. Just need to give them the serial number of your synth. It's a massive design fault, after all.

Maybe other local roland offices would do the same?
Old 24th March 2011
  #11
FYI The redglue issue on the jd800 is under warranty indefinitely. You do not have to pay for it to be repaired and have a new keybed put in. You only have to pay for the tech service. In the US I didn't have to pay for any of the cost of the replacement parts.

I had mine replaced several years ago. the new keybed is the best one I've got out of all my keyboards now.
Old 24th March 2011
  #12
mfx
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Quote:
Originally Posted by syzygywell View Post
FYI The redglue issue on the jd800 is under warranty indefinitely. You do not have to pay for it to be repaired and have a new keybed put in. You only have to pay for the tech service. In the US I didn't have to pay for any of the cost of the replacement parts.

I had mine replaced several years ago. the new keybed is the best one I've got out of all my keyboards now.

Thats good to know. I have only just heard about this last week. I've had my JD for around 15 years from new. 1 key started sicking but loosened itself after a while. But also recently experienced other stuck notes on it, use it mainly as a master.

Considering I don't trust myself to disensemble my beloved JD800, how can I identify that the Glue problem is the issue?
Also can you help with further details regarding the 'indefinate warranty' please. Might be useful.
Old 24th March 2011
  #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gilwe View Post
Still asking myself how they placed the metal reed used instead of the standard springs under each key. Flatearth, did you have any issues when putting all keys back ?
When I put them back, I came across a few keys still slightly sticking, so had to go over them again. Eventually it was perfect. ...but it sounds like your keys have suffered a major disaster caused by the leaking red glue. Its quite important to get any trace of glue out of that felt strip and keys. Even if they seem clean, but are slightly 'sticky' by touch, they will click and stick. Once you are happy, leave it for a couple of hours then try all the keys again. You will probably still have a few suspect ones, so take that into consideration before putting the whole thing back together.

As to those leaf springs, I have no idea why Roland used them. I took my JX10 keyboard apart the other day to clean a bad contact (same domes as JD, but shorter strips), and it was just a case of unclipping a spring then pulling key forwards. Very simple. I really hope I don't have to take the JD's apart again.
Old 24th March 2011
  #14
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btw, if you are sealing in the red crap with a film of glue as I suggested, make sure you don't put too much in, as it will upset the balance/feel of the key. I used clear hotglue, and smeared it round the edge of the weight with a small rounded metal edge whilst it was workable.
Old 24th March 2011
  #15
Gear Maniac
 

Thanks. Yes, mine looks like it has suffered a "disaster", definitely :/

I will still need to find a metal part which is of the same wight as the ones originally used under the keys, as many are missing.
Old 24th March 2011
  #16
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Thread Starter
Quote:
Originally Posted by gilwe View Post
Thanks. Yes, mine looks like it has suffered a "disaster", definitely :/

I will still need to find a metal part which is of the same wight as the ones originally used under the keys, as many are missing.
If worse comes to worst, you can get replacement JD800 weighted keys from vinatge planet. Might also be worth asking Senso if hes got some loose weights hanging about too.
Old 25th March 2011
  #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nofi View Post
If you are in australia, roland will sell you a replacement key bed at their "cost" which is about half the normal price. Just need to give them the serial number of your synth. It's a massive design fault, after all.

Maybe other local roland offices would do the same?
Do you happen to know how much that would be?...

I fixed the keybed myself but it is not perfect. The red dampening cloth is full of dry but still quite sticky drops of the freaking glue (about 7-8 of them across the keyboard range) so some keys become sticky and I don't like to play my JD800 anymore...

I'd rather have the whole keybed replaced since I really love this instrument... I don't know if I could change just the red dampening cloth though. That would do too.
Maybe a cloth from a different instrument would match?
Old 25th March 2011
  #18
Gear Maniac
 

Yep, I'm also quite curious - is there another instrument which uses the same keyboard as the JD800 ?
Old 25th March 2011
  #19
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Thread Starter
Quote:
Originally Posted by gilwe View Post
Yep, I'm also quite curious - is there another instrument which uses the same keyboard as the JD800 ?
I had a quick look at other Roland synth keybeds of that rough era, all the JX's and Alpha Junos used spring mechs. I think the JD's one was quite unique. Never seen it on anything else (unless they used it on any of their arrangers?) Again I think it would be worth asking Senso. He would have great knowledge in this area.
Old 25th March 2011
  #20
mfx
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mfx View Post
Thats good to know. I have only just heard about this last week. I've had my JD for around 15 years from new. 1 key started sicking but loosened itself after a while. But also recently experienced other stuck notes on it, use it mainly as a master.

Considering I don't trust myself to disensemble my beloved JD800, how can I identify that the Glue problem is the issue?
Also can you help with further details regarding the 'indefinate warranty' please. Might be useful.
Bee beep
Old 25th March 2011
  #21
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Thread Starter
Quote:
Originally Posted by mfx View Post
Thats good to know. I have only just heard about this last week. I've had my JD for around 15 years from new. 1 key started sicking but loosened itself after a while. But also recently experienced other stuck notes on it, use it mainly as a master.

Considering I don't trust myself to disensemble my beloved JD800, how can I identify that the Glue problem is the issue?
Also can you help with further details regarding the 'indefinate warranty' please. Might be useful.
The glue problem will only make the keys stick or click (unless they cease up totally). If the notes are intermitantly playing, or stop working at altogether, then the key contact is dirty and/or the rubber dome above it is split/worn. If you check my old thread on dissasembling the keybed, you can see the 5 rubber dome strips which click in above the contacts. The contacts need to be cleaned (with pencil eraser and then alcohol soaked cotton bud) and then replace any of the 5 rubber dome sections which are damaged or faulty.

The dissasembling of the keyboard is more time consuming than difficult. The only particularly tricky bit is removing the 5 rubber strips (if you are replacing them) as the rubber cone shaped stoppers that hold them in can tear if pulled too hard.
Old 25th March 2011
  #22
F5D
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One key of my JD-800 had begun to drop the glue when I got the synth. I disassembled the synth, cleaned the whole keyboard and covered the weights and the red glue with a thin layer of epoxy. I also glued a couple of coins below a key that was missing the weight.
Old 26th March 2011
  #23
Basically I bought mine with the problem already apparent. Several of the keys didn't put out a sound and occasionally became stuck when I pressed them. It was a black key I noticed first primarily near the very last of the night notes. So it wasn't a range I played often. It grew progressively worse over the next year when I decided to try to do something about it.

I went onto the roland website and looked up repair places that listed locally. I found one not too far away and called and described the problem and that I thought it might be the glue issue. Since that is usually what it is on these keyboards. The guy said it was warrantied indefinitely as it was a known defect and to bring it in. It took about 1 month to get the replacement keybed and then they repaired and replaced it. It took several hours so I paid something like 40-60 bucks and hour for the tech to replace it. I can't remember what it came to though. I had this repair done back in 2005.
Old 26th March 2011
  #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by omegaomega View Post
Do you happen to know how much that would be?...
It was years ago. Really can't remember.
Ring roland in Dee Why, NSW and ask for the spare parts department.
Old 23rd June 2011
  #25
Gear interested
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by gilwe View Post
I have a JD800 here which is generally in a good shape, except for the notorious epoxy issue, which when all over the keys sticking them together ... Ideally, I'd like to drown the entire mechanism in some kind of fluid which will dissolve the glue and wash it out, but still keep the plastic and metal parts (keys and circuit board) intact.]
Sodium hydroxide (NaOH, lye) solution works great to dissolve the red glue without harming the plastic. Here's my technique.

WEAR SAFETY GOGGLES. Even dilute NaOH can permanently damage your eyes.

The sodium hydroxide I like to use is granular NaOH, which I've bought on eBay. If you can get Red Devil lye or some other pelletized NaOH at your hardware store, that will work too, but the granular NaOH dissolves faster.

In a plastic bucket, mix 80 grams NaOH with 2 liters of water until all the NaOH is dissolved. (The bucket will get warm.) Be careful not to splash any of the solution on yourself. If you do, wash it off promptly with a lot of water.

[For you chemistry types, this recipe makes a 1-molar (1 mole/L) solution of sodium hydroxide.]

Immerse the keys in the lye solution. You only need to soak the part with the glue on it, so don't worry if the narrow parts of the keys aren't bathed in the solution.

Leave the keys soaking in the solution for 18-24 hours. After this time, no traces of the red glue should remain, and the weights will simply fall out of the keys into the bucket.

Carefully pour the NaOH solution down the drain. Don't let the weights get poured down the drain too.

Rinse everything with a lot of water. Dry the weights as best you can. It's normal for a bit of rust-colored oxidation to form on the weights.

I like to let the keys soak another 24 hours in a bucket of soapy water. This bath helps eliminate the fishy odor left on the keys by the reaction of the lye solution with the red glue.

When everything is dry and clean, re-glue the weights into the keys. I have had great results using a popsicle stick to apply a dab of 5-minute epoxy to each key. Make sure the weights are properly centered.

The best way to get red glue off the metal chassis is to blast it with freeze spray, then, while the stuff is frozen hard and brittle, chip it off with a single-edged razor blade.

And that's it. Have fun.
Old 23rd June 2011
  #26
double post...
Old 11th July 2011
  #27
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JD 800 glue mess

I have this wondeful problem too! Today I called Roland and was told the "lifetime" warranty was discontinued as of April of 2010 and it would cost $360.00 for a new keybed for the JD! Isn't it nice that they can profit from the stupidity of their engineering? Even without an "education" lol in engineering I could have prevented this by simply saying .. uhhh how about a little tab or two on the plastic key so the weight just snaps into place? Thanks Roland Restoration has begun needless to say!
Old 12th July 2011
  #28
mfx
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What really gets me about this is that I registered mine and constantly receive emails of Roland over the years and first i hear of it was back when i read this post sometime this year. Ah well such is life, will sell it on sometime soon no doubt.
Old 2nd November 2011
  #29
Gear interested
 

Red Glue of Death

I just bought a JD800 off Ebay that is in perfect condition besides the red glue issue. I bought it to refurbish it and add it to my personal collection.
Well, I just basically killed the keybed.
Taking advice from this string, I tested by boiling one of the weights that had fallen off in hot water, and with some rubbing, all the glue came off. So, I just began disassembling the keybed, this time by sticking two of the whole keys into boiling water and the glue released the weights. However, I DO NOT recommend this, because I wound up warping both of the keys. I can find replacement keys, but I am considering scapping the project and just buying a new keybed for the unit. I called Roland and they are selling the keybeds for $369 (more than I paid for the whole JD, but combined, still a good deal). This glue is ALL OVER THE INSIDE of the keybed, so cleaning out the keys is the easy part. Then I have to figure out how to clean the rubber bushings and the whole frame, which may be more work than it's worth.
If I give up on the project and replace the whole bed, I'll have plenty of spare keys, weights, and springs to sell off as replacements.
Old 12th December 2012
  #30
Gear Maniac
Hello, I'm trying to remove the excess of glue from the keys. It's like dried out chewing gum, and I'm having a hard time getting rid of it. I have soaked the keys in hot water with washing powder, with no success. How could I get rid of it? (at least the resin underneath the keys) Any product? Thanks.
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