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Weird problem with reel to reel speed
Old 27th December 2010
  #1
Here for the gear
 

Weird problem with reel to reel speed

Before I explain the speed problem, here is why I haven't touched my deck in a while. (heehee.. read that out loud)

I have a Roberts 778x.. I got it 5 years ago refurbished (I think). It worked fine for a few years, then one day it didn't really record. I don't remember how long it had been since the last time I used it, but I did put it in a car to drive to rehearsal that day and maybe it got bumped.

The problem: When played back, the tape sounded fine, however the new recording did not erase the old one and there can be heard only faint ghost noises bleeding through, from what was recorded.. particularly drum crashes. (loud stuff?)

Today I got it out after a couple years of closet storage and discovered that it has a speed problem.

The problem: When I play the reel back, (I've only ever had one reel), the music is too slow. I noticed that the speed was on low, so I set it to high... but the tape got slower!

The only thing I could think of is that a belt might be slipping, and that when I put it on high speed it only slips more, like a table cloth being pulled out from under dinnerware.. But after opening it up a little bit, I found that the main motor seems to be having the problem.. but then, I don't know anything about this.

Hmmmmm...


..?
Old 28th December 2010
  #2
Lives for gear
 

you cleaned, aligned, lubricated the deck and checked the tape path before putting it back into service?
Old 28th December 2010
  #3
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Jimsi's Avatar
 

A tape recorder needs regular maintenance, justs needs a little tlc...thats why i went to a DAW...
Old 28th December 2010
  #4
Here for the gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jimsi View Post
A tape recorder needs regular maintenance, justs needs a little tlc...thats why i went to a DAW...
Yea so I hear.. I didn't think it would only take 5 years for problems like this...
Old 28th December 2010
  #5
Here for the gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by [email protected] View Post
you cleaned, aligned, lubricated the deck and checked the tape path before putting it back into service?
I am pretty sure I got the tape path right, although I couldn't find my manual. I did look online at photos just to make sure... I also only assume that 'tape path' means how the tape is threaded through, and was trying to google this without knowing how to phrase it technically. I didn't do any of the cleaning, aligning, or lubing though. Could that really have an effect on the speed problem? It sounds like a 78 played on a 45/33... not a small pitch difference or anything.. and the low speed is faster than the high speed. Low means slower right??
Old 28th December 2010
  #6
Gear Guru
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by shoelace View Post

The problem: When I play the reel back, (I've only ever had one reel), the music is too slow. I noticed that the speed was on low, so I set it to high... but the tape got slower!
did you go back and forth, back and forth?
IOW, is the high speed always slower and the low speed always faster? or is it just slowing down more more as you play it?

If the latter, maybe the tape is sticky-shedding and gumming up the works.
What does the tape path look like after this slow-down?
Old 28th December 2010
  #7
Here for the gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by joeq View Post
did you go back and forth, back and forth?
IOW, is the high speed always slower and the low speed always faster? or is it just slowing down more more as you play it?

If the latter, maybe the tape is sticky-shedding and gumming up the works.
What does the tape path look like after this slow-down?
Yes, I did go back and forth.. the speeds are consistently wacky, they do not slow down. The rewind and fast forward seem normal too. Also, I don't know what you mean by "what does the tape path look like.." ..it's all the same except that the tape goes slower when it should be going faster.

Thanks yall
Old 28th December 2010
  #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shoelace View Post
Yea so I hear.. I didn't think it would only take 5 years for problems like this...
My Tascam lasted around 11 years before the speed started messing up, i didnt do any maitenance on mine...except basic head cleaning and demagnatizing
Old 28th December 2010
  #9
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by shoelace View Post
Yes, I did go back and forth.. the speeds are consistently wacky, they do not slow down. The rewind and fast forward seem normal too. Also, I don't know what you mean by "what does the tape path look like.." ..it's all the same except that the tape goes slower when it should be going faster.

Thanks yall
He's asking if the iron oxide is shedding off of the tape and sticking to the metal parts. Also suggesting that if you exercise the switches, it might clean them and 'fix' the electronics. (wear the dirt and gunk off, so that there is better electrical contact.)

I was suggesting that motors and spinning wheels and other mechanical parts need to be able to move properly and unimpeded. And after that, breaks need to be checked.

If you pulled a car out of the garage after a couple of years of sitting, would you just top off the tank and take it for a spin?
Old 30th December 2010
  #10
Gear Maniac
 

Sounds to me like the motor run capacitor is shot. Very common problem with Roberts (Akai) and other makes from the same era (Sony for one)....
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