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Setting up an 8-track Recorders, Players & Tape Machines
Old 30th August 2007
  #1
Gear Nut
 

Setting up an 8-track

Hi-
I am borrowing a friends 1/4'' Fostex 8 track reel to reel recorder. I just bought a reel of quantegy tape but i'm not sure how to set it up on the machine exactly. I know everything up to the part when I get to the other reel on the right. At the end of the tape there is a strip of color that has numbers on it. (2, 4, and 6 i believe). It seems slightly adhesive, is this to stick it to the other reel?
Anyways, the way I have it set up right now everything looks right but when i press play, the reel doesn't move. When I fast forward or rewind however, it does. Also, when I remove the tape, the reel spins normally when I press play. I'm so confused!

any help would be great!

thank you,

jake
Old 30th August 2007
  #2
Lives for gear
 
nukmusic's Avatar
 

MANUAL
Old 30th August 2007
  #3
Quote:
Originally Posted by jacob eli View Post
Hi-
I am borrowing a friends 1/4'' Fostex 8 track reel to reel recorder. I just bought a reel of quantegy tape but i'm not sure how to set it up on the machine exactly. I know everything up to the part when I get to the other reel on the right. At the end of the tape there is a strip of color that has numbers on it. (2, 4, and 6 i believe). It seems slightly adhesive, is this to stick it to the other reel?
Anyways, the way I have it set up right now everything looks right but when i press play, the reel doesn't move. When I fast forward or rewind however, it does. Also, when I remove the tape, the reel spins normally when I press play. I'm so confused!

any help would be great!

thank you,

jake
The manual isn't probbaly going to help with the first -- you do NOT want that sticky thing left on the end of the tape where it might go past a head. Cut the leader just before it so it's completely gone.


On the other problem... the tape is pulled off the supply reel by the capstan (the tape should go between the capstan and pinch roller). The takeup reel in play/rec mode spins faster than it needs to but has a slippable clutch on it so that it will not pull top hard against the capstan. (Obviously, in fast wind, it's a different engagement.)

There is also likely going to be a little (typically lightweight metal) sensor that presses lightly on the tape. When the tape runs out or breaks, this lever-like thing will swing out (or in) and turn off the capstan and take-up reel motors.

So it sounds like a mis-threading issue.
Old 30th August 2007
  #4
Gear Maniac
 
wineredno1's Avatar
 

Have they just started putting manuals on there? I was looking for the 8330 manual for months and eventualy paid for one.
Old 30th August 2007
  #5
Gear Nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by theblue1 View Post
The manual isn't probbaly going to help with the first -- you do NOT want that sticky thing left on the end of the tape where it might go past a head. Cut the leader just before it so it's completely gone.


On the other problem... the tape is pulled off the supply reel by the capstan (the tape should go between the capstan and pinch roller). The takeup reel in play/rec mode spins faster than it needs to but has a slippable clutch on it so that it will not pull top hard against the capstan. (Obviously, in fast wind, it's a different engagement.)

There is also likely going to be a little (typically lightweight metal) sensor that presses lightly on the tape. When the tape runs out or breaks, this lever-like thing will swing out (or in) and turn off the capstan and take-up reel motors.

So it sounds like a mis-threading issue.
thank you!
but what do i do to keep the tape secure on the other reel?

thanks,
jake
Old 31st August 2007
  #6
Gear Head
 
KansasAudioWorks's Avatar
 

You might be able to get a manual PDF on the Fostex site. That's where I got my A-8 manual.

You mention the reels turn in FF or REW, or if there's no tape on the machine. Does the capstan turn? I not, the belt may be stretched or broken. Some Fostexes seem to have problems with the belt slipping off the flywheel as the belt ages and gets loose. If you ARE mechanically inclined I will suggest RTFM* when replacing the belt. Not all mechanisms are intuitive.

(*One version of RTFM- Read The Fun Manual)
Old 31st August 2007
  #7
MsM
Gear Nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by jacob eli View Post
thank you!
but what do i do to keep the tape secure on the other reel?

thanks,
jake
Just let the friction between the layers hold the tape. It's like winding a piece of string on a spool. For 1/4" tape some reels (7", I guess) have small cavities you can thread the end of the tape through, for larger formats you just hold the end with a finger, turn the reel and release your finger while holding the tape with other fingers, continue turning the reel until you have enough rounds so the tape doesn't slip on the reel. The tape should be so tight that it doesn't slip when you eventually engage fast forward or rewind, if it's not tight and the machine has some force in the transport, the tape may stretch, tape guides may be bent. (When trying this out, it may be best to just use 'play' to get this to work, much less force on the tape.)

If you are going to store what you record for some time, it's customary to initially put the new reel of tape on the RIGHT reel (take up), and then rewind the whole tape before recording. That way the print-through (low level copy of what's on an ajacent turn of the tape on the reel) will not be preceding the sound, giving "pre-echoes". When threading the tape for rewind, you can lessen the force on the tape by judicously toggling rewind/fast forward a few times, until you are sure the tape is properly held by the left (supply) reel. (If I forget this on my Otari MX-70 (1" 16 trk), the tape goes haywire, slamming the tape guide if the tape isn't perfectly taut. I only forget this if it's some time since I've used it. Better put a small note on the machine to remind me....)

So, great to have more people trying out tape, welcome to the club
I've been bitten by the tape bug, also got myself a 2-track mixdown deck, and I'm fixing up a 2" 24-trk that needs some TLC. Great sound, and rewind gives you some time to relax/think/digest things...

Good luck, and just ask more here.

M.
Old 31st August 2007
  #8
MsM
Gear Nut
 

Forgot: as to the tape not moving when threaded: what shape is the pinch roller in (the rubber roller pressing the tape to the capstan, the drive shaft in play/record)? Often these can go all gooey with age, or the rubber gets so hard that it really doesn't make effective contact with the tape. If that is the case, the roller can in most cases be fixed, see e.g.

Terry's Rubber Pinch Rollers & Wheels

Great guy, I got a new pinch roller for my MX-70 from him.

M.
Old 31st August 2007
  #9
Lives for gear
 
stagefright13's Avatar
 

MSM is correct the tape is a friction fit on the reel. Also you should put the full reel on the right and rewind to the beginning. And use "PLAY" to wind the tape back on the reel. Fast Forward leaves alot of the tape edges exposed. If you use play the tape edges will be even and look smooth.

And have fun! I forget sometimes that some people have never used tape.
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