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hey old timers, what the hell is a 'pancake'?
Old 25th June 2009
  #1
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sleeper1400's Avatar
 

hey old timers, what the hell is a 'pancake'?

hi slutz,

i was very fortunate to get my hands on some old MIX mags from 83-87.

in one advert the product ( i cant remember the brand) was a cassette tape duplicator.

the advert bragged about it being the first microprocesser controlled duplicator etc.....

further into the products description, they talked about how the duplicator reduces or eliminates pancakes.
seriously.

is this a term referring to a pile of tape unspun from the spools?
Old 25th June 2009
  #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sleeper1400 View Post
hi slutz,

i was very fortunate to get my hands on some old MIX mags from 83-87.

in one advert the product ( i cant remember the brand) was a cassette tape duplicator.

the advert bragged about it being the first microprocesser controlled duplicator etc.....

further into the products description, they talked about how the duplicator reduces or eliminates pancakes.
seriously.

is this a term referring to a pile of tape unspun from the spools?
the guy doing the duplicating (that'd be you) eats breakfast after working until 3:00AM. this new gear speeds up the process so much that you are done by 11:00PM and don't have to eat breakfast..thus eliminating the pancakes.

BSF
storage transfer mechanism.. eliminated a step that took time

....copy tape collected on large "[COLOR=#f26522! important][COLOR=#f26522! important]pancakes[/COLOR][/COLOR]"
Old 25th June 2009
  #3
Lives for gear
Back in the day......(lighting campfire and distributing Smores....), taoe was shipped in two ways.

On reel....in a pro format that was a 10.5 or 14 inch reel filled with tape.

Or as a pancake. A pancke was the same tape, except the outside parts of the reel were removed. Pancakes were usually shipped 10 in a pack, each pancake sitting in a styrofoam form designed to be stacked.

This saved shipping weight and the cost of the metal reel flanges, and was the most economical was to buy take.

At the studio, typically the engineer had a bunch of flanges and would dump the pancake out of the styrofoam holder onto the flange, and would thenplace another flange on top...and put it all on the tape machine hub for use.

Pancakes were also used in bin dupers for cassette duplication.
Old 25th June 2009
  #4
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AllAboutTone's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steffmo View Post
B

Or as a pancake. A pancke was the same tape, except the outside parts of the reel were removed. Pancakes were usually shipped 10 in a pack, each pancake sitting in a styrofoam form designed to be stacked.
yes
Old 25th June 2009
  #5
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Now we can add "pancake" to our wealth of technical jargon!
Old 25th June 2009
  #6
Gear Guru
 

when you wanted to put the tape away, the pancake would have to be play wound. If you used FF or RW to get to one end or the other of the reel, the pancake windings would be loose and irregular and if you picked it up by the edges - the center might pop out.

to make it tight you would play it from beginning to end before taking it off the flanges. Some machines had a special winding mode that kept the tape from wearing down the heads during this phase. Or you could stick a Q-tip in behind the lifters. Some studios had an old deck dedicated to just winding duties.
Old 25th June 2009
  #7
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When you were sending the bulk of your tape out the door on smaller plastic reel it only made sense to buy tape bulk like that.
Only full length "records" or "LP" projects ended up being on 10.5" reels when completed and even then they were usually on plastic reels.
Plastic is much cheaper than aluminum.

To give you an idea of the scope of duping radio/TV spots for distribution...
The radio/TV production house I worked at would have easily TWO HUNDRED FedEx letter packs with a 7", NAB hub, plastic reel in each sitting at the front door at the end of any given day.
All of those dupes (reels) came off of pancakes of Ampex 407.
Once the dubs were completed and the pancake was used, the only "scrap" or un-used component was the plastic hub from the pancake.

After digital delivery came along in about '98 very few reels went out the door on reels. Only the local stuff went out that way.

BTW... a loaded bin loop dupe machine in operation is a cool thing to watch!
At the place I worked at we used six Technics 15000 reel to reel decks.
A bin loop would be for mass cassette dupes.
Old 25th June 2009
  #8
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Brent Hahn's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by dbbubba View Post
Plastic is much cheaper than aluminum.
And springs back when you bend it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dbbubba View Post
... a loaded bin loop dupe machine in operation is a cool thing to watch!
At the place I worked at we used six Technics 15000 reel to reel decks.
A bin loop would be for mass cassette dupes.
Loop bins were also used for major label 8-track and reel to reel 1/4 track album releases. A typical Ampex 300 7.5 ips reel to reel setup would have a master playback deck, via a distribution amp, feeding a dozen or more slave recorders, the whole thing running at 75 ips backwards. The upside was efficiency, of course, but the downside was fidelity; 15kHz at 7.5 ips became 150kHz at 75 ips, and any tiny tape path anomalies during recording became 10 times less tiny on playback.
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