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Thread: SERIOUSLY Considering This TASCAM 38- ADVISE, PLEASE- QUICK!

  1. #1
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    SERIOUSLY Considering This TASCAM 38- ADVISE, PLEASE- QUICK!

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    http://atlanta.craigslist.org/msg/1117768013.html

    Ya think I should? I am really looking for a 2-track 1/2" machine, but geech, $100...

    Get back to me quick- shoot from the hip on this one. Thanks.

    EDIT: Just talked to the seller- from our convo, it seems the capstan transport mechinism has some kind of issue- capstan and pinch roller are not turning. Both reels turn fine when there is no tape threaded thru the capstan. Heads move up and engage the tape when play or record are pushed, too.

    And, DUH, I KNOW it's an 8-track machine- I can count the number of meters across the face. I meant, my PREFERENCE would be to find a 2-track machine, but this one is looking attractive at $100. Another opinion of
    1: What it MIGHT take, both cost and difficulity, to repair,
    2: Value of it, as-is,
    3: Utility of an 8-track, 1/2" machine in the 21st century, and
    4. How easily I could convert this into a 2-track machine.

    I have about 15 one-pass 1/2 tapes, presumably 8 tracks, sitting in my closet. I am curious YELLOW about what's on them- I am thinking this machine, once fixed, would tell me that, and then I could go from there.
    Last edited by stevieb; 04-11-2009 at 12:07.

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    Quote Originally Posted by stevieb View Post
    http://atlanta.craigslist.org/msg/1117768013.html

    Ya think I should? I am really looking for a 2-track 1/2" machine, but geech, $100...

    Get back to me quick- shoot from the hip on this one. Thanks.

    The 38 is an 8 track 1/2" Deck, not a 2 track...

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    Arrow 38

    The problem described would point to the capstan belt, which is inexpensive and not too difficult to fix.

    A 1/2" 8-track is just that, and it serves the purpose of 8-track production. (8's) Maybe not impressive these days, but it's a good solid format that countless demos and a few albums have been made on. It's a good sounding format for home recording, and some people prefer working with (and the sound of) tape.

    There is no readily available 2-track mod or upgrade for this model, tho' that doesn't mean it's strictly impossible, but I'd not look to this machine for that. I'd fix it and use it for an 8-track format, the way it's intended.

    I tend to think if you "need a 1/2" 2-track deck", you'd befallen of a myth or hearsay on the subject anyway. Most commonly for home and pro mixdown format you'd be looking at 1/4" 2-track units, which are way more common.

    $100 for this unit needing repair is fair, but pickup is preferred. Don't ship this unit!
    Quote Originally Posted by Lt. Bob
    ... subtleties of sound make a difference to those who really listen.

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    Well, I got it. Seller was firm on the price, but it came with an ART tube pre, a reverb unit (can't recall who's) and a 8-channel TS/RCA snake. Thanks for the help. Hope to tear into it, soon.

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    That's a good deal, even if you have to do some minor servicing. Are the heads good?

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    How do I determine that?

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    Take some good closeup pictures with good light and post them up here and you'll get a good rough guage of their condition based on the responses.

    Lay an index card or similar on the face of the deck in front of the headblock to reduce glare and reflections.

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    Pulled the front off it- sure 'nuff, it's the belt! Found pieces of it, all soft and gooey, all over the place. The drive pully is spinning just fine. Will post pics of the heads when I can.

    Can anyone give me very good, reliable, inexpensive sources for parts for R2R machines from this era? I am going to take a look at that Fostex R8 that's been sitting in my closet for over a year, too...

    I used to clean the heads of my cassette decks with a Q-tip swab and some rubbing (isopropyl) alcohol. Any problems with that on these machines?

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    The best alcohol to use is the 97-percent stuff, not isopropyl, to clean the heads.
    Get yourself some rubber conditioner as well (CaiKleen is good) as you don't want to dry out your rollers with alcohol.
    That's the two basics for cleaning the tape path, along with a good de-magger, the Han-D-Mag being the classic model for that.

    Have fun,
    C.

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    Diluted window cleaner or a very mild soap and water solution is good for cleaning rubber parts...even straight water.

    The rubber conditioners will work sometimes to breathe new life into those rubber parts but, IMHO, if you need to use that stuff you're just band-aiding the issue with that rubber part. In other words, if you need to use conditioner, the best fix would be to replace the part.

    Best place to get parts for the 38 such as the capstan belt and pinch roller is...(drum roll please)...the OEM manufacturer of the deck! CALL Teac parts 323.727.4840.

    BTW, 97 percent alcohol is still isopropyl alcohol. Just because it says 97 percent doesn't mean its not iso alcohol anymore. Denatured alchol is another good tape path cleaner (again, not for the rubber parts).

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