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Thread: Tascam 234 tape drive problem

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    Unhappy Tascam 234 tape drive problem

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    My Tascam 234 has been out of use for a long time and when I set it up last night I had a problem with these two symptoms:

    A noise emanating from the tape drive area.

    When I hit play, the tape fast forwards with the heads engaged (I can see the meters moving and hear the music). Fast forward (and rewind) works fine. Play does not move as fast as FF, but it's way too fast.

    The deck is nearly 20 years old and I can't whine about losing it because of it's value, but I have a lot of tapes that I can't access now. Any suggestions other than take it to a Tascam repair center? I might end up doing that, but on Tascam's website there are apparently no such centers anywhere near me.

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    Arrow The belts probably need replacing.

    There's a belt that drives the head up/down, and there's another belt that drives the tape forward in Play/Rec function. It's a pretty involved job for a DIY'er. The cassette mech has to be removed from the chassis. It's a disassembly job not for the feint of heart.

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    Thanks!

    I had the lid off last night and saw the belt that lifts the heads. DO you think that perhaps the other belt needs an adjustment? I could see it not working at all because the belt broke, etc., but going too fast?! MAy be a gearing-type issue? I'm a pretty good DIY'er as long as it doesn't require an O scope or some fancy electronics knowledge. If it's just replacing a belt or maybe even a motor, I should be OK.

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    Arrow To the best of my recollection, it's all belt driven.

    Unfortunately, there is no adjustment for the belt. It's not like your car's fan belt! Heh. If you're a moderate DIY'er, you can do it. The symptom screams of broken belt, and a visual inspection verifies that. You need belts, my friend.

    Good luck.

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    Quite correct! I've just removed the tape drive unit and underneath found what looked like small pieces of electrical tape. Upon closer exam I found the rest of the belt. It's the one that wraps around the large "chrome" wheel. I can only assume becauase of the symptoms that the large wheel acts a as a drag to maintain proper speed. Now I can't get through to Tascams website to find parts. Any suggetsions about obtaining belts?

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    Quote Originally Posted by kgf
    Now I can't get through to Tascams website to find parts. Any suggetsions about obtaining belts?
    http://www.tascam.com/ContactUs.html

    Cheers!

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    Arrow Give me until sometime tomorrow,...

    and I can find dimensions of those belts.

    My best recollection is that the main capstan drive belt is 9.0" (flat) and the small belt is about 7.2" (square),... but DON'T use those figures until I've verified them. Also, a search of this bbs might produce a post with the correct belt sizes for the 234. I've done this job, and I've posted these numbers before. /DA

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    Arrow Forget tomorrow, here's the info now:...

    (This was copied from a note I posted in June):...

    The belts I was using to refurbish the 234 were:

    - [capstan belt] Flat rubber belt, 9" total length, about 4mm wide and about .5mm thick, &
    - [head/carriage belt] Square shaped belt, 7.2" total length.

    Find a large variety of belts online, at www.electronix.com

    ... (the FF/RW mechanism is driven by two little rubber tires)...

    The rubber tires I'm referring to are .599" OUTER diameter, qty 2.

    ======================================

    There'ya go!

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    Thanks to both of you! I'm in touch with both Tascam and Electronix.com

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    good news bad news

    Well i received the belts from Tascam and installed them. That was quite a job. It's all reassembled, but as soon as I turn it on the head carriage moves up and down without stopping. I admit that I spun that thing quite a bit and I figure it's a "timing" issue and I need to get it in the right spot. I have no idea how to figure that one out.

    Also, I inserted a tape (clear case) then turned it on to see what would happen and the tape started moving immediately, but the reels weren't turning, only the spindle at the bottom (Guess that's the capstan). I should mention that while trying to figure out how to get the new capstan belt on I tried to loosen the white plastic screw that sticks out the back of the largeer heavy wheel that the capstan belt goes around. It turned one full rotation and one side of the slot broke off. That is, the slot that the screwdriver fits into. So, I left it alone and did not try to screw it back in. COuld that be causing this? Maybe that's some kind of tension adjustment?

    Any more help you can give me on these two issues would be greatly appreciated.

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