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Thread: tascam 388 playback failure

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    tascam 388 playback failure

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    Hello, i have recently purchased this deck, it is in great condition, but a month or two ago it stopped playing. fforward and rewind still work, and with the tape off i can get the reels to spin by gently lifting the tension rollers. Might anyone be able to give me any advice? It looks to me as if it is a simple spring problem, but i really dont know much about open reels and am lost.
    any help greatly appreciated
    tommy

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    When you lift the tension rollers, does the capstan turn? If not, the capstan motor may be in need of attention. Don't know specifically about the 388, but I used to maintain a 38, and I'm assuming that the basic design is similar.

    Don

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    well, the capstan motor is face down in the second "layer" of components that i havnt dissasembled yet, but it certainly doesnt look, feel, or sound to be turning at all... should i be able to tell its turning or is it a very very quiet motor?

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    Arrow What city are you in??

    ... the capstan shoudl spin counter clockwise any time the right tension arm is lifted.

    ... the pinchwheel and tape lifters should move upward when Play is pressed, enough to contact the pinchwheel to the capstan.

    2 clues to start. More later.

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    Brooklyn, ny

    Ahah,
    i was confusing the capstain motor with the actual capstain. the pinch roller does contact, but the capstain is not spinning at all. How can I tell if it is the belt or the motor? I can hear a motor spinning as soon as i lift the right tension roller, but i cant tell if it is the capstain motor or something else (though i think it is the capstain motor).

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    Arrow Hello.

    You're gonna be fine. It's usually a belt that's the problem, and rarely the motor. To access the belt, you'll have to:

    - remove the plexiglass cover by depressing it to one side & lifting out, or just tape it down so it doesn't flop around. Either way is fine.

    - either stand the 388 up on it's back end, CAREFULLY, or find some pillows or adequate padding, so that you may turn the 388 upside down, & carefully rest it on it's mixer surface, upside down.

    - remove all screws on the bottom, & remove the bottom cover plate.

    The belt's down there, in plain sight. I don't remember the exact size of the belt, & that would take me a short while to verify, but suffice to say, you can measure the defective belt, and source a belt that's just slightly smaller than the old belt. The old belt will be stretched out, by definition. Belts are measured in TOTAL length. I have a new 388 belt in my technical items in the garage, so it will take a while to dig it up and measure it, myself.

    A suitable belt may be sourced from any good electronics supply store, or for 400% markup from Tascam Parts. Avoid the belts on Ebay, because they're inflated about 1000%. A suitable belt sourced from an electronics store should be about $3,... or $12 from Tascam & $25 on Ebay. Your choice. Heh.

    When I get a chance, I'll pull my belts out & measure them for you.

    In the meantime, that will give you a chance to turn the 388 over and inspect the belt yourself. Not such a hard job.

    It's probably best to turn the 388 entirely upside down for this operation, because if you stand it on it's back end, the bottom panel may fall as you remove it, and it could hurt someone.

    If I sound scatter brained, I need sleep very badly.

    Anyway, good luck, and I'll check back after a while.

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    Arrow ...

    The reason I ask users about their location, is that I service 388's, 38's & similar units in the Los Angeles area. I basically do it for a hobby. Thanx.

    PS: if you hear the motor spinning when the R-tension arm is lifted, the motor's working & it's definitely the belt.

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    Quote Originally Posted by A Reel Person
    You're gonna be fine. It's usually a belt that's the problem, and rarely the motor.
    Sorry for the confusion, Tommy. I assumed (silly me) that the 388 was the successor to the 38, and that it had a similar design. On the 38, the capstan was the motor spindle, IIRC -- so no belts were involved.

    I will humbly bow out of this conversation and defer to my colleague A.R.P.

    Don

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    Arrow Sorry!

    The Tascam 38 has a similar motor/pulley/belt-drive as the 388.

    If you're talking about the successor to the 38, it's the TSR-8, and I believe that may be a direct-drive capstan,... but I'd have to verify that, so take it on assumption, for what it's worth.

    Cheers!!

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    thanks ARP, your info has been VERY helpful. I opened the back, and the belt was simply popped off, it didnt seem to be stretched. its playing fine now.
    But..... somehow in the process my counter has stopped working. Its permanently on 00.00 no matter what i do. Any ideas?

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