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Reel To Reel All discussions pertaining to reel to reel decks. These include general usage, recording, playback, and service questions. For subjects related to tape itself, see the Open Reel subforum under this one. Obscure service subjects that don't quite fit go in the Help and Do It Yourself subforum.

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  #1  
Old 01-12-2018, 03:48 PM
SongJohn SongJohn is online now
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Lucky Teac A-3340S Find; In Need

The other night I stumbled upon a Teac A-3340S (made in July-ish 1976) and took it home for $150.00 USD. I knew the machine would need work, but I wanted the challenge. It seems very clean. The seller had it since the late '70s, and judging by his pristine estate and vibe, I could tell this man always took care of this unit.

So, my problem is that when I engage the transport, all I seem to hear is a clicking sound (only from the fast-wind button). I've made a video. The clicking only happens when the switches on the head-housing are set to Normal (as opposed to simul-sync). Only once did the transport engage and fire it into fast-forward mode! I couldn't believe it. But after hours of fiddling, that never came back
This is my youtube video link:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_tgxTV5vkME

Finally, the other thing I noticed was that when I manually pull the tape, all four VU meters begin to jump around! The sound in the background of the video is talk radio, not the tape machine, but you can definitely see the VU meters bouncing:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D4M0ikUznEU

The bad news isn't that it's not working, the bad news is I'm lost without a paddle on this. This is the first repair that I actually crave...I feel I'd be bored if this machine just worked right. This is interesting. But the problem is I don't know where to begin! That's why I posted these videos; perhaps someone knows about this weird clicking sound? It's VERY repetitive.

When I pull up the shut off arm, I definitely hear two micro-switches engaging, for the record. Anyhow, I just took some pictures. I hope you all get a kick out of the photos, and extras that came with it. I've never seen these four rubber back supports before. I guess it's so you could use the machine table-top style, which I would probably never do, but still really historical























  #2  
Old 01-12-2018, 04:29 PM
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Skywavebe Skywavebe is offline
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The fan needs cleaning and plugging in the remote and doing all that clicking is not helping- it will wear out the relay.
First order of business is the change all capacitors on power supply to fresh ones. The is the board on the right as looking at the back. The microswitches could click but do they actually conduct. One is for capstan motor and has 100Vac on it- it is in the ground circuit.
The other switch passes 26 Vdc. I bets you have a power supply problem.
Just don't look at it, get the service manual and dive in or send it to a Technician who does work on them- not me I have 174 units here already.
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  #3  
Old 01-12-2018, 04:39 PM
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johns82 johns82 is offline
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Nice! Good damn price! Like Sam said get a service manual. If your in over your head a tech is needed. Where are you located? This will help techs line up to help you.

Power supply is my guess as well. That deck is in damn good shape. Get her fixed.
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  #4  
Old 01-12-2018, 05:16 PM
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fmorariu fmorariu is offline
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Nice,

That deck is super clean, it will be great when it's restored to perfection. Like Sam said, all signs point to the power supply board, and the capacitors. Take the board out and examine them for corrosion. Don't blast DeOxit on the board, it's corrosive, but simply look for possible damage, cracked solder joints (get a flux remover pen and a pcb contact cleaner pen, and clean the solder points, so you can see better what is going on), examine for bulging and leaky caps and take note of how many and which caps you need to get equivalents for, polar and non-polar. Make a list and order your parts. Get the service manual and check against the manual parts list just in case and then start your work one by one.

Good Luck, it's worth restoring something in that clean of a shape. Awesome price, almost jealous ;-)

Felix M.
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Last edited by fmorariu; 01-12-2018 at 05:20 PM.
  #5  
Old 01-12-2018, 05:50 PM
SongJohn SongJohn is online now
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Thanks for all of the leads. This means a lot. I'm excited to take out the multimeter and pop up the hood. I live in Connecticut. I got the machine in Rhode Island.

Funny thing is, the machine on the botton is just as clean, also came with a remote and minimal headwear and was also 150

The bottom machine is from 1977, the top from 1976. There are about 3-4 cosmetic changes between the two machines...I feel like doing a "spot the difference" with TEAC. You get a prize if you get it right.

EDIT 174 units in general or 174 Teac 3340s??? 174 Teac 3340 machines would be amazing to see Sam

Last edited by SongJohn; 01-12-2018 at 06:11 PM.
  #6  
Old 01-12-2018, 06:53 PM
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Skywavebe Skywavebe is offline
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Now in all including some WM-D6C and 122 Mk II and then all the rest that go all over the place. Today a Tascam 34B came in and then a RT909. Like I need more work. This is why my numbers do not go down.
Just finished a A6300 that went 22Hz to 24KHz inside of plus/minus 2dB at 0 Vu at 7.5 IPS using LPR35.
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Skywave Tape Deck Repair- Chicago area
(630)616-0932 Office/ Email skywavebe@sbcglobal.net
Past Teac/Tascam Lead Service Technician at Chicago Factory Service still doing repairs.
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Last edited by Skywavebe; 01-12-2018 at 10:20 PM.
  #7  
Old 01-12-2018, 07:08 PM
earczar earczar is offline
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Nice score, im glad to see theres still some out there at this price. The heads look mint. My guess will be other then the things mentioned that youll have a sticky pinch roller from the old lube. Unless the pinch roller snaps. Theres a million posts on it here. Good luck
  #8  
Old 01-12-2018, 11:00 PM
SongJohn SongJohn is online now
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Yeah...good deals are tough to come upon. Auctions can sometimes be okay...

Anyway, Sam, I must say, that sounds like the life. Do you work from home? I'd love to work for myself nurturing these sweet machines all day. That's a dream. They're so cool...it would be like a labor of love
  #9  
Old 01-13-2018, 03:57 AM
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Jonny Ramone Jonny Ramone is offline
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Heads look great on that. Is the pinch-roller linkage moving freely?
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  #10  
Old 01-13-2018, 09:22 AM
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Skywavebe Skywavebe is offline
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Labors of love run out quickly especially if you have done it for more than 45 years. The most aggravating part is when a guy brings you a Tascam 34B that has the reel tables pushed in and so it is suppose to be an easy fix.

Ha! Turns out some butchers in Indiana and once I find their name I don't hold back. There were wrong screws in the unit stripped out screws, one broken off- most likely from a non-torque controlled drill, meter covers were removed and put on upside down with super glue. Once I got the unit to where I could run it the speeds were off 100 Hz each. What kind of idiot does this to a machine and then tries to sell it for $950?
They have the wrong pinch roller on it and then a wrong tension arm roller cap that was filed to make fit- IT doesn't.
At least the heads have little wear. When I looked at the front panel the meters looked to be seated wrong- well they don't move much on the chassis so I determined the meter covers were on wrong.

Like I say there are 500 bad Hacks out there to one good Technician.
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Sam Palermo, BSEE , ProSquad Member
Skywave Tape Deck Repair- Chicago area
(630)616-0932 Office/ Email skywavebe@sbcglobal.net
Past Teac/Tascam Lead Service Technician at Chicago Factory Service still doing repairs.
http://s609729863.onlinehome.us/tape...uipment-repair
Now accepting MC, Visa, Amex & Discover Cards!
  #11  
Old 01-13-2018, 12:35 PM
SongJohn SongJohn is online now
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Well that guy sounds worse than just a hack - at that price it sounds like a frigging scam artist tried to fix that and make a pretty penny. In fact, you're right about the percentages of actual useful techs I've encountered. I've been scammed a few times myself actually. When I took my machine to Russ at New Jersey factory service I really had no idea what I'd be getting into. I hadn't read reviews or anything, I just went there. Again, I thought it would be more BS. Although I didn't have him do extensive overhaul work, he was the first guy I ran into who wasn't full of BS and just a normal professional and did good work. I was surprised to find there were still decent people out there working on this stuff. This is one good story out of dozens of horrible ones.

I also would say that, for me anyway, the labor of love would run out working on the '80s machines. But the '60s and '70s ones are just so mystifying to me, they just seem like the real deal, I definitely believe in the voodoo magic, although I would be totally fine with pulling out old out of spec parts. I feel that the circuit design is really what I'm after. I'm probably not going to tell much the difference between a stock 3340 and one modified with a few prized germanium transitors thrown in the amp cards; to me it's a big whatever ..they'd probably sound similar enough to my ear.

Also, jonny ramone, very good question because as a matter of fact the pinch roller linkage is not free! Its gummy and I have to use my hand to engage/disengage. The linkage on the August 1977 machine is totally free and easy!

Also, now I'm getting into dangerous territory where I'm starting to take things apart. I pulled out both power supplies ( I have two A-3340S ) and started hitting the multi meter to the caps. I figured, since I have one working unit, and one defective, maybe the multi meter can show me differences between the working unit's power supply section and the broken one's. I'm sure this is the most stupid, ridiculous idea in the universe. But I'm trying

Last edited by SongJohn; 01-13-2018 at 12:41 PM.
  #12  
Old 01-13-2018, 12:52 PM
wheeble wheeble is offline
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Great looking machine. Half the allure to these instruments is the fact that no matter how great they look and sound, at 40 years old, they all have issues we take pride in tweaking/fixing. It'll be brilliant when up and running.
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  #13  
Old 01-13-2018, 02:15 PM
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Jonny Ramone Jonny Ramone is offline
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Sticky linkage is a common issue, and COULD be the sound of the deck trying to overcome this. There are a lot of posts on the subject; here's one with pictures, there are probably others. Try it first, and see if it works. I have other people do my soldering stuff, as I don't have a lot of practice at it. I think I can order the right caps for this stuff now, and I do have a practice board to play with. http://reeltoreeltech.com/pinch-roll...r-teac-tascam/
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  #14  
Old 01-13-2018, 02:36 PM
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fmorariu fmorariu is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skywavebe View Post
Labors of love run out quickly especially if you have done it for more than 45 years. The most aggravating part is when a guy brings you a Tascam 34B that has the reel tables pushed in and so it is suppose to be an easy fix.

Ha! Turns out some butchers in Indiana and once I find their name I don't hold back. There were wrong screws in the unit stripped out screws, one broken off- most likely from a non-torque controlled drill, meter covers were removed and put on upside down with super glue. Once I got the unit to where I could run it the speeds were off 100 Hz each. What kind of idiot does this to a machine and then tries to sell it for $950?
They have the wrong pinch roller on it and then a wrong tension arm roller cap that was filed to make fit- IT doesn't.
At least the heads have little wear. When I looked at the front panel the meters looked to be seated wrong- well they don't move much on the chassis so I determined the meter covers were on wrong.

Like I say there are 500 bad Hacks out there to one good Technician.
Sam, this is exactly why people should be very weary of things they see on eBay. People (flippers) with absolutely no clue attempt to fix something that was never touched and then F-it all up and sell it for a high price. Someone not familiar with this will not notice until it's too late, that something is wrong with the machine. It pisses me off to no end when I see this sort of thing happening. They paid good money and they have to spend more now.

Postings decked out with stupid terms like "mint", "bench serviced", "tested for 14 days", "fully service by pro tech", piss me off also. Then to make matters worse they ship it to you in a subpar package and get away with blaming the carrier for the machine being all messed up.

I will not buy a deck that has been serviced or messed with from anyone that is not a tech and has reviews on this board. Personally I prefer untouched decks from the original owner, that I can restore myself. There are a ton of deck flippers out there eBay, Craigslist, etc that are capitalizing on this recent reel to reel fad in the past couple of years. So exercise caution where you can!

Felix M.
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Last edited by fmorariu; 01-13-2018 at 02:41 PM.
  #15  
Old 01-13-2018, 04:20 PM
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Pacific Stereo Pacific Stereo is offline
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One of my biggest issues are "techs" who have no business owning a screwdriver, much less using one to take a cover off of a unit. I do a lot of rehab on bad work by other folks. You should see some of the SX-1980s I've had and what the power supply and other areas look like...

She sure looks sweet, I hope you can git 'er goin'.
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  #16  
Old 01-13-2018, 05:13 PM
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Skywavebe Skywavebe is offline
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Some of the stuff that is butchered is mind boggling. Not only did this person take a good motor out of a Tascam 122 Mk III deck and put in a $.50 dual cassette motor- the guy with the hack saw on the flywheel video. But they then make a video on You Tube to show how incredibly stupid they are. The unit here was not on speed and could not be adjusted to be on speed. I have to think that these guys are insane and they are showing other people how to do it- if that is not crazy then I don't know what is.
You would think he would see if the deck could be on speed before releasing such rubbish.
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Sam Palermo, BSEE , ProSquad Member
Skywave Tape Deck Repair- Chicago area
(630)616-0932 Office/ Email skywavebe@sbcglobal.net
Past Teac/Tascam Lead Service Technician at Chicago Factory Service still doing repairs.
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Last edited by Pacific Stereo; 01-14-2018 at 10:46 AM. Reason: Yeah, not so much.
  #17  
Old 01-15-2018, 03:00 AM
SongJohn SongJohn is online now
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Loving all the support in this thread. Thanks so much guys! I decided to inspect my second A3340S heads. I always thought they were in good shape, but it's clear there is some wear on them compared to the heads on the machine I just bought. Nevertheless, I took some side-by-side comparison photos to see if maybe anyone on the forums can give their opinions on some of the things I noticed. I tried to take as clear a picture as I could. The April 1976 Heads belong to the machine I just bought pictured at the top of this thread.









Thanks in advance for all the input and advice!

Last edited by SongJohn; 01-15-2018 at 03:03 AM.
  #18  
Old 01-15-2018, 03:15 PM
SongJohn SongJohn is online now
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Also too, this is another question i've waited 10 plus years to ask out loud: why is the sync head inferior in frequency response? Don't the sync and normal play heads look identical? Thanks for any insight!
  #19  
Old 01-15-2018, 04:00 PM
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Skywavebe Skywavebe is offline
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Keep in mind that the purpose of the Sync head is for timing reference. it does not matter that the frequency response is not the same. Later on in better designed decks it is the same but that is where the record head and play heads are the same part. It is simply an evolution of the technology that has been made ending with the Tascam 44OB.
If Teac made a better unit than the Tascam 44OB, I just don't know about it but then we did not always find out all the models that were made in Japan. I had never even heard of an F-1 model. If you research though there was such a great unit. The Japanese get all the good stuff.
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Sam Palermo, BSEE , ProSquad Member
Skywave Tape Deck Repair- Chicago area
(630)616-0932 Office/ Email skywavebe@sbcglobal.net
Past Teac/Tascam Lead Service Technician at Chicago Factory Service still doing repairs.
http://s609729863.onlinehome.us/tape...uipment-repair
Now accepting MC, Visa, Amex & Discover Cards!
  #20  
Old 01-15-2018, 04:15 PM
SongJohn SongJohn is online now
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Actually this is something I was prepared for. I stopped using the 80-8 that had great FREQ response in sync, then moved down to 3340 machines that have the muffled sync response. It doesnt bother me, I just want to know why from a technical perspective? To my untrained eye the play and rec heads look the same on the 3340? Why the drop in FREQ response?
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