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Universal Capstan Motor
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  #1  
Old 01-04-2013, 01:29 PM
opel123 opel123 is offline
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Nakamichi LX-5 problems

Hello Folks,
I just purchased an LX-5. It has impressed me so far but there are some issues.

First off, it raises the heads slowly and it does it with a noise which goes away as soon as the mechanism fully reaches end position. Playback starts but the noise goes on sometimes 10-15 more seconds. If I push play and stop several times it helps but only temporarily.

What also bothers me that looking at the mechanism with door off and no cassette in, while the left capstan is running, the pressure roller stays down. Is that normal or it only comes up when there is cassette in and I cannot see it? The full head meachanism and the right roller lifts and engages with the right capstan but not on the left.

The third problem is the recording level difference between the two channels. The left channel is at least "2 hours" lower than the right. If I turn up the left level it overloads easily.

Tomorrow I will get the cover off and look into it but I need some good advice from you what to look at closely, where to grease the mechanism to help its proper work. I will have a knowledgeable technician with me so if there is a problem with some electrical components he may find it. However no adjustments will be done on any trimmer or so nor any mechanical tweaking on sensitive parts. Probably a full service is needed but I just want to enjoy the deck for a couple of weeks before we are parted for a repair.

Last question: How difficult is it to replace belts? Can I do major damage by trying to do that?

So any hints or help is appreciated.

Cheers,
László

Last edited by opel123; 01-04-2013 at 01:33 PM.
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  #2  
Old 01-04-2013, 01:44 PM
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tapetech tapetech is online now
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The grease in the pinch roller arm bearings has solidified. You need to remove both pinch roller arms, remove the old grease, re-lube and reinstall them. Reinstalling entails aligning the left arm height with a NAK height gauge or an M300 gauge (because the pinch arm has a critical tape guide on it). Also the play and record head heights will likely need re-adjustment. The azimuth of both heads will need adjustment. Special test tapes are needed for both play head height and play azimuth. The cam-assist belt will need replacement as well as the capstan belt.

Last edited by tapetech; 01-04-2013 at 01:51 PM.
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  #3  
Old 01-05-2013, 06:23 AM
opel123 opel123 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tapetech View Post
The grease in the pinch roller arm bearings has solidified. You need to remove both pinch roller arms, remove the old grease, re-lube and reinstall them. Reinstalling entails aligning the left arm height with a NAK height gauge or an M300 gauge (because the pinch arm has a critical tape guide on it). Also the play and record head heights will likely need re-adjustment. The azimuth of both heads will need adjustment. Special test tapes are needed for both play head height and play azimuth. The cam-assist belt will need replacement as well as the capstan belt.
Thank you for the help. Then an experienced tech having the gage is definitely needed. I will order a belt replacement kit. Do you know a trusted ebay seller that I can order from? If I find someone that can fully service this deck is there anything else that may need replacement? I would have it done at the same time.
Cheers,
László
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  #4  
Old 01-05-2013, 06:53 AM
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Pacific Stereo Pacific Stereo is offline
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Get your belts from Fred Marrs at marrscommunications.com.
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  #5  
Old 01-05-2013, 09:57 AM
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tapetech tapetech is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by opel123 View Post
Thank you for the help. Then an experienced tech having the gage is definitely needed. I will order a belt replacement kit. Do you know a trusted ebay seller that I can order from? If I find someone that can fully service this deck is there anything else that may need replacement? I would have it done at the same time.
Cheers,
László
The idler tire should be replaced as well.
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  #6  
Old 01-05-2013, 10:09 AM
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tapetech tapetech is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by opel123 View Post
Thank you for the help. Then an experienced tech having the gage is definitely needed. I will order a belt replacement kit. Do you know a trusted ebay seller that I can order from? If I find someone that can fully service this deck is there anything else that may need replacement? I would have it done at the same time.
Cheers,
László
The idler tire should be replaced as well.
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  #7  
Old 01-05-2013, 01:28 PM
opel123 opel123 is offline
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Great, thank you! Just ordered a complete set including the idle tire from Fred.
Cheers,
László
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  #8  
Old 01-05-2013, 02:20 PM
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perry perry is offline
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When you mention your second problem, I assume Tapetech believes you mean with the cover off the door, but closed, and the deck put in PLAY, that you do not see the pressure rollers against the capstans? They should rise when in PLAY, if not, then it is as Tapetexh said. But I think perhaps this is not the case, or you would not be playing any tapes at all. If you can avoid removal of the pressure roller arms, and just put a drop of sewing machine oil where the arm rotates on the stainless steel pin, that usually is enought. You can push the arm against the spring that covers the pivot enough to put a drop in there. Then alignment will not be affected. You need a drop of oil on the pivot of the large toothed cam gear. That is the soirce.of your noise, along with a loose cam belt. Please download my pictures and tutorial on the RX303/505 in the DIY section. While removal of the transport is not the same, it is easy on the LX-5 and everything else is very similar or the same. Only the counter belt is different. You will get a lot of help with those pics and write up.
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Old 01-05-2013, 03:10 PM
opel123 opel123 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by perry View Post
When you mention your second problem, I assume Tapetech believes you mean with the cover off the door, but closed, and the deck put in PLAY, that you do not see the pressure rollers against the capstans? They should rise when in PLAY, if not, then it is as Tapetexh said. But I think perhaps this is not the case, or you would not be playing any tapes at all. If you can avoid removal of the pressure roller arms, and just put a drop of sewing machine oil where the arm rotates on the stainless steel pin, that usually is enought. You can push the arm against the spring that covers the pivot enough to put a drop in there. Then alignment will not be affected. You need a drop of oil on the pivot of the large toothed cam gear. That is the soirce.of your noise, along with a loose cam belt. Please download my pictures and tutorial on the RX303/505 in the DIY section. While removal of the transport is not the same, it is easy on the LX-5 and everything else is very similar or the same. Only the counter belt is different. You will get a lot of help with those pics and write up.
Actually, the right pressure roller lifts when I push play that is why I was able to listen to some pre-recordeds yesterday. The left one does not seem to move. Another strange thing (at least to me) that FFWD works without tape but REW stops after a second.

I will look at your pics, thanks a lot! I wish I could avoid the alignment with the M-300. The rest I might try. There are no crowds knocking on my door for the service after I posted my problems in the local forum..
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Old 01-06-2013, 05:01 AM
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perry perry is offline
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I wouldnt imagine in Hungary there would be. FF and REW w/o a tape is normal. The tape counter is belted off the right hand reel, so it counts w/o a tape and stays on. In REW, no counter movement means broken tape ,so it stops. Your left hand roller arm is siezed then, as Tapetech alluded to. You can try to GENTLY move it after some lubrication, but be careful not to apply toomuch pressure and cause the pin to rotate with the roller arm. That will wreck the transport. Many times tho, it is just gummy and it can be loosened with solvent, then oiled. You have to do this with the transport removed to ptrvent it running all over the place. If it is siezed, then you have to immobilize the pin from behind with suitable pliers or Vise-grips to keep the pin from moving as you work off the arm. If you have a caliper, you can measure the amount of pin sticking out beyond the brass split retainer, and get close putting it baxk on, though an M-300 is needed for best alignment. (Or Nak gauge, of course) I assume you know the service manual is available free at naks.com/wiki

Last edited by perry; 01-06-2013 at 05:04 AM.
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  #11  
Old 01-06-2013, 07:09 AM
opel123 opel123 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by perry View Post
I wouldnt imagine in Hungary there would be. FF and REW w/o a tape is normal. The tape counter is belted off the right hand reel, so it counts w/o a tape and stays on. In REW, no counter movement means broken tape ,so it stops. Your left hand roller arm is siezed then, as Tapetech alluded to. You can try to GENTLY move it after some lubrication, but be careful not to apply toomuch pressure and cause the pin to rotate with the roller arm. That will wreck the transport. Many times tho, it is just gummy and it can be loosened with solvent, then oiled. You have to do this with the transport removed to ptrvent it running all over the place. If it is siezed, then you have to immobilize the pin from behind with suitable pliers or Vise-grips to keep the pin from moving as you work off the arm. If you have a caliper, you can measure the amount of pin sticking out beyond the brass split retainer, and get close putting it baxk on, though an M-300 is needed for best alignment. (Or Nak gauge, of course) I assume you know the service manual is available free at naks.com/wiki

Thank you for the explanation! I posted a new query for help in the local forum and I was contacted by a tech whom I know from the local HIFI community. He actually displayed his R2R system in the 2011 Budapest High End Show and is very good name among the Hungarian DIYers. I am pretty confident he will be able to solve the problems. I am lucky!
I will be back with pics after the service is complete in 2-3 weeks.
Cheers,
László
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  #12  
Old 02-06-2013, 11:46 AM
opel123 opel123 is offline
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Hi there,
I just received the message from the tech that my Nak LX-5 is fully functional, level and bias set to the cassette types I gave him as my favourites. He sent in email the list of repairs and adjustments he had performed and the bill is not at all high. 70 USD for all the service he had to do. Not bad.

I will personally pick up my deck in a week or so. Now all the belts, the idler and pinch rollers are new and the deck runs beautifully and is fully aligned using Nak test/alignment tapes. Measurements shows that deck is back to spec.
Cheers,
László
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  #13  
Old 02-16-2013, 12:31 PM
opel123 opel123 is offline
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Tomorrow I will pick up my deck. While waiting, I received the wired remote. Unfortunately it is a tad short. Do you know by chance the type of the plug for the RM-200 to build an extension cord?
Thanks,
LN

Last edited by opel123; 02-16-2013 at 12:33 PM.
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  #14  
Old 02-17-2013, 03:14 PM
opel123 opel123 is offline
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The deck is back at home. Wonderful. I played a couple of pre recorded tapes and it is just good. The remote is fine. I am listening to Barbra Streisand's Back to Broadway and sipping some malt. Life is good.
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Old 02-17-2013, 03:59 PM
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JaeTee JaeTee is offline
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Congratulations!

Its always a good feeling to hear a good Nakamichi do it's thing!

keep

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  #16  
Old 02-18-2013, 04:32 AM
CottonSwab CottonSwab is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by opel123 View Post
The deck is back at home. Wonderful. I played a couple of pre recorded tapes and it is just good. The remote is fine. I am listening to Barbra Streisand's Back to Broadway and sipping some malt. Life is good.
Thats just great enjoy your happy Nak!

Ron
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