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  #1  
Old 07-31-2014, 03:07 PM
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Modification for decks with capstan constantly spinning

Hi guys, don't know if this is any help to anyone but I've just modded my Sony tck 470 with a microswitch that shuts the capstan motor down when a tape isn't playing, I really have no idea the logic behind keeping the capstan spinning when the decks on but not playing a tape, my problem is I use my deck at night and there for I fall a sleep with the deck on and thus it's spinning away all night, so this is a little fix for any one wanting to do the same and a good location for a microswitch I'm sure it could be adapted for other makes, I'm just doing the same mod to my pioneer deck now.

I know this transport in my deck is used a lot across a lot of higher end Sony's too that have electronic doors, it's a good mod to do if you want to save that Capstan motor from dying before its time.
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Last edited by Pacific Stereo; 08-01-2014 at 11:07 AM. Reason: Better title
  #2  
Old 07-31-2014, 03:40 PM
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kawal kawal is offline
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Very nice mod. I think that you can eliminate some brush and bearing wear by doing this. Please add some details what you actually had to do to make the mod. Make it like a manual for others.

Hats off to your creativity.
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  #3  
Old 07-31-2014, 04:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kawal View Post
Very nice mod. I think that you can eliminate some brush and bearing wear by doing this. Please add some details what you actually had to do to make the mod. Make it like a manual for others.

Hats off to your creativity.
Yea no prob I'll do a proper write up with pics

I love the electronic door decks but it seems to be a thing with them to keep the capstan running all the time no matter what make it is, my pioneer deck is just the same, its annoying because it puts unecessary wear on the motor and capstan sleeve bearing.
With this mod I've just put a microswitch on the head gear section that puts the head up and down, soon as the head gear engages it hits the switch and turns the capstan on, I spliced in to one wire of the capstan motor the + live and just put switch on the wire.

Last edited by SegaMDJ; 07-31-2014 at 05:04 PM.
  #4  
Old 07-31-2014, 05:56 PM
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Why don't you just use a timer to shut everything off? I use a timer and set it for 30, 60, 90 or pretty much any amount of time I want. I use it ti shut off the tape deck, and amplifier.
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  #5  
Old 07-31-2014, 06:11 PM
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The logic to those that notice these capstan motor running all the time is that in some cases it is needed. Say you are editing a tape trying to add songs to the end of another very tightly. If the flywheels are at stop the motor and speed will need to come up to the correct value and in your case the motor might not be at speed when it is stopped. I came across a complaint that the speed is not right on start up on a Onkyo TA2700. In this design the motor is allowed to stop but unless you have a real good belt on, the speed will droop at the beginning which will be noticed. This now might be your problem from full stop as well. Maybe you don't do editing but the Engineers had to design around all possible uses. Plus they made money when you had them serviced but not anymore.
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  #6  
Old 08-01-2014, 12:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Web Police View Post
Why don't you just use a timer to shut everything off? I use a timer and set it for 30, 60, 90 or pretty much any amount of time I want. I use it ti shut off the tape deck, and amplifier.
Yea that is fine for anything other than tape deck. I tried that and on some decks even when you chop power the head still remains up and the tape still pinched, when you turn it back on take the tape out you have a nice little crease on the tape and as someone who takes good care if his tapes I like them sounding good for as long as poss.


Also to the poster above , no mate I have no speed issues its pretty quick at firing up the capstan and no drop in speed I can still edit fine with this deck.
  #7  
Old 08-01-2014, 02:06 AM
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Smile

I will keep mine spinning thank you.
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  #8  
Old 08-01-2014, 02:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skywavebe View Post
The logic to those that notice these capstan motor running all the time is that in some cases it is needed ... (snip)... in this design the motor is allowed to stop but unless you have a real good belt on, the speed will droop at the beginning which will be noticed.
OK, but then what is the rationale for having a deck with a direct drive capstan constantly spinning (like the Technics RS-B565)?
  #9  
Old 08-01-2014, 03:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SegaMDJ View Post
Yea that is fine for anything other than tape deck. I tried that and on some decks even when you chop power the head still remains up and the tape still pinched, when you turn it back on take the tape out you have a nice little crease on the tape and as someone who takes good care if his tapes I like them sounding good for as long as poss.


Also to the poster above , no mate I have no speed issues its pretty quick at firing up the capstan and no drop in speed I can still edit fine with this deck.
I'd say it is sufficient to program the timer to stop a few minutes more than the tape side lenght.
  #10  
Old 08-01-2014, 03:08 AM
Warped Bezel Warped Bezel is offline
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I tend to want a deck with a working auto-stop...the other notion is that when you are timing a recording like that for time-shifting, the program time should somewhat match the tape side running time or it should be an autoreverse deck with an end of side 2 shut off.

If you are wanting to wake up with one, as an ALARM CLOCK...the deck should be able to be set in PAUSE in TIMER mode and the pause will disengage, heads return back to play/rec position when power is applied by the timer, which makes sense all around anyhow. A soft landing is a good thing, although I'm not sure the alternative is as deadly as some surmise.

Take a good look at your timer functions if you have the manual or I do suggest you find it or a similar one.
  #11  
Old 08-01-2014, 04:45 AM
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There are two reasons why a capstan runs continuously.
  • this was already explained by Skywavebe. The need to have the inertial mass of the flywheel in motion when the PLAY is engaged. This will prevent the "houling" (the same principle as changing the speed from 33 to 45 for a turntable). It also allows for a slower (like a BMW is slower than a Porsche) start, that would save the belt from mechanical stress.
  • the second issue is the belt training. Many decks have a sharp turn of the belt around the motor, which can lead to permanent mechanical deformations. If the belt rotates, the tension is distributed evenly.

The negative aspect is that the motor runs non-stop, which would cause:
  • energy consumption
  • premature use of the bearings
  • premature use of the belt
  • premature use of the motor brushes

Nevertheless these issues have been discussed here
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Old 08-01-2014, 05:06 AM
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I wonder why a motor timer wasn't used, similarly to VCRs?

Most VCRs keep the drum spinned up for a reasonable amount of time with a tape loaded. E.g. if you engage "STOP" from "PLAY", the drum will keep spinning for 2-5 minutes depending on the VCR design, so that for short pauses, quick reviews etc. it won't have to spin up all the way again. Most VCR capstans stop spinning though, and they are DD.

Also, if there's no belt to worry about, why do some DD decks still keep the capstan on? Aren't the electronics rapid enough to bring it up to speed almost instantly or to engage the pinch roller only after the proper speed has been achieved?
  #13  
Old 08-01-2014, 05:44 AM
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Just put a vid on my youtube page if anyone's interested lol i know some of the hardcore tapeheads wont do this to their beloved decks but I haha like to fiddle and fart about with electronics to suit my needs

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KB-0SpJetDE
  #14  
Old 08-01-2014, 05:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SegaMDJ View Post
Yea that is fine for anything other than tape deck. I tried that and on some decks even when you chop power the head still remains up and the tape still pinched, when you turn it back on take the tape out you have a nice little crease on the tape and as someone who takes good care if his tapes I like them sounding good for as long as poss.


Also to the poster above , no mate I have no speed issues its pretty quick at firing up the capstan and no drop in speed I can still edit fine with this deck.
Quote:
Originally Posted by vince666 View Post
I'd say it is sufficient to program the timer to stop a few minutes more than the tape side lenght.
I always set the timer for longer then the tape so I never had that problem.

If it works then cut off the motor.
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Last edited by Web Police; 08-01-2014 at 05:57 AM.
  #15  
Old 08-01-2014, 07:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Velktron View Post
I wonder why a motor timer wasn't used, similarly to VCRs?

Most VCRs keep the drum spinned up for a reasonable amount of time with a tape loaded. E.g. if you engage "STOP" from "PLAY", the drum will keep spinning for 2-5 minutes depending on the VCR design, so that for short pauses, quick reviews etc. it won't have to spin up all the way again. Most VCR capstans stop spinning though, and they are DD.

Also, if there's no belt to worry about, why do some DD decks still keep the capstan on? Aren't the electronics rapid enough to bring it up to speed almost instantly or to engage the pinch roller only after the proper speed has been achieved?
VHS stops the spinning because the tape might be damaged - think that the tape would have been hit some 9000x during that time by the heads, also that would have been some 9000 passes of the head upon the same thin tape track

It's not the heads, but the tape, contrary to common myths in this field.

All VHS I've seen stopped the drum instantly when STOP has been depressed. The drum was not actively braked, just left rotating and let the friction do the rest. A good bearing allows it to spin for quite a long period of time. This actually helps recovering if the user presses again PLAY within this time.
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Old 08-01-2014, 09:21 AM
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Nak 48x, LX-3,LX-5 shut the capstan off when hit the stop button.
at Rec + pause it is spinning.

I found that it sounds a bit better if the electronics is constantly on, which is possible with these decks.

Last edited by active; 08-01-2014 at 09:25 AM.
  #17  
Old 08-01-2014, 09:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ghitulescu View Post
VHS stops the spinning because the tape might be damaged - think that the tape would have been hit some 9000x during that time by the heads, also that would have been some 9000 passes of the head upon the same thin tape track
Only that VCRs actually slacken or partially "unthread" the tape when not actually in playback mode. The tape is in full contact with the spinning drum and tensioned only during regular playback and freeze-frame mode, while even FF/REW modes cause just a tiny bit of slacking in most designs. In all other modes, the tape is at least partially unthreaded, though the degree depends on whether the VCR has a "fast response" mecha or not.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ghitulescu View Post
All VHS I've seen stopped the drum instantly when STOP has been depressed. The drum was not actively braked, just left rotating and let the friction do the rest. A good bearing allows it to spin for quite a long period of time. This actually helps recovering if the user presses again PLAY within this time.
All "modern" VCRs with quick-response mechas actually allow a couple of minutes before you can actually hear the drum spinning down, when in STOP mode. If you wait too much or actually eject the tape, only then they allow it to spin down completely. Older VCRs may shut it down completely and even unload the tape each time you hit "STOP".
  #18  
Old 08-01-2014, 09:52 AM
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Is there a way to see without opening the top

I think my NAD 6300 keeps spining
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  #19  
Old 08-01-2014, 10:23 AM
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Open the cassette door and look. If your eyesight can't confirm - touch one of the capstans (you should be able to feel it turning). The 6300 capstan runs constantly if I remember.

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  #20  
Old 08-01-2014, 11:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by active View Post
Nak 48x, LX-3,LX-5 shut the capstan off when hit the stop button.
at Rec + pause it is spinning.
IMO, this would be the best compromise of performance / wear saving.

It could be modded into decks with a constantly running capstan with a limit switch (like SegaMDJ showed us) and the addition of a toggle switch. To select between "capstan always on" for recording and "capstan toggled by limit switch) for playback duties.
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