Mark’s CT-F850 arrived- some questions…

J!m

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#21
D’s are around $2 each…

But yeah, SA (or Maxell) won’t leave you with much change from a tenner these days.
 

MarkWComer

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#22
That’s great!

if you get the internal bias set for those tapes you’ll have more range of adjustments to fine tune each lot.
I wouldn't be adjusting anything internally for the Walmart cassettes until you've found an older formulation which is an economical alternative cassette you can buy in bulk. You have to up your price point to the $5-$7 per cassette range, as a starting point. Give your deck a fighting chance to do what its supposed to do.

Nando.
This is exactly why I won’t complain until I try a few different formulations. If I set for one formulation, others won’t work as well. The tape I’m using now may be absolute garbage, and to “normalize” bias for it will throw others completely off.
 

J!m

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#23
PM me your address and I’ll send you some tapes to play with.

Once I finally get Nando and Bob’s tapes out the door…
 

MarkWComer

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#24
Somebody give me some recommendations:

What do you use to clean heads?

What do you use to demag heads?
 

J!m

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#25
Clean with 90+% isopropyl alcohol on a swab before every recording and as needed otherwise.

I don’t demag other than a little TDK demag cassette. And not very often.
 

Elite-ist

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#26
I use 99% IPA on the entire tape path: heads, capstan shafts and pinch rollers. I, rarely, demagnetize the heads, but when I do, it's with a pencil-type demagnetizer.

c13c03f1-9194-403f-8d0e-fd3a246762c0_zpsf8sey1gb.jpg

Nando.
 

Elite-ist

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#28
I've been using 99% IPA on pinch rollers for years. This might be a bone of contention for others. Ask any of the technicians what their professional experience is with cleaning rubber pinch rollers.

Nando.
 

BlazeES

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#29
If IPA is fine for condoms... it has to be Ok for use on pinch rollers & belts. So says ASTM... :p

https://www.astm.org/DIGITAL_LIBRARY/JOURNALS/TESTEVAL/PAGES/JTE20130069.htm

All joking aside, there are a whole host of environmental impacts that hammer pinch rollers - over time - that degrade the shape, resiliency and surface tensions. IPA as a single variable is statistically low impact - short of soaking said parts in IPA for prolonged periods of time. That said, if a pinch roller or set of pinch rollers in a machine were formed poorly to begin with and/or have been exposed to extreme environmental conditions along with natural aging - IPA will accelerate their breakdown... predominantly the breakdown of the surface tensions that keep them in their designed shape. Pinch rollers don't turn to goo like belts. There are good reasons for that.

Bottom line: Use IPA sparingly & rubber conditioners even more sparingly... and prosper.
 

J!m

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#31
Teaser…

5C3CB2F2-1FB3-4E8D-AD30-A5384B345FE2.jpeg

I’ll try to get some of these out to you along with the tapes for Nando and Bob.

Besides being busy, I’m not totally happy with the tape… I keep thinking I’ll re-do it and don’t have time. Sucks.
 

Elite-ist

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#32
That's very generous of you, Jim. That vintage of TDK Ds are going to be good stock for Mark's CT-F850.

Nando.
 

J!m

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#33
Yeah I got these long before I was on any of the tape forums. Probably 2008/9 time frame? Anyway, I recall I couldn’t find any SA tapes at the time, which was a bummer.

But since I got these, they have been stored well. 60 minute length so I rarely use any of them.

I’m happy to share a few for the cause.
 

MarkWComer

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#34
Yeah I got these long before I was on any of the tape forums. Probably 2008/9 time frame? Anyway, I recall I couldn’t find any SA tapes at the time, which was a bummer.

But since I got these, they have been stored well. 60 minute length so I rarely use any of them.

I’m happy to share a few for the cause.
Uhmmm… If they’re aimed at me personally, don’t send so many! Others can benefit, and I found that those cheap- ass Warmalt tapes compare quite favorably. I cleared off their rack of them, BTW. At that price? How could I possibly go wrong? And they perform perfectly!

Shits & Giggles time: this deck runs too slow! One side of a C-90 took 45:17!
(Of course, this is well within what you can call “accurate” speed…) 17B96F7B-2BDA-4DC8-AF22-75A4EC835D9D.jpeg
 

MarkWComer

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#37
I am planning to send you four or five of them. Enough to see if the old tapes can hold up against the state of the art from Walmart.
I have to tell you- I’ve been on a little shopping spree, have 7 SA’s and 5 D’s coming from fleabay, this on top of the six Warmalts, ten 60 min. ATRs, and a found D90 at my sister’s house. Thanks for the offer, but I’m starting to get a Σч!Гλφαδ of them already! Just wanna be fair…
 
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#39
Shits & Giggles time: this deck runs too slow! One side of a C-90 took 45:17!
(Of course, this is well within what you can call “accurate” speed…) View attachment 55218
two things....

1) tapes usually have some more tape than their suppoused lenght, then the deck might also be fast, depending on how much extra tape is into that specific cassette...
in other words, you cannot draw any conclusions with such a test.

2) the only proper way to check/set speed is to use a proper speed reference tape (usually with 3000 hz or 3150 hz tone recorded on) and a frequency meter....
it's easier, faster and more precise than what you just tried there.
 

MarkWComer

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#40
two things....

1) tapes usually have some more tape than their suppoused lenght, then the deck might also be fast, depending on how much extra tape is into that specific cassette...
in other words, you cannot draw any conclusions with such a test.

2) the only proper way to check/set speed is to use a proper speed reference tape (usually with 3000 hz or 3150 hz tone recorded on) and a frequency meter....
it's easier, faster and more precise than what you just tried there.
Exactly! Looking for a calibration tape. If the deck goes at 2ips, playback at 2ips will sound perfect- until it’s played on another deck.

Yeah, I know this is a bogus way to check speed…
 
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