Repair of Luxman and Pioneer Tape Decks

Skywavebe

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Jun 13, 2010
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412
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Bensenville, IL
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Work too much
#81
There are a lot of decks I have worked on and of course many I have not. In also working with Nakmandan who did a lot of decks at his place for me he also said the same thing as I did in terms of Aiwa decks. Aiwa may have a nice performance in some of them but they are a nightmare to work on with wires everywhere and then very congested. Over 46 years I have worked on all kinds of stuff.
Recently Dan had a BIC deck over to my bench and we found it was designed terribly by fixed ressistors where pots should be- I think Dan was going to put trimmer in it to make it adjustable- it is amazing what some companies will do to get buy just to make profit. Teac did it too in the 112, the 202 and 302 to name a few. These are junk units- I can fix the 112 but the 202 and 302 I will not take in.
There are decks that are a horrible design with regard to service. NAD is one of then. Nevertheless I do fix the 6300 as they have Sankyo transports.
A lot of Sony decks look clean and have fancy open door functions but then again are very hard to work on. This has gone over to Teac decks like the V6030 or V8030 which are built with real abstract thinking. When you have to take face plates off to get a transport out then more that just adds to the hours that is taken to repair a deck which results in very high labor cost.
Funny as it seems I like working on Tascam 122 Mk II, Mk III decks not because they are all that much better but they were built to be easy to service.
I do them all the time and yes they did not use the correct grease and in some cases have belt cam and then gear cam drive which really made no difference because the hard grease causes more problems for the gear driven deck than the belt driven one. There are a lot of decks that are nice to work on like the BX300 Nakamichi. I have found and have heard from reports from guys I work with that the esoteric decks like Revox and Tandberg are not at all friendly to service and also in Revox requires you to make a switch panel device to program the B215. The Tandberg I had here was a mess and even tough I was able to get it back together with it un-numbered cable connections which I call a stupid design, I did not find it all that great a unit to go chasing after. If you want to chase something I say a ZX7 or ZX9 Nakamichi. I have Teac Z6000 here in my collection and they work well when serviced properly but they do have a cam belt in them that goes bad and the boards may have Marcon caps which have proven over time to be like the purple caps in Technics decks.
The Z6000 is one of the best Teac made but they did not have access to the Nakamichi Sendust heads which all Technicians know you can not beat the Nakamichi head design. It is their heads that make the big difference not the rest of the decks as the Dragon is built with a plastic frame and multiple board layers. The Z6000 is superior in construction in this as well as the C-1 and even C-3RX but again they don't have that Nakamichi heads. Their low end CD-1 from Nakamich was a bucket design and terrible to have to do repair work due to the whole board has to come out to get to the parts- they then turns into a basket case and how are you suppose to work on that?

Keep in mind the "better" Tascam 122 Mk III has many fewer pots inside so that it is not superior to the Mk II but a cheapen out version of the Mk II.
They should have left that Mk II design in there and improved on it rather than tried to find a way to get away with a better deck that was with fewer adjustments- fewer adjustments mean it does not work as well with all the tape types and Chrome and Metal are a single bias adjustment in the Mk III. That is a very stupid mistake and I would never have approved that. I wonder who was in charge over there Engineers or Marketing?
As most of you know I report what I see regardless of brand or maker. The Z7000 is a nightmare to work on as other than a circuit description book we have no way to know what the thing is doing. Many of then do not record and it is due to the Auto Cal chip that is in the way. I have not found the answer as it would probably take a lot of time but it most likely is a bad cap somewhere as a lot of them are like that- probably a Marcon.

You know it is with age that we find out the true nature of these decks and how good they are- all in all Teac did a pretty good job except when they went chasing profits as their number one goal- then things went south. Look what they make today- a deck with a spec of .25% W&F. How can you offer this when you are competing with digital devices with 0% wow and flutter? Stupid again.
 
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Skywavebe

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Jun 13, 2010
Messages
412
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Bensenville, IL
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Work too much
#82
There are going to be opposing opinions and those that like Tandberg in Germany and Denmark and so when you need them fixed send them to those guys since they like them that much. How can a company put that many connectors in a deck and many of them alike and give no labels to anything? When I put the deck back together it took me an hout just to put every connector back using the schematic so no mistakes were made- I know all too well that if you hook a power connector to the wrong place and blow out chips that this is a thng to avoid and I was not looking for more trouble on the Tandberg I had here. Some one told me that works on them that correction of the azimuth knob was easy- well he did not tell me that you have the take the transport apart to get to the frozen up parts that I don't think he had come across yet- the brass piece was frozen up not the knob. It is therefore NOT very easy to service this and one reason I don't want to see one again. Then there are the cheap meters that fail. How can there be a good unit with cheap meters in it.
 

Bob Boyer

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Apr 24, 2013
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645
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Chattanooga, TN
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---
#83
And that's the way it is, September 2, 2020. (In my best Walter Cronkite voice...)

Thanks, Sam for those thoughts; it's always good to know what's worth chasing and what isn't from a technician's standpoint. Because at some point, those of us who aren't techs are going to be paying techs to work on this stuff. Happy techs are good techs.

Bob
 

Travis Henley

New Around These Parts
Joined
Aug 28, 2020
Messages
23
#84
Yeah Sam...I appreciate the insight as well. The voice of experience is always valued with me and Im sure, others. Thank you very much for the detailed reply. Oh....and I'm sure the marketing department and the accountants overrule the engineers as far as design goes....the dollar is the ultimate concern these days and i think it has been for a long time. I recently serviced a Teac r777x for the original owner and I must say it was very serviceable....nice design. I've also serviced a mixture if Nak's lately and the standout as far as sound quality to me was the ZX7. I like the old Pioneer tape decks too but I am struggling to find a workaround for the 950 and 1250 takeup reel motor replacements. I need to spend some time on that project i guess. Thanks again,,,,Travis
 

Skywavebe

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Jun 13, 2010
Messages
412
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Bensenville, IL
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Work too much
#85
Nakmandan on another forum was using a regular motor in that location and had to put some resistors to slow it down and it seemed to work. In these repairs where original parts are not to be had or old ones trusted, you need to put what can be had in them and sometimes change the circuit to adapt to the new part. I don't know if Nakmandan is on this site but that is the name on the Tapeheads site. He is no longer fixing decks so much full time now and as far as I know not taking new one in.
In the idler cracking problem that Mark the fixer did on AK site, it turns out he is about a mile away from me and Dan and I have visited his place. So there is a solution of the cracked nylon Idler drum as it looks like.
 

Skywavebe

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Jun 13, 2010
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412
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Bensenville, IL
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Work too much
#86
Dan is also working on a Luxman that came to us in very broken up form from Brazil or some country like that- Postal is NOT the way to send these heavier devices and people do things all the time that amaze me. The Postal system in USA is by far the worse shipper of any item even exceeding the UPS. I use Fed Ex all the time usually the Ground service.
 

Travis Henley

New Around These Parts
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Aug 28, 2020
Messages
23
#87
I try to stay away from mailing anything if I can but when I have to I pack it like its eggs...sometimes that's not enough. Thanks for the info on the pioneer motors and idler issues. I enjoy making things operate as they should. When I get back on the pioneer's I will post my findings and solutions,,,,,Travis
 

Skywavebe

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Joined
Jun 13, 2010
Messages
412
Location
Bensenville, IL
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Work too much
#88
I do use the Priority postal for small 1 oz parts and things that they should not be able to mess up but I did have a pair of RC101 sent to CA that they said they delivered and the guy never got them and then they were insured but I never got a dime from the post office even with the insurance- it was later found out the replacement postal person threw the box on someone lawn and left it there not delivering it at all and then they never settled on the claim. People wonder why the Unibomber exists- it is government buffoons that cause regular people to get pissed and do these kinds of things. I was a Patrolman in the town where his brother lived that broke the case. It is never mentioned in the Movie but it was Lombard.
 

nakdoc

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May 11, 2011
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463
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Nashville, TN Music City
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highly biased
#89
For performance, initial cost, and ease of repair, the Nakamichi BX1,BX2, BX100, BX125, BX150, CR1 cannot be beat. These lowly 2 head decks perform better than most 3 head decks! If you can find a vintage JVC deck with sendust heads, they too are great for the money.
Travis, I have a used Pioneer reel motor - in fact it is a mech from a CTF-900 IIRC.
 

Travis Henley

New Around These Parts
Joined
Aug 28, 2020
Messages
23
#90
Thats good news on the reel motor. Let me know your price and how you prefer to get paid. To be honest....I have never met a Nak that didnt sound and record well to my ears. My old 600 is amazing to me...especially when I keep the alignment touched up every now and then. Thanks Nakdoc....Travis
 
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