Broken Gear Wheel And Worn Out Sliding Pots Found In An Antique Philips Cassette Player
This antique Cassette Recorder was brought to me by my regular customer from a faraway place and was one among the six he brought at a time. The set looked lying unused for quite a long time. I opened and cleaned the set thoroughly. Found broken pieces of some wheel lying around. So, dismantled the whole set and dismantled the mechanism assembly to locate which wheel was broken.
As you can see from the above picture, the wheel was made of celluloid and was engaging the play wheel.
My hunt with techie friends helped me fetch the exact replacement along with the original set of pinch roller and I replaced this wheel:
I lubricated the wheels with silicon grease and applied power to the motor and found that the mechanism was working well. Surprisingly, there was no need to change the belt and it was found in tact. As the set was found having undergone servicing before, perhaps the previous technician had replaced it.
I did a thorough retouch of all solders, in the process of which I also replaced all the electrolytic caps on the board. Found that the volume, Bass and Treble controls had rusted badly and the tracks were worn out. I had to spray WD40 and apply pressure for moving the controls up and down. The controls were found open when checked in multimeter.
So hunted for a 10K, B type, 45mm length slip locking sliding type volume controls, as these were not available in the market. After sending messages to around 200 of my contacts, one spares parts dealer helped me locate an antique parts dealer in Indore, Madya Pradesh. I spoke to him and paid money by Google Pay and bought ten pieces, planning to keep these rare to get parts in stock. The pots were found original in its packing! Removed and fixed the new pots, which were found to be exact replacement for size of pot and its height.
After fixing these back, applied power and found that the tape was not moving because the pinch roller had worn out. So replaced it with the original I got from my techie friend. The set worked perfectly well. The head actually needed replacement, as recording was not good enough.
But customer did not want to do any recording and further the play was really good. So, I did not replace the head though I had a spare one in stock. I allowed it to run for several hours. Mission accomplished very well with utmost satisfaction causing it to jump and join others in the bag! (LOL)
Special Notes: From this article, one can learn (1) Never give up looking for parts and solutions. Hunt, hunt and hunt until you get what you want, as the aim is to bring the device back to working condition. (2) Never ever return an old device without retouching solder joints all around the board and replacing all the electrolytic capacitors, especially when the set has been lying unused for a prolonged time. (3) Why the customer is bringing such antique sets? It is because of his love for it. We should reciprocate that feeling and never spare our efforts to restore it back to the original condition. (4) Servicing is not always for money, but the thrill we get when we accomplish the results that fetch utmost satisfaction to the customer.
This article was prepared for you by Parasuraman Subramanian from India. He is 72 years old and has more than 30 years’ experience in handling antique equipment like Valve Radio, Amps, Reel Tape Recorders and currently studying latest tech-classes conducted by Kerala State Electronics Technicians’ Association. He has done graduation in BBA degree, private diploma in Radio Engineering and retired as MD of a USA company. Presently working as Consultant to Hospital and other institutions.
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