Cleaning rubber capstans

Discussion in 'Recording/Live Sound' started by TheTrowerFreak, Mar 4, 2006.


  1. TheTrowerFreak

    TheTrowerFreak Member

    Messages:
    216
    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2004
    Is there a household/auto item that will do a decent job without causing deterioration?

    TTF
     
  2. loudboy

    loudboy Member

    Messages:
    27,444
    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2003
    Location:
    Sedona, AZ
    Windex or rubbing alcohol.

    Do NOT use Tascam's Rubber Cleaner - it ruined the capstan on my old 38 1/2" deck.

    Loudboy
     
  3. TheTrowerFreak

    TheTrowerFreak Member

    Messages:
    216
    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2004
    Windex, it is.

    Thanks.

    TTF
     
  4. LSchefman

    LSchefman Supporting Member

    Messages:
    13,448
    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2002
    First off, it is well known in the old analog deck community that some rubber parts spec'd by European and even American firms were not properly cured, and turned to goo, or simply fell apart, and I'd suspect this caused the problem loudboy had, not the Tascam stuff.

    I don't recommend Windex for parts on analog decks. Windex and most glass cleaners have "wetting agents" that aren't specified but in fact are detergents, solvents, fragrance, Ammonium Hydroxide, and alcohol; in other words, there's a lot of stuff in there to gunk up your machine and actually dry out or damage the parts, and in most cases, it isn't even listed on the bottle.

    Rubbing alchohol is also the WRONG kind of alcohol, because it is ethyl alcohol with various chemical additives and water, only contains 50% alchohol by volume in most cases, and it tends to dry out rubber worse than plain isopropyl alchohol. It's designed for rubdowns, hence the name, and not for things like prepping syringes, which requires greater purity in the alcohol content. Even isopropyl alcohol isn't great for rubber parts, but it's a lot easier on them than rubbing alcohol. If you're going to use alcohol, which isn't all that bad, use isopropyl.

    However, there are any number of A/V part and head cleaning products on the market that are designed to be used on these machines. I use a product by Geneva, which is specifically formulated for cleaning the tape path, and doesn't harm rubber or plastic, but as I said, the standard thing to use is standard isopropyl alchohol. Not my first choice, but do what ya gotta do.

    I also recommend the use of foam A/V head cleaning swabs, because they don't leave a residue like Q-Tips do. You can get them any number of places, but I think Radio Shack also carries them.

    Incidentally, I used the Tascam rubber cleaner for many years on analog 1" and 2" machines I had and used, and had no problems whatsoever.
     
  5. stratofied

    stratofied Member

    Messages:
    580
    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2004
    I've used this stuff many many times without any problems either.
     
  6. ricoh

    ricoh Member

    Messages:
    1,199
    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2004
    Location:
    surfside fla
    Same here.................................
     
  7. lhallam

    lhallam Member

    Messages:
    15,666
    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2004
    Location:
    Lost
    Ditto
     
  8. Jon C

    Jon C Silver Supporting Member

    Messages:
    14,818
    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2002
    Location:
    Mid Atlantic USA
    same here, nearly 15 yrs. on my old Tandberg cassette decks with no problems.
     
  9. loudboy

    loudboy Member

    Messages:
    27,444
    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2003
    Location:
    Sedona, AZ
    Didn't mean to blow against the wind, just going by what a Tascam Service rep told me.

    My deck had been sitting for a while and I was cleaning it up, to sell. Took the old Tascam Rubber cleaner to it and it turned all the pinch rollers to sticky, gunky crap.

    I'd never had problems w/it before, altho he alluded to it being cumulative.

    Recommended 99% isopropyl for the tape path, which you can get at Walmart.

    And yes, Windex is pretty standard for cleaning the pinch rollers, which perfectly fits his need for something household, that won't cause deterioration.

    Loudboy
     
  10. tone4days

    tone4days Member

    Messages:
    6,157
    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2005
    Location:
    central maryland
    i always thought denatured alcohol was the trick for rubber bits in the tape path and head ... no?
     

Share This Page