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Vintage Tape (Audio), Cassette, Wire and Magnetic Disc Recorders and Players Open-reel tape recorders, cassette recorders, 8-track players etc.

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Old 7th Dec 2020, 3:48 pm   #1
Martin Bush
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Default 8 track head and capstan cleaning

Hi all

Another 8 track question from me.

I know all about the need to clean the tape path in my 8 track player and know how to do this (or at least I will when I open the player up).

However I have spotted that a reputable online supplier has a NOS 8 track head and capstan cleaning cart for sale for £18.

Is this likely to be a good investment?

I don't fancy opening the machine up on a regular basis if I don't want to, but I also don't want to damage the heads etc if anyone thinks that this sort of cart is a bit of a blunt instrument.

Martin
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Old 7th Dec 2020, 4:50 pm   #2
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Default Re: 8 track head and capstan cleaning

Hi Martin,

I think it's fair to say, that Tape cleaning Cartridges, or Cassettes are
never going to do the Job as well as proper manual cleaning with
Alcohol and a Lint free pad of some description.

This was true when the Cartridges/Cassettes were new.
A NOS cartridge ? Well who knows how good that will be now.

I think Vintage Equipment like 8-Tracks, are best served with a
"going the extra Mile" attitude.
They are not difficult to open up and get too, for cleaning.

You need to be very careful cleaning VCR Heads manually, but 8-Track
Heads (and Compact Cassette Heads) are quite tough, so you are unlikely
to do any damged.


Just my Two Pennies worth.



Ian
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Old 7th Dec 2020, 5:00 pm   #3
Martin Bush
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Default Re: 8 track head and capstan cleaning

Cheers Ian.

I think compact cassette cleaners were best avoided even when new. I couldn't see into the 8 track one I mention so I wondered if they might be somehow better - why I thought that I don't know
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Old 7th Dec 2020, 7:42 pm   #4
llama
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Default Re: 8 track head and capstan cleaning

Surely you can get enough access through the cart slot.
Graham
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Old 7th Dec 2020, 8:28 pm   #5
ben
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Default Re: 8 track head and capstan cleaning

I used to have a double ended 8 track cleaner bought in a job lot form a boot sale. All it was was a sponge pad at one end to scrub the capstan, and (I think) a short length of cloth tape at the other. Effectiveness: comparable to tea-making receptacle constructed form cacao type products

More practically, the slot in an 8 track is usually wide enough for most people to move a Q tip (or two taped together for length) over the head.
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Old 7th Dec 2020, 9:23 pm   #6
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Default Re: 8 track head and capstan cleaning

Not worth spending £18 for something like this when you can manually clean the transport with a Q tip and isopropyl alcohol for much less and with much better results. I avoid any cleaning tapes/cartridges.

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Old 8th Dec 2020, 1:20 pm   #7
Martin Bush
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Default Re: 8 track head and capstan cleaning

Thanks chaps. I did suspect that the cleaning cart might be tat, but as I couldn't see the workings I wasn't sure.

I probably can get access through the slot. I may go inside the first time at least as I'm interested in seeing more and want to be sure I am poking in the right direction
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