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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 23rd May 2024, 12:55 pm   #1
af024
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Default Ricoh Synchrofax Mains Connector Query

I have a 240Va.c. 50Hz version of the Ricoh Synchrofax otherwise known as the 3M Sound Page. Techmoan on YouTube did a fantastic presentation of one he his in his possession. Unfortunately mine is missing a suitable mains lead and I wondered if anyone here might know what it is and how I might be able to acquire one please? I guess it's going to be a tough call.

It 's about the same size (and similar pin spacing) as a standard modern square pin 3 pin IEC, but the device has round pins - please see photo.

I did wonder if a standard modern 3 pin IEC connector might be coaxed into a fit (of sorts, perhaps with a little persuasion) - even the wiring would be suitable (earth pin centre etc) but no, the pins are just that bit too large in diameter.

So frustrating ...

Kind regards,

Andy
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Old 23rd May 2024, 1:06 pm   #2
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Default Re: Ricoh Synchrofax Mains Connector Query

PS The second photo (the connector close-up) seems to be upside down (it's the right way up in my Explorer though, all very strange). Just stand on your head and you'll be ok! Thank you.
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Old 23rd May 2024, 2:12 pm   #3
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Default Re: Ricoh Synchrofax Mains Connector Query

Can you post the dimensions - pin diameter and spacing, and the rectangular recess?
I may have a matching plug.
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Old 23rd May 2024, 2:17 pm   #4
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Default Re: Ricoh Synchrofax Mains Connector Query

That connector looks very similar to the 3 core power cable plugs / sockets that used to come with things like mains powered strimmers, mowers etc . where a safety earth was required before everything went class 2 insulation. Worth investigating ?
Another thought would just to fit an iec socket and then cables are plentiful
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Old 23rd May 2024, 2:36 pm   #5
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Default Re: Ricoh Synchrofax Mains Connector Query

Interesting, had never heard of it before.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kdfTuE9XHas

David
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Old 23rd May 2024, 3:31 pm   #6
af024
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Default Re: Ricoh Synchrofax Mains Connector Query

Sorry for the delay in responding m0cemdave, I was trying to make a drawing. Hopefully the attached will do the job. It's probably not quite to scale, but not far off. It's not that easy to measure up actually, but I think it's pretty much ok.

I know what you mean about the 3 pin types for gardening tools and equipment spamfritter. It does remind me a bit of those, but the pins are much smaller. I'd love to keep it original if at all possible, so I'm resisting to do a swap for a standard IEC at this time.

Yes it's a weird thing DMcMahon, that's for sure. I do love weird and wonderful recording formats though.

Thank you.
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Last edited by af024; 23rd May 2024 at 3:35 pm. Reason: Typo correction
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Old 23rd May 2024, 3:46 pm   #7
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Default Re: Ricoh Synchrofax Mains Connector Query

That looks like like a match.

Details of the connector that I have:

Branded Hirakawa, Number VM0058, moulded onto a 2 metre 3 core mains cable

Rectangular shell 23 x 13 mm

Pin spacing 8 mm
Outer pins are on centreline of shell
Centre pin offset 2 mm

Wiring is L - E - N with offset pin uppermost

To fit pin diameter somewhere between 2.5 and 3.0 mm (hard to measure, checked with the blunt end of a couple of drills, neither fit)
sockets are D-shaped, but probably to fit circular pins

Yours FOC if you want it. This has been in my box of miscellaneous mains leads for years and I've never found a use for it (hopefully that will remain the case after this...)
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Old 23rd May 2024, 3:51 pm   #8
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Default Re: Ricoh Synchrofax Mains Connector Query

Ooooh, that does indeed look like it will do the job. Yes please! How fantastic is that!? Thank you so much m0cemdave. Wonderful! I'll drop you a PM right away. Thank you again. Kind regards, Andy
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Old 23rd May 2024, 10:20 pm   #9
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Default Re: Ricoh Synchrofax Mains Connector Query

What can you tell us about your pliers, Dave? I've got these on my mind 'cos I keep hoping someone will ask me what I want for my birthday or Christmas

Maun Flat Nose Nylon Parallel Plier
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Old 24th May 2024, 10:03 am   #10
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Default Re: Ricoh Synchrofax Mains Connector Query

Unfortunately this won't be much help - it's not a pliers but a set of jaws, part of a vice kit.

They were sold by RS in the 80's / 90's and were horrendously expensive. They came in a plastic case with various attachments and there were a couple of different kits available. I'm not sure who actually made them. They are not the same as Pan-a-Vise kits.

Mine were all picked up cheaply from radio rallies and have been extremely useful over the years.
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Old 25th May 2024, 12:47 am   #11
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Default Re: Ricoh Synchrofax Mains Connector Query

That's a nice kit Dave, I've not seen those. I keep looking covetously at those Pan-a-Vise systems, I notice it's cheaper to buy them new from RS than used from eBay.
But we're going off topic, this needs its own thread in Workshop Equipment.
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Old 25th May 2024, 10:41 am   #12
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Default Re: Ricoh Synchrofax Mains Connector Query

Wow this is a blast from the past. Some years ago I bought one of these (actually two, but the first had a rusted play/record head) from Yahoo Japan auctions. My mother used one years ago at university for her degree to make recorded pages with nice drawings on the pages (that she did). I even helped with the sound effects in the recordings as a kid. She then kept all these pages in her dissertation folder, and for many years I wanted to be able to play them. Anyway, mission was accomplished, and she heard them again, and I even digitised the recordings for good measure. A piece of family history for me, really.
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Old 28th May 2024, 12:43 pm   #13
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Default Re: Ricoh Synchrofax Mains Connector Query

Hello m0cemdave,

I'm over the moon! The lead you kindly sent me is exactly what was needed. I thought I'd never see one, even if I lived to 100. How amazing is that - not only that you actually had one, but you also had an inkling from my photo and dodgy measurements, that it would be the right thing for this device (and actually knew where it was in your stock!).

I'm truly amazed and very grateful.

There are some wonderful folk on this forum who bend over backwards to help others. Thank you so much m0cemdave, I can't tell you how pleased I am.

Now for a play ...

Kind regards,

Andy
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Old 28th May 2024, 12:54 pm   #14
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Default Re: Ricoh Synchrofax Mains Connector Query

.... and it even works, despite slightly slack belts! Yippppeeee!! I'm going to have some fun with this, that's for sure. Talking pages on the way ...
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Old 28th May 2024, 2:40 pm   #15
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Default Re: Ricoh Synchrofax Mains Connector Query

And it's found a use for a mystery cable that was cluttering up my workshop for years / decades.
A good result!

Also, an example of how useful these message boards are - thanks to Paul (et al) for running them.
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Old 28th May 2024, 2:51 pm   #16
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Default Re: Ricoh Synchrofax Mains Connector Query

Indeed! Thank you very much!
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