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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 13th Jul 2017, 5:45 pm   #1
Levente
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Default Ferrograph Reel Expert Help Please!

I am new to this machine, and about to bring back to life. All checked and sounding really good so far, after 10 minutes of switching the unit on, no short or problem.

On this machine, there is push stop button switch which was fine until the moment that it was not responding, in fact, the button just stuck in a push position, not coming back at all.

With a screwdriver, I can push this back from underneath, but there is no spring mechanism. There is a thin plastic looking plate under the button going to the other side of the switch, moving loosely.

Is this broken completely, or this switch is a type of switch is like a realy...if there is enough power it works, but if not, then it doesn't.

I don't have the manual yet, but about to find this...but if any Ferro expert out there had similar experience, please share.

many Thanks!
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Old 14th Jul 2017, 9:24 am   #2
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Default Re: Ferrograph Reel Expert Help Please!

Hi,
Can you please tell us which model/Series of Ferrograph that you need help with? From your description it sounds like you have a series 6 or earlier. Also a photograph or two showing the part or problem you are having will make it easier for us to help you.
Thanks,
Bill
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Old 14th Jul 2017, 4:39 pm   #3
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Default Re: Ferrograph Reel Expert Help Please!

Hi Bill,

Thanks a lot. It is believed to be a series 3 deck dated around 1957/8 ish half track mono.

Attached a few pic, it is difficult to see from the underside of the switch, but it is visible the button and underneath a thin small plate...this small plate, and the button is basically can be moved and loose now. It was not like this when I Have switched this on, it was doing fine for 10 minutes. I can not see any spring fallen out of this anywhere...

Thanks!


UPDATE> that plate visable under the button side ways at the last pic, came out completely and it seems it has broken off at the other side of the switch where it was connected to I think. Will need to dismantle the whole switch to see inside...damn. I didn't really want to do that...
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Last edited by Levente; 14th Jul 2017 at 5:05 pm. Reason: Update
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Old 14th Jul 2017, 10:51 pm   #4
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Default Re: Ferrograph Reel Expert Help Please!

Hi,
It looks like your stop switch is intact but that the spring moving part of it has broken and no longer pushing the button back up. The spring contact strip appears to have fallen to one side in your photograph. Remember that the contact closes to stop the motors.
I suggest that you dismantle the switch. If the springy contact has indeed broken you may be able to find some suitable thin strip to make a replacement?
The design of the switch is simple and would have been made by the Ferrograph company themselves.
Hope this helps?
Bill
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Old 15th Jul 2017, 5:03 pm   #5
Levente
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Default Re: Ferrograph Reel Expert Help Please!

Thanks Bill,

It really helped indeed, and thank you. It was broken and managed to remake a home made one similar to the original one.

When I hit the stop button, it makes a huge POP for a second..that should not be right I guess....I have not checked any of the components yet, only visually.

Is this a sign of a short or some dodgy cap/resistor?

This machine really sounds like a dream.

Treble is working, the bass adjustment seems not responding....maybe there are also some faulty parts. Time to spend a little time on the amplifier section.

Cheers Bill!

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Old 15th Jul 2017, 10:36 pm   #6
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Default Re: Ferrograph Reel Expert Help Please!

Glad you were able to sort the stop switch out.
A capacitor that can give problems is the suppressor across the motor start switch contacts. It is actually soldered across the switch so is easy to find under the deck plate. If this fails it can short and the motors remain energised. Some versions have two motor switches. May be worth checking this out?
Bill
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Old 16th Jul 2017, 6:46 am   #7
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Default Re: Ferrograph Reel Expert Help Please!

Thanks Bill!

Are you also having one of these machines? Which model?

I have attached a pic, this is the only cap I can see, and I think this is the one you've mentioned.

This is a .1 MFD cap, measuring .055 on my DMM.

I guess this should be replaced as this is the half of the required value.

Have a great Sunday!

Thanks.
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Old 16th Jul 2017, 8:51 am   #8
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Default Re: Ferrograph Reel Expert Help Please!

Quote:
This is a .1 MFD cap, measuring .055 on my DMM.
This information is incorrect, it is .115 on my DMM, and not the value above.
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Old 16th Jul 2017, 5:17 pm   #9
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Default Re: Ferrograph Reel Expert Help Please!

You may or should replace it anyhow even if it measure OK that does not mean it is not leaky. More important if it is DC blocking capacitor in the grid circuit than in this instance but it is well old lets face it.

If a capacitor is leaky and is a grid circuit it messes with the bias voltage on next valve, can cause red plating and over run valve, burns out transformers and when I mean leaky that is DC volts. You may want to think about that when looking at the tape amplifier.
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Old 16th Jul 2017, 5:27 pm   #10
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Default Re: Ferrograph Reel Expert Help Please!

Hi Stevie,

Thanks a lot for your advice.

I have spent the whole afternoon inspecting the unit. Found 3 capacitors completely off value and about 14 resistors off value.

This amp section was recapped by someone earlier, possibly 30 years ago looking at the replacement caps/resistors. All these were spot on correct, however, the ones were not replaced by this person, are all out of values.

There was one cap 0.022 uF measuring about 3uf at the first tube, next to a resistor completely out of value too. Funny, that all the bad resistors are the typical Allen and Bradley once.

I have found two "things" which I am guessing a ceramic capacitor, I have not seen anything like it before. Picture attached.

Could you guys advise on this what it is, or the value? its Blue/Red/Black/Yellow/White dotted.

Thanks a million dudes, Bill, and Steve!

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Old 17th Jul 2017, 11:44 am   #11
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Default Re: Ferrograph Reel Expert Help Please!

You are correct they are both capacitors, the silver one should be OK as it looks like a close tolerance polystyrene capacitor.

The other not sure on but you are probably right that it is a type of ceramic capacitor.

If you do a google search you will find a colour code system for capacitors the same as there was for resistors. It is often to be found on the same old sheet as the resistor code and from memory it has the body shapes on it as well.

You seem to be on the right track tracking down dud components and replacing them.

I just did a quick search and this is what I came up with:https://www.google.co.uk/search?clie...w=1517&bih=731
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Old 17th Jul 2017, 2:46 pm   #12
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Default Re: Ferrograph Reel Expert Help Please!

Hi Levente,
If you are OK reading a circuit diagram and can search out and identify the pin-outs for the valve bases then one of the quickest and safest ways of identifying components such as capacitors is to use a diagram for your machine.
Here is a link to the manual which I think covers your machine:
http://www.morphet.org.uk/ferro/s2docs.html

New capacitors are fairly cheap and 're-capping' an old set like this is pretty much standard procedure. Remember that capacitors may appear ok when across your DMM leads but may 'leak' when under the stress of hundreds of volts.
Hope this helps.
Bill
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Old 17th Jul 2017, 4:31 pm   #13
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Default Re: Ferrograph Reel Expert Help Please!

Steve, Bill,

Thanks so much for your advice and links...

I think some parts on the schematics are different what I am seeing, for example, there is a resistor at the last EL84 socket attached, it s a 270 Ohms drifted above 330 Ohms. This looks like a 1 watt one, but I can not see any of this type or any 1 watt 270 Ohm resistors on the circuit diagram... I can see 1/2 watts. Perhaps, wattage is not crucial at this stage...all of the other resistors are 1/2 watts and smaller, and someone in the past just threw one in there for some filtering reasons?

I believe this amplifier section is an aftermarket/home made. Not a bad one, but slightly different...found a date written on the inside part, '65 February.

Have a great day guys.
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Old 17th Jul 2017, 11:49 pm   #14
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Default Re: Ferrograph Reel Expert Help Please!

Some pictures of the machine in question may help, unless I have missed are we sure which model this is yet?

I think I have most of the circuit diagrams if that helps and possibly the manual.
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Old 18th Jul 2017, 7:29 am   #15
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Default Re: Ferrograph Reel Expert Help Please!

Yes, pictures would certainly help.
On the face of it, someone has bought a Weare & Wright deck from one of the surplus suppliers in the early '60s and paired it with a later pre-amp/amp - possibly home-brew based on the Mullard circuit or tried to emulate an original Ferrograph/Vortexion amp or maybe just bought one of the amps from, say, Sterns. Another possibility is that someone upgraded a commercial tape recorder with that deck. We did sorts of stuff back then! I found an amp circuit in R&TV Servicing and tried to build that.
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Old 18th Jul 2017, 3:02 pm   #16
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Default Re: Ferrograph Reel Expert Help Please!

Hey Guys,

Thanks for that.

The face of the unit is definitely NOT Ferrograph. It has a BTT logo on the left, and all the design is pointing to an after make one. I didn't take a pic of the deck as that is definitely a Ferro, it has two half track mono on two heads plus the erasure head.

Looking at the manual, the part components and schematics, I have managed to locate some of the parts. matching with the schematics.

I can not find a 16uf 500V cap at V6 at all. It's just not there. Also, the person who has rebuilt this separated the power transformer and built a wooden box for the whole lot. At the main power transformer, there is two electrolytic 50uf capacitors which are also not on the schematics.

At V1, there was a 22uf 50V electrolytic installed, but according to the manual, this should be a 50uf at 12V.

It also seems that on the deck the V4 and the V6 swapped around, however, I am not 100% certain.

R31 at V4 and the R36 at V6 both should be a 1W 220 Ohms resistor, but here only one is 220 Ohm, the other one is 270 ohms.

If I follow the schematics, V4 and V5 connected with Cap C32 0.1mfd, but I don't have that, instead, the V6 is connected to V5 with a 0.1mfd cap coupled with a 10MOhm resistor. No 10Mohm resistor can be found on the schematic either..

hmm...interesting.

before The last pic, these two caps found at the V6 and at the input 1 section, both of them way badly out of measures.

Thanks for all of your input,

Oh and one more thing...I don't have a new 1W resistor for the V6 tube....can I use a 1/2 watts instead..will this do a harm?

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Last edited by Levente; 18th Jul 2017 at 3:03 pm. Reason: picture in wrong order
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Old 18th Jul 2017, 3:30 pm   #17
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Default Re: Ferrograph Reel Expert Help Please!

Quote:
before The last pic, these two caps found at the V6 and at the input 1 section, both of them way badly out of measures.
Wima black bombs, another change on sight paper capacitor. Hunts by no means have a monopoly on past their best paper capacitors.
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Old 18th Jul 2017, 3:56 pm   #18
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Default Re: Ferrograph Reel Expert Help Please!

Hi,

Interesting machine.

Hopefully someone here will be able to properly identify it for you. I am (very) familiar with Vortexions and less so with Clarke and Smith machines that used Wearite tape decks but I am sure that others utilised its qualities also during a long production run.

Since your machine is a three-head unit it will have fundamental differences in the way the amplifiers are connected to the heads and controlled. From your pictures it looks to be a reasonably well laid-out chassis and I suggest you draw out a diagram particular to your chassis and not to copy the Ferro one.

1W resistors were chosen by the designer for a reason - power dissipation under load - if you fit a lower rated one it will heat up and may quickly fail - the wisps of smoke will give the game away!
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Old 18th Jul 2017, 6:54 pm   #19
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Default Re: Ferrograph Reel Expert Help Please!

Well Bill beat me to it, I was going to suggest that you draw out the schematic from the chassis layout and ignore anything to do with Ferrograph electronics.

Agreed on the 1 watt resistor stick to the wattage ratings or you may run into trouble.

Once you have drawn out the schematics, by all means post them here so we can all see what you are referring to.

As for reading pin numbers on the valves you read them clockwise and the first pin yes it's pin 1.

It may be easier to draw it out stage by stage and then to join them all together that way you will fit it on one A4 sheet as you draw it out without having to resort the eraser.

It will be a pretty standard circuit, possibly or probably based on a Mullard design.
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Old 20th Jul 2017, 1:19 pm   #20
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Default Re: Ferrograph Reel Expert Help Please!

Thank you so much for your advises guys! Really appreciated.

Will take your suggestions, and I will not follow the schematics this time. I have ordered the resistors exactly, as it was in the amplifier, same values.

And also the dead cap's and electrolytic's.


With regards the drawings, I am really bad at it so maybe better if I take the schematic's from the series 2 or 3 (as I have seen more similarities to series 3 half track mono) and cross out/amend what is there and not there and post that one.

It is looking simple and straight forward, really good that everything is easily accessible in this unit, but at the same time, it's like a military tank.

Will do some update as soon as the parts are in place.

Have a great week guys!

Levi
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