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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 21st Jun 2024, 3:36 pm   #1
agardiner
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Default Saisho / Olympus microcassette recorder woes

I purchased a Saisho microcassette recorder; an MC600. Lovely physical condition and boxed; looks like very low hours. No surprise that it doesn't work though. Initial checks clearly showed a mechanical problem and I expected the belts to have perished.

Taking it apart, the PCB is marked 'Olympus T338' so I suspect this is simply a rebadged model which would make sense. No surprise to find the main belt had gone to mush. The counter belt is also desperate to be replaced.

That's where the whole project has become a bit of a disaster! In order to remove the counter belt, you have to remove the take up spool. To do this, a plate over the top of the mech has to be removed. However; this plate holds everything in place, and on removing it the mech fell apart like a jigsaw puzzle.

I have posted elsewhere in the hope of finding a service manual / exploded view; but wondered if anyone here has experience of such tiny mechs. I am determined to restore it, but suspect it is going to be many hours of figuring it out.
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Old 21st Jun 2024, 4:12 pm   #2
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Default Re: Saisho / Olympus microcassette recorder woes

I have service info for the Saisho MC606, MC608 and MC650 but don't know how close they are likely going to be re the MC600. Probably going to be poor quality photocopies but might be useful. I could scan if required.

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Old 21st Jun 2024, 4:35 pm   #3
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Default Re: Saisho / Olympus microcassette recorder woes

Dave, many thanks for that. I would really appreciate it. I only need any pages showing exploded views of the mechanism.

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Adrian.
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Old 22nd Jun 2024, 3:30 pm   #4
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Default Re: Saisho / Olympus microcassette recorder woes

Hi Adrian, Having now had a chance to check my Saisho MC service manuals, I'm sorry to say that non of them are micro cassettes. The MC606 is a full size tape deck, the MC608 is a tape deck with record player and the MC650 is a music centre as are all the other MC types that I have. So sorry about that, good luck and hopefully another member will be along soon.

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Old 22nd Jun 2024, 4:44 pm   #5
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Default Re: Saisho / Olympus microcassette recorder woes

OK, many thanks for checking Dave; I appreciate it.

I suspect I am going to end up having a few nights of working it out as a jigsaw puzzle!
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Old 23rd Jun 2024, 3:06 am   #6
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Default Re: Saisho / Olympus microcassette recorder woes

Not wishing to make matters worse but an Olympus microcassette desktop machine I own has also been very difficult to repair. The dismantling and reassembly process is not easy but also sourcing the correct tiny rubber belts. I managed to make the 2mm wide flat belt by slitting a 4mm belt down the centre with a scalpel. Not ideal! Good luck with it.
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Old 23rd Jun 2024, 10:51 am   #7
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Default Re: Saisho / Olympus microcassette recorder woes

If it's just a handheld dictation recorder, these can be had for under twenty notes so probably not worth spending much on. For tricky belts like the counter, you may be better off cutting and joining a belt, threading it through, instead of disassembly.
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Old 23rd Jun 2024, 2:36 pm   #8
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Default Re: Saisho / Olympus microcassette recorder woes

Certainly not worth spending much on; but I like this particular unit as it has a MIC socket as well as an earphone one.

How would you go about successfully joining a belt?
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Old 23rd Jun 2024, 11:13 pm   #9
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Default Re: Saisho / Olympus microcassette recorder woes

Quote:
Originally Posted by agardiner View Post
How would you go about successfully joining a belt?
First, make a good clean, straight cut, then a tiny dab of superglue, hold the ends together for a minute. Obviously this join might make a slight bump in use, so probably best limited to spooling and counter belts.
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Old 24th Jun 2024, 9:28 am   #10
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Default Re: Saisho / Olympus microcassette recorder woes

Thanks for the tip.
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Old 24th Jun 2024, 1:39 pm   #11
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Default Re: Saisho / Olympus microcassette recorder woes

OK; after messing around with it all morning, (the things we waste our time on! ) I have figured it out.

Now to track down some suitable belts. Will report back how I get on and whether it works!
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Old 12th Jul 2024, 4:28 pm   #12
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Default Re: Saisho / Olympus microcassette recorder woes

Well that was fun. Bought the belts from fixyouraudio.com which is excellent for good quality belts in all sizes, including the very thin ones. After a lot of fiddling, (and several reattempts when all the bits fell out ) the unit is finally back together and works!

Don't think I will be collecting any more micro-cassette machines any time soon.
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Old 12th Jul 2024, 4:44 pm   #13
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Default Re: Saisho / Olympus microcassette recorder woes

Great result! I think you've been unlucky though, I have a few micro and mini cassette units and don't recall ever having such grief!
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