Tape Gear!


I take all my Tascam tape machines to Russ at NJ Factory service. http://njfactoryservice.com/

He’s repaired everything from 424 / 488 multi track cassette machines to model 32 and 388 reel to reels. He’s the best and very reasonably priced. Highly Recommended!



Thanks John! I came across that website too. I’m trying to decide whether a repair (and trip to Edison) is worth it, or whether I just pay it forward and pass the unit along.


Just wanted to update on my issue in case anyone else here experiences this problem at some point.

After being in touch with Tascam themselves and various technicians across the US, one of the techs pointed out to me that there should be a slight cut in the capstan shaft, where a small plastic or nylon washer (an e-clip or similar would likely be too thick) should be present to hold it in place. And sure enough, when the capstan is in the proper position, the cut sits right above where it comes up from below the deck.

Of course, after consulting their service manual, Tascam’s parts department was like “yeah sorry this part is discontinued,” and because of how thin the cut is (less than 0.5 mm), it looked like I had very few (if any) options beyond custom ordering a huge batch of washers.

Obviously not wanting to do that, I started looking for other solutions in true DIY spirit. Since the part needed was made from plastic or nylon, and as a guitarist I have tons of guitar picks laying around, I ventured out to the hardware store to grab a drill and some drill bits.

I came back with a hand drill and a smallest (read cheapest) set of bits I could get with one that was 1.5 mm diameter (approx the diameter of the capstan shaft). Then 15 minutes later, after using a box cutter to hack away a small piece of pick and filing the hole ever so slightly bigger than 1.5 mm, I slid my DIY part on, and to my amazement it actually worked!!!

Honestly I didn’t really expect it to work. Apparently neither did my partner, when after I showed it to her said she was honestly afraid it wouldn’t work and that I would’ve just gotten more frustrated (pretty accurate tbh).

For reference, while the pick itself isn’t labeled as to what size it is (it’s an Apogee promo pick by Ernie Ball), I suspect it’s around 0.5 - 0.7 mm thick.

Needless to say, I’m so glad to have a functioning 4 track now!!


recent nice find:

with built-in digital looper + pitch shifter


How do you mean a looper & pitch shifter?!? What a lovely find! Super jealous :wink:


“REPEAT” button = it loops the audio for a few seconds. you can set a “repeat time” and the indicator goes up to 48 but to my ears the loop duration is no more than three seconds.

with “PITCH CONTROL” you can modify the pitch up or down by a few semitones (I didn’t measured how many).

nice toy.


Thanks! What is the exact model of the recorder? I can’t make it out from the photo.


it looks like a TCM-900.


@ermina is right, it’s a TCM-900.


I just saved this beast from ending up on the junkyard. Are you familiar with this? I haven’t tried it yet but I’m really excited to do it.

Edit: it’s a Phillips D6650


I made a video expanding on some techniques Heinbach described a few months ago. How to use a 3-head tape deck with a DAW (or a mixer) as a tape delay and looper. First how-to vid I’ve made so be kind: https://youtu.be/C0UZ0hBiP3Y


any true fans here know what handhelds grouper uses in her live sets ?


Well, I decided to post this over in the trade section. Don’t have time or energy to haul out even to NJ. Anyone local to NYC interested? No firm price, just want it in good musical hands.



Sony WM-D6C


Liz uses several TCM-200’s.
Here is a photo I took at the Kranky anniversary show in Portland.


wow ! quite the fan !


they hired me to document the two nights of performances. I managed to get quite a few good shots despite the challenging lighting conditions


inspiring thread. and interesting that it showed up for me now. i’ve been making a lot of music this year by dumping computer recorded stuff onto my fostex 4track and then back into the computer. and to add more tape hiss and wobble i usually pass the signal through a tape delay going into the 4-track. and sometimes again going back out.


IDEA: 1u eurorack microcassette recorder. But don’t think it would physically fit ha. I just had a mental image of a microcassette sitting in there

then again a whole modified dictaphone would probably work as a full sided module


Awesome! I made a mental note to look out for a 3-head deck :wink: