HELP! Tascam 388 dropout emergency!

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notbillcosby
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HELP! Tascam 388 dropout emergency!

Post by notbillcosby » Sat Mar 02, 2013 7:34 pm

Posted the same thing in Home Recording forums, but I need answers!! Sorry for the duplicate post...

Oh no! I've used my Tascam 388 religiously for years and now, out of nowhere, the night before my band is recording, Track 1 (and occasionally tracks 2 and 3 earlier, but now just track 1...) drops out here and there. I was recording some drum tracks, just trying to get sounds, and noticed that was cutting in and out strangely. Thought maybe i was overloading it with low end and it was responding poorly or something, but that didn't seem to be the case. It was just sorta random from what I could tell. When I recorded a test tone to all 8 tracks, Track 1 was very obviously being effected, but it seemed to drop out in a rhythm. It would drop out for 1, 2, 3 counts and then not drop out for 4, and repeat. I'm assuming it has something to do with the way the tape is pulling across the head which would sorta explain the repeating pattern and make me think it's something physical and not electrical, but looking at it I can't see anything obvious. I've switched reels of tape, cleaned and demagged the heads again, and can't seem to fix it. I last used the machine, with the same exact type of tape, about a week and a half ago with no noticable issues, but I don't think I was recording anythign on track 1. A month or so ago i tracked a band live and definitely used track one with zero problems.

What the heck is going on?? Why does this have to happen right now?! Guess we're going digital tomorrow unless someone's got a good answer for me. I hope you do! We're a surf band, recording to a computer is bordering on blasphemy...

notbillcosby
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Post by notbillcosby » Sat Mar 02, 2013 7:48 pm

Upon taking a real close look at the tape running across the heads, it does seem to have a little side to side (or up and down, i spose) wiggle to it in sort of a rhythmic way that I wonder about. Could that be causing it? It's extremely minor and i had to get way in there to notice it happening, but it seems to be. Is this normal or is it the problem causer?

notbillcosby
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Post by notbillcosby » Sat Mar 02, 2013 8:04 pm

And part three... I used some rubber cleaner on the rubber bits and it seemed to help immensely. There's still a little shakiness on track 1 but nowhere near what it was, and the tape doesn't seem to be rocking as obviously as it was a few minutes ago. Gonna give that rubber a bit more of a scrub and see if it helps further...

notbillcosby
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Post by notbillcosby » Sat Mar 02, 2013 8:36 pm

After a thorough cleaning it seems to be much better, but track 1 is still a little wobbly. I feel like I probably need it to be calibrated or something; something must've happened or changed that I somehow didn't know about.

Can anyone suggest a good tech in the Des Moines, IA, Omaha, NE, or Kansas City, MO area?

E.Bennett
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Post by E.Bennett » Sun Mar 03, 2013 9:18 am

What does the wear pattern on the head look like? Is the wear even or does it have an hourglass or trapezoid pattern? It sounds like it could be a wear issue, which usually causes edge track dropouts first.

kslight
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Post by kslight » Sun Mar 03, 2013 9:44 am

notbillcosby wrote:After a thorough cleaning it seems to be much better, but track 1 is still a little wobbly. I feel like I probably need it to be calibrated or something; something must've happened or changed that I somehow didn't know about.

Can anyone suggest a good tech in the Des Moines, IA, Omaha, NE, or Kansas City, MO area?
Never personally dealt with him but my drummer uses him all the time. He is pricey and busy but good. Jeff Olinger, in Iowa.

notbillcosby
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Post by notbillcosby » Sun Mar 03, 2013 5:02 pm

I'm not sure how to judge the wear pattern, i'm pretty new to a lot of this. I'll post a picture. It's just weird that this JUST started happening out of the blue.

Jeff Olinger. Know how to get a hold of him or what city he's in?

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shedshrine
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Post by shedshrine » Mon Mar 04, 2013 3:54 pm

notbillcosby wrote:Jeff Olinger. Know how to get a hold of him or what city he's in?
Google is your freind: searched "jeff olinger audio repair iowa"

http://www.chamberofcommerce.com/des-mo ... hnologies/

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