Where the Rubber Meets the Road

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Most all VTRs have pinch rollers. These little tires pinch the tape against the capstan and pulls it through the machine. They get hard and lose¬†their grip over time and can cause tape damage by changing the geometry of the tape path. You can sometimes clean and renew the rubber but the attempted repair¬†doesn’t last long. The only real solution is to replace the roller. Average cost for a small cassette VTR is around $75, Some 2″ audio decks may run up to $250. Just a small example on how expensive it is to properly take care of old machines.

Our VPR-3s don’t use a pinch roller but a vacuum capstan. This provides better grip. The capstan actually drives the tape through the machine and the reel motors take up the slack.

 

 

 

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