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VCR running badly

About half way through an E180 tape, the spools slow down and stop. The VCR then goes into REWIND automatically. The cassette also stops when there is a change from an LP to an SP recording and vice versa, and stops and switches to REW. The machine isn't new, but it isn't old and much used either. Thankyou.

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The 180 tape is thinner than regular 120's, and they tend to stretch. Your VCR "knows" the speen and that there is information on the tape by looking at and counting the pulses on the "control track" which is like the sprocket holes on a film. The control track is a series of pulses (regularly spaced pips or electronic clicks) on the edge of the video tape. (They are magnetic and can't be seen with the naked eye.) There is a counting mechanism which - based on HOW MANY pips there are - helps the machine to determine whether it an SP, EP or LP recording, and whether there's a recording at all.

If the tape stretches, the number of pulses becomes very irregular and the machine goes haywire. (There are normally about 60 pulses in one second of tape - 59.94 to be exact!)

If the count - because of stretching - is too far away from the norm the machine the machine will "hunt" (and never find out the real speed) - trying to figure out what speed the tape ACTUALLY is running at. If there's no control track at all the machine will just stop.

Your problem is any or all of the above. Throw the tape away.

Sorry!

Posted on Aug 14, 2008

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