Destructive Imaging of DECTAPE II Media

Christian Corti cc at
Thu Jan 29 03:53:17 CST 2015

On Wed, 28 Jan 2015, Al  Kossow wrote:
> When I was working on this a couple of months ago, I had hundreds of old 
> DC450/600/6150 carts to experiment on and I
> sent out a message about the results. Short answer is bands from 300/450 and 
> 600 aren't worth messing with. 6150 are

That's more or less true. I have many old 300/600 tapes with with belts 
that broke during or shortly after the treatment. Therefore I use belts 
from much newer (about one decade) NOS 600 tapes (thanksfully I have many 
dozens of them). They need the hot water treatment beforehand, too. But at 
least they work reliably after that.
If you are archiving such tapes you don't need a new belt for each 
cartridge. I simply transfer the belt from the archived cartridge to the 
next one and keep it in a parts box for a future archiving session.

> The 6150 bands either do not require the warm water treatment or should 
> be rehydrated at significantly lower temperature/time. Since I

I had very few 6150 that needed the treatment, too. But in general, you're 

> Like I said, I have a big batch of TU58 tapes that I need to process, so I'll 
> experiment with different brands of DC-100
> sized tapes when I do it. I'm in the middle of setting up new lab space at

I have many TU58 tapes, but I have never used a TU58 so far. But I 
also have a lot of DC100 tapes from HP terminals, and they surely have 
the sticky and worn belt problem. And because DC100 tapes are so rare and 
*** expensive, I try anything to keep the original belt going.


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