DECtapes have 5x redundant tracks. If you could find an 8-track head that
had the same track pitch, and maybe track width, you could read the tape
but lose redundancy on the Mark and Timing tracks. That probably would not
work with a marginal DECtape.
On Mon, Feb 7, 2022 at 3:33 PM Wayne S <wayne.sudol at hotmail.com> wrote:
I?ve often wondered if the tape heads from consumer
tape devices such as
cassette or 4-8 track tape players could be used or be made to be used as
replacements. Anybody ever try that?
Sent from my iPhone
On Feb 7, 2022, at 11:51, Michael Thompson via
cctech at classiccmp.org> wrote:
From: Gary Oliver <go at aerodesic.com>
Subject: DECTape head problem
In debugging my DECtape interface lashup, I found that one of my head
has two open windings.? Specifically, one channel has an open 'ground'
with the other two lines apparently the full winding of the channel.?
The second channel failing has no continuity between any of the three
lines.? I have tested the other head and it has all the requisite
continuity so I'm hoping I can at least get a single spindle running.
Has any ever attempted repair of one of these?
At the Rhode Island Computer Museum we found several DECtape heads on
and TU56 drives with open connections. A
volunteer got one head X-Rayed
we could see the solder joints between the tiny
wires for the head coils,
and the larger twinax wires that go to the relay board. We couldn't see
damage to the wires or solder joints.
We tried heating the potting material to soften it, and digging it out to
get to the solder joints. While digging at the potting material you can't
see the tiny wires, so they will likely get damaged.
We considered using a solvent to remove the potting material, but thought
that it would eat the enamel off the head coil wires and damage them
So far we haven't found a way to repair the heads.