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  #1  
Old 05-28-2017, 07:21 PM
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Zenith VR-9000W Problems

It's basically a Sony SL-5400 that says Zenith on it.I thought this probably would be better suited to the tech forum than the recorded video forum,correct me if I'm wrong. I've put belts on this thing,cleaned all the contacts I can find and lubricated all moving parts (being careful of the head, tape path,and belts/idlers). It initially would let you press play,spin the head up,then pop the button back up. Then upon further inspection I'd missed the flat belt so I replaced it. That got it to load the tape and play as intended.....aside from not spinning the takeup reel. So i opened it once more to check out all the idlers and such related to that,put it back together,and it went back to doing what it did before I replaced the flat belt. At this point I decided to sit it on a shelf for awhile as a bulky clock until I felt like working on it again. One day I noticed that even with the switch "off" the power light was very dimly lit,something it was NOT doing before,unplugging it and plugging it back in didn't help anything by the way. I have experience with a bunch of various 70's electronics but am very much a newbie to video equipment. Anyone have any ideas on where to even start?
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Old 05-28-2017, 11:19 PM
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Try getting the sam's (IIRC it is in sam's VCR-3) and checking the power supply voltages. Lytic caps will go bad in stuff of this vintage.

I have one of these decks, and after much mussing with the electronics and mechanics I've given up....I may start mine again, but these are complex suckers, and much of both the mech and electronics are failure prone at this age. Having to deal with multiple issues on something like this can have you chasing your tail.
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Old 05-29-2017, 12:06 AM
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I made the mistake of thinking that because I replaced the belts on a late 80's RCA VCR and understood the mechanism that I was ready to work on one of these old beta units. I was so very wrong,they are ludicrously complex machines. I feared it might be caps,or at least cap related. would that also cause the loading problem or is that purely mechanical? I want to get it going if I can #1 because I have a collection of strange formats and beta is a welcome addition, #2 because I don't have the funds to purchase a "better" player, and #3 because after fixing this nothing will scare me
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Old 05-29-2017, 05:55 PM
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Just watch the thrifts for a $5 Sanyo front loader if you want a cheap player....Those Sanyo decks usually seem to work as found...In the last year or two I've found enough cheap Beta front loaders in thrift stores that I've become rather picky on getting any more...

The load mech is a combo of electrical and mechanical systems. If either is out of whack it will not load right.
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Old 05-31-2017, 07:47 PM
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It worries me that all the "experts" on beta machines I've talked to don't want to touch it with a 10 foot pole. I'd like to get this working but I'm not opposed to getting a later machine to watch in the meantime. I'm basically looking for a place to start looking for problems.
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Old 06-01-2017, 03:37 PM
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Do you have a service manual? Try tracking down some decent documentation, I find that I can never fix anything until I understand how it's supposed to work.. the service manual will tell you a lot of things you won't learn by just looking at it.
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Old 06-04-2017, 04:22 PM
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I haven't been able to locate a service manual yet. It would make life much easier.

EDIT; I got to thinking about it and I believe both issues could be symptoms of a faulty power supply. I think I'll start there and see where it takes me.

Last edited by Laserdisc; 06-09-2017 at 09:48 PM. Reason: not double posting
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Old 06-09-2017, 11:55 PM
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Lemme check my stash of Sony Manuals - I have some Beta and Umatic stuff stashed, leftovers from the old Videorama service center here. Two of everything - I kept some and dumped a bunch on eBay back in late 2003.

Yours for postage only if I have it. I also have a TON of Sony VCR tips in a database - I'll dump it to Word and print to a PDF for you if there is anything there.
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Old 06-11-2017, 06:01 PM
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I appreciate that greatly,thankyou!
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Old 06-13-2017, 06:11 PM
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Never did much VCR but there are clutches in both the reels
also brakes on both & a back tension band on the supply. Be
sure the thread ring makes it all the way also. Watch for any
little motors. They are famous for getting weak on VCR & audio.
STORY : I found a Nachamiche "Dragon" cassette deck at the
dump. Wouldnt play a tape & made a little noise. It was the
"mode motor" that moved the mechanics. Give it a little shove
& it worked.
BTW got $500 on E-bay for it broken
Reason nobody will touch it is if they make a living doing this
they will LOOSE money 95% of the time. Fix it & a week later
a new problem, often subtle. When we did any old stuff
we showed it working but the the minute it went out the door there was
NO guaranties.

Good luck Zeno
LFOD !
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Old 06-23-2017, 11:01 PM
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Well,I asked for advice from the dude and he wanted nothing to do with it. I will definitely check out those motors and clutches,it's one big electro-mechanical mess under the hood so it wouldn't surprise me if either of those are an issue.
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