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Notes on VCR Troubleshooting and Repair INDEX V.
Chapter 1) Table of Contents

Notes on VCR Troubleshooting and Repair INDEX V Contents:
Chapter 1)Table of Contents
Chapter 2) INTRODUCTION
2.1) Entertainment - then and now
2.2) VCR repair
2.3) Repair or replace
Chapter 3) VIDEO RECORDING TECHNOLOGY
3.1) Helical scan video recording
3.2) VHS video
3.3) VHS audio
3.4) VCR servo systems
3.5) Video Special effects
3.6) For more information on VCR technology
Chapter 4) VCR PLACEMENT, PREVENTIVE MAINTENANCE, AND RENTAL TAPES
4.1) General VCR placement considerations
4.2) Preventive maintenance
4.3) Sample VCR preventive maintenance schedule
4.4) Rental tape considerations
Chapter 5) VCR MAINTENANCE AND TROUBLESHOOTING GUIDE
5.1) Safety
5.2) Troubleshooting tips
5.3) Test equipment
5.4) Why you should read the entire FAQ first
5.5) Cassette cheaters
5.6) Test tapes
5.7) Getting inside a VCR
5.8) Why does my VCR shut down or behave strangely when I remove the cover?
5.9) Getting built up dust and dirt out of a VCR
5.10) What to do if a tiny tiny part falls into the VCR
Chapter 6) VCR TAPE TRANSPORT FUNDAMENTALS
6.1) Parts of the tape transport in a VCR
6.2) Most common problems
6.3) General guide to VCR cleaning and rubber parts replacement
6.4) Lubrication of a VCR
6.5) Head demagnetizing
Chapter 7) CASSETTE and TAPE LOADING PROBLEMS
7.1) Cassette loading and eject problems
7.2) Ejecting a cassette from an uncooperative VCR
7.3) VCR is confused - will not eject non-existent tape
Chapter 8) FAST FORWARD AND REWIND PROBLEMS
8.1) VCR will not fast forward and/or rewind
8.2) VCR aborts fast forward or rewind
8.3) Tape rewinders
Chapter 9) PLAY AND RECORD MECHANICAL PROBLEMS
9.1) VCR refuses to record
9.2) VCR aborts play or record during startup or shortly thereafter
9.3) VCR aborts play or record at random times or near end of tape
9.4) VCR eats tapes
9.5) Tape loop hanging from cassette when ejected after play or record
9.6) Tape sticks to head drum
9.7) Video head drum stops or slows during play or record
Chapter 10) GENERAL CONTROL PROBLEMS
10.1) VCR is alive but will not do anything
10.2) VCR attempts to play non-existent cassette
10.3) Erratic behavior in various modes
10.4) VCR mode (sensor) switches
10.5) Mechanical relationships in VCRs
10.6) VCR does not work after cassette was forcibly removed
10.7) If this is not enough for you to get the hint
10.8) The VCR is failing the power-up sequence
10.9) VCR displays DEW warning
10.10) VCR shows LOCKED in the display
10.11) VCRs with Alzheimer's Disease
10.12) VCR has gone whacko
10.13) VCR forgets settings following power failure
Chapter 11) PLAY AND RECORD CONTROL PROBLEMS
11.1) VCR randomly switches speeds, tracking problems, and muddy sound
11.2) VCR plays but at fast forward speed (or beyond)
11.3) Tape edge gets creased and/or random switching between speeds
11.4) Recording stops at random times on previously used tapes
11.5) Record (or play) stops after 15 minutes (or 30 minutes, etc.)
11.6) Tape counter is erratic
Chapter 12) VIDEO PLAY AND RECORD PROBLEMS
12.1) Video playback problems
12.2) Video record problems
12.3) Snow on one or more speeds
12.4) Jumpy picture in play
12.5) Picture shakes or jumps or has snow in PAUSE/CUE/REV
12.6) VCR plays prerecorded tapes but its own recordings are noisy or jumpy
12.7) Incorrect frame alignment or bad video for part of frame
12.8) Rainbow pattern in recordings made over previously recorded tapes
12.9) Flag waving
Chapter 13) AUDIO PROBLEMS
13.1) Poor quality sound on non-HiFi VCR
13.2) Excessive flutter on VHS linear audio playback
13.3) No (non-HiFi) sound on new recordings
13.4) Previous (non-HiFi) audio is not erased on new recordings
13.5) Poor quality sound on HiFi VCR
13.6) Squealing noise from VCR in certain modes
13.7) High pitched whine from inside VCR
Chapter 14) SIGNAL AND INTERFERENCE PROBLEMS
14.1) VCR color problems
14.2) RF signal problems
14.3) VCR will not tune broadcast or cable
14.4) Firing (static) lines in picture during playback
Chapter 15) GENERAL SYSTEM PROBLEMS
15.1) Multiple system problems
15.2) Power supply problems - unit totally dead/major system problems in all modes
15.3) VCR power supplies
15.4) Internal fuse blew during lightning storm (or elephant hit power pole)
15.5) Use of surge suppressors and line filters
Chapter 16) MISCELLANEOUS PROBLEMS
16.1) VCR poops out after a couple of hours
16.2) VCR blows fuse once in a blue moon
16.3) VCR was dropped
16.4) VCR or camcorder went to the beach (sand and/or surf)
16.5) Dead remote control units
16.6) Recovering damaged or broken tapes
16.7) Cassette rewinder problems
Chapter 17) A FEW MODEL SPECIFIC PROBLEMS
17.1) Dead Clock in Hitachi manufactured VCR
17.2) JVC tracking problems and dropped parts
17.3) Panasonic and clones switching power supplies
17.4) Late model Sony VCR munches tape on eject
17.5) Sony VCR error codes
17.6) Symphonic/Funai brand vcr won't rewind or fast forward
17.7) Additional Funai comments
Chapter 18) VIDEO HEADS AND UPPER CYLINDERS
18.1) What is a Video head?
18.2) Are your videos heads really bad?
18.3) Need for video head cleaning
18.4) How NOT to clean your video heads or a very expensive lesson
18.5) Video head cleaning technique
18.6) Rob's alternative video head cleaning techniques - use with care
18.7) Advanced video head testing techniques
18.8) Highlight tearing and bad video heads
18.9) Where to obtain replacement video heads
18.10) Video head replacement technique
18.11) What are the symptoms of a video that is on backwards?
18.12) Can I substitute a video head from another VCR?
Chapter 19) TAPE PATH ALIGNMENT AND BACKTENSION ADJUSTMENT
19.1) General tape path alignment problems
19.2) Adjustment of A/C head - problems with tracking or sound (linear audio)
19.3) Roller guide height adjustment
19.4) Likely causes for sudden change in tracking behavior
19.5) Backtension adjustment
Chapter 20) VCR SENSORS AND TAPE COUNTERS
20.1) Tape start/end sensors
20.2) Start/end sensor testing
20.3) Tape counters
20.4) Reel rotation sesors
20.5) Reel rotation sensor testing
20.6) Stan's tips on reel sensors
Chapter 21) MOTORS AND ROTORS
21.1) Types of motors in VCRs
21.2) Repairing small motors
21.3) Capstan problems
Chapter 22) ITEMS OF INTEREST
22.1) Why is a tracking control needed
22.2) VCRs with 2, 4, 6 or more heads - what is the difference?
22.3) Old clunkers and the march of technology
22.4) Comments on quality of consumer electronic equipment construction
22.5) Can I add an S-Video input to my VCR?
22.6) Can a VHS VCR record single video frames at a time?
22.7) Controlling one or more VCRs from a PC
22.8) Why is a special VCR needed for multiple video standards?
22.9) Recording HiFi audio only on a HiFi VCR
22.10) Can I use an Uninterruptable Power Supply (UPS) to retain the programming?
22.11) Can a VCR be used for computer backup?
22.12) How can I use an old deceased VCR as a sophisticated appliance timer?
22.13) What is a delay line and where is it used?
22.14) What are photocouplers and how are they different than optoisolators?
22.15) Why are there so many different designs for VHS transports?
22.16) Service center honesty?
22.17) VCR repair saga - a shop that hasn't seen this FAQ
22.18) VHS specifications
22.19) Video recording theory
Chapter 23) SERVICE INFORMATION
23.1) Advanced VCR troubleshooting
23.2) Popular books on VCR maintenance and repair
23.3) FCC ID Numbers of VCRs
23.4) Determining belt, tire, and pinch roller specifications
23.5) Interchangeability of components
23.6) Suggested Parts Suppliers
23.7) VCR service parts for the do-it-yourselfer
23.8) Other Sources


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