Tandy Radio Shack Computer Cassette Recorder (TRS CCR) Repairs

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GOTO PART 5 (Example CCR Usage)

PART 4: Belt Repair Notes (with photos of internals)

When something with a belt is held in storage for a long time (like VHS player, cassette recorder, DVD player with tray), it can get very hot in that storage area (such as an un-airconditioned shed or attic space). The metal pulleys could heat up enough, over time, to warp and weaken the rubber belts. Combined also with the winter/summer changes in weather in non-climate controlled storage, which can cause the rubber material of the thin internal belts to deteriorate.

This is what happened in the CCR-82 shown below, the motor drive pulley was just slipping due to no real tension on the belt. With just a little touch, the belt/band snapped entirely (and even before breaking, if you look closely, you can see the belt was very weakened and warped in that portion where it touched the metal pulley). In addition, the second “sub-belt” was completely deteriorated (rubber bits of its remains were scattered inside the unit – a light tap and small vacuum removes most of that).

The small size of the CCR-82 in particular may make it more prone to warped belts — either due to having less airflow around components (thus more internal heat), or just due to having to use smaller (thinner) belts.

WARNING on opening old plastic casing: the plastic can be brittle, especially in the areas around where the screws are located (especially if the device was stored in a shed or attic, exposed to hot/cold cycles). In the process of unscrewing the screws, the brittle plastic may crack or shear, then making it difficult to screw back in (and so the case won’t secure back nicely). There are ways to fix all this, so keep a little plastic bag handy to hold any “extra” parts like this.

(example TBD)

NOTE: The CCR-82 Service Manual can be found HERE (or Google Search “CCR-82 Service manual ColorComputerArchive“)

Below is a photos of another CCR-82’s that had the main belt broken in exactly the same way as the one above. The image is marked with the following:

  • Red arrows: screws to remove to lift the circuit board (that board will not lift completely, due to power wires, but enough to use a pick tool to maneuver the belts into place)
  • Red circle and “untie” note: untie the gray cable to loosen up the bundle of other cables, then underneath that bundle (about where the red circle is) there is a third small black screw that also must be removed to lift the circuit board
  • Blue arrow: there is a red washer below the silver shielding plate. Avoid losing or dislodging that washer. I did not need to remove this shielding when replacing the belts. But whether you do or not, just be mindful about this red washer and keeping it centered in place.

Repair Parts:

  • On Amazon or eBay, try searching something like: “”Recorder Rubber Belt, Cassette Recorder Repair Maintenance Mix Cassette Rubber Square Belt” (the belts don’t need to be super precise, just they should not be overly loose or overly tight; these kits will likely come with a suitable size to have enough tension to actuate the pulleys)
  • Also may help to have Nylon Pick Set, a kind of plastic version of the pick tools that dentist use, to help set the belts in place. [ a metal paperclip is also fine, just be sure to have the power unplugged ]
  • Both of these (as of 2021) are under $10.

For the CCR-82 specifically, these are examples of belts that can be used:

NOV. 2021 UPDATE: Replacing the belts on both CCR-82 (and getting the correct polarization on the DC adapter) did not restore them to working condition. The REWIND works ok, but FFWD and PLAY do not. I’ll continue to investigate.

Below is a “before” and “after” view of the belts replaced.

  • The larger main drive belt is fairly easy to replace, even without a pick tool.
  • The middle sub-belt is difficult, as it needs to fit the groove in the smaller pulley below the main drive larger pulley. Remove the main drive belt to get it out of the way temporarily.

Image of CCR-81 Internals for reference:

  • Verified CCR-81 does have a larger speaker (than CCR-82 and CCR-83)
  • Drive belt is thicker/wider than what is used in CCR-82
  • The AC adapter port is “loose” in the CCR-81 (as opposed to secured in place on the CTR-80 by two screws)

GOTO PART 5 (Example CCR Usage)

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