Tape recorder randomly stops playing

Hello members.
I understand that this is not an Audacity related issue but I’m asking here for a solution in case anyone of you encored the same problem.

Here is the list:
Windows 7 Ultimate 64bit; Luxman K-110 tape recorder/player; standard 60 minutes tapes recorded by a cheap portable Sony device; Audacity 2.1.0.

Ok everything is set up and ready to transfer the sound to the computer, I press play on the recorder, it starts then stops, I start it again then it stops.
After several attempts finally the recorder keeps playing until the end but rarely it stops again in the middle of the transfer.
This bothers me because I must attend the transferring from beginning up to the end.
What would be the cause?
Thanks in advance.

Sounds like your cassette tape has become sticky. Or the sensing on the Luxman is far too sensitive.

Try winding and rewinding each cassette before playing. Store your cassettes in a cool, dry place. Buy the best cassettes you can get. If that doesn’t help, have the Luxman serviced. It’s a very good tape machine and as all mechanical devices it needs some TLC every now and then.

If these are real old cassettes, or they have been used outside, or in a car, they need to be dried. Take a known good thermometer and check how hot your household oven gets on the lowest settings. If it doesn’t go over 40°C, put a tape in it overnight. Then try the tape.

Obviously, a microwave wouldn’t work! It would probably erase the tape, or burn it. Haven’t tried it :smiley:

Thanks for suggestions.
The cassettes are pretty new as well as the portable cheap Sony recorder, also the room is quite cool.
I think that your second option is more viable, the Luxman my be too sensitive.
What can be done to fix that? I did a research on Google but I couldn’t find the answer, maybe I’m searching the wrong wording.

It’s been years since I saw the inside of a Luxman K-110. Let me see if i can find the schematics. I think there is a setting.

It could also be some silicon grease that’s dried up over the years. In that case, the only good solution is to remove the old grease and replace it. But taking apart, cleaning and reassembling isn’t easy.

Has the K-110 been sitting unused for a long period?

I’ve found the schematics. This isn’t the deck I had in mind, though…

This deck is microprocessor controlled double deck. Fairly complicated. Do you have any experience in electronics?

If yes, I’ll post the service manual. It’s a good one.

If not, you’ll have to refer to a qualified service technician I’m afraid.

There is still the odd chance your new cassettes could be not-so-good. Have you tried another brand?

I’d definitely go with cyrano’s suggestion of winding through the cassette before playing - preferably wind by hand as “fast forward” on a cassette player may wind the tape too tight or unevenly. Mechanical hand winders are good for this job, otherwise the slow method of twiddling a pen/pencil through the hole will work. The aim is to get the tape wound all the way through, not too tight, and nice and even so that the reels can rotate easily.

That may not be the solution, but it costs nothing to try and should be eliminated as a possibility before moving onto more elaborate or expensive options.

If other cassettes play OK on the machine , consider transplanting the tape into a new cassette-shell … https://forum.audacityteam.org/t/vintage-cassette-tape-keeps-stopping-on-one-side/24177/4

I bought it second hand from a rich lady for only $50 and it looks like as brand new, but now I think that she knew about the problem and didn’t tell me, it isn’t a big drama.
The playing only stops at the beginning of the tape (and with different tapes) so I don’t think it’s a tape related issue.

Do you have any experience in electronics? If yes, I’ll post the service manual. It’s a good one.

I’m able to service laptops and open them a part and fix problems shops always avoid because they worry about responsibilities.
Yes please post it and thanks very much for help!

I understand the meaning of it and this is another option for me, but I’ve had chance to use many cassette players and only this Luxman has this issue, maybe as cyrano said it’s too much sensitive.
I can see that during the initial start/stop saga the tape metal selection led goes alternatively on/off then it remains off for the rest of the playing, I guess because I’m using a normal tape.

The problem occurs with different tapes (standard tape) and they are all quite new.

Can you not use the Sony tape machine that you made the recordings on the playback device to record into Audacity?

I’s often thought better to record and playback on the same machine as the head alignments and azimuth settings are then (or should be) identical.


Ok, here you go:


It’s a complete service manual (scan).

I have no chances, my mum records the audios then she wants them on cd-rom, the quality is like 50s radio also it’s mono. :sunglasses:

That is fantastic!
I think that I’ve to work with the playback sensitivity switch but before opening the machine I’ll need to learn more about this specific issue, I’m very fussy!
Thank you very much for help!

I sympathise, I’m very fussy too. My tapes were (nearly all) made on my Nakamichi BX-2 on the TDK tape that the deck was especially set up for - and before I embarked on any of my tape transfers I had it professionally serviced by Bowers&Wilkins - the UK agents for Nakamichi :nerd: :slight_smile:

Hope you can get yours sorted with the help of the manual that Cyrano posted for you …


You might find this article from the Audacity interesting/useful: http://wiki.audacityteam.org/wiki/Recording_from_Cassette


That is very handy especially the cleaning part, for now.
There’s a link on the top of that web page that returns a forbidden alert: Noise Removal.

Audacity forums are just awesome! :slight_smile:

Thanks - now fixed.

I’ll second that! This is a deck that is worthy of some tlc.

One of the things you might want to look at are the drive belts - B&W replaced those on my Nak when they serviced it


The recorder looks like brand new so I believe that it doesn’t need any part replacement for now.
I think that the previous owner knew the problem and decided to sell it.

Difficult to tell with drive belts. They can look perfect (especially after being cleaned) but still lack the necessary grip due to ageing. If they look shiny, then cleaning with IPA may help in the short term, but if that is the case they are likely to have also stretched a little and hardened so replacing them is likely to be necessary.