This site is dedicated to servicing Tascam 238, a popular analog rack-mount 8-track recorder that uses standard Type II compact cassettes. Many units are affected by the capstan motor “runaway” issue, where it runs at much higher speed and makes a loud whirring noise. Sometimes it stops altogether, or its performance depends on temperature and humidity.

My best guess at the root cause after repairing over three dozen units is that there was a manufacturing process anomaly. Flux was not completely washed off the capstan board after soldering — maybe the wash tank level was low and the left part of the board was left untreated — and over time flux residue corroded away PCB traces and capacitors.

I’m planning to continue to share as I learn more. Stay tuned…