Wednesday, August 25, 2010

VCR Goldmines!


Ok, so I'm at home sick with some lurgy I picked up in London and may not be thinking all that clearly but I wanted to get started on my next electronics project. At the moment the plan is to build a "most useless machine".



As far as possible I'd like to use recovered parts though. Luckily I'm an accomplished hoarder - I even have difficulty throwing away packaging in case it might be useful.

Now, I've read that old VCRs contain a lot of interesting stuff - in particular motors - and what do you know, I have at least 2 sitting around unused upstairs (who uses VCRs these days? I don't even use DVDs anymore and BlueRay... Pah!).

So here are the little organ donors.
Lookin' Sharp, eh ;)
Don't worry, it's just a routine procedure...
And in case anyone's interested, you might be able to make out model numbers in these pics.


First up is the Panasonic so out comes the screwdriver...
Oh la la, naked!
And there's a tape in it - probably just porn!
Now things are looking interesting - this spinning drum both
 reads and writes magnetic tape - magic!
Ok, so I run into a slight hitch here as something is broken and when I try powering up and ejecting the tape nothing happens. I'll figure that out later but for now I can turn my attention to the Sharp...
More brazen nudity!
I have the Power! (supply)
Skipping forward a bit - how's that for a nice pile of... erm... useful things?
Well, that was pretty easy and i now have all sorts of potential project parts: motors; gears; pulleys; modulators and demodulators; power supply; magnetic read/write thingy... Awesome!

Back to the panasonic then...
Probably the most interesting pieces all come out as 1 unit - will want
 to take a closer look at this before ripping it apart :)
Seems the Panasonic is built in a much more modular fashion and with many fewer screws. In fact, things seem to have been snapped together like a big interlocking puzzle. This makes it a little tougher to dismantle without applying a modicum of force resulting in some small pieces of broken plastic - nothing to be concerned about though.
Hmm, main board doesn't seem to be held in with screws...
... careful and strategic application of brute force does the job!
Nice, another interesting looking power supply :)
So, I've got 2 interesting piles of parts now and I've already had a go at applying power to the Panasonic's eject mechanism - wondering if it can form a part of my "most useless machine" - and the motor still works. So the previously encountered eject issue will likely be inconsequential :)

That's it for now, further updates to follow I'm sure. In the meantime... why are you reading this! Seriously if you got this far we need to talk - I think you may have issues ;)

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