Computers & Electronics

Dead camcorder - how to remove the tape?

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  • May 26th, 2005 1:19 pm
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[OP]
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Oct 2, 2003
1946 posts
102 upvotes

Dead camcorder - how to remove the tape?

Its a real antique, Canovision E?? (might be 53) like this one:
Image
or
Image

It belongs to a friend who wants to dispose of the camera but needs the tape removed first. His kids recently let him in on a secret - the reason it went to Canon 8mm heaven 8 years ago. They somehow dropped the battery in the pool. Afraid of getting in trouble they said nothing and the old man charged it the next day (yes, it was dry by then) and as soon as the camera powered up it died. The tape has some sentimental value so he doesn't want to risk damaging it by trying to smash the casing open. A small electronic repair place tried to open it but had no luck. They offered to try more elaborate techniques but the cost was a minimum of $90, the bench rate.

Any ideas? Hope this was the right forum BTW. :D
8 replies
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Nov 10, 2003
1945 posts
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Yah... just take a screwdriver to it, and start removing screws until the thing falls appart.
Then take your tape out, and trash the rest.
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Nov 3, 2004
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If the tape is in and was loaded when the camera had power, the tape itself is likely wound around the heads. I wouldn't suggest removing the tape until you can lower the gears that pull the tape up.

Do you think it's just the battery that's fried, or is it likely the camera itself?

If you think it's the battery, you can try applying the correct voltage to the battery terminals on the camera. If you can get it powered up from an external source long enough to eject the tape, your woes should be solved.

If not, you'll need to open the casing and manually move the gears to release the tape from the heads.

Good luck.
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Jan 23, 2002
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If the camera didn't work at all when powered on (as sugessted above,) I'd try to "re-recreate" the battery with a DC adapter.

Unfortunately, if the battery does have charge and the correct voltage coming out then (as also mentioned above) your tape may be jammed in the mechanism. Powering up may be bad for the tape.
[OP]
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Oct 2, 2003
1946 posts
102 upvotes
Yeah, the problem is the camera won't power on even if its plugged into AC, something must have fried. The batteries are fine, if they are placed in the charger they're like new again. When it died the camera wouldn't be in REC or PLAY mode, just "on". Not sure if the tape heads are engaged when the tape is idle or not.

Anyway I'll pass this on and see if he has any luck. I told him it would be great if the tape had footage of the kids (now close to 20) goofing around, dropping the battery in the water - it was the spare battery so it could happen, heheh.
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