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Old April 29th, 2003, 11:50 PM   #1
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What cleaning tape for pd150?

Apparently there are two different kinds of cleaning tapes for the pd150: the (small) DVCAM cleaning tape and the MiniDV one. Which one do you think it would be best for the camera, and what are the differences?

Thank you.
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Old April 30th, 2003, 12:39 AM   #2
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Other than labels, I cannot think of any actual difference. The cleaning tape function is to be very mildly abrasive. Both DVCam and DV heads rotate at the same speed and almost all are of the same dimentions.

I'd use whatever you have available. 5 seconds at a time only. 30 seconds between applications.

Any longer and you risk heating up the heads and melting tape detritus onto the heads. If that happens, it's head replacement time.

I don't use cleaning tapes more than once or twice a year. I don't think I've used a cleaning tape on my DSR-20 more than twice and I've had it for over 4 years and about 700 hours of head use.
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Old April 30th, 2003, 02:00 AM   #3
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Also consider a cleaning tape that is either "dry" or "wet," depending on the miniDV / DVCAM tapes you use.
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Old April 30th, 2003, 03:18 AM   #4
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I didn't think there was a lubricant issue with cleaning tapes (dry vs wet)I asked Ray at The tape Guys and he felt there was no issue, maybe we should check further.
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Old April 30th, 2003, 09:32 AM   #5
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I just confirmed with Ray from The Tape Guys that there is no lubricant used in a cleaning tape formulation. Ray told me, "it's an abrasive tape and should only be used as a band aid." Bill Pryor (contributor) will vouch for Ray's knowledge.
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Old April 30th, 2003, 12:13 PM   #6
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Thanks Bryan. I didn't think this really matters as well, but cleaning tapes state that they are either for dry or wet. Kind of makes you wonder.
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Old April 30th, 2003, 12:17 PM   #7
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I've posted on several occasions that I know of no lubricant issue with cleaning tapes. I think the use of the "Band Aid" term is incorrect. To the best of my knowledge all the major manufactures recommend the use of cleaning tapes at regular intervals (as stated in the respective owners manuals). If used as directed by both cleaning tape manufacture and camera manufacture, cleaning tapes will not damage your video heads.

I would stick to a known name such as Sony, Canon, Panasonic, JVC, Maxell etc.
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Old April 30th, 2003, 04:51 PM   #8
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Most old time pro's are used to taking the tape door cover off the camera and manually cleaning not only the heads but the tape transport and capstain.

From that perspective, the manual cleaning job is certainly more thorough than that accomplised by using a cleaning tape. And it is less damaging to the heads. The abrasive certainly will wear the heads down if used to excess.

I'll try and find the URL to the Sony posting on transport cleaning. It is quite informative.
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Old April 30th, 2003, 06:51 PM   #9
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Mike
there are several PDF's on PD150/VX2K maintenance over at the Yahoo VX2K/PD150 list. One deals with taking off the tape door and cleaning the heads and transport.

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/vx2k/files/

If you can't get in I can email them to you.

Anyone interested email me at bbeasleighnospam@rogers.com
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Old April 30th, 2003, 06:54 PM   #10
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That would be Great, Brian. We'd need permission to repub them. Maybe just the URL would do with the note that they have to join Yahoo, whatever that amounts to.
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Old April 30th, 2003, 08:56 PM   #11
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I guess I have oldtimers disease I can't remember how you join, it's been a while. You basically apply and you're emailed a password. The link is http://groups.yahoo.com/group/vx2k/

The site has a lot of resources, including lens evaluation pictures, the maintenance info I mentioned, details of the BBC mod, home brew stabilizers etc, etc. A few of the members poste here and at dv.com. Wayne Orr, Christina Fox and Tom Hardwick among them
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Old April 30th, 2003, 10:02 PM   #12
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Taking the tape door cover off would void the warranty. As a former owner of a facility that did warranty and out of warranty service, I've seen hundreds of upper drum assemblies (heads) destroyed by improper cleaning. I've never seen a cleaning tape, damage heads, if used in accordance to the manufactures directions.
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Old April 30th, 2003, 10:28 PM   #13
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True, it might void the warrantly but cleaning tapes don't do a good job in some instances. You certainly did see decks/cameras that came in for cleaning because cleaning tapes would not do the job.

A properly trained person will not destroy the heads. If one has doubts, don't remove the door cover.

Good point about the warranty. I so rarely have anything in warranty that I overlook the issue.
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Old May 2nd, 2003, 05:40 AM   #14
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Here's some comments that illustrate my point. Do not try to clean video heads unless you are thoroughly trained in the proper procedure and techniques. Q-Tips are not the tools to use. Costly lesson.
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