8-tracks - FordTough.ca - Home of Canadian Ford Truck Enthusiasts
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 08-07-2019, 04:30 PM Thread Starter
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8-tracks

Hi..i was just wondering if someone could tell me whats wrong with my 8-track player in my 1977 ford f150 xlt..it has power..little green light..yet it wont play..tried5 tapes..when you push left knob it "switches"..1..2..3..4..why?..what is this for?..thanks
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 08-07-2019, 07:33 PM
 
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You're lucky that the guys on here pretty much are of an age that we all know what an 8 track even is, except for one guy maybe, and he's Googling 8 track on his phone right now trying to figure out what you're talking about.

No help, but factory original 8 track is pretty impressive.

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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 08-07-2019, 08:15 PM
 
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Welcome to the forum! A sense of humour is a must around here as I will aptly demonstrate. 8-track tapes are a 1/4 inch wide continuous loop of magnetic tape. The 8 tracks are actually 4 - 2 tracks. This is why you can switch from 1 to 2 to 3 to 4 and back to 1 again. The playback head in these units moves up and down across the tape to align with the current stereo channels 1 through 4. Each channel has 2 tracks, a left side track and a right side track giving you stereophonic playback. As the loop of tape does a complete channel cycle, a small metal strip on the tape makes contact with a set of electrical contacts that automatically advances the channel selector. Most of these units where internally belt driven. A motor inside the deck drove a belt which in turn drove a large flywheel. The flywheel is attached to the capstan. When to tape is inserted, it moves a reed switch with a small wheel attached to it. This engages power to the electronics that provide channel switching, amplification, lights and the drive motor. If you look at the tape end. you will see 3 slots with the tape running through it. Similar to a cassette tape, just bigger. The first hole is for the channel contact set and keeping the tape aligned because you don't want the tape to move with the playback head. The middle hole is for the playback head. The third hole is the one with the rubber wheel behind the tape. The tape gets pinched between the rubber wheel and the capstan which in turn advances the tape across the head and circulates the tape. The tape is pulled from the center of the reel inside the cartridge across the channel switch, across the head, through the rollers and back on to the reel. The usual problem with these units is the drive belt failing. On some occasions, inadequate care and cleaning will produce similar failures. Here comes the sense of humour part. A rubber band is not a sufficient replacement for the drive belt. The capstan is designed to drive the tape speed at a constant 3 3/4 inches per second. Imperfections in a rubber band do not allow the motor and flywheel to turn at constant speeds. Get the proper drive belt replacement. Do not bend, fold, stretch, mutilate, or use for sexual purposes the drive belt. A new belt is only meant to stretch a small amount to keep enough tension on the drive motor pulley and flywheel. Or... get a replacement deck that has a usb port and can playback MP3's.

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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 08-07-2019, 10:44 PM
 
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so
now we know who took apart his mom's 8 track player when he was a kid..

I did the portable record player so I'm no help here this time
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 08-08-2019, 06:17 AM
 
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Of course, who do you think was asked to fix it after my father put it in his work truck and hooked it up to the 24v system.
I like Fords Too likes this.

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The Past - 1976 F-350 Crew Cab 1992 - 2006 RIP
The Past - 1995 F-150 XL Enforcer All Gear Drive 2008 - 2015
The Present - 1993 F-250 XLT Turbo Diesel Super Cab 4x4 2015 - ?
The Future - Who knows?
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 08-08-2019, 02:47 PM Thread Starter
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Wow!..thanks for all that detailed info..i certainly appreciate all that typing..ive been sitting in the cab fiddling with the player cause its raining all day and i hate sitting inside the house(im on disability..lot of time on my hands)..my dad says he has an 8-track player with F.M. (under dash) from his1975 ..mercury..he casually mentioned this to me..he said he figured someone might need it someday...but he lives in Nova Scotia..and of course he will have to find it first..then send it to me..i will do a little recearch to see if its compatible..but an older gent told me (doesnt have a computer)..that hes pretty sure that a car unit wont work in a truck...well..i think they can be modified but very expensive..until then il finish my coffee..go back out and play some more...i have a nice cobra c.b. unit with truck antenna that someone gave to me..so i have a few things to figure out and fiddle with to keep me busy..
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 08-08-2019, 08:43 PM
 
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The one from your dad was probably an under dash mount unit. It will work just fine as long as it's a 12 volt unit. If it's been sitting a long time, it will likely also need a drive belt.

Electrician, powered by Tim Hortons, brought to you by Ford. Java Inside!
The Past - 1976 F-350 Crew Cab 1992 - 2006 RIP
The Past - 1995 F-150 XL Enforcer All Gear Drive 2008 - 2015
The Present - 1993 F-250 XLT Turbo Diesel Super Cab 4x4 2015 - ?
The Future - Who knows?
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 08-10-2019, 08:56 AM Thread Starter
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Ok thanks..well..i figured how to get good A.M. and F.M...i just plug my inverter in the cigarette lighter and plug in my ghetto blaster..and play cassettes too...
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