How do I properly clean the heads on a Sony Betacam SR deck?

Question by Richard: How do I properly clean the heads on a Sony Betacam SR deck?
Hello! After some issues, it seems I may have to clean the heads on my BVW-22 Sony Betacam SR video cassette player. Anyone know various ways to do this well? Thanks!

Best answer:

Answer by ►BobB◄
sorry, but if you have to ask, you should not be cleaning yourself.

Video heads scan on a helical scan, the heads move across the spinning head in slices.
By scanning, you can get more data transfer than you can with passive, mounted heads.

As a result, the spinning heads are mounted on a thin piece of brass shim, and then the shim is mounted to the spinning piece (no need for details).

You clean the heads by holding the heads in place with a nonferrous item, then CAREFULLY, in one direction, never up and down, using a head cleaning fluid, clean the heads.

It is very easy to push the heads out of alignment, it is very easy to break the heads off the the brass shim..

or you buy a head cleaner

of you let a Sony Authorized shop fix it.

Add your own answer in the comments!

Vacro Series: 24 of 105
deck cleaning
Image by Jef Harris
This is an extremely large series, even by my standards. So I think an explanation is needed here to really appreciate what you’re looking at.
As a kid I used to love taking apart electronics. Clocks, TVs, Tape recorders, anything I could get my hands on. But my favorite thing to take apart was a VCRs. 30 years later and I’m still taking apart VRCrs. Only now instead of VCRs that costs hundreds of dollars, I’ve graduated to this High End Panasonic Editing Deck that was worth 00 new. The heads where out of alignment. The cost involved in fixing it was out of the question. So the original owner, who knew of the macro work, happily handed it over to me.
Except for the electronic boards, no piece is bigger than a golf ball. The smallest piece, (#011), is about an 8th of an inch.
I took about a month taking apart this ProVCR. Taking my sweet time. Great loving care went into taking this apart, only using a screw driver and a set of needle nose pliers. There was only one piece I had to break (shot #017). I had to use industrial strength bolt cutters to get that one out.
After I was done taking it apart I took over a thousand shots. So what you see here are the best of the best! Photoshop was used but only in cleaning dust particles and building the presentation frames. The lighting you see was done in the studio.
An interesting thing about how this VCR was put together was that there was no actual case holding it together. It was a series of metal plates interlocking and held by screws. One of the main components of any piece of electronic equipment is the wiring. Well in this thing, all the wiring was held together as one single bundle. So I was able to take it apart with that bundle of wires intact. I used that bundle of wires in THIS shoot.
My personal favorite is #009.

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