Add a Wireless IR Remote Control to your Nakamichi Tape Deck

DIY to Replace Idler Tire on the RX-202

As you may know I make and sell a series of wireless remote receiver for use on Nakamichi tape decks. For developement and testing I have collection of 8 Nakamichi tape decks. That collection includes 2 RX-202's which don't have remote capability via the DIN-8 connector on the back. After looking through the schematics and comparing them to decks that do have remote capability it was obvious that the only thing that was needed was to add the connector and wire it to the transport controller chip. This lead to my DIY web page for adding remote capability to the RX-202. After I was done I found out that my RX-202 was having problem with the eject/flip mechanism. This lead to my DIY web page for replacing the flip mechanism belt on the RX series decks. After that was fixed, guess what! I found out that the idler tire had gotten old and was no longer playing, rewinding or fast forwarding correctly. Guess what, this lead to this web page on replacing the idler tire on the RX-202. While replacing the idler tire on a Nakamichi deck with Sankyo transport is a simple job and hardly needs a DIY web page, but, the eject/flip mechanism in the RX-202 makes the job at least 3 times harder.

Tools required
#2 Philips screw driver
#1 Philips screw driver, long shaft recommended, but, not required
clear tape (frosted tape if fine too)
tweezers
flashlight (optional)

1) Power up the deck and press Eject to open the cassette door. Turn off the deck and unplug the deck from the power outlet.

2) Remove the cassette window.

3) Remove the top cover by removing the four screws holding it on (two on the left side and two on the right side).

4) Turn the cassette holder so that it is half way through the flip cycle, see picture below. Remove the two screws in the lower corners. The cassette holder might be difficult to turn, don't force it. You might need to slightly rotate the flip mechanism gears a little. The picture below-right shows two slots where the gears are visible. Rotate the gears in the lower window a little at a time until you are able to rotate the cassette holder to the correct position.

5) The cover plate should now be loose, but, you can't get it out yet. It is stuck behind the two lock arms used to hold the cassette when loaded. See picture below.

6) One of lock arms needs to be removed to get the cover plate off. I show how to remove the left one. Remove the two screws holding the top of the lock arm. See picture below. The two screws are different lenght. I have labeled them in the picture to aid reassembly.

7) Remove the plate and then remove the lock arm. Now you should be able to pull the left side forward and slide it out. This will reveal the idler assembly. See picture below. The idler tire assembly is held on via a small clear washer that has a cut radially from the center. This washer needs to come off before the idler comes off. This washer is very very very easy to loose. Use the clear tape to attached it to the idler and with the tweezers peel the washer off the shaft trying not to damage the washer. Leave it attached to the tape so you don't loose it.

8) Now remove the idler tire assembly. Pry the old rubber idler tire off and put the new one on. When installing the new tire make sure that it sits all the way down in the slot.

9) Put the idler tire assembly back on the shaft and place tape with the slit washer over the center shaft and press the washer onto the shaft and peel the tape away.

10) At this point I like checking to make sure the idler rotates smoothly and that it is sitting all the way down in it's slot. To do this plug the deck back in and press play. Make sure the idler rotates smoothly and it doesn't look lumpy. Press stop and unplug the deck.

11) Reinstall the cover plat making sure that the spring for the lock arm is protruding through the slot in the cover plate (use the right side lock arm as an example). Make sure the top of the cover plate is in the correct place. It should be in the slots in the two metal cone shaped shafts. Reinstall the two screws in the lower corners.

12) Reinstall the lock arm. Reattach the spring to the top of the lock arm. Insert the bottom of the lock arm into the hole. Reinstall the lock arm holding plate. Use the right side lock arm as an example. Reinstall the two (1-long and 1-short) screws into the lock arm holding plate. See picture in step 6 above.

13) Reinstall the top cover.

That's it.