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Thanks for the pictures Mike, it helps.  I have worked on more cassettes than I care to remember but, it was the cleats that caught my eye.  I found them often in random tape stock including BASF.  Most often they would break in half or I would encourage them to! (A wee fast forward at the end of the side in the Nakamichi).  I had a large collection of hubs and cleats/clips and would replace them.  Hubs with the much smaller clips/cleats were far more reliable plus I noticed that the plastic used seemed to be a different compound.  The larger ones seem to go hard and brittle making them break in half under tension.

I am very interested in your project of collecting images of cassettes.


Marie O'Connell
Analogue Tape Preservation Archivist
Sound Archives/Nga Taonga Korero
PO Box 1531
Radio New Zealand House
Level 1, 51 Chester Street West
Phone  +64 3 374 8443
Fax  + 64 3 374 8448
--- My opinions do not necessarily represent those of my institutions ---

>>> mike.hirst@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx 7/10/2008 10:23 p.m. >>>
Further to my posting of yesterday re detached tapes in the cassette 
mechanism of BASF LH C60s, I have spent some time looking into the 
source of the problem. These are my findings so far:

In the period 1975-85 there are three distinct version of the BASF LH 60 
cassette. Externally these differ municipally in the size and shape of 
the central window.

Prior to 1980 all tapes have a small window:


c.1980-81 the window changes shape and size:


After 1981 the window size is increased again:


In the small window version of the cassette the leader is attached to 
the spools using wide clips or cleats:


In the later versions the fixing method is modified:


It is the earlier version of the cassette that is causing the problem 
(the image shows a selection of broken cleats).

In the later versions the fixing method is more reliable and can be 
viewed for verification prior to playing in the later large window version.

It seems to me that the greatest vulnerability in working with vintage 
cassette tapes is the tape mechanism itself. Following this experience I 
intend to spend some time collecting images and details of the internal 
mechanism of the cassettes I work with. If there is interest, I would be 
happy to share this information with others.

Mike Hirst
Managing Director
16 Ocean View
Whitley Bay
Tyne & Wear
NE26 1AL

tel: 0191 289 3186
email: mike.hirst@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx 
web: http://www.das360.net

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