Tascam 122 Mk III and Other models- 112, 488 and so on: Gear C

I am now at the point that I am taking orders for the gear that so many service shops and people need to fix their blinking transport lights problem. Teac does not have this part any more but I have had them made up. They are $30 plus the postage- I will not ship in a flat envelope like the $80 guy does on E bay. What does it look like-This is a Resin cast gear as were the original ones. Some call it gear B some Gear C. In the 122 Mk III parts diagram 4 the 4-34 part is what this is and was part number 5801474300 and sub’d to 9278377600.

122Gear wm

To obtain one or some, contact me at skywavebe@sbcglobal.net . I take credit cards- MC, Amex, Visa and Discover and can take Paypal as well. The cost of obtaining the gears has gone up slightly so they are $30 each now. Also know that the mechanism must be cleaned and greased prior to use or the same problem can occur. I have never had a new one fail yet. I use Lubriplate 105 to lubricate the mechanism first. Also the contact plate.

Green arrow points to Gear C.

Every once in a while I get a guy who complains about the gear price. NO there are no $.33 gears nor $2.00 gears or you would not be contacting me. The gears cost the manufacture near $3000 to set up and make these custom made gears- he dictates the price he wants for them. There is conjecture that I make $20 profit on a gear and I can tell you that is not at all what they cost. There is a guy selling hundreds of gears on E bay who started at $80/gear. He sells them for $39 now. If you want to buy from him to save money then do so. There are a limited number of gears and when they run out that might be it. I use the same gears in repairs and there is no reason I HAVE to sell them. With enough of this aggravation I might not.

As of 1/27/2020 the postage has been increased to $8.30 for flat rate.


54 thoughts on “Tascam 122 Mk III and Other models- 112, 488 and so on: Gear C”

  1. The fact is that this blog was developed as Thumbtack took my website down as they had no category for it.
    Really? Electronics repair and no category? Then I found my associate in New Jersey had his website up and running and I informed Thumbtack we did the exact same things so maybe I should talk to my attorney. Then my website went back up.
    I have a very good following from a number of websites but Tapeheads.net was the one that I have been active on so much since 2008. If you are kind to people in helping them fix their decks of minor issues, the karma or whatever it is comes back to you in business. This has seemed to work very well.

  2. There is really no need for guest post as I have enough of a problem keeping people on track to the subject at hand.
    This blog is about tape deck repairs and related things. NOT Zune, Jerseys, shoes and other garbage that gets trashed immediately.
    If you want to make social comment there are plenty of places to do it at.
    If you want to contribute what level have you repaired tape decks and electronics at?

  3. Sam,
    I have a Tascam 112 MK II that has been in storage for a year or more, and now show the broken gear signs – one second after pressing the play, forward or reverse buttons the lights on play, pause and record star flashing and there is no movement on the transport. Is there any other problem that the flashing lights indicates, or do I need to purchase a new gear from you?

    1. It indicates a malfunction of the transport. It does not mean the gear is broken yet but due to waiting this long for service it can be.
      The only way to find out is to open the deck and look at the gear section. I have had a few occasions that the gear was frozen solid but still intact. I then used alcohol and not a lot of pressure on it to get it to release and I was after cleaning the old grease out then used the
      old gear without problems.

      1. Amazing. The hardest part was getting the cover off and on – those tiny screws. However, as soon as the cover was off and I began to look around inside for obvious damage or simply a disconnected plug, I must have brushed against the play button because it started running. perfectly. Your advice was correct; the gear was not broken. It just needed a little cleaning and encouragement. Everything is back together now and working fine. Thank you, again.

        1. If you did not clean up the whole gear system you might be in for a return visit as that grease will continue to harden. That is why I take all of it out and clean gears off with a tooth brush and alcohol and then apply Lubriplate 105 and the mechanism works faster than new.
          You can not do just one thing and think you are done. There are other items needing lubrication that will also stop the deck from working and they don’t involve that gear.

    2. It is very typical of a dried up grease condition or a gear with cracked pieces. I find that some of the gears break apart when you try to remove then from the shaft- No matter how careful you are. Even if you get one off I would not trust it as it is already hard and fragile and will probably fail soon. I have come to not trust these old gears.

  4. Hi Friend, i´d like to buy some pieces from Gear C. I´m from Brasil and we ave nothing more about this vintage equipments so we need help from others countries. I have 2 Tascam (1x112R and 1X112) and 2 friends asking about this Gear C too. Could you help me? How many does this 4 pieces will cost to send to Brasil?

    My Postal Code is 13272-821 and the adress is
    Rua: Claudemires dos Santos, 112 – Jardim São Marcos – Valinhos – São Paulo – SP

    1. Hi Marco,
      The gears are selling for $30 USD each so 4 would be $120, the Postage that I have been sending them with
      often runs in the $15 range so 4 gears will be approximately $135. I take Paypal and credit cards and have
      them in stock now.
      It is best to contact me directly at

      to do the transaction to keep it out of public view.


    2. Hi Marco,
      The gears are being sent all over world wide. I just regret that the postage outside the USA is typically $15.00. The shipping is a one time cost as 4 or more gears will fit in the same box- maybe 50 would fit not that I have that many here.

  5. Hi from Australia! I only just discovered this problem with the Tascam 112 MKII when the head assembly stopped working, just after I’d serviced it too. I noticed the gear felt “fragile” when I was handling it and not like the others. I guess the gear was made in softer plastic to keep the head assembly running quieter. I actually have the same problem with 2 Technics decks (RS-TR232 and 252) as well, but these are idlers driving the take-up spools. I had attempted moulding in plastic some time ago but never gears with teeth, so it’s gratifying to know someone else has got there before me!

    1. Hi Evan,
      The gears are made in a material called Resin Cast. The materials used today may be superior to that used many years ago. The major issue with these decks is that the grease they used hardens and makes it impossible to turn the cam gear. The DC motor having so much torque is not current limited so it does it’s thing and the weakness must be in that gear. I have had some that are dried and fell apart too no matter how careful I was with them. I am now on my 4th order to the maker of the gears and he only makes about 30 at a time. It is not a big machine turning them out and so the expense. I E mailed you about these so you should have all the info you need. I think all these machines will fail due to this and the capstan motor capacitors issue with time. I would say that after these years it is a 100% failure rate- some sooner than later is all.

  6. it’s great that someone can take over making parts for tascam cassette decks. i love making tapes still and i do see small bands releasing new music on cassette’s, kinda go’s along with analog vinyl getting popular again. i have several tascam’s so i guess i will be stocking up on parts. thanks,

    1. Yes, someone had to step up and make this part as otherwise they would all go into the scrap heap. I get a lot of repairs here due to this gear and the bad motor caps. One just came in today- 122 Mk III. With 168 units here I have plenty to do.
      Also note as I tell some people out there that the gear replacement needs to be done with the cleaning and regrease of the mechanism. I know they used some form
      of damping grease on the gears which is where all the trouble came from- it dries out. I have used Lubriplate 105 in these mechanisms and the units work better than new. I have had no gears fail yet but I warn that without new grease in the mechanism that this could happen again. The new grease is required.

  7. My tascam 122 mkiii counter does not work, after few minutes head is going down and all led is flashing, any body help me how to fixing this?

    1. It must need mechanism repair work including one the gears I sell. This is very common and I fixed one the other day. The capstan motor also needs to be recapped. After a correct restoration of the unit, it will work like it is suppose to.

    2. Be careful in Florida with local shops- THERE ARE SOME REAL BUTCHERS OUT THERE.
      I just got one in from Miami Florida that is a total butcher job. Capstan cables missing, spring for the door missing, no servo drive IC and the Gear C is totally gone. With the motor the coils all measure open every one of them- I can not guess what they did to this machine except that they were very effective in wrecking it. Do they think that taking cables and parts out is going to make it work better. Boy, I wish I found out who this was as I would be sure to post them as a shop to stay away from. This is the worst unit I have had come into my shop.

    1. I get orders for them on a regular basis. I just sent one to the UK. I know they are expensive as it seems like $45 with the international postage is not fair but then you can not get them anywhere else. Maybe E bay but that guy does not have an infinite supply and mine are made fresh in TN by a machine shop. These are selling World Wide. They are not a profit maker but since I use them in my repairs, it is good to have a source and that the source is making them to cover his cost. The machine cost $2500 and the mold $500. I still have about 12 of them here.

      1. Hello Sam!
        There is a pushbutton “S2” near the IC on the PCB counter. In the manual service it says nothing about it. I have seen that if I turn on the Tascan with the button pressed, it shows a status every time. What is it for, what does it indicate and why does it not appear in the service manual? Thanks Sam!

        1. I know that it is there and it is a totally undocumented item that has nothing in the service manual, schematics or none of the factory service guy I have contact with know what it does. Apparently no one knows what it is for. Similar to the information you get for the Dolby S cards in the 238S deck. They treat them like they do not exist. Sometimes you have to put up with this kind of work but at least it is not all the time. See the RIP off post about this deck. It might clear up your problem if the deck is set in the wrong direction.

  8. Hai Sir,
    I am Joshy Francis From india
    I have Tascam 122mkiii, the particuler gher missing . So i urgenly need th ghere

    Joshy Francis
    ama shoping complex
    poothole road
    trichur , kerla state
    pin- 680004
    Mail. jjsystem@gmail.com
    Ph: 91 9447083851

    1. I have an Invoice made up for your order. All that is left is payment and I sent you an E mail about that. The gear is ready to be sent out.

    1. It is best to contact me by E mail at skywavebe@sbcglobal.net

      Using Paypal Friends and Family or Credit cards I can have the gear shipped out the next postal day usually as I have a quantity in boxes that are ready to go. These seem to be selling all over the World.

  9. Прошу сообщить стоимость отправки в Россию. Город Нижний Новгород. Оплата Mastercard.

    1. Translate-
      Please report the cost of shipping to Russia. City of Nizhny Novgorod. Payment Mastercard.
      The gears to go that distance are $45 with the postage.

    1. To replace that gear the transport is taken out of the deck. The transport is placed on a board across the top of the deck and then face down there are two screws at the top that hold the bracket on and then one at the center of the feedback board down below in the feedback bracket. To address a unit like this one needs to download the service manual and have a look at the mechanical drawing to see how things go together which would show what I explained above. The head wires to the transport are still connected so that is why I work on them on a old side board from a open reel on the top of the deck. Just place the board over the area where the transport came out and over the transformer. This then gives a surface to work on. In addition to the gear on a 122 Mk III, the recap of the capstan motor board will need to be done as well. I do that automatically here.

  10. Hi Sam,

    The PLAY/REW/FF buttons on my Tascam 112 mk2 stopped working, the device is just making a loud noise and all the lights above the buttons blink. At first I thought it was a belt so I ordered a new set from Germany which was about £17.

    I didn’t really have time to look inside as the deck is mounted in my rack, kinda bigger job to get it all out. These days, though, there is not much to do apart from home activities, I thought I will give it a go.

    I opened it up and realised it’s not a belt problem but a gear that had lost few teeth. Damn it!

    I thought I might fix it with some epoxy, but the whole gear broke into pieces like a biscuit as I tried to take it out. Maybe the previous owner used machine oil to lubricate the mechanism, who knows. Or maybe it is just a material fault, similarly found in walkmans of the DD series, with plastic gears deteriorating as time passes.

    I looked it up on Ebay to saw that those tape decks has gone up quite a lot since I bought mine, about 4 years ago for £40. Are the tapes finally make a come-back?

    Anyway, apologies for long post, my question is:
    Do you still have those gears in stock, and would you kindly ship to the UK and how much would that be?

    (Mine tape deck is the Mk2, not Mk3, not sure if that matters.)

    Many thanks,

    1. Hi Matt,
      Yes, I just got done boxing up about 30 of these gears as my stock pile was running low. The Gear C is the most failed part in that deck and all decks that use them. Not only does the old resin they used harden and become brittle they usually can not be used again even if all else is corrected as they are still compromised. Putting on a new Gear C is a very common thing here and I am selling them all over the world but not on E bay. They are $30 due to the fact that they are custom made 2 or 3 at a time by a machinist who bought the $3000 machine to do this stuff. He also consulted a plastic parts maker to see what we were dealing with and it was found that these were not injection molded but made by what they call resin cast. The Machinist tells me they are using a higher grade of resin than what was used 30 years ago. Some think these should be $2.00 a gear and if injection molded and 500,000 order you can get that price but who wants to put up the cost of making the mold which could be very expensive. We have made them the same way and they are not easy to make as there is a helical pitch to the teeth on one section. The guy on E bay that I tried to buy from in quantity would not sell them to me so I had to find my own source- before I showed up they were $80 per gear on E bay- I guess he had to reduce his price when I started selling them.
      The problem with orders outside the USA is that postal even first class is like $15 to the UK and anywhere in Europe and I have also sent some to Australia and Brazil. Send me an E mail and I can work with you to get a gear coming your way.

      Some people do not realize that the cleaning of the old damping grease they used which is part of the problem has to be cleaned out as well as the gear- this then is replaced in my shop with Lubriplate 105 which I have never had any issues with in any deck from when I started using it- maybe not 45 years ago but back a long time. It can be had at Automotive stores and hardware stores or even on line. I bought 4 tunes from a supplier online for about $7.00 each. In my process I also clean and re-lubricate the head base and recondition the Pinch Roller as well as pull Flywheels out and oil with AMS oil Signature synthetic oil. The 112 Mk II I did last and sold was at .04% wow and flutter with this oil. It often times make a big difference in all the decks I work on. The oil I am using that is in syringes at my shop is 0 W 30. It helps to oil the top bearing of the capstan motor in the 112 type decks.

  11. I would like to order TWO Gear C for a Tascam 488 MK II and if you have the belt I will be interested. I need two of each.

    How do I reach you and do you send to Canada.

  12. Hi, Sam!

    Just wondering if you still have any of these “C” gears for purchase? Finally trying to get my 488mkII back up and running again. I’m hesitant about the “new, never used, original” gears available on eBay right now, as it isn’t very clear as to whether they’re NOS or reproductions. But I’ve seen other people mention purchasing from you over the years so I figured I’d see if you had any left. Thanks!

    – Nick

    1. They are made recently with a higher grade of resin. They are Resin cast just like the other parts. I use them in my shop and also many people have used them already with no problem. There are some on E bay cheaper but I am told by those people that bought them that they do not work as good? I have one here that my producer sent me and he says they are made in China. They are not resin cast and I just am so busy here to not be able to try it in a machine yet. I have 185 units to work on- trying to clean out for the end of the year- last year.

  13. Hello, I have a Tascam 488 MK ll. It finally stopped working, thanks for giving me hope in bringing my baby back to life. It’s probably just gummed up, but if I’m going to open it up, I might as well put in a new gear C. I’m hoping to get a couple, because cassettes are coming back and I got a a lot of recording to do. I will place my order soon..Cheers.

    1. Hi Harry,
      It could be the gear but the cause is the dried grease in the entire mechanism and if you are going to take it apart and clean and regrease you might as well put a Idler tire for the fast wind assembly. I use Lubriplate 105 to grease the mechanism and I have never had a unit come back with dried grease with that. The amount of parts you have to remove and that to do the job is usually more than an owner can take. I do have gear C parts ready to go out again sine a new supply order came in.

      1. Thanks for getting back to me. I need to open it up anyway, I have a guitar cable tip stuck in channel #3, So this gives me a good reason. Looking forward to the challenge, but I’d like to have a new gear C just in case, are there any secrets to taking these apart? Do you have any other parts available, I might need idler tires, and a belt..thanks again..Check out ‘No Tomorrow’ by Trout Spuzzum..recorded on my Tascam 488MKll..be safe..cheers from Edmonton, Alberta.

  14. Hi! I’d like to order a gear C for my Tascam Portastudio 488 Mk II. Also… any Recommendations on gear grease that aren’t too expensive? Many thanks, Ben

    1. Gears are ordered through E mail to skywavebe@sbcglobal.net
      They cost $30 plus 8.45 postage for priority mail in the USA.
      I will need a postal address to make the invoice which is done on Quickbooks not Paypal.
      Paypal friends payments are acceptable but I also take all credit cards, checks and Venmo.

    2. The grease I use after cleaning out the mechanism with Denatured alcohol is Lubriplate 105 which in the USA is easy to obtain at a hardware store or online. The cheapest prices I saw were from skygeeks where I bought 3 tubes for $7.00 each. Amazon as usually is a lot more money and I really do not tell people to go there.

      As usual Amazon is keeping up as it wants $9.20, They are just a middleman that charges excessive amounts.

  15. Hi Sam,

    I have a 122 MK3 that makes some motor sound when I press PLAY or REW/FF but tape don’t turn, then the 3 PLAY/PAUSE/REC light blink. Would appreciate any advice of what the problem is. Capstan motor is working.

    Thank you in advance.

    1. Hi Alex,
      That is a very common happening these days as the grease- which was damping material of some kind dries up and causes the gear to crack from stress. The Correct answer is to have the deck taken apart- the transport cleaned and then greased with Lubriplate 105 and I usually have to put a new Gear C in as it is cracked. The wrong selection of lubricants is a thing that has become well know across the Whole Japanese community. Lubriplate existed back then but they did not use it then we have this.
      I have never had a Lubriplate grease deck come back for problems with the grease. In addition even if the transport does work the Capstan motor usually fails due to SMD parts that leak and so the capstan motor needs new caps put on it and to be cleaned and some traces repaired. After the corrections to these deck are made they are better than new as I don’t use SMD parts as they were never meant to last. I use Through hole parts of the 105*C type except the Bipolars which only come in 85*C types. I have rebuilt at least 135 motors so far.

      1. Hi Sam,

        Many thanks for your reply.

        I will try to disassemble and try to clean up the hardened grease. I’ll check if the gear is broken then I’ll send you an email.

        Btw, I also found out that the power sometimes just goes out totally black out and come back again if I unplug and plug it back. Could it be the big electrolytic capacitors in the power section? Or other problems?

        Thank you again .

        Kind regards,

        1. That is something that I have never seen to date and I have worked on a lot of machines- that could be bad solder joints or maybe a bad bridge rectifier. I think in a deck I did change one once but it may not have been a Mk III deck. These are pretty new to be having cap problems. What you will want to detect is if the ripple of the power supply is increasing or if power it disappears all the way. A bad solder joint can be intermittent as well as temperature sensitive. On most all Mk III decks I turn them over take off the bottom cover and resolder a lot around the power supply as well as add the 1N4148 diodes to the mute transistor circuit. Some people have had me put MAX4066 IC’s in the deck to replace the 4066 that are cheap. The power supply issue needs to be resolved before further work as all other work can make confusing and more difficult the job of finding the problem. Taking the mechanism apart is a lot more complicated that people think. Not only the gears on the back are done but also the two slide plates in the front- the 4 balls for slide plate, the Pinch roller comes off, The head base plate comes off and the cassette holder is first taken off. All this to trainees look very complicated but after you do a 100 of them it then is just work. The brake spring comes off, the spring at the rear of the actuator arm is taken off the stud that goes to the front and the head base spring which I put rubber cement at the head area to keep it on. Once a spring is disconnected from one side there is nothing holding it on so it can be lost. This I glue it to the one side with Best Test latex glue and once dry it should not come off.
          Once you take the bottom off you can see what solder joints are maybe causing the problem- I resolder all regulators so that aerospace grade soldering is done and they will never break with Kester 44 on there. Most of the joints in manufactured decks is anemic solder wise which tends to be easy to break. A lot of joints are broken already just still conductive.

        2. To really determine what the problem is you need to find out if the deck just loses the counter display or do the meter lamps go out. These should never go out other than lamps burning out after time. It is possible to have the counter go out and the power still be in the deck. One of the first things I try is the fast wind. If that does not react then there may not be power.

          1. Hi Sam,

            Thanks for the reply.

            It actually goes black out like power off, the counter, the meter lamp, the blinking LEDs of REC/Play/Pause. It’s literally power off. The light goes out slowly then out totally. And if I let it sit for awhile and plug it back, it turns on again.

            Btw, I need to order some C gear, I disassembled it last night and found the C gear broken in half. I’ll send an email to you. Thanks again!

  16. Hi again Sam, I couldn’t find your email address in your skygeek website. Can you write it here? Or send me an email.

  17. Sam hi,
    I have a Tascam 488 mk 1. I think need gears for it.
    Everything is working except for when I press play. The cassete does not turn. It does engage but does not play.
    I watched a video on repair and it seems that the problem is the gears.
    The video gave your details.
    My email is yprittsehmi@yahoo.com
    Could send details of the cost of the gears and shipping.
    Thanks Pritt

    1. Hi Pritt,
      I sent you an E mail with details. Kind of running low on gears as it cost me money to have them made 40 or so at a time.
      The transport if the LEDs are blinking is confused. The LED not blinking might just mean you need a new capstan belt which I think is the FM8.0 on
      the Consolidated Electronics website.
      I sell them with some gears for $6.00 no additional postage as I use Priority postal unless out of the states and then First class postage.
      E bay sellers are selling gears too but being they are cheaper than mine then why are mine still selling at all?
      The transport needs to be taken apart and all old grease cleaned out and I use Lubriplate 105 grease in the deck- AMSoil Signature Synthetic oil 0W30 is used fro capstan bearings and all motor top bearings. This oil goes a long way to making your deck work well and keep it working. I use it in all my deck now and it always gives me as good as the deck can perform depending n wear.
      I can provide more info depending on what you finally need. The feedback plate with gold pattern must be cleaned off and I use a thin layer of Lubriplate 105 there. In all the deck I have serviced in all the years Lubriplate has never failed even once. I got my 10 OZ tubes from Skygeeks at around $7.00 each.

  18. Hi Sam,, I’m working on a 112 mk2 that needs a new C type gear and I am wondering if you have those and also I was reading your posts above and you mentioned recapping the C Drive motor.. Can you tell me what capacitors I need to do that… also are there caps on the board that need changing as well.. Thank you,, Terence.

    1. The 112 Mk II uses a Gear C which I have on order. The caps on a capstan motor only really apply to the capstans on a direct dive motor board not on the 112 that is belt drive. I have not had to replace Electrolytics on the boards of these newer model yet.

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