AKAI GXC-760D: Replacing the Lamps
This cassette deck suffers from 40+ years old burnt lamps syndrome. Time to change all of them. There are five miniature bulbs rated 24 V / 40 mA in the command buttons. Another two axial lamps are in the cassette compartment. The remaining two axial lamps are above the VU meters, behind a prism. All axial lamps are rated 8 V / 200 mA. I sourced all these bulbs then proceeded to disassembling the unit.
First off I have addressed the control buttons bulbs. The rewind and pause bulbs were still functioning. A a best practice, I replaced all bulbs in this machine.
This is the controls block.
This block is disassembled by removing the two screws holding the black mask. Then you carefully remove each button by gently pulling it out. A spring is beneath every button. Remove these as well. Then again three screws are securing the lights block to the chassis. Remove the top two screws and the bottom screw. The entire plastic holder gets out. Now another two screws are holding the printed circuit board to the plastic holder. Remove these as well. And...
Clearly someone has been here before me. Check out the 3 mm LED in place of the record bulb. Dirty job. The guy even managed to break two printed circuit tracks. Which I fixed as well with miniature copper tape. I also cleaned the lights board with isopropanol. The result is as follows.
Here are the new miniature light bulbs.
I have then cleaned all the old AKAI corrosive glue with D509 thinner. Lengthy job. And smelly too. Well ventilated room is a must. Then I have inserted all the five new miniature bulbs and soldered them in place.
Next follows the trimming of the bulb leads. This is how the bulb array looks on the other side. All nice and clean.
Detailed miniature bulb view.
All good on these control buttons bulbs. I have reassembled everything in reverse order.
Next up is the replacement of the cassette compartment bulbs. You can see here that only the left original bulb is still lighting. The other one is burnt.
Removing this steel part is easy enough. Two screws are securing it in place. Here is the steel holder with the old lamps. New lamps are visible also.
I have then reassembled the steel part in reverse order and moved on to the VU meters illumination.
Just above them there is a small screw that is holding up the light dispersing prism. I have removed this and put the prism in a safe place. Each VU meter has its own lamp mounted on independent printed circuit boards. Each board is secured in place with two screws. I removed the screws and desoldered the lamps. Unfortunately the same corrosive glue attacked two of the screws. I gave them a good bath in a mild acid that eats rust. The screws came out clean.
Before reassembling the prism I fired the unit up. The lights came on as expected.
I have secured the prism back in its place then I have proceeded to the reassembly of the unit. This is the lamp aftermath. All junk.
Here are some final pictures.
I have chosen not to replace the lamps with modern LEDs because I really like the warmth of incandescent light. I hope the new bulbs will last at least as long as the old ones.