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Pioneer laserdisc player repair

Discussion in 'Playback Devices' started by williammoore, Sep 6, 2017.

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  1. williammoore

    williammoore Extra

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    Hello. Does anyone know of a facility which can still repair Pioneer Laserdisc players? My DVL-700 is starting to have some playback issues like momentarily dropping out video and audio and not wanting to change sides. I used to use Bayview Electronics in Washington state but I think they have closed up. Help!
     
  2. David Norman

    David Norman Producer

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    Not many big facilities that do it anymore.

    Kurtis Bahr I think still does repairs but it isn't his full time business. Last email I had for him [email protected]
     
  3. Joseph Bolus

    Joseph Bolus Cinematographer

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    You may be better off just purchasing a couple of used (but presumably working) units off eBay. At the very worse, at least you’ll have spare parts available and a local generic electronic repair shop might be willing to try a repair.
     
  4. williammoore

    williammoore Extra

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    OK, thanks! Maybe I'll get in touch.
     
  5. williammoore

    williammoore Extra

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    Thanks for the tip and there are a lot of players on Ebay, but as you say, it's a crap shoot. I'm looking though.
     
  6. Phil A

    Phil A Producer

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    Kurtis is excellent. I lived about 40 minutes from him before I moved just under 4 years back. I had him come over my house one time to decide which player to go with. I sold my LDs and 2 players (Elite 79 and Pioneer 704, which are essentially the same player), key spare parts (e.g. spindle motor) and my 130-140 LDs almost a year back. Sold them cheap as they were just taking up space and I had not used them in a bit (they worked perfectly though). I've re-bought a few of the titles I had on LD and I'm sure I'll re-buy a few more.
     
  7. MatthewA

    MatthewA Lead Actor

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    My player just bit the big one just as I was getting back into it, so I bought a "new" one that also plays DVDs off eBay; I'm interested to see if they look better there and upconverted on my external upconverter than the PS4's internal upconverter. It won't be here for a few weeks because it's coming from Japan. I'll try to see if anyone in the Monterey Bay, San Jose or San Francisco bay areas (if it comes to that) can save my existing unit, but I'm not optimistic. It kept getting the "U1" error for everything.
     
  8. David Norman

    David Norman Producer

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    The U1 error message seems to be one of the more common error messages
    From memory and what I can find it can be something as bad as a dying spindle motor or dead laser mech not being about to read the disc
    to something as simple a broken/slipping belt or belt coming off the pulley so the disc won't spin or can't get up to speed so
    the laser can read properly.

    Most commonly in the past I'd take the top cover off and watch what happened when I tried to start up a disc -- did is spin at all or
    spin way too slow, would a CD work but not a LD, If the player has been inactive for a while the belt could have rotted or all the lubricant
    dried so possible an easy fix.

    Kurtis might be able to walk you through some easy steps or might know of someone or a shop in the area. The only 2 folks that routinely did a lot of repairs were Kurtis in Virginia and a guy in Michigan. Years ago Duncan at Bayview in Washington state was pretty good, but the last 5-6 years I've heard nothing but horror stories. I looked over at LDDB.com, but couldn't come up with a Pioneer Shop anywhere.
    I'd honestly be shocked if that wasn't someone in the SF area with all the Tech People there that could do the work as long as it wasn't some no longer made parts.
     
  9. MatthewA

    MatthewA Lead Actor

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    I'm not coming up with any reliable professional repair options, but I found a site that had this do-it-yourself option that costs nothing but the $5 it costs to replace a belt.
     
  10. David Norman

    David Norman Producer

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    If the belt is all you need, then that's about as simple a repair as there is. It probably takes longer to take all the screws in and put them back than to change the belt. The U1 error can be from a bunch of different problems though
     
  11. MatthewA

    MatthewA Lead Actor

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    I opened the machine and found the problem: a label flaked off a 30+ year old disc and was covering up the laser! Taking it out solved the problem completely.
     
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  12. mark brown

    mark brown Stunt Coordinator

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    an electrical storm knocked out both of my 1998 players sometime this past spring. I am sure it is a fuse but have no idea how to replace
     
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  13. Message #13 of 18 Jun 20, 2018
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2018
    David Norman

    David Norman Producer

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    I take it back -- there is at least one more simple repair


    If it really is a fuse and it's a US PIONEER (or clone) it should be pretty easy.

    Take the cover off and there is a main fuse near the power supply or near where the AC cord enters the rear of the unit. I forget which size fuse (2A/125 or 2A/250 -- I think some of the combo units may use a slightly different size) , but it's a pretty std size available at any Electronics store or online. I think the fuse size may even be printed next to the slot.

    Lightning surge could easily have taken out something more critical, but I guess start with the easiest which should just take a screwdriver and looking at the fuse though depending on the player you may have to manually open the drawer to see everything.

    I just took the top cover off mine since it was open in the closet already. I can see the main fuse on my CLD99 just by taking the cover off though I have to look in the side -- literally the fuse is the very back corner of the Main Board. This fuse is a 2A/250 though I'm sure most basic units were 2/125,
     
  14. Jesse Skeen

    Jesse Skeen Producer

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    If you're in or near Sacramento CA, I highly recommend Paradyme. They've serviced a number of my players and some other stuff.
     
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  15. William Moore

    William Moore Stunt Coordinator

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    Do they have a website? Also, I'm having a slight issue now with my Pioneer DVL-90 and that is on most discs, when being played back on my Pioneer 60" plasma, I see a white/greenish vertical line at the far right of the screen, right next to the border. On certain scenes, however, the line disappears. Is there any way to get rid of this? And, what might it be? Could the picture on the plasma be shifted a hair to the right? And finally, does anyone know of a good ISF calibrator who travels. Thanks!
     
  16. William Moore

    William Moore Stunt Coordinator

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    I think Bayview has closed their doors. I have emailed Duncan several times with no answer.
     
  17. David Norman

    David Norman Producer

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    All the reports I've heard since the early 2010's were terrible. Either you couldn't get a hold of him or he'd accept a player and then wouldn't hear anything from him in months or the player would be sent back unfixed or more damaged. Someone said they went by the "shop" which at some point moved into a shack in his back yard and even that was falling apart with players and parts strewn haphazardly. I've about some severe health issues that caused some of the problems, but it's been many years since that was a legit option.

    Right now Kurtis, someone Kurtis could suggest, or possible some big cities that maybe had big Pioneer connections at some point seem to be the main options.

    I had a very strange issue with my CLD-99 (multi voltage version of the Elite 99) where the power seemed to be dead -- initially there was a standby light, but wouldn't power up, then that went away. I check the power supply and cord which seemed to be getting power, the main fuse near the AC power cord and the infamous Arc Suppressor Diode seemed OK, but zero power.

    I put the player aside for 3-4 months and mostly forgot about it thinking at some point I'd send to back to Kurtis to repair it (bought it from him to start with). Last week when I got my new Marantz 6012 receiver I figured it was time, but I plugged it in just out of habit and it fired up with an issue. Played a couple discs and then just put it on Repeat and let it run for 4 days without a glitch. Who knows -- maybe it went to sleep knowing it's best friend Denon 5800 was about to bite the big one or maybe it shut down in sympathy of its buddy it had been attached at the hip to for 15 years..
     
  18. Echolane

    Echolane Auditioning

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    I have the Pioneer ELITE CLD 99 and it is still working. Bought it off eBay well before DVDs came along so I could watch Opera LDs. I loved having it. But with the advent of large screen digital TVs I have a hard time enjoying the video. It is dim and blurry on my 55” UHD TV so I seldom use it anymore. Besides that, I replaced a lot of the operas I had on LD with their equivalents on DVD. No comparison in video quality. I do think the Audio was excellent on the LDs, but it is also excellent on the DVD. It becomes harder to justify keeping it. I think if it goes down, I won’t fix it.
     

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