Dealing with an audio cassette repair is similar to the “How to Fix a Video Tape” guide I posted earlier. To make things easier, the tools I used were splicing tape, a small flathead screwdriver, and a new blank cassette tape.
The first step is to inspect what type of damage your cassette has, the most common types of problems are either a break in the tape, the tape creased and flipped somewhere. This guide will detail how to fix a cassette tape that has been pulled off one of the reels. This is a pretty common example of a damaged audio cassette, so in most cases the steps are the same.
After you have discovered the source of the problem, you’re going to need to open up the cassette. Your cassette tape will either be glued, or held together with screws in each corner. If you are attempting to repair a tape that has been glued together, you literally have to break the casing in half in order to attempt any sort of repair. You can easily accomplish this by sticking a flathead screwdriver into one of the small openings at the bottom of the cassette, and prying it open that way .
Be careful not to lose the parts inside as you break the casing apart, as sometimes they can go flying onto the ground.Once the cassette shell has been opened up, you can now get to work. For many cassettes, especially older ones, the tape will have pulled itself off one of the reels.
When the tape is pulled off the reel, it can be difficult to thread it back through the reel, and even if you do manage to do it, chances are that it will not last for long. The recommended fix for this problem is to purchase a blank cassette at your local electronics store that we can use for parts. *Make sure the new cassette you buy has screws and not glued together.
We’re going to open up the new cassette just like we did with our damaged tape.
Take the reel from the new cassette and cut the tape about 1-2 inches from the end of the leader tape. This will give you a brand new reel, and a nice piece of tape to splice the broken tape onto.
Remove the old reel from your cassette, and replace it with the reel you just cut from the new cassette. You now have enough room to easily splice the two ends together with a piece of splicing tape. You want the ends to meet as flush as possible, with no overlap of tape. This is possible without a splicing block, just keep in mind you’re going to be working with pretty thin tape, so it may take some patience and steady hands.
After your tape is spliced together, we need to set it back in the casing the way we found it. You can look at the picture below to see the correct layout. It’s easier to thread the tape through the notches with a small screwdriver or tweezers.
Screw the casing back together again, and use a pencil or something similar to make sure the reels turn correctly and don’t get stuck. After these steps, your audio cassette should be ready for a cassette to cd transfer or just plain listening again!