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Pioneer 1020L is it worth fixing?

Discussion in 'Tape' started by PAUL Camden, Sep 6, 2018.

  1. PAUL Camden

    PAUL Camden Member

    Messages:
    60
    Just purchased a pioneer 1020L for 200 bucks. the play switch was working intermittently and I thought maybe
    cleaning with Deoxit might do the trick but the problem got worse and now the capspin wheel doesn't engage at all so I think it needs to go in for repairs. after doing some research I'm thinking the control board needs work.

    so it took the back off and can see the belts are original. I suspect this thing hasnt been serviced in a very long time. If I take it in I might as well have the belts replaced, heads polished and get everything calibrated but Im guessing that isnt going to be cheap.

    so, the question is how much is reasonable to sink into this one? I did get a brand new Quantegy tape on a TDK metal reel and 2 extra TDK metal reels with the deck so not a total loss.

    what do you guys think?
     

     

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  2. Jonny Ramone

    Jonny Ramone Super Member

    Messages:
    1,866
    $200 was probably a bit much to start with, as expensive repairs are fairly common in the hobby - it's not a great bang for the buck. If it's in cosmetically good shape, with low wear on the heads, it's a better candidate for restoration. In my neck of the woods, cheap Pioneer decks are plentiful on Craigslist, so it's easier for me to be picky( I'm not in the market for anything but insane give-away prices).
     
  3. PAUL Camden

    PAUL Camden Member

    Messages:
    60
    I knew it was a gamble but the 3 reels and the new tape made it worth the risk, not a total loss.cosmetically it is pretty good. I dont see a lot of the 1020l's on CL around here.
    if I can get it fixed for a few hundred at least I know what I have, thats my thinking on it. there is a guy trying to sell a 909 for 1,200.00 on CL
    that has not had any recent service, guys are telling me they go for a grand easy but to me that is a lot of money for something that isn't restored.

    I like the deck , just dont want to end up under water on the value.
     
  4. wallacefl

    wallacefl AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    334
    Pioneer 1020l was my first go with a 10.5 inch r2r and it made great tapes.I payed $374 for a non used/ new shelf display demo from Swallens in Cincinnati when it first came out so prices today are hard to gauge but if you get it working I think you will like it.
     
  5. PAUL Camden

    PAUL Camden Member

    Messages:
    60
    Ive heard nothing but good things about it. I suppose its at least worth taking it in and getting an estimate. it is in very good shape cosmetically.
    an hour of detailing and I could get to excellent.
     
  6. oldvinyldude

    oldvinyldude AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,642
    Location:
    Buckeystown Maryland
    This is a very solid model, and a good first R2R. I rarely hear of serious issues getting one back to working condition.

    Aside from it not having reverse play, it's very close to the RT909 in performance. The 909 has a lot more eye candy factor-that's why folks pay up for them.

    If you plan on using the deck periodically, it should be worth repairing, if you are not up to the task yourself. If you are looking to fix and sell-you may only recover your investment, or loose a bit.
     

     

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  7. MaxxVolume

    MaxxVolume AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    5,007
    The 1020L (and H, also), are reliable workhorse machines. Relatively simple, one-direction play & record means less to go wrong. Sound quality (assuming clean, decent-condition heads) is pretty good, maybe not quite on par with an RT-909, but certainly quite respsctable, especially at 7 1/2 ips.

    upload_2018-9-10_17-6-39.png
     
  8. PAUL Camden

    PAUL Camden Member

    Messages:
    60
    I have a real nicely restored Teac A-3340s to play with also but im real tempted to fix this one. Im also looking at a recently serviced Teac X-1000r.
    I like the idea of the auto reverse and DBX.
     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2018
  9. oldvinyldude

    oldvinyldude AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,642
    Location:
    Buckeystown Maryland
    The Teac A series deck is similar to the Pioneer deck. Well built, and reliable.

    The x1000r is a nice deck, but not as robust as the others. It's dual capstan design can get out of whack, and there are not many techs who can get it right again.

    It does offer reverse record (and play), which is very convenient. Also has Return to Zero function-again-can be handy too.

    fyi-Forum policy frowns on discussing prices in specific terms. Dollars and Sense is the place for questions/feedback on this topic. Of course, lots of CL and eBay window shopping should give you a fair sense of correct pricing for any deck you might consider.
     
    Skylab likes this.
  10. PAUL Camden

    PAUL Camden Member

    Messages:
    60
    Thanks! there's an rt-909 for sale locally but a bit pricier than the X1000. just hate to shell out that much for a deck that hasnt been gone through.
     

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