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Sansui 881 - Recapping (I'm going to do it!)

Discussion in 'Exclusively Sansui' started by Blistex, May 5, 2012.

  1. Blistex

    Blistex New Member

    Messages:
    35
    Two months ago I delved into the vintage audio world, and I'm forever sold. I picked up an 881 from an electronics bin at the dump.

    Cleaned it up, plugged it in, and it works . . . but there was a very loud and annoying buzz. I took some AK forum advice and after re-heating some ground solder connections it was gone. A month later one of the channels is muted and distorted. Some more AK advice and some contact leaner later, and it's fixed as well.

    Well Now I'm wanting to give those 38 year old Capacitors a proper burial, and get some new ones, but I have a few questions.

    1. There are orange 1μF 50V capacitors, and 3.3μF 50V Capacitors. They have a row of "(M)"s and they say "LR" on them as well. I'm confused because there are other gray/blue capacitors of the same values on the boards. Why the handful of orange caps in a sea of blue and gray? Are they a special brand? Do they do something the regular gray/blue ones don't?

    2. The panel that all the buttons and dials are attached to below the glass display. . . how do you get that off? I've removed the two screws and the nuts/washers on the dials, but I can't get the push-buttons off? Do they pull off? Twist off? Or are they glued on? I don't want to break one and have to drop $15 on eBay or some other place to get a replacement. This is the last CCT board I need access to. Once I have that out I will be finished cataloging all the capacitors on the board.

    When I'm finished recording all the info, if anyone would be interested, I'll post the capacitor list which would include the electrical values and the size so anyone else interested in recapping the 881 won't have to do all the counting and sorting, and all that other fun stuff. Maybe even the Digikey #'s for all the parts as well so people know they are getting the right ones when they order.

    Thanks.

    The beast in Question:

    [​IMG]

    ***EDIT***
    Here is the Digikey list with the Capacitor descriptions, part numbers, and number of units to re-cap your 881 in order of decreasing voltage and uF.

    Enjoy! (click for big)

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: May 28, 2012

     

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  2. kevzep

    kevzep Its all about the Music Subscriber

    I believe those orange caps are special high grade audio caps or so I am led to believe, they are sealed with some kind of resin....
    I could be wrong but i have always found them in the audio path rather than power applications....
     
  3. vintageboy

    vintageboy Chicago HiFi Subscriber

    Messages:
    21,402
    Location:
    NW Chicago IL
    post the list here when you are done, I have one 881 too!
     
  4. Hyperion

    Hyperion Roobarb & Custard Subscriber

    Messages:
    48,643
    Location:
    Hertfordshire, UK
    You are right I think Kev - I heard that they were low leakage audio caps. They are described as 'low noise' - but I think this is just 'marketing speak' for low leakage.

    To the OP, you can still buy low leakage audio grade caps - they have about 10 times less leakage current than 'ordinary' audio caps. Providing you stick to known brands, any caps you buy today will be a great deal better than the originals.
     
  5. Blistex

    Blistex New Member

    Messages:
    35
    So if I keep the "audio" search option on in the Digikey menus, does that mean the caps are going to be low leakage? I think I might just do that with all caps since it only means a few cents difference per cap. All in all I'm looking at a $30-40 job to re-cap this sucker.

    Also, did anyone know how to remove that one panel? THe one with all the push buttons and dials? I can't seem to figure out how to get the push buttons off, and they appear to be what is stopping me.

    I'll be sure to make a post showing all the caps and their sizes as well so anyone else wanting to recap an 881 will have a much easier time of it than I'm having.
     
  6. skippy124

    skippy124 AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,624
    Location:
    Sydney Australia
    Hi,

    Are you trying to remove the front panel?.

    As far as I can recall - The front panel is one piece, you need to remove the switch and pot knobs first (they pull off), and from memory there may be a couple of nuts on the switches/pots that will also need to be removed. Then there are four screws - two on the top edge and two on the bottom edge of the front panel, remove these and the front panel will come off without having to remove the push switch knobs. There is an exploded view in the service manual that is helpful - page 20.

    Once the front panel is off, you can remove these push switch knobs.

    Cheers

    John
     

     

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  7. ConradH

    ConradH Addicted Member

    Messages:
    7,970
    Location:
    Canandaigua, NY
    This is a wild guess, but other than tantalums, capacitors are inherently low noise. The idea of a low noise cap doesn't make any sense. Almost any modern cap (we're talking electrolytics here) will have very low leakage. What I wonder is if they mean low noise as in low microphonics? That would seem to be something important. Unfortunately I've never seen that as a touted feature.
     
  8. skippy124

    skippy124 AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,624
    Location:
    Sydney Australia
    Low noise Electrolytic as original fitted were basically low leakage current, and as Hyperion has said, there are low leakage spec caps available today for these applications if you want to go down that path when recapping.

    There is literature on capacitors from Pioneer at the time in the link below that is a good read

    http://www.audiokarma.org/forums/showpost.php?p=3012505&postcount=11

    Cheers

    John
     
  9. Blistex

    Blistex New Member

    Messages:
    35
    So basically any capacitor that wasn't made with slave labour is pretty much going to be better than the "low-leakage" ones from the 1970's? I guess what's I'm saying is, "do I need to replace those orange ones with something special, or is it ok to use any "non-crap" cap?"
     
  10. kevzep

    kevzep Its all about the Music Subscriber

    I use Panasonic FC and FM almost exclusively, BHC's for the main caps......Just because thats whats available locally here in New Zealand, but a lot of guys over in the USA like to use the Nichicons.....they are are all good, just depends what you feel like using at the end of the day...

    Any good quality cap you use will be better than any of the caps which were used originally in that amplifier......
     
  11. Blistex

    Blistex New Member

    Messages:
    35
    I left the calipers at my parent's place, so I can't give you measurements yet on all the caps, but from what I've gathered, it would be pretty hard to get a cap today that is larger (in size) than what it was back in 1974, so there shouldn't be any worries yet.

    Here is my list, and I'm pretty sure it's accurate. If you see any discrepancies, be sure to mention them. I've attached it as a giant .png file and a pdf file. The "low-leakage" orange caps are marked in the orange columns, so anyone who is really worried or anal about those ones can see which caps they need to make sure are "top-of-the-line". I've arranged them by voltage because, "screw you" I feel like it. :D Hope some of you out there find it useful.

    I hope to make a more detailed one with cap measurements and the digi-key part numbers so that ordering is easier for those who want to go through that distributer. I don't think that they stock the exact three giant caps next to the transformer, but I'm pretty sure it shouldn't matter. If I find a distributer that does, I'll post it here as well, and maybe post the part numbers for them and the website where you can get them on the final copy.


    ****THAT LAST CAP IN THE ATTACHED PDF FILE IS SUPPOSED TO BE "100μF 50V", not "5V"****
    I've fixed the attached image though, so ignore the PDF.

    [​IMG]

    Sorry about that!
     

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: May 6, 2012

     

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  12. rswojo

    rswojo AK Subscriber

    Messages:
    913
    A Sony preamp I recapped had four orange electrolytics. They were stated to be low leakage caps. I used Nichicon KL caps to replace them.
     
  13. kevzep

    kevzep Its all about the Music Subscriber

    Any modern cap of reasonable quality is going to be higher spec than those orange things.....
    Panasonic FC FM Nichicion rubycon.....whatever......Its not as bigger deal as you may be lead to believe.
    As long as they are not some crap Chinese things....
    In my opinion some people make way way to bigger deal about caps.......
     
  14. Blistex

    Blistex New Member

    Messages:
    35
    So I've been through Digikey, and when I got to the last one it came up blank. Seems that there were no "100μF 5V" Caps so on further examination I forgot a zero and that was supposed to be "100μF 50V". :sigh:

    Attached is a new PDF with the correct values. The image in my previous post has been fixed (click here to get it), but I can't change the attached PDF, so I just added a disclaimer. This one is better.

    Also, I don't think I'll be adding digikey part numbers as there are so many options and all I did was order the first cap that came up that didn't require me to buy them in increments of 2000 units. I think every one I ordered was a Panasonic ECG. . . those kind ok? They're not going to make my 881 sound like a $25 Walmart stereo, are they?
     

    Attached Files:

  15. kevzep

    kevzep Its all about the Music Subscriber

    Just get 100µf 10v or 16v 25v......its okay to go up in voltage a bit. They will still be smaller than the ones in there....
    Better to go Panasonic FC or FM, but the EGC wont make it sound like a Walmart $25 stereo in any case......
     
  16. Blistex

    Blistex New Member

    Messages:
    35
    Good to know. I think I will go "Panasonic First Result" for all the Blue/Gray caps, and go FC or FM for the Orange ones that are supposed to be low-loss.

    Thanks for all the advice.:thmbsp:
     

     

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  17. jazzdoang

    jazzdoang New Member

    Messages:
    20
    hi Blistex,

    Do you mind showing/telling which part usually need re-heating ? did you reheat all the ground ? It did not seem to work for me.

    thanks...
     
  18. Blistex

    Blistex New Member

    Messages:
    35
    Some of the ground wires (black) are screwed to a board/panel, and others are soldered. There was also a thick woven silver coloured wire as well. I reheated all the ones that were soldered, and the ones that were screwed on got a shot of contact cleaner and some wiping.

    Just look around for ground wires and start reheating their connections. I wouldn't do it when the stereo is on or plugged in, and give it a few minutes before turning it back on so everything has a chance to cool.
     
  19. jazzdoang

    jazzdoang New Member

    Messages:
    20
    Okay, I will try again following your advice. Thank you for your quick answer
     
  20. Blistex

    Blistex New Member

    Messages:
    35
    Dammit! I used contact cleaner the other day to get the left channel of my 881 going again, and today I turn it on and it's muted and distorted. What the hell?

    This was the stuff that I was using:

    [​IMG]

    From the can. . .

    Should I just man up and drop $30 (shipping included) and get a can of Deoxit? Or does anyone think this might be another issue?
     

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