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Sony PS-X55 tonearm issue

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Sony PS-X55 tonearm issue

Postby rattus » 13 Dec 2017 12:09

Hello!

Today my record player stopped working. The tonearm doesn't go down anymore. The 'tone arm indicator' light is flicking. I think the automatic system didn't work properly, the tonearm didn't go automatically to the starting point... I had to move it manually. But after it's not working anymore.

I found a similar issue: viewtopic.php?f=18&t=71497

the user says: "Solved , I remove bottom plate, move the brake drum and the toner arm work flawlessly. I think is a typical grease issue...."

But I don't understand what he means about that. What is the bottom plate? What is the brake drum?
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Re: Sony PS-X55 tonearm issue

Postby rattus » 13 Dec 2017 18:44

I found the service manual for this model, but it doesn't really Help me. I don't understand.
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Re: Sony PS-X55 tonearm issue

Postby paul401 » 14 Dec 2017 00:49

Hello,

I am not familiar with this model, but downloaded the service manual. The arm is 'driven' by it's own motor and gear system (on many decks the arm auto mechanism is driven by a cam on the main platter).
Looking at the manual, it uses a small 'worm drive' system with gears around the base of the tone arm. What has probably happened is that over time the grease on the various parts has dried up and become hard and/or solid, stopping the parts from moving freely.

The 'brake drum' is just part of the whole gear assembly, as shown in the service manual. You will need to open up the deck by removing the base of the unit ( 'bottom plate' in the linked thread) - this can often be done with the unit on it's side/end, just take care, and disconnect from the mains first.
Once you have access to the underside of the tonearm clean away/remove the old grease from the mechanism with cotton buds (cocktail sticks and paper towel can also be useful), use something like WD40 or contact cleaner to remove old grease, apply to the cotton bud, don't squirt it direct onto the gears.
Be gentle and do not 'force' or put 'excess pressure' on any of the parts.

Hopefully it will be possible to clean enough of the old grease off without the need to take the gears apart - I would not recommend/advice this, as the manual shows, it's comprised of many small parts.
Once the old grease is removed, clean away any residue with fresh cotton buds and then apply a small amount of new 'light' grease.

I can't promise this will work, but based on the quoted thread it would seem a good place to start.

Paul
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Re: Sony PS-X55 tonearm issue

Postby rattus » 14 Dec 2017 13:07

Hello! Thanks for the reply. I opened the player today, and it looks like that:

Image

I didn't really see any old grease, except very little on that part B - which I actually felt with finger, but didn't see the grease. Also I didn't really see any broken parts...

Earlier I accidentally forced the tonearm to go back to the start place - because the tonearm was stuck on the middle of vinyl (but not touhing the vinyl, just 1 cm over it). I wonder if this force move broke it even more. I moved the part A, tried it in different positions, but none of those had any effect. Part C gives a red light.. I wonder on which position that part A needs to be. I assume that my forced move moved the part A to wrong position, but it can be something else also.

It looks like a real pain, if I need to take off all the parts and check the greases...
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Re: Sony PS-X55 tonearm issue

Postby Van_Isle » 14 Dec 2017 13:57

No those gears really don't have any grease.

The service manual does have some diagrams showing the relationship of the 'Part A' to the rest of the mechanism. When the slot in the brake drum 'A' lines-up with the light 'C' then the light shines through to a sensor that sees it and triggers the tonearm to return. It's been a while since I had my PS-X55, but I believe that yellow can is a solenoid and probably is what is triggered to start the return cycle. Now an IC chip triggers the tonearm motor to start and also there is a sensor similar to the return sensor that senses the record size. That feeds into the IC as well. So you may have a bad record size sensor, a bad IC or a bad motor ... or something else that is more mechanical and related to forcing the tonearm.
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Re: Sony PS-X55 tonearm issue

Postby paul401 » 15 Dec 2017 01:27

Van_Isle wrote:No those gears really don't have any grease.


They certainly do not! Not what I expected to see at all, given quotes from the earlier thread. Mmmm?Some good info from Van_Isle, not a lot to add. The gears may be a friction fit on the tonearm and can be moved out of alignment, for example, by forcing the arm, so yes try and align them as per manual. Otherwise could be other issues as Van_Isle points out.

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Re: Sony PS-X55 tonearm issue

Postby Van_Isle » 15 Dec 2017 01:34

There's a set screw on the brake / shutter that fixes it to the tonearm.
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Re: Sony PS-X55 tonearm issue

Postby rattus » 15 Dec 2017 10:10

Van_Isle wrote:So you may have a bad record size sensor, a bad IC or a bad motor ... or something else that is more mechanical and related to forcing the tonearm.


hmm. The record size sensor should be fine, because I was using this without problems the last two years (expect for some LP's the tonearm went up before the record ended; I am sure there's a way to fix that also).

I don't know what is IC. Can you please tell me.

Bad motor... might be.

When I put the power on (and keeping the down part visible, as the player is now 90 degrees position, so I can see what happens when I push the buttons), I see that 'control cam' is moving a bit, but then stops; and nothing else happens. I think the 'control cam' is now in its last position. When I push the power off and on again, then it's not moving anymore (because it's in its end position). Totally confusing. I tried to move many parts, but there's very minimal things to do without forcing.

I wonder if I should just get another player. But the money situation is not good right now, so if I could fix this, it would be the best (and yes, I have also plenty of new records waiting in a christmas packages... which I probably cannot even play).

I see that the 'arm lifter' doesn't go down, that's why I cannot move the tonearm manually onto the record. If I push the 'arm lifter', it goes down, but it's heavy. When I check under, I see that the 'control cam' is blocking the 'arm lifter' to go more down.

Image
Image
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Re: Sony PS-X55 tonearm issue

Postby Van_Isle » 15 Dec 2017 16:49

IC = integrated circuit. It's System Control IC 401 - the microprocessor (see the block diagram in the manual)

Don't try to run the turntable when it is sitting on its side. I think that is what you mean by 90 degree position. The turntable wasn't designed to work like that. Also the platter may come off and damage it or something else. And you shouldn't run the turntable without the platter on since the speed control system will not work properly. Instead, prop the turntable up on two piles of books, or something similar, so you can watch what's happening from underneath. I use a pair of speaker stands.

Hopefully it's just the positioning of the components that has gotten messed up and once you compare service manual to what you are seeing underneath you'll be able to reposition things.
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Re: Sony PS-X55 tonearm issue

Postby rattus » 15 Dec 2017 20:01

thanks! OK, I will not put it on while not in normal position. it makes the fixing more difficult, as I need to turn to upside down (removing the metallic plate) and after turning back to normal (and adding the plate again)...

but anyway, I feel quite hopeless with this. Been trying different things several hours today, without any change. Service manual doesn't really say what are those different components doing.
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Re: Sony PS-X55 tonearm issue

Postby Van_Isle » 15 Dec 2017 20:37

Yeah, that service manual isn't the best ... and the scan of it is crap.

Try starting with adjusting the clearance between the brake lever and brake drum to 1mm as shown on page 9. That should set the drum to about the correct spot to get the unit to operate, if it's been moved out of position. Mine I couldn't get the auto-return to adjust to the proper spot with the 1mm clearance, but it was a start.

Also since you would be adjusting the brake drum, I should say that I found that the brake drum set at about 0.7mm on the tonearm shaft as shown on page 5 caused the tonearm to bind when swinging horizontally, so I think mine was pretty much flush with the shaft.

As I said, prop the turntable up on something without the bottom on so you can see what's happening underneath.
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Re: Sony PS-X55 tonearm issue

Postby Van_Isle » 15 Dec 2017 20:49

Could I just ask perhaps a stupid question (and stupid of me perhaps for not verifying it)? You are trying to start the turntable with a record on the platter ... right?

I just looked at the video from the linked post and that fellow doesn't ... so no wonder his lights were flickering!
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Re: Sony PS-X55 tonearm issue

Postby rattus » 16 Dec 2017 11:08

Van_Isle wrote:Try starting with adjusting the clearance between the brake lever and brake drum to 1mm as shown on page 9.


I checked that, it was 1mm, BUT when I was moving the 'control cam' with the roll (which I signed as B on the photo above), then that 1mm changed, and the brake lever is even touching the brake drum (as you can also see on the photo). But I don't know how to move the brake drum, as its center should be at center of the whole system around the tonearm section. I assume that the brake drum has a hole in the center, which is a fixed size, so how to move/change that...

Van_Isle wrote:Also since you would be adjusting the brake drum, I should say that I found that the brake drum set at about 0.7mm on the tonearm shaft as shown on page 5 caused the tonearm to bind when swinging horizontally, so I think mine was pretty much flush with the shaft.


I tried to understand that picture, but I don't really understand what should be 0.7mm. Good photo about that would Help.

Van_Isle wrote:As I said, prop the turntable up on something without the bottom on so you can see what's happening underneath.


I did this couple of times, but I saw that nothing was really happening, so moved the player upside down, and again to normal. When I click the START/STOP button, the player starts spinning normally, but the tonearm doesn't react for anything. Not even if I click the manual button (up/down arrows).

Van_Isle wrote:Could I just ask perhaps a stupid question (and stupid of me perhaps for not verifying it)? You are trying to start the turntable with a record on the platter ... right?


I tried with the record and without, but it's all the same. But now, I always put the record on also, just to be sure that there will be not another problem.
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Re: Sony PS-X55 tonearm issue

Postby rattus » 16 Dec 2017 20:03

NOTE: I found that the brake drum doesn't keep in its place, when I put the record player back to normal position, the brake drum falls about 0.5cm down - and like that it cannot move much, because it gets stuck to other parts. I don't think it's normal. Why it's falling from its place, I don't know - but I wonder if there's a way to fix that?

Another thing what I was thinking, probably a bad idea, but could Help me to just play the records, is that if I would take totally off the arm lifter. Like that the arm could go more down and the needle could touch the record and even play it. Does that sound bad???
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Re: Sony PS-X55 tonearm issue

Postby rattus » 16 Dec 2017 22:54

...now I tried a new thing. The record is spinning, and I am 'fixing' the system under the player. I use a pen to touch the mechanism. I managed to move 'the control cam' and the 'lead-in lever' (both seen on image above). That helped to make the motor rolling a bit more. Sometimes I heard sounds similar like in the end of the record when the tonearm goes back to the base. And once I found a position that the needle went to the record!! It was playing the record - but only looping it. Tonearm felt quite heavy, so it couldn't naturally go with the flow. Something was keeping it stuck. hmm.
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