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Tape Splicing Block

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Re: Tape Splicing Block

PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2018 7:00 am
by ef37a
I also have a splicing block somewhere. I bought it only a few years ago along with splicing tape and some clear leader. Cannot remember where I got them but almost certainly via Amazon.

I had built a wired remote for the A3440 and intended to incorporate an optical tape stop. Ah! The energy of yoof! (I was about 66) never got that far but I did "top and tail" a few NAB reels.

Mind you, I am still looking for the 12 pin rectangular plug for the machine. Cobbled up from 4mm panel pins atmo!

Dave.

Re: Tape Splicing Block

PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2018 8:22 am
by Ariosto
I did a lot of tape splicing in the late 1960's to the 1980's - all reel to reel. Those were the days! But of course for speed and the possibilities and ability to edit on computer now are so good that we will never go back. In those days of tape editing, when an edit was needed the orchestra or group etc needed often to go back where there was at least a second of silence to make a clean edit possible.

Re: Tape Splicing Block

PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2018 4:52 pm
by Dan LB
Thank all for your contributions. It’s turned out to be an interesting topic.


@James Perrett: thanks for the links, the one from Splicit.com looks like what I’m after but I do wonder about what they are advertising as a “90 degree” cut - I always thought it was like 87 degrees or something- not exactly 90. I’ll contact them.

I will be using it to edit both stereo 2-track tapes recorded on a Revox A77 and 8-track 1/4” tapes recorded with a Tascam 388.


@Folderol: that’s an extremely kind offer (especially given the effort you put into finding it!) and one I might take you up on, but for now, I’m going to see if I can find an Editall block or similar. I’ll get back to you on that :thumbup: Thank you :angel:

I’ve seen some on eBay that are over $125!

Dan

Re: Tape Splicing Block

PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2018 6:12 pm
by Hugh Robjohns
Dan LB wrote:...the one from Splicit.com looks like what I’m after but I do wonder about what they are advertising as a “90 degree” cut - I always thought it was like 87 degrees or something- not exactly 90.

The early blocks were cut at 90 degrees and 45 degrees, but the later Editall types were cut at 87 degrees for quarter-inch tape (and as shallow as 83 degrees for wider tape formats), plus the 45 slot. The link I posted earlier explains why (to reduce 'bias transition noise' over the edit).

The EMItape blocks which were in widespread use bolted to the Beeb's tape machines always had three slots. I believe the 'vertical slot was at 89 (rather than 87), but it certainly wasn't 90. The other two were at 45 and 60 degrees. The 89/87 degree slot was only used for declicking vinyl disc transfers and sometimes for cutting in leader tape. Anything on a half-track stereo tape (at 15 ips) was always edited with the 60 degree slot, while the 45 slot was only used for full-track mono, which had mostly been obsoleted by the time I was being trained. The 60 slot could also be used for 7.5ips mono (Uher) tapes, but stereo at 7.5ips really needed the 89/87 slot to avoid 'flash edits' where the image rushes across from left-to right as one channel is edited slightly before the other. (For really critical work, we would cut 'fish tails' by hand with brass scissors so that both channels are cut at the same time, but still with a short cross fade!)

If you can't find an Editall block, it would be fairly easy to cut new slots at any preferred angle into the Splicit aluminium block if necessary using a hacksaw with a decent blade.

I will be using it to edit both stereo 2-track tapes recorded on a Revox A77 and 8-track 1/4” tapes recorded with a Tascam 388.

I'd suggest a 60 degree cut for the stereo tapes, and the 90/87 slot for the 8-track tapes. A 45 slot on the stereo tapes is likely to result in flash edits.

I’ve seen some on eBay that are over $125!

Yes, I've seem some going for £95 recently. I'd certainly try and get an Editall or EMItape type if you can as they are undoubtedly the best to use.[/quote]

H

Re: Tape Splicing Block

PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2018 6:23 pm
by ef37a
Hacksaw a splicing block Hugh?

I think I would rather give a local engineer a decent drink and get it milled!

Dave.

Re: Tape Splicing Block

PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2018 7:18 pm
by Folderol
ef37a wrote:Hacksaw a splicing block Hugh?

I think I would rather give a local engineer a decent drink and get it milled!

Dave.
Indeed :o
My Bib one has only 60 and 90ish deg, and the slits are very fine - just enough for a razor blade. Rather than shaped edges to hold the tape it has two clips with cork pads.
Personally I preferred that, as an accidental {very slight} movement of tape or block doesn't move the tape just after you've cut it!

Re: Tape Splicing Block

PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2018 7:34 pm
by Dan LB
Thanks for the info Hugh. Presumably 87 vs 90 really wouldn't be noticeable at 7.5ips on the 388. I'll make sure to look for block that has 60 and 87 or 90 degree slots.

It's been about 18 years or so since I've edited on tape and I’ve never edited multitrack.

Re: Tape Splicing Block

PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2018 8:51 pm
by ef37a
Folderol wrote:
ef37a wrote:Hacksaw a splicing block Hugh?

I think I would rather give a local engineer a decent drink and get it milled!

Dave.
Indeed :o
My Bib one has only 60 and 90ish deg, and the slits are very fine - just enough for a razor blade. Rather than shaped edges to hold the tape it has two clips with cork pads.
Personally I preferred that, as an accidental {very slight} movement of tape or block doesn't move the tape just after you've cut it!

Yeah...LASERs mate!!

Dave.

Re: Tape Splicing Block

PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2018 10:22 pm
by James Perrett
Folderol wrote:My Bib one has only 60 and 90ish deg, and the slits are very fine - just enough for a razor blade. Rather than shaped edges to hold the tape it has two clips with cork pads.
Personally I preferred that, as an accidental {very slight} movement of tape or block doesn't move the tape just after you've cut it!

That's why, as discussed earlier, the tape channel is slightly narrower and the bottom curved. This has the effect of holding the tape in place without needing the clips. I have a Bib splicing block as well as a standard one and I've always found the clips fiddly to use.

Re: Tape Splicing Block

PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2018 10:27 pm
by James Perrett
Dan LB wrote:I will be using it to edit both stereo 2-track tapes recorded on a Revox A77 and 8-track 1/4” tapes recorded with a Tascam 388.

I've never found the need to edit multitrack tapes - if I need to use different sections of the multitrack I'd just record/mix the sections separately and splice the stereo master. Editing the narrow format multitrack would be more likely to cause discontinuities in the audio as the sections need to be lined up very precisely to keep the tracks continuous.

Re: Tape Splicing Block

PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2018 10:29 pm
by Sam Spoons
Dan LB wrote:Thanks for the info Hugh. Presumably 87 vs 90 really wouldn't be noticeable at 7.5ips on the 388. I'll make sure to look for block that has 60 and 87 or 90 degree slots.

It's been about 18 years or so since I've edited on tape and I’ve never edited multitrack.

The slight difference between the time each track passes the edit won't be noticeable, even with 8 tracks but with the 90 edit there may be a click as the edit passes the head. The 89º angle means the edit does not pass over the head in a single instant which usually is enough to avoid the click.

Re: Tape Splicing Block

PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2018 10:52 pm
by Tim Gillett
Dan LB wrote:I will be using it to edit both stereo 2-track tapes recorded on a Revox A77 and 8-track 1/4” tapes recorded with a Tascam 388.

Wondering why splice edit these days. Splice when it's needed of course, but why not use the DAW for any editing?

Re: Tape Splicing Block

PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2018 11:13 pm
by Dan LB
James Perrett wrote:
Dan LB wrote:I will be using it to edit both stereo 2-track tapes recorded on a Revox A77 and 8-track 1/4” tapes recorded with a Tascam 388.

I've never found the need to edit multitrack tapes - if I need to use different sections of the multitrack I'd just record/mix the sections separately and splice the stereo master. Editing the narrow format multitrack would be more likely to cause discontinuities in the audio as the sections need to be lined up very precisely to keep the tracks continuous.


Thanks James, I'd never thought of that! That makes alot of sense!!

Re: Tape Splicing Block

PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2018 11:18 pm
by Dan LB
Tim Gillett wrote:
Dan LB wrote:I will be using it to edit both stereo 2-track tapes recorded on a Revox A77 and 8-track 1/4” tapes recorded with a Tascam 388.

Wondering why splice edit these days. Splice when it's needed of course, but why not use the DAW for any editing?

It's for a creative project I have in my head at the moment. It won't be the same for me if I do it in Pro Tools. It's also a bit of fun too really.

If it was a job i was doing for someone I'd most definitely do the edits in the box!

Dan

Re: Tape Splicing Block

PostPosted: Sun Nov 18, 2018 2:06 am
by resistorman
Ah yes... undo was fragments of tape stuck on the control room window :lol: We did some astounding edits...