Panasonic RQ-DP7, recently refurbished, plays but won't rewind or fast forwad

I recently had my Panasonic RQ-DP7 repaired and refurbished by the DCC Museum. It worked perfectly for a few days, but today it won’t play or rewind.

Background: I sadly used a 12 VDC power supply and fried it. I sent it to the kind folks at the DCC Museum, and they got it working like new again. I’ve been using it for about a week now, and this morning it lost the ability to fast forward or rewind.

Tapes play normally. This is true of both analog and digital tapes. But no fast winding function works with either type of tape. Fast search or rewind search doesn’t work either. I can hear the motor run when I activate these functions but the reels don’t move.

This is true whether I use the 18650 battery adapter or the power adapter.

I’m wondering if this is something common that I can fix myself, or if I need to send it back in. I can’t find any other mentions of such behaviors after googling for a bit, which makes me wonder if it’s related to the original overvoltage damage.

Well, I decided to open it up, and after removing both boards, I found what must be at least part of the problem. The white gear indicated in the picture was just resting loosely in that position. I’m not sure how to proceed because the center hole of the gear doesn’t seem to fit on the spindle beneath it. If anyone has any suggestions, please let me know.

That is a real bummer as we have not seen that one before.
Any loose parts in there?

Here’s an update after I have looked at it for a while. Yes - the white gear was completely loose and free. I could pick it up and inspect it. After a while, I realized that it would press onto the black spindle underneath it – I just had to look more closely and use a little more force than I wanted to.

After it clicked into place, I was able to capture the video below. There was an analog cassette loaded at the time, and the first time you see action, I pressed the play button. This resulted in the clicking back and forth. Then I pressed rewind, and it seems that the gear engages correctly for a couple of seconds, but then it goes back into the clicking.

Shortly after I stopped the video, I pressed rewind again, and the gear popped right off and flew across the room. By some miracle I found it.

Bottom line, there is an outward force on it that’s popping it off of the spindle. But even when it’s in place, the player just clicks.

That part is definitely broken. That clicking might have to do with the fact that the board is not attached as the lever is not engaging the electronic switch on the board.

We might have a spare mechanism to replace this if you feel comfortable doing this?


Yeah, at this point I feel pretty comfortable working with it. Please let me know about the mechanism.


Just send you a message via e-mail.

Update: I was able to replace the mechanism. If anyone is curious, the white gear that was popping off is apparently supposed to be one piece with the spindle it’s pressed onto. Once they separate, you need a new one.

So, after I got it all back together, it played perfectly. I thought I was all set. UNTIL… side A ended and it reversed to side B. Everything looked normal on the display with the track number and the counter, but there was no audio at all. I also noticed that it couldn’t find the track name.

At first I though that I may have left something disconnected or loose that affected audio playback in reverse but then I found that I could play an analog tape in both directions with audio.

If anyone has any ideas about being able to play the A side but not the B side, please let me know.

If none of the DCC titles play side B, you head is clean and it is playing analog tapes correctly on side B… the news might not be good. The head is very delicate and ESD might have damaged the head.

Did you check all the correct cables as well? If you are up to it, we have one more replacement head. We can’t quit now lol. Send me a message via e-mail if you would like to continue the journey.