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Friday, September 12, 2014

Beomaster 8000: Repair of a Broken Phono Jack with a 3D Printed Insert

The input jacks (sockets) of the Beomaster 8000 are weakly designed. They are made from a plastic that gets brittle over the years, and frequently the tabs that fix the jacks in the socket panel break off when a phono or tape plug is inserted. When that happens the jacks fall into the panel.

So far the remedy was to obtain a replacement from a carcass...a saddening thought. Beolover has a no-carcass policy! Parting out one should really be the very last resort!

Luckily, the 1980s designers of the jacks had a few looks too many at the cheap American cars that were made during this period (remember the Dodge Omni??), and that inspired them to also cheap down their design of these plugs.
To save plastic, they introduced recesses below the jack surface, which probably reduced the weight of the jacks by about 20%. It occurred to me that these recesses could be used to anchor a 3D printed insert, which would restore full functionality and get close to the original looks of the jacks. I made a brief video about the repair procedure (some pics are below):


The STL file of the inserts with printing instructions can be found on my website at www.beolover.com. I will also be happy to supply this part on request.

Here is a pic of the broken jack:


























And with the 3D printed inserts in the recesses:




And after re-installing the jack together with the inserts:


It looks and feels pretty much like an original jack...there is a slight irregularity across the surface of the tabs due to the 3D printing raster. Oh well...it is never perfect! We can only strive!

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