Arp Omni 2 fix up part one: Key replacement and Slider clean up

While I wait for my Juno 60 toggles I might as well tell you about my Omni 2…  Here’s the first in a probably two part series.

I bought this Omni 2 off Craiglist in April 2011 for the seeming current market rate of ~$200 for one that powers up, makes most sounds correctly and has some ‘lingering’ voices.  While the lingering voices are alright if your fooling around, they are a roadblock to being able to make recordings with it -which is my intention.  A quick web search told me this was a common problem and not difficult, just tedious to fix -with a high success rate for machines that have basic functionality when you start.

Arp Omni 2 sandwich -the meats bigger than the bread.  Source looks positively petite on it.  Arp is pretty nice other than the chipped tooth -courtesy of careless TSA baggage handlers the PO told me.  Note the 6 vertical panel sliders have caps -also note that each slider has a white grease pencil line -one way to store a patch!

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Roland Juno 60 resto part 9: a little this and that

The waiting (for the package from Hong Kong) is the hardest part but it has given me the chance to get some little stuff done and replace the capacitors in a friends Arp Omni (more later).  One of the things that has bothered me about the Juno 60 is the connections to the panel in the power supply that have to be cut or de-soldered to remove the panel -yesterday I added an EIC socket that unscrews from the inside so it can be removed from the panel and today I added spade connectors to the wire that runs to and from the power switch so it can be pulled out of the top.

Pretty colors!  The Arp Omni has spade connectors to the power supply from the switch so it should be okay right? I added a few layers of heat shrink to the connectors to protect against problems.  Note the little string knot holding the two purple wires together -it was someones job to tie little knots all day long -can anyone say RSI?

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Roland Juno 60 resto part 8: Sliders, plug mod and capacitors

Lots of little details to wrap up and then I can start enjoying this synth for what it can do -I suppose the last installment will be a song composed for and entirely played on the Juno 60.  I’m waiting on a package from Hong Kong based Technology Transplants that will be the new toggles I need along with a slider cap set and some other stuff I can’t remember.  In the mean time I’m moving slower than normal but it has given me a chance to do some little jobs like install an IEC type plug.

I love the convenience of having the same cord power all your stuff.  This was pillaged from my parts Prophet 600.  It’s a cheap part but it saved me a drive pulling it.  Thursday I’ll get my drill and Dremel from my dads house (long story) and modify the panel.

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Roland Juno 60 resto part 7: Bender panel

Any long task is accomplished in small increments.  A difficult task is accomplished by spending more time thinking about it than trying to do it.  A long difficult task… you get the idea.  The bender panel on this Juno 60 is frankly fucked up.  Let’s give it a clean.

Gold finger would love it.  Amazing thing is there were no screws securing the board or bender to the panel, it rattled around, but it worked.

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Roland Juno 60 resto part 6: Flicking your switch

Synthesizers of this era relied on mechanical components to select and vary controls.  Toggles to switch between settings or switch them off, sliders and pots to vary resistance and incrementally change the magnitude of a filters effect/strength of amplification/rate of change etc and momentary switches to change logic states. This afternoon I removed and cleaned up all the momentary switches that control the wave forms, chorus settings, presets and write capabilities.  If this thing was a little cleaner I would have cleaned them on the boards, but as can be seen below, the boards are pretty dirty and removing them was only a few minutes work.

Pretty gross build-up on these switches and on the circuit board below them.  I pulled the middle switch the other day to see why it didn’t work -it was missing the little contact button.  There’s one of those Hitachi HD14051BP’s that are probably about to hit the endangered IC species list.

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Roland Juno 60 resto part 5: Wood

The Juno 60 is possibly the last synthesizer in the Roland line to feature wood ends.  Jupiters’ 6 & 8 had brushed metal ends, the SH’s and RS’s by this time were electronic sandwiches with plastic for bread and the Juno 106 had plastic as well.  To say the Juno 60 has wood ends is somewhat of a stretch really, as  it’s really wood simulating sticker applied to particle board.

This particular Juno 60 had been treated poorly and the ends looked horrible, but for all their ghastly appearance they did the job they were made to do -they protected the rest of the synth from assaults to it’s flanks.  New factory replacements do not exist so replacements had to me made.  Good thing we are talking about wood here ’cause I know a guy named Paul…

Starting at the end for once.  Here you are -a pair of cheeks and front edging in Sepele -an African hardwood a lot like Mahogany but about $6/BF, with a walnut stain and satin urethane finish.

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Roland Juno 60 part 4: Power supply board and Pitch bender assembly

The power supply board seemed like a nice place to start since it’s small, really dirty and needs a lot of attention. First order of business was making a sketch of which wire went where coming out of the transformer since I had to cut these wires to separate the transformer from the board.  I also took a bunch of detailed pictures of the plugs and wire bundles so I’d be able to plug everything back in when it’s time for reassembly.

I read with interest a post about Arp Omni sliders that described a process for cleaning them without removing them from the boards.  It involved washing the boards in Simple Green, rinsing them in distilled water and thoroughly drying them.  I did this on my Omni 2 and it came out great, so I used the same process on this power supply board.

Looks damn good now.  All the barf is gone.  The plug pins are all clean and shiny. 

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