WX7 repair

This section covers the WX5/WX7/WX11

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gtrdrumsplayerduarte
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WX7 repair

Unread post by gtrdrumsplayerduarte » Mon Aug 14, 2017 12:04 pm

yamaha_wx7.png
My Yamaha WX7 plays continuously when powered on. I think the breath sensor is broken. Can anybody help me? I've contacted the 2 major wind synth repair websites advertised on google. One said it couldn't help me, the other one didn't answer.
Help please.
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Re: WX7 repair

Unread post by Saul » Mon Aug 14, 2017 7:20 pm

Hi and welcome to the site :)

We do have some members who own the WX7 so they may be able to chip in here.

Have you checked the lip sensor? Perhaps that is damaged in some way.
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Re: WX7 repair

Unread post by Derek » Mon Aug 14, 2017 8:44 pm

Hi. I am not an expert (not having touched my WX5 for two years), but have you been through the calibration procedure in the manual? IIRC if the calibration is out, then you can get the effect you mention.
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Re: WX7 repair

Unread post by bassmande » Wed Aug 16, 2017 12:31 pm

I collected up to now three WX7 that aren't working and would appreciate a service address in Europe.
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Re: WX7 repair

Unread post by cloudburst » Wed Nov 29, 2017 8:45 pm

To the OP - it may be any of a number of things - however, be aware that there is also a HOLD key on the WX7. It’s the upper of the 2 keys controlled by your right thumb and it may be stuck.

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Re: WX7 repair

Unread post by Blo » Wed Feb 14, 2018 8:23 pm

I'd also like some help with this fault on my WX7.

Around 2014 my WX7 developed two faults. I could only use a midi-in socket on a VL-70m not the WX socket at the front, and there was this continuous noise fault. The WX socket issue was cured by replacing the 4 large capacitors in the WX7 (there's a thread on here about this). I then stopped using the WX7 and for the past 3 years I've been playing a WX11.

Yesterday I connected up my WX7 again and gradually the same spontaneous sound returned. It could not be cancelled by wind zero adjustment. Initially turning the power off and on temporarily reset things. I suspect that with use over time, the circuit board's components have been exposed to contamination from the breath, this could happens if the soft plastic cap behind the mouthpiece is not making a proper seal. After I cleaned up the circuit board with a cocktail stick and clean tooth brush this seemed to have helped. (I used an eye glass to get a close look)

I think it is not the breath sensor itself. If I connect a small silicone pipe directly to the breath sensor, I can play normally without it spontaneous sounding. Before I cleaned the circuit board it was worse. I can play different notes if their is a spontaneous sound. It's not a hold function fault, that button still appears to work normally. Adjusting the lip settings also seemed to have helped somewhat.

Earlier when the note was continuous, I tried some freezer spray to stress the components and there was was a change in tone but only when I cooled the IC6 OP-Amp (it handles both breath and lip control signals). There was no response to cooling the reverse side of the pc board. This chip is cheap enough to replace though it would be something of a challenge being so small.

Apparently there's now someone offering a wind controller repair service in the UK.

Edit: After some hours my WX7 seems to be playing normally, not sure how long this will last. In the mean time I plan is to get some Servisol switch cleaner type product and go over the pc board again, removing any remains of human contamination. I'll also give the lip and breath setting pots a clean up with fluid.
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Re: WX7 repair

Unread post by Blo » Tue Feb 20, 2018 8:01 pm

Some updates
It was not long before the WX7 spontaneous sounding returned. After dismantling the top to access the top circuit board, I lifted off the breath sensor to see condensation on the circuit board near the top edge and correspondingly under the breath sensor itself. As before, any time I directly connect a pipe to the breath sensor and put it in the corner of my mouth to mimic normal playing, no sustained notes happen.

I've cleaned the circuit board again with a tooth pick and brush , used electrical cleaner fluid, used plastic foam in an attempt to form a barrier to any breath that I think might escape from behind the mouthpiece, but so far I've been defeated. If I put the cowl and mouthpiece back and play normally, I think somehow warm moist breath is able to get to the circuit board and cause a sustained note. I suspect the plastic cap behind the mouthpiece has aged and doesn't make a proper seal with the mouthpiece, perhaps there's an air leak around the lip sensor lever (despite a short length of silicone tube) and breath destined for the outlet pipe vent escapes from behind the plastic cap to enable warm moist breath access to the circuit board.

The Hall based lip sensor is closer to the the mouthpiece though I doubt this is the cause.
Last edited by Blo on Wed Mar 14, 2018 9:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: WX7 repair

Unread post by Blo » Sun Mar 11, 2018 11:23 pm

Edit: Here is my solution to this sustained note issue on my WX7

My WX7 has now been playing normally for the past few weeks. The cause of sustained notes here was moisture getting onto the circuit board. You can easily check the integrity of the airflow on a WX7 by closing the mouth over the mouthpiece and plastic reed and blowing gently with a finger occluding the exit port at the bottom of the instrument. There should be no escape of breath unless the bottom exit hole is open.

There are three holes in the soft plastic cap, revealed when the mouthpiece is pulled off from the main body, one for the lip sensor, one for the airflow which will eventually exit at the bottom of the instrument, and one opposite the breath pressure sensor. In my case it was the latter, I'd already slipped some silicone tube over the lip sensor lever wire to give a good seal through the soft cap but there was still an air leak.

I used some thin walled silicone tube that I had bought from a model aeroplane shop some years ago. I was able to fit this tube over the pipe of hard plastic moulding that leads to the breath sensor. I was able to feed this tube through the correct hole in the soft plastic cap and then plug in the small black plastic pipe with the right angled bend (I assume the purpose is to help keep spit out of the breath sensor).

I have retained some of the soft plastic foam which I poked down around the top edge of the circuit board to keep any moisture away from the circuit board but I know on its own this is not enough.

Where necessary I used some silicone grease (used by plumbers for push fit pipes) to help with the assembly.
Last edited by Blo on Wed Mar 14, 2018 9:04 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: WX7 repair

Unread post by bassmande » Mon Mar 12, 2018 11:59 am

@Blo: "Apparently there's now someone offering a wind controller repair service in the UK."
Could you please post some details on this "someone"?
Thanks a lot!
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Re: WX7 repair

Unread post by parametric » Mon Mar 12, 2018 4:18 pm

Blo wrote:
Tue Feb 20, 2018 8:01 pm
I think somehow warm moist breath is able to get to the circuit board and cause a sustained note. I suspect the plastic cap behind the mouthpiece has aged and doesn't make a proper seal with the mouthpiece, there's an air leak around the lip sensor lever (despite a short length of silicone tube) and breath destined for the outlet pipe vent escapes from behind the plastic cap to enable warm moist breath access to the circuit board.
That's a really annoying problem.

Though I have no specific knowledge of Wind controllers, but do have some experience fixing stuff -

I think you are dead right.

If you just LOOK at the item and consider "Well it did work when it was new - so what have I done to

change things?", you are probably thinking "nothing at all"? and you'd be right.

I think Time is the culprit here . . . . 8O

Breath can't help but carry moisture. When you clean your specs by breathing on them before wiping with

a cloth, it's the moisture that does the job . . .

So a Wind controller must expect some moisture - and was therefore designed to allow some . . .

and to continue working . . . !

I would say that provided any recommendations in the manual have been followed with respect to

cleaning/drying after use - that you have done all possible to maintain the WX7

I would suggest that Plastics do harden with age, and the lack of a proper seal might be due to this.

Is a replacement of the Cap you mention possible?

If there is any tubing, passing through a hole as you describe - perhaps that tubing no longer has the

elasticity necessary to seal properly - thus allowing moisture to where it shouldn't be?

Don't know if this helps - or just restating what you already know? :lol:

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Re: WX7 repair

Unread post by Blo » Mon Mar 12, 2018 9:30 pm

bassmande wrote:
Mon Mar 12, 2018 11:59 am
@Blo: "Apparently there's now someone offering a wind controller repair service in the UK."
Could you please post some details on this "someone"?
Thanks a lot!
I found Puretech Solutions by chance after a web search. I have no connection with them neither do I offer any endorsement positive or negative. As far as I know they are the only repairers in the UK of Yamaha wind controllers, VL-70m etc.
http://www.puretechsolutions.co.uk/wind-controllers.htm
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Re: WX7 repair

Unread post by Blo » Mon Mar 12, 2018 9:44 pm

parametric, yes the issue here is the soft plastic cap has become hard and less flexible over time, it may have slightly shrunk too. As far as I know there are no replacements available, the WX7 dates from around 1988. It's possible that a 3D printer could be set up to produce a small batch but this is just my guess work.
The main learning point about the sustained note fault is it's moisture getting to the circuit board, more a physical issue not an electronic fault.
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Re: WX7 repair

Unread post by parametric » Tue Mar 13, 2018 1:50 am

That really is a bummer, Blo . . .

So a pathway has opened up - to the circuit board, that wasn't there when new . . . . ?

At this point I would mention another of my interests - Satellite TV - and the running of aerial leads -

particularly from the LNB on the dish to the receiver.

The LNB is out in the weather, and great pains are needed to exclude MOISTURE from the system,

as it's presence, seriously compromises signal level.

One of the measures one can take is to pack the F-Connectors with Silicon Grease, which has NO electrical effect,

but does exclude moisture well . . . . .

Might it be reasonable to suppose that this approach might PREVENT the moisture ingress that is

causing your problem?

I DO hesitate to suggest this, as I APPRECIATE that this end of the instrument is probably incredibly delicate,

but perhaps if you seriously dried out the pcb and then applied a layer of silicon grease to the problem area -

it could work?

I think there are a number of wind controller users in here . . . perhaps a wider discussion to get a consensus?

As I said, the grease would have no electrical effect, but should prevent the moisture from breath getting in there.

Perhaps something to consider?

parametric
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