One of my two S-VHS recorders has this problem, an RCA VR695HF. I bought it about 1990. It was one of the earliest S-VHS decks. I also have the earliest one, a JVC JRS-7000U. Both decks have been repaired a few times
- the heads have been replaced.
The RCA deck has had a problem for a while. It doesn't always eject the tape. I press the eject button and I hear the mechanism kick in but the tape doesn't eject. Until a couple weeks ago, it usually (not always!!) ejected on the second press (the same sound happened both presses, but the second time the tape came out). A couple weeks ago I had to press it40-50 times before the tape finally came out. Annoying, especially because the tape was due back at the library that day.
Some months ago I took the cover off and looked for something to adjust or lubricate but whatever I did didn't help (cleaned, a bit of lubrication here and there, blow compressed air, etc.). Using a different tape has no evident effect.
Any ideas what I might look for in troubleshooting and fixing this problem? I have a book on repairing VCR's, but its flowcharts haven't helped.