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"I know others are thinking it but I am going to go ahead and say it…"
Glad you did. I’ve come across this gunky build-up several times while looking at cameras with these very problems, even after the owners had used a head cleaner, so I knew this can cause those types of problems…
…but I didn’t know about mixing tapes!
Luckily for them, a professional service sorted things out, and luckily for me I only use the same Sony tapes every time, and I tend to avoid the head cleaners as much as I can (I knew it wasn’t really a good idea to overuse them), but I never would have thought about there being a problem with mixing tapes. So that for me definitely was the tip of the day – thanks, Brandon.