Grace 707 Tonearm Lift - need fixing... - diyAudio
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Old 2nd July 2007, 10:11 PM   #1
JesseG is offline JesseG  Canada
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Default Grace 707 Tonearm Lift - need fixing...

Hi All:

I have a Grace 707 tonearm that works very well except for its lift. Instead of the proper smooth action up and the delightfully slow drop of the stylus to the record, this one drops like a stone!

I have disassembeled the little gizmo and it all seems to be there. If I put a couple of drops of oil in it, by the time I replace the cap peice I have oil on my fingers and it still does not move slowly and smoothly, but just as abruptly as before.

Can anyone tell me how to fix this? Please? Pretty-please???

Jess
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Old 3rd July 2007, 06:44 PM   #2
bulgin is offline bulgin  South Africa
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Default Grace...

Hi Jess

I use a Grace arm (Gyromaster) on on of my turntables and had exactly the same problem. I also opened the cylinder carefully and tried 3 different viscosity silicone oils. Also ending up with more oil on my fingers and the results, when it stopped oozing - were pretty disappointing.

I have machine tools in my workshop and in the end, I took the armrest plate off the arm (mine is black anodised). I found a lift from an old Jelco arm which was styled similarly, but 1mm wider in diameter and decided to re-mill the mounting hole larger, to fit the replacement lift. I carefully wrapped the mounting plate in a few winds of cloth and masking tape to protect it as it had to be held firmly in my milling vice.

I first put a cutter of the same dia as the old hole in the chuck and carefully positioned the cutter to go down dead centre with the hole. The final step was to very carefully re-mill the hole wide by 1mm to fit the new lift. All worked out OK and no-one will know the difference.

Hope this helps.

bulgin
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Old 3rd July 2007, 08:31 PM   #3
JesseG is offline JesseG  Canada
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Hi bulgin

I am certainly impressed with your ability to machine a solution to the problem. And, it is nice to know that this is not a unique problem. I regret that I have no machine tools (nor old Jelco arm parts) to clone your solution.'

I cant help thinking that the oil leaking out is because some kind of seal (rubber o-ring?) has disintegrated and this is why the lift will not hold oil and therefore why it does not work properly.

Try as I might I cannot find any design or service drawings anywhere on the web.

Oh, well - just have to keep looking.

Jess
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Old 4th July 2007, 11:14 PM   #4
bulgin is offline bulgin  South Africa
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Default Grace 707...

Hi Jesse

As far as I remember, I found no O-ring in the old Grace lift. It had a black plastic plug at the bottom, keeping the oil inside. The oil which had the best result was that from an sme damping kit. It replicated the same rate of descent as my other lifts. I'm sure if I turned a new plastic plug to replace the old one, this would have stopped the oozing.

I guess I got impatient and had to find a quick fix and decided to use another lift. I wonder if places stocking and repairing dj decks will not have a wrecked arm and lift for you. As you probably know, the lift cylinders are fixed in place with a grubscrew or two. With a little luck, you may find a lift of similar diameter. The mounting plate for these lifts are also fixed to my Grace arm with a grubscrew. Once this plate is off the arm, it may be possible to carefully adjust the mounting hole with a halfround file.

I'm too dumb to post pics here but if you send me a mail to listen@blueangelaudio.com, I'll send you a few pics of how the Grace looks now with the new lift.

Cheers. Hope you come right.

bulgin
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Old 5th July 2007, 03:57 AM   #5
Nanook is offline Nanook  Canada
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Default Jesse... think about this one :(

I have a solenoid actuated "lift", and when it actuates, it rifles down (and up too)!. Bad enough I don't use the turntable!--and I don't.

I have to disable the "lift" and manually move the arm by hand. I think I'll have to make some kind of lift or make a magnetic lift for the end of the record.
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Old 5th July 2007, 04:30 AM   #6
JesseG is offline JesseG  Canada
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Quote:
As far as I remember, I found no O-ring in the old Grace lift. It had a black plastic plug at the bottom, keeping the oil inside.
Hi bulgin

Thanks - yes, I don't remember an o-ring either, but I did watch where the oil oozes out from, and it seems to be coming from the inside end of the rotating cam shaft (opposite the lift lever). That's what got me thinking that maybe some kind of seal was gone missin'...

I will probably start looking for an alternate lift, but since these Grace arms are prime 'vintage' gear, I kind'a hate to start modding it too much. Once I start, who knows where it will stop...

Quote:
I have a solenoid actuated "lift", and when it actuates, it rifles down (and up too)!.
Hi Nanook

That sounds scary! Like you, I currently ignore the lift when it is time to place the stylus. It still works OK to lift it off the record.

There's just something about super-simple devices that really bugs me when I can't make them work. Know what I mean?

Jess
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Old 2nd August 2007, 03:21 AM   #7
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Default Grace 707 Tone Arm

I have a Grace 707 fitted to a Regar Planar 3. The damping mechanism has also failed but the lift arm still works fine which is what I use for cueing by controlling the rate of ascent/descent manually.

I regretefully broke this myself simply by attempting to adjust the angle of the top curved resting pad. All I did was loosen the top screw half a turn and re-tighten it. and ... bugger !. Dont anybody else try this, you'll regret it.

there was some oil leakage but very minimal and since then I've not been able to repair it.

An audiophile shop assistant thought it may improve through a cooling of the air temperature (decreasing viscosity). ... No it doesnt.
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Old 2nd August 2007, 04:52 AM   #8
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I've had the opportunity to obtain a wee bit of original Grace G-704 arm lift damping grease, which the owner said came part & parcel of that arm.
Its consistency is thick and gooey like tar, (somewhere 300,000cST?). I achieved satisfaction with the supplied Grace grease to repair the arm lift on a budget 80's Japanese tonearm lift mechanism. I had earlier used silicon fluid also meant for tonearm lift but it didn't work, dropping like a stone. The Grace grease worked a charm, the arm dropping to the record gently to my satisfaction, gentler than my own Rega RB300 and Rega P3 TT.

I'm now believing, a thick gooey grease consistency is required for Rega tonearms ( I'm thinking what Rega is using is still not good enough as the arm still drops a little too fast) and suitable for many Japanese tonearm lifts.
A search revealed that Dow Corning have may have the suitable grease products for arm lifts or damping and comes in various consistency. Rega use a British made product called Kilopoise...not readily obtainable on the open market.
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Old 2nd August 2007, 03:44 PM   #9
JesseG is offline JesseG  Canada
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Quote:
original Grace G-704 arm lift damping grease
Thanks Coolmaster! I think this is the info I needed: I have been using various oils (silicon, mineral, olive ) with the same result - it dropped like a stone.

There are many forms of grease with the consistency of tar - gear grease being one. Since I have had mine apart so many times, I am going to try it with gear grease. If this gives the right sort of response, then hunt down some of the proper stuff from Rega or wohever.

Thanks again

Jess
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Old 2nd August 2007, 03:50 PM   #10
JesseG is offline JesseG  Canada
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Quote:
I regretefully broke this myself simply by attempting to adjust the angle of the top curved resting pad
Just a thought, simonl8353:

Some time ago I found myself in the same position with a cueing lift - I lost the screw. I tried many sources (eyeglasses, watches, etc.) but could not find anything that would work.

In a fit of frustration, I tried a drop of crazy glue. Make sure you know how the rest is to be aligned with the body of the lift. Extend the lift rod to it's extreme, put a small drop of CG on the end of the rest arm around the hole and hold it in place on the end of the shaft for the requisite 30 seconds. Then let it sit for about 5 minutes before handling it.

This strategy worked for me and the arm (a Grace 714) is still happily in service.

For what it's worth

Jess
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