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Old 21st December 2012, 11:58 PM   #11
Nanook is offline Nanook  Canada
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Default "a bad idea..."

sreten: as always we end up in similar threads and more often than not on "opposite" sides,(but actually agree more than it seems).

sco1t: If the Lab60 (or A60 or whatever they called it in Europe) is in great shape, and cheap enough buy and use it if you get a new stylus. Set the cartridge up correctly and just buy a new stylus (still available from Shure IIRC). Either learn how to set a turntable up (you'll need something to measure the tracking force, and a alignment protractor, and a small thin mirror to start, then a test record), or pay to have somebody do it for you. The worst case is that you do no further harm to any records you play on it, and if you come across something that is less desirable (like a Dual), you can always hack that up and make it into a fully manual table. Then sell/give away the '60.

In gutting changers I have found the most significant improvement to be due to a reduction of resonance of the mechanical "bits". Rather than use a spring for anything, convert all springs to a weight and pulley scheme. Then there are no springs to further resonate (except the suspension of the Garrard). I mount converted changers firmly to a new plinth with no ill effects. There is little you can do about the bearings though, other than get a few new balls and fit as many as possible into the loose bearings as will fit. Just make sure that there is a least room for 1 of the ball bearings in the loose bearing pack (for example if 7 bearings fit snugly, or just barely doesn't fit, then leave 6 bearings well packed with good grease, and remove 1. Put the platter on and give it a spin by hand , it should be much quieter. The grease I use is no longer produced, but any good grease will do, even if it seem too heavy. The Lab series of motors are very robust and posses much torque and should be able to overcome a significant amount of drag. Do not use a sealed bearing unless doing a bunch of machining to remove the integral cone of the bearing from the platter.
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Old 22nd December 2012, 04:40 PM   #12
sreten is offline sreten  United Kingdom
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Hi,

The thing is the Lab 60 is not a great motor unit and
the arm is probably the best bit of package. I'd be all
for stripping it if the end result is desirable, it isn't IMO.

Gutting, replinthing, new arm etc is not worth it,
considering someone will like it as very original.

The Lab 80 is an entirely different kettle of fish.

rgds, sreten.

Nanook:

No problems arguing the toss with someone, here there is
no good halfway house at all, so opinion will be divided.

My opinion is it can't be turned into a good main turntable
(sensibly) and in good condition its an ideal enthusiasts
second turntable for 78's, 45's, mono and the like.

Not all idlers are suitable for a complete makeover.
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Last edited by sreten; 22nd December 2012 at 04:42 PM.
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Old 22nd December 2012, 05:44 PM   #13
Nanook is offline Nanook  Canada
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Default Hi guys, a few further thoughs.

All, please make no mistake I am not here to stir things up. I have a LAB 60 I am working on and have stripped it.

I use bold type to indicate a response to a particular poster, so I hope no one takes that as a "shout" indicator or similar.

sreten: okay, given a choice to save a good LAB 60 (or A 60) or not, I think it should be saved. Thing is that over here (Canada) finding a good one is tough. If most we find are junk then the effort is worth it, especially with terribly high prices being asked for otherwise unloved turntables.

All:While sreten is correct that a good LAB 60 or similar can make a good 2nd turntable, if it's botched at all, it can make a great single play. I've found that any mechanical bits (all the changer mechanicals andsprings), at least in my personal experience.

It is difficult to find good idler types like Lenco/Bogen or Thorens (belt/hybrid) at reasonable prices. In direct telephone conversations with Jean Nantais (of Lenco rebuild and modification fame), he suggested that his recommend for the use of Lencos was what he ended up with, not that it was the best, but was good (particularly the main bearing) and easily modified. He had stated directly to me that he had started with a Mirachord (30 IIRC), and that was a good table when modified. He had suggested to me that even a modest idler tweaked appropriately could see off most new tables that retail in the USD$2000 range (1,520). This misunderstanding has created a worldwide rise in asking prices for the Lencos. I'm sure if he chose to recommend Duals or whatever other idler wheel driven table brand, the same price inflation would occur. Shills who seek out exorbitant prices for what some classified as "junk" a few weeks or months ago would pop up all over the the Internet, such as it is.

sco1t:Take the above with a grain of salt, and all of my comments. Perhaps I'm too focused on what I have available to me.

OK, so regarding cheap idlers that do respond well, the Dual 10XX and 12XX changers respond well. The Garrarda are better made, but the Dual has one feature that I really like: the fine speed adjustment. It is very hand. That and some prices are still okay in North America. But they are climbing at a fairly quick rate. This is why I am seeking a scratch built idler, and I have designed a few. Of course sticking with what I feel are good design principles some of the features required are as follows:
  • over specified AC induction motor
  • simple drive system, most probably rim drive
  • hammer-simple plinth
  • no springs whatsoever
  • gravity based tensioning devices
  • some sort of electronic means to control speed if required
  • an appropriately sized and contoured platter with appropriate density and total mass

There are several that could be copied, but I prefer an original design. Yes the Lencos can be copied, but if using Lenco specific parts , they will be quite expensive. The same can be said of the Thorens, some of the Rek-o-cuts (or similar broadcast types like the very desirable and expensive EMT turntables) or virtually any Reasonable quality existing idler wheel types out there.

I've stated elsewhere that maybe even a idler retro-fit kit could be built using an existing belt drive turntable to be the basis for the retro-fit. I'll leave it at that for now.
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Old 22nd December 2012, 06:04 PM   #14
sreten is offline sreten  United Kingdom
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Hi,

I'll still maintain that in the UK the LAB 60 is more wanted to more
people in great original good condition, and you can find a better
idler motor unit as a basis for a higher quality turntable rebuild.

Not that the OP has indicated he has the skill or interest for this.

I've seen some pretty nice used Duals 100 to 150 including
nice (and new very expensive) cartridges that are a far
simpler good quality starting point for an LP collection.

rgds, sreten.

I've rebuilt (sometimes radically) far more turntables that most
(claim) in my younger days, and consequently have ended up
with some pretty hard nosed practical opinions on the matter.
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Last edited by sreten; 22nd December 2012 at 06:10 PM.
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Old 22nd December 2012, 06:21 PM   #15
Nanook is offline Nanook  Canada
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Default sreten, I don't think we are disagreeing...

...and thus I made sure to specify that in my circumstance gutting idler changers makes some sens. I your (in the UK) it most likely doesn't. I too have a few hard-nosed opinions as well, and as per usual I suspect we share many of the same thoughts regarding turntables and their construction.
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Old 22nd December 2012, 06:37 PM   #16
sled108 is offline sled108  United States
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Been There...Done That...Sounds Great!
There is No Rumble at All using a Detached ToneArm...
Stews Arm, for that Matter....Thanks Stew...
Click the image to open in full size.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg New AT 60.JPG (63.0 KB, 40 views)

Last edited by sled108; 22nd December 2012 at 06:44 PM.
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Old 22nd December 2012, 07:26 PM   #17
Nanook is offline Nanook  Canada
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Default Hey sled...

...looks good. Which table did you use for the basis? Sorry haven't been keeping up on everything... I lost all email contacts, and previous email notifications, but my iMac is finally working (semi) normally.

How does it sound? Did you use Kynar?
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Old 22nd December 2012, 07:49 PM   #18
sled108 is offline sled108  United States
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It was a Garrard AT60...All of $30 worth...
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Old 22nd December 2012, 09:46 PM   #19
Nanook is offline Nanook  Canada
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Default all of $30.

And most probably knackered. How do you like it? Have you compared it to anything else? How's the arm?

So as to not hijack this thread please PM me.
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Last edited by Nanook; 22nd December 2012 at 09:52 PM.
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