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Old 9th August 2006, 09:07 PM   #1
percy is offline percy  United States
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Default seeking ideas for diy headshell (tonearm pics inside)

I am thinking of dumping the plastic headshell on my BIC 960 turntable and see what I can do to put a better headshell with a better contact with the tonearm. Here is how the end of the tonearm looks like after removing the stock headshell -

Click the image to open in full size.


First, are there any ready made headshells that I could clamp/sleev over the open end of the tube ?(The outside diameter of the tube is 5/32"). Like the one on this Formula 4 arm -


http://www.audioinvest.no/tt_vinyl/t...s/ta_f4iii.htm
Click the image to open in full size.

If there are any members who could fabricate one for me please do let me know!! (email or pm).
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Old 9th August 2006, 11:42 PM   #2
bulgin is offline bulgin  South Africa
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Default Seeking Ideas for diy headshell

Hi Percy

You seemingly trod where angels fear to step! Why did you remove the old headshell? Was it too floppy? I once did this years ago with a Beogram 1000. At the time I was too poor to afford a new SP7 or whatever from B&O. Besides I wanted to also play 78's. I rigidly bonded an all metal headshell and on it, I could have a much wider choice of cartridges.

I too stil have an acute shortage of headshells. I've got plenty of the plug-on (sme) type but the arms I use now are Micro's & Grace. Each of these headshells are different which make things difficult to change carts.

I suggest you look at the front end of the Clearaudio 'Satisfy' arm, which looks simple to make.

bulgin
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Old 10th August 2006, 12:25 AM   #3
percy is offline percy  United States
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are you saying I am rushing in like a fool ?
well the whole cartridge->headshell->tonearm connection/arrangement just doesn't seem right, or lets just say there is a lot of scope for improvement.
Besides, this turntable was free so I could use it as a 'learning platform'. I have nothing to loose, all I can see is an opportunity to gain.
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Old 10th August 2006, 08:54 AM   #4
EC8010 is offline EC8010  United Kingdom
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You can make a headshell out of 1 1/2" aluminium angle (1/8" thick). I made this with the assistance of a Black & Decker power drill in a stand, a junior hacksaw, and a few files.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg shell1.jpg (48.8 KB, 658 views)
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Old 10th August 2006, 10:14 AM   #5
bulgin is offline bulgin  South Africa
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Default Seeking Ideas for diy headshell

Hi Percy

I didn't say anything about being a fool!!! It takes b#lls to remove a fixed headshell from an arm before planning what you are going to replace it with. This is only my personal view and no slight on your skills was intended.

Here is another idea but you would have to find an old scrap arm if you haven't any: How about fitting a female screw collar device (devised by sme originally) in the place of the old headshell. This way, you would have a wide choice of headshells.

@ EC8010
This is really excellent work with the tools you had available. The most difficult part would be to fabricate the male socket end which would involve turning an outer metal sleeve and an inner plastics cylinder, precision drilled to take the mating pins or tubes for the arm end, or is the shell going to be fixed?

Sooner, rather than later, I would also have to make a plan for additional headshells for the arms in use as I change carts all the time.

bulgin
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Old 10th August 2006, 10:27 AM   #6
EC8010 is offline EC8010  United Kingdom
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Thanks bulgin. The headshell in the photograph was originally simply glued with epoxy to a Thorens TD166 arm "wand". Two years later, the bicycle style cup and cone bearings in the arm wore out, so the arm was ditched but I kept the headshell. The headshell is now on a Minisonic arm, and now that I have a lathe, acquired a bush to allow better fixing.

About twenty years ago, I made another headshell to the same design but cut a slot in the headshell near the arm tube hole using a jeweller's saw, then drilled and tapped 8BA across the slot to make the headshell clamp the arm tube (thus allowing adjustment). That headshell is still on a friend's Dual 505.
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Old 10th August 2006, 01:45 PM   #7
percy is offline percy  United States
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EC8010, that is exactly what I had in mind!

I am also tossing around the idea of removing the socket from readily available headshells and then fitting the headshell over the wand. Or keep the socket and trim the locking pins if the entire socket fits inside the tube.

bulgin, the collar device might be worth checking into. Do you have a picture or link to it anywhere ?
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Old 10th August 2006, 01:53 PM   #8
EC8010 is offline EC8010  United Kingdom
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But all SME-type headshells are straight. You need one that angles the cartridge...
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Old 10th August 2006, 01:57 PM   #9
percy is offline percy  United States
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oh so they dont have the slots which allows a cartridge to be mounted at an angle. That's not gonna work. I need a 24-25 degree angle (based on John Elison's spreadsheet for calculating Baerwald or Loefgren alignment).
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Old 10th August 2006, 02:05 PM   #10
bulgin is offline bulgin  South Africa
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Default Seeking Ideas for diy headshell

Hello EC8010

I acknowledge making your own headshell is skillful work and my 'hat' (I don't wear headgear!) off to you. I have access to my own small stock of various types of aluminium (incl angle) and I also know some headshells are made from an alu/magnesium alloy. I however also work with titanium for making jigs and have a supplier in Johannesburg where I buy small quantities from.

I think when I try my hand at making some headshells, I may use titanium as it is very light and will wear much better. This metal is not all that expensive, as I found out when I started using it.

I just would love having about 6 headshells for each of the arms I use here and to make these (12pcs) would be a lot of work. The guys with cnc facilities will probably give you 101 reasons why NOT to do the job for you and I may try getting the flat parts lasercut. The rest I'll machine.

@ Percy, I hope you solve the problem.

bulgin
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