SME 3009 S2 Improved Blues

...when it rains it pours. My amp is also giving me grief.

I finally got my Thorens 124/SME 3009 S2 Improved arm working to the best of my limited abilities and was putting out some amazing sounds. Suddenly, no sound from the right channel. So, after some troubleshooting and a lot of head scratching, I found the problem. One of the spring loaded contact pins on the locking collet on the cartridge socket is shot. I removed the socket from the arm, but there doesn't seem to be any obvious serviceable parts that I can fix. I've looked around and no one seems to sell the socket. Short of sending it off with $350 to someone to fix, what are my options/workarounds etc.. that I can do? Any help would be appreciated.
Regards,
David
 

kevinkr

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Probably best advice I could give would be to look for junker arms and parts on eBay - you'll be surprised at what you can find.. This is a pretty unusual failure. The sockets show up from time to time there..

FWIW I'm having some problems with the 26dht line stage I originally designed and constructed 10yrs ago, lots of people have built improved versions of it so why am I still using the original prototype? :D
 

kevinkr

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Hi,

FWIW you can get away with only using 3 connections by commoning
the earth channels and the other two L+ and R+. May have to move
the connections in the headshell and/or require the arm sockets
depending on which connection has failed.
The easiest is when an earth connection has failed.

I've done this quite a few times, albeit to more mundane arms.

rgds, sreten.

A more radical alternative is to convert the arm to fixed headshell.
In this case you lose the spring loaded contacts altogether.
The Sumiko headshell is a good candidate for this.
 

kevinkr

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Sreten makes a good point and this will get you going again in the short term - longer term I'd either convert to a fixed headshell or find a replacement socket. I have three SME3009 Series II (not the IMP) one of which is expressly for parts to keep the other two going. I've not needed parts from it yet. I also have a slightly rough loaner 3012 Series II which I will eventually restore and use to decide whether I want to acquire one. Amazing that the difference when new was about 10% of retail, today a 3012 typically goes for 4 - 6X what a good 3009 fetches.

Patience and a watchful eye on eBay and you will probably be rewarded.. Most of the most interesting parts seem to be sold by UK sellers..

Whatever you do don't send it off for big money repairs, you can replace it with another one for less.. And hold on to it until the right part shows up..

I guess it is kind of obvious I am a fan of these arms.. :D
 
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kevinkr

Administrator
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To the best of my knowledge it should just slide right into place with no further changes required. (My understanding is that there is only one arm tube..) The tabs and that gap you mentioned should not require adjustment.

The hardest part will be to pull the wires through to the yoke, once that is done it should be pretty easy. The original wires may be used to do this with some care. I'd remove the top half of the yoke and separate the arm from the pivot to do this, having noted and unsoldered the connections at the base. (4 wires will be pulled, the arm tube ground is secured by the knife edge hardware and should not be disturbed.. Note that this is also the ideal time to install a bronze knife edge bearing..)

These arms were so logically and intelligently designed, a fine example of classic British mechanical engineering.