I damanged my Shelter cartridge, next steps?....

Hi Folks:
Well, I managed to damage my Shelter 501 mkII by, well, bumping into it. So, to cut a long story short, the stylus is leaning to one side horizontally, and is pointing more steeply vertically (wider angle between end of stylus and body of cartridge). Finally, the stylus appeas to be more 'springy' and is not as rigid.

So, question is, can I salvage it? Should I try to orient it correctly, or can it be 'reseated'. The stylus does not appear to be bent or broken - just out of correct orientation, and a little loose. Anyway, I'd value advice on whether this can be fixed, and who I might bring it to for such a fix. The cartridge is about 2.2 years old and has about 250 hours on it.

Looking forward to hearing any recommendations on next steps. IF I have to replace the cartridge, I'd also welcome input on replacements. I've a teres 255 with OL Silver Arm. Preamp is Supratek Syrah.

Dear John: You can't salvage it.
From a positive point of view this give to you the great opportunity to improve the quality sound reproduction from your very nice audio system: if you like the Shelther sound you can go for the best, the 90X model it will shine in your system.

Regards and enjoy the music.
Been there and done that. I spent a lot of time being angry at myself and my advice is just fugitaboutit and move on. Cartridge selection is very personal and audiophiles are oh so opinionated. If you like detail, and especially considering how the Syrah performs with such a cartridge, I support Raul's suggestion. For my money though I would buy a Sumiko Celebration. It's doubtful that many of the folks here have heard this wonderful performer at it's price point because it's just not auditioned enough with it's lack of snob appeal. What I love about it is while it still has the details I enjoy it has a wonderful seamlessly smooth presentation and works well with every genre of music. It would work wonderfully with your arm and phono stage.
Patrick's got a point. I finally had a chance to hear the Sumiko, and was frankly quite surprised. While I didn't get to listen to it on my system, which is pretty similar to yours John, I think it would be a very good match. But, that's my opinion, and you have to remember that I'm the guy who prefers the 103r over the 501, FOR THE MONEY.

Another cartridge that I've heard good things about, but not heard is the Yamamoto

I'm think about buying one, if I can get it in time too take to a shootout against some very high-dollar cartridges.

I like bang for the buck. So when I did pretty much the same thing you did, I tried to fix mine and failed miserably. I like to do some DIY, but I found a cartridge is not DIYable. While I'd love to be able to spend a shitload on a cartridge, it ain't gonna happen. So I put on another 103r, and started looking around for the best sub $1000 cartridge out there. If I can find it, I'll let you know.

Before doing anything else you need to find someone on which you can lay the blame for this misdeed. Any other step taken will be out of order. Somebody else has got to be responsible for this!!!

Personally I tend to blame Carl!
Guys, thanks for the advice. Some good options mentioned. I'm still open to a number of cartridge choices. I may go with a more reasonably priced option in the short term (perhaps the DL 103), and save to get something better longer term. Another option might be to jump on a bargain used cartridge - the ZYX Airy 2s looks inviting at $925 for example. Still, this is an expense I hadn't anticipated, so am weary of spending more than $800 just now. Does anyone know where I can still pick up a new Denon DL103, or where I can get a good deal on another Shelter 501 Mk2? The Sumiko does look interesting too.. Anyway, thanks again for the advice. Shame I can't salvage this Shelter ;-(
Dear John: The Sumiko Celebration is a top performer and a bargain of cartridge for what it do for the music reproduction. I totally agree with Lugnut, this cartridge is one of my favorities.

Jphii: Take care with the Yamamoto very low output cartridge.

Regards and enjoy the music.
Denon 103 and 103r can be had at www.audiocubes.com. The Yamamoto looks interesting, but .18mv output? This is the lowest output cartridge I have ever seen, a couple of older Ortofons excepted.
Nrchy: "Personally I tend to blame Carl!"

I'll second that.

Outlier, have you checked on the cost of repairing your Shelter?
Hi Dirtyragamuffin - I'd definitely be keen to see if I can have the Shelter repaired - my sense from some comments though is that the cartridge is kaput now though. BUT - if anyone has ideas on where I might send it for review (and possible repair), I'm all ears. Certainly, that would be a great way for me to go, if the cost of repair is not prohibitive, and the resulting sonics not impaired..

FYI, I just ordered a Denon DL 103 from the UK (Doh! - should have waited and acted on the more local audiocubes tip.) Still, I'm in the market for investing in a stronger contender than the Denon if I see something special at the right price. Thanks again for the input guys.
Audiocubes would not be more local, unless you live in Asia.
I did the same thing once while trying to "dust off my TT. My condolences, it was a very bad day for me as well. Music direct gave me 50% off on a new 501 ($400) when I sent them the damaged unit (which I hadn't originally purchased from them).
I'm not sure what Shelter's repair/retip policy is. When My old Clearaudio needed repair, I was quoted a "retip" price but was told that Clearuadio actually just takes the damaged one and sends out a new cart--though I wound up upgrading to the next model up at dealer cost.

But get the repair cost on that Shelter, if it can be repaired, and take a look at what other carts you can get for that price. If they're not as good as the Shelter, then you know what to do! :)
Jyprez - that sounds like a fantastic deal you got on that replacement. That might be the best way for me to go, if I can avail of such a deal. Is there someone in particular I shoudl contact at Music Direct, do you think the offer would be a general policy that they apply, or do you think you were just lucky? Just seems like a super deal (very nice of them :-)

Does anyone know the website/contact email of Shelter in Japan? I purchased it direct from some store/site in Japan but can't for the live of me remember the store/site. I got the Shelter about two years ago. I guess I should explore a fix/retip with them. They might be nice to me like MusicDirect was nice to Jyprez. One can only hope :-)

Thanks again for the great suggestions and words of wisdom. I'm glad to know I'm not the only person to have broken a cartridge (although I have done this twice. Third time's a charm...;-)
From what I've heard, Shelter has no repair/retip service.

They suggest you trade it in on a new one, for a small trade-in allowance.
You know, that Sumiko Celebration reminds me an awful lot of the old Supex 900 Super, with a little higher output.

I wonder?
Twl: You are totally wrong, confused or have an awful sound reproduction audio system: the Celebration has nothing to "" envy "" to the Supex. What are you hearing? Why do you do that kind of statement ?

Regards and enjoy the music.
Outlier - just talk to the analog department at Music Direct. That is the standard replacement deal from Shelter as I understand it. They said it cannot be repaired but I had to send them the old one, probably to prove I wasn't just trying to buy a new one for cheap.
Sorry Raul, I didn't mean to upset you.
Dear Tom: My questions are because I have two different Supex ( well there are already sold. I will ship next monday ) and, about sound reproduction, the Celebration is totally different.

Today that I read my post to you I can " see " that was a little aggressive, sorry for that. That was not my intention.

Regards and enjoy the music.
I am late to the thread but, boy do I have a story. Years ago I bought a Benz Glider. Few weeks later, while dusting the tip went bye-bye. For a $300 fee I got a replacement. Few months later I did the same thing and paid another $300. I used it for a while and got spooked that it would happen again. I went to a dealer to trade it in on a wood body L-04 for the protection factor. At the dealer, I took the Glider out of the box to show him. He took one out to compare and placed them both on the counter. Well he placed them so close together on the counter that the magnets attracted to each other!! The sytlus in his new Glider was nowhere to be found. To this day, I live with that fear and will not own a "nude" cartridge.
So, to update on the Shelter issue - even though the cantilever is askew (both vertically and horizontally) and the suspension is quite loose, I reinstalled the Shelter on my OL Silver, and Teres 255 (just got the 255 platter, so had to let it settle into place). I seated the Shelter skewing to one side so that the needle could at least line up correctly with the groove. And, well, it's the darndest thing, but it sounds damn good?! The cartridge is aligled at about a 15 degree angle (in order to line the cantilever up straigt with the grooves), and the cantilever is way steeper into the groove vertically than it should be = maybe at about an additional 15 degree angle between the cartridge body and the cantilever (but, I guess because the suspension is loose, it ends up being pretty ideal angle when the tracking force is applied). So, I was very skeptical of getting anything close to real sound, but it sounds fantastic...Open question is, am I putting a strain on the records (over wearing one side of the groove?), although the channel seperation sounds perfect, with no etching present at all on my choice recordings. Also, I'm practically waiting for the needle to fall out or something, but so far, so good.Anyway, all told, I guess I'll continue to run the Shelter 'as is' until I hear otherwise - and am now less inclined to fork out $$ on a new/used heavy-hitter cartridge like an Airy 2/3 etc (which I've been considering). I did order a Denon DL-103 from the UK though, which didn't cost me much, and I guess will be a great comparison (and back up cartridge) to the Shelter. Anyway, thanks guys for the advice and guidance on getting through this problem. I'm a bit embarassed to see that the cartridge is still usable (that my diagnosis of fatality was off target, but I'm thrilled too ;-) Anyway, just wanted to post an update. Hopefully I'll be getting some more blissful hours out of this Shelter yet.
You cannot rely on this cartridge to have proper alignment at this time, John.
It could possibly be damaging your records to play it like that.
Just take some toothpicks and straighten the stylus out already. If you fail then deal with that issue. Your records are too valuable IMO.
Remind me not to buy any records from you.
Mmm, that's what I was afraid of - so i would be damaging my records. They seem to sound just fine, but I believe you guys. Ok, I guess I'll be taking the plunge on a new cartridge..I do have the Denon DL 103 on the way, so that might keep me occupied for a while, but if I still have the itch to get a better cartridge, the foremost contender right now is a used Airy 3X-SB. I trust it will match my OL Silver OK. i'll keep you posted
Well, I went ahead with a new cartridge purchase. I went out on a limb and selected the Airy 3x-sb. A bit more of a cartridge than I was in the market for, but hopefully will be a nice upgrade for my system. I have the new MG-1 air bearing tonearm on the way too. Not sure how that cartridge/arm combo will pair up on my Teres 255, but I still have my OL Silver arm too.
Dear Outlier

I noticed that you are using the OL again. Do you have any comments regarding it's sound as compared to the MG-1 .....
Hi Growlar. Actually, I just sold the OL Silver this week, and am still using the MG-1. I didn't do close comparison between the two arms - it takes a little time to switch out the arms on my rig, and also, I didn't want to touch the Airy cartridge any more than I have to (last thing I need is to damage the Airy - I'd need therapy for sure ;-)

That said, my impression having used both arms is that the MG-1 sounded better. I was experiencing some skipping of the cartridge, but I ended up setting up the turntable directly on my brick floor, and now there is absolutely no skipping or vibration. The rig is rock solid now, and I'm experiencing no problems. The MG-1 seemed to sound a bit more 'airy', excuse the pun, but that's the best word I can think of. The music seemed a bit more full and effortless. I think I'll be very happy to stay with the arm until such time as I can afford a Schroeder, which may be some time away. I'd be curious to hear other impressions of the MG-1 from more seasoned Audiophiles, as I've only experience with these two arms.
Did you consider Ezpert Stylus in England. Check out there website for more details.
Hi Cardiackid, thanks for the suggestion. I haven't heard of that company, so I will check it out. I also got a recommendation to send to Benz Micro in Switzerland, which I may try too. Overall, I'm now up and running with a ZYX Airy 3x-sb low output, so I'm in good shape. But, it would be great to see can I get the Shelter salvaged and then have a backup, or re-sell. Thanks again for the tip. I'll surely try and get it fixed/retipped if I can.
Don't bother with Expert Stylus they are good but expensive - you will pay more in pounds than you will in Euros/dollars with Benz Micro. I sent my Koets Black to be re-tipped in Switzerland and it cost half the price that Expert quoted me.

Others have had pleasant results with Expert so I would suggest you consider all options. Since you will require more than a simple retip, i suggest that you understand the track record of each company for the rebuild. Another key point is how close to original spec will the repaired product be.

With the current exchange, all Euro transactions will be hefty. The main thing, don't give up on a professional repair until you have all of the facts. Is van den Hull an option? I am not sure.

Good luck, you have many good options suggested.
Cardiackid, with respect, you are wrong about the exchange rate. Expert are in the UK, where I am, and their quotation for the same work as Benz Micro was more in pounds than the Benz quotation in Euros. As 1 Euro = £0.70 it means that Benz are over 30% lower.

It is fairly common knowledge that Van den Hul subcontract repairs to Benz in Switzerland, just as the Cartridge Man subcontracts his repair work to Expert, obviously charging a substantial mark-up.
I appreciate you point, and if Benz is the place to go, that's fine. The main thing is to be sure that repair options are well considered before discarding the cartridge. That 501 may be a great back-up cartridge after repair.

Also, I guess I am an outsider, but I thought Van den Hul repaired their own. Live and learn. Thanks for the update. This thread may come in useful for me too!

Happy listening
Cardiackid, I verified with Van den Hul USA that they do not subcontract cartridge repair. All work is done in house by the master himself in Holland. I have also heard many rumors, and before I sent my cartridge back I investigated. Now they could have lied to me!