By "at the pivot point" do you mean the arm mount? There are two horizontal set screws in the arm mount that tighten the aluminum collet against the arm pillar. Loosening those set screws allows you to move the arm up or down to set VTA.
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Reviving and old thread I started some years back. I seem to have gotten many things "right" with this deck but the tonearm thing still eludes me. I have talked with Brian about the pivot screw and think I have this one adjusted properly. My next challenge is that the cueing mechanism drops the arm far too rapidly, as though there is no damping at all.
Question: Is there an adjustment of some sort? Is this drop controlled by friction and if so, is there a special type of lubricant (grease i.e.) that is used to slow the drop?
Any help would be very much appreciated. Not sure if Brian is still at the Analog Room but I will try there again as well. If I remember right, it was not easy to contact him and he seemed rather busy.
Thanks, Joe.....I have contacted HWDSound and spoken with Marc, who is a very pleasant person and quite helpful. As for the adjustment of the pivot set screw he did not really have a definitive answer although he seemed to agree with my method of leaving it loose enough for unrestricted movement but not so loose that the stability is lost. As for the cueing/lift mechanism, I ordered and received a new one and while better, the thing still drops too fast in my estimation. I am waiting on a call from Marc to discuss this further. Again, thanks for your advice.
Rob, sorry I did not answer your question: the set screw I am talking about is not those to which you make reference. It is the solitary screw at the very top/center of the tonearm itself at the pivot point.
OK, thanks for the kind responses.....
I am just a bit confused at this point......everything I have researched tells me that this lift was made by Rega, and countless comparisons from images along with the maintenance info on VinylEngine confirms this as accurate. When I contacted NAS, Penny Jones sent me a reply that contradicts all this:
Thank you for your enquiry.
The lift/lower device will need replacing.
You must not use any grease / oil and there is no way to 'tighten' up the movement.
Sometimes heat / cold can effect these devices.
Please contact our distributor for the US, they should be able to help you.
Contact: Audio Encounter Solutions (aka Hollywood Sound, Florida).
I hope the above is of help to you.
With kind regards
Nottingham Analogue Studio"
So, where does this leave me? Rega even spells out that there IS a grease: "Re-grease using only Rega supplied lift-lower grease..." More digging reveals that this is actually pure silicon oil 300K cst. Maybe my old, original lift would indeed have been salvageable had I known this.....
After disassembling the new one, I found.....you guessed it, that sticky silicon stuff in the piston/cylinder. While Rega directs one to "completely fill the groove in the piston," there was only a very, very tiny amount of it in the groove. I carefully removed what was in the groove and applied it to the piston before re-assembling and the lift now drops somewhat slower, so that should be an indicator that there was too little applied from the manufacturer to begin with?
I am still waiting on the aforementioned return call from Hollywood Sounds, although they told me originally that they did not believe these could be fixed and that a new one was the only way to remedy the situation. I would have been plenty happy to spring for a new one provided it worked correctly, but getting one that drops faster than it should kind of sours me on this "deal." I'm in hopes that a small amount of the 300K cst will be all that is required to get it to drop in the fashion one might expect, slowly and accurately. Will keep everyone posted as I see this has been an issue for more than just myself.
Update, sorry it's taken so long but I just yesterday received what I thought would be the fix......not so, not even close! The tech at Hollywood Sound sent me some 3,000cst silicone oil, and I expect he thought it was 300,000cst. In any case, I did not look carefully at the vial he sent, thinking he had understood it needed 300,000cst and just coated the piston and groove, turned it about in the cylinder to coat each surface and re-installed only to see it drop like a rock! THEN I looked at the vial and noticed it was 3,000cst! Will send the vial back to him and start sourcing some of the 300,000cst myself. Keep you posted as to the eventual outcome......
Update #2......300,000cst did NOT cause the 9" Spacearm to drop slowly enough. I sourced some 500,000cst and that has enough "sticky" to do the job. I would suggest, if you want the arm to drop even more slowly, 1,000,000cst but HAVE NOT tried it. My stylus rests 5/16" above the record surface before I cue it down just in case that is a consideration. You will, of course, need to remove the mechanism from the arm base, thoroughly clean it (I used isopropyl 93%), and then coat the piston filling the groove in it completely with the silicone oil as per Rega’s (it’s identical to the Rega lift/cueing mechanism) instructions found here:
You will need to create an account at VE (free) and then go to that link to see the instructions.
Hope this helps others that have run into the "drops like a rock" issue.
Upon further review......
After a couple weeks with the 500,000cst silicone oil in the cueing mechanism, I can report to you that this is definitely the right stuff for a Space Arm.
As for cartridge, currently using an SAE1000E with a weight of 4.7 grams. It will be interesting once I have my Sumiko Blackbird back on the arm as it weighs about 9.6 grams to see if that makes any difference. My hunch is that it shouldn't as the counterweight will be adjusted accordingly to achieve the correct VTF but we'll see.
Meanwhile, if you are having the "drops like a rock" issue with your Spacearm, highly recommend a dismantling of the cueing mechanism, thorough cleaning with IPA, followed by re-packing the piston/cylinder with the 500,000cst.....let me know if this gets you to where you would like to be.
Right now, my arm takes 5.6 seconds from beginning the drop to the record surface at a distance of right at 5/16 inch. Perfect for me to get to my listening position......I'm happy!