Must be at least one owner out there?
13 responses Add your response
Albert is going to send some pics, but he doesn’t know what pump it is.
As for Seth, I talked with him a number of times a few weeks ago.
I first emailed him during break at work with my contact information, mentioning that I have been working 6 day/12+ hour graveyard shifts, that email would be the most convenient so I could sleep.
He called my cell about an hour later, I was not able to pick-up because I was working.
I messaged him the next day with more information and that email was the best form of communication. He then called a couple hours later again, while I was driving on the freeway. I mentioned I was driving on the freeway, but he paid no attention and went on about how if I was going to order parts from him, it was only worth his time if the order was over $100, he spent the conversation trying to figure out how to charge me MORE for parts I didn’t need.
He had zero mindset for any customer service at all... it was all about what was best for him.
Seth gave me a lecture that I didn’t buy the machine ’new’, that I wasn't the 'Original Owner' (it’s 60 years old!) therefore I shouldn’t expect any help.
I decided after talking with Seth, that either I was just going to completely rebuild my Keith Monks Gemini myself, or purchase a new RCM, but either way, I was not going to give any $$ to Seth, nor Jonathan Monks, as there is no care for the customer, just their money.
Never seen such lack of care or respect for a customer before.
Sorry to hear that, Seth was kind to me. He was more of a phone guy than an email guy as I remember. I did spend some time with him, both on the phone and at his studio. (He's a pretty well known archivist of old historic recordings, among other things).
That pump company you mentioned is still in business, as you probably know. The trick is to see if the fittings that are used on the Monks will fit onto a new pump, if that is what you are after. I wonder if the pump company itself supplies any of those fittings since I doubt Monks would fabricate fittings if they are standard items.
Monks itself lists a replacement pump that no doubt has all the bells and whistles already attached.
I would be happy to take a look at the pump in my Monks if it is of any help to you, and snap a few photos. Mine is a late machine, an Omni, which was built after 2010.
My email address is on the web if you look me up. My name is Bill Hart and I am listed at a page called flying reptile media group.
Thank you for your help and information. I had already researched the Keith Monks pump a few weeks ago, for the US it is a KNF UN022 AN(insert letter here for size of tubing connector). It is available.
I was just curious to see what other options there were and find out what was used in the Odyssey to see if it may be a better pump.
The pictures that Albert had are not clear enough to be able to read the label on the Odyssey pump, so I'm still searching.
here's the Monks parts list which shows an Austen pump head rebuild kit:http://keith-monks.com/spare-parts/
Mine was rebuilt- the main thing it needed was a fresh diaphragm - the rest was tubing and fittings.
I'll try to reach Syntax for you.
You might try writing to Austen directly and ask them what they supplied. More as I have it.
Whart, thanks for all your help and posts, you are appreciated.
Yes, Albert is one of the 'Good guys'... he has helped me many, many times and given me lots of help with especially turntables... as I also have Technics SL1000 MK3 & MK2 and Lenco tables.
I bought the Austen rebuild kit from Jonathan Monks back in 2007 for $160.00, but have yet to use it. The Austen pump seems to work fine, but probably would work better with the kit installed.
At the time, I spent about $500.00 on spare parts for my Gemini, as I wanted it to last. But I also had medical issues and was unable to work up until recently, so I ended up selling much of my audio gear and am now just getting back.
The main reason of going either with the new KNF or Schwarzer vacuum pump is for better performance/reliability/longevity and independence from the rip-off pricing of the Keith Monks company.
On the Keith Monks spare parts page, they want $14.00 EACH for a 1/8" nylon connector, which I tried to buy from Seth, even though at an extreme high price point...
but...instead, he was trying to push selling me the jar lid with 2 nylon connectors for $80.00!!!
Instead, I ordered 1/8" nylon connectors online myself for $7.00 for packages of TEN, not ONE, but TEN!!!
I bought a whole package of 10 jar lids for less than $2.00!!!
I bought high quality solid BRASS connectors online for $2.00 each!!!
The KNF replacement pump can be bought from the factory for more than $400.00 less what it is sold for on the Keith Monks site.
I was willing to pay up to a point, but will no longer and they lost me from being a customer ever again. I doubt that Keith Monks is in business any longer and if so I really do feel for anyone who purchases a machine from them.
I hear you. I’m a big advocate for finding non-audiophile solutions to audiophile issues. The Monks is very Rube Goldberg in its design, but it works. I would have purchased the Odyssey if it was still being made at the time I got my Monks.
Good luck with it, if you go for that other pump and get it installed, I’d be interested to know what other fittings or adapters you needed. I suspect most of this is standard stuff- I did a fair amount of work on my air compressors for my tone arm- and relied heavily on SIL, which has an office in Houston. Most of the fittings and filters are cheap compared to the audiophile branded versions of the same thing and the SIL folks really know their business on the compressor end. Thankfully, I haven’t had to do much with the Monks since Seth rebuilt it and I hear you on Monks- they aren’t terribly responsive to customers directly- my impression is that Jonathan has a full time job elsewhere and encourages clients to work through a dealer. It is a really good RCM, so it’s too bad they aren’t more customer friendly.
I’ve learned a few things in this dialog so it’s been helpful to me as well.
regards, and please keep us up to date on your progress.