Please remind me about VPI TT anti-skating.

I'm sure this has been touched on in older threads, but I can't seem to recall the answer.  I own a VPI Classic turntable with the anti-skating (AS) device.  I remember reading many threads which speak to whether AS is really needed on a VPI, .... in contrast to a gentle twist of the tonearm wire.  

In the old days, VPI (actually Harry) thought the twisted wire provided enough AS force.  Many others disagreed.

Well I went with the "many others" and through a couple of donut rings onto the AS device thinking I was doing good.  I got the feeling that the image balance seemed to shift to the left channel. When I disengaged the AS device, the image seemed to shift to the center of the sound stage. 

Does this make sense or would too much AS force shift the image to the right?  I am pretty sure that my tonearm wires are connected properly and the same regarding the I/Cs to the phono pre and from the phono pre to the linestage.       

I concede that if too much AS would augment the right channel, that the problem could well be the recording,... or maybe just my imagination.



The best part of the VPI anti-skate device is that it is adjustable and defeatable, therefore, allowing the end user to make his/her own informed opinion.  You will never get a consensus of which way method is best, therefore, go with whatever sounds best in your system.
I have two early FR tonearms without AS. A FR 29 and a FR 54. Evidently Ikeda-san didn't think it important!
I just sent a cartridge to Soundsmith for a new cantilever and stylus after many hours of play on an early VPI Aries with a JMW Memorial arm.  No anti-skate.  The report was that the cartridge wear was symmetrical, neither side worn more than the other.  

The current cart in use on that table provides very precise imaging on an immense and well-defined soundstage.  No anti-skate.

In my 40+ years dealing with high-end tables, minimal anti-skate has always produced the best quality vinyl playback for me and minimal wear.

In my opinion, anti-skate is overrated.