Excellent clarification by Quiddity, thanks. I should have included the proviso that the two c/w's be of the same shape.
With apologies to my friend Raul, this question is not as simple as you say. You're correct that changing to a heavier c/w would increase effective mass (moment of inertia) IF you mounted the heavier c/w the SAME distance from the pivot. But that would unbalance the cartridge, so this fact has no real world application.
For the *same* VTF...
with the *same* cartridge...
for two c/w's of the *same* shape but *different* masses...
the heavier c/w mounted closer to the pivot will result in a lower moment of inertia than the lighter c/w mounted farther from the pivot.
You left out a key factor. The heavier headshell will be mounted at (virtually) the same distance from the pivot as the lighter headshell. Therefore, its greater mass will increase the system moment of inertia, quite substantially given how much heavier it is.
Read Quiddity's excellent post. A headshell is mounted farther from the pivot than a c/w, so a change in mass at the headshell has a greater effect on moment of inertia than does the corresponding adjustment of c/w position. Adding mass at the headshell and adjusting the c/w to maintain the same downforce at the stylus increases moment of inertia (as Raul correctly stated above).
This will be true whether you use the existing c/w or go to a heavier one, although in the latter case the increase in moment of inertia will be less, due to the effect that was the original topic of this thread.