I'm sure if you call VPI (or this is something your dealer should be handling), they will get you all the info you need. VPI has very good customer service.
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I live in the Azores / Portugal already contacted three dealers in Europe and say that VPI does not provide this kind of information which is ridiculous compared to other major manufacturers of arms that has all the information on their websites.
Already called several times without success for the VPI and have already sent an email, I am awaiting response.
I still think that it makes no sense to have a new arm inside the box and not being able to use it only because is not available in VPI website a simple information that is the distance between the spindle and the pivot for a JMW 12.7 tonearm and has now also should have to for JMW 10.5i and JMW 12.6 because there are many people like me who use VPI arms to install on other turntables.
I have a JMW 10.5i a latest version JMW 12.6 and now a JMW 12.7
These Tonearms are my favorites along with my Tri-Planar VII uii
VPI has a long history of NOT providing tonearm setup information. From your account it seems they don't even tell their dealers.
If dealer protection isn't the reason, the only other reason I can think of is that VPI would rather sell you a VPI table than help you set up their tonearm on another table.
This is not good customer service. "We won't give you the information you need to use our product." is horrible customer service, no matter how politely they say it. That's reason enough for me never to buy a VPI product, no matter how good they are. There are many excellent tonearms, who needs this aggravation?
Sorry for the rant. There are recent threads on this topic with links to useful information developed by independent sources. Search this forum and you'll find them, hope they help.
On 18/02/2010 I asked the VPI this information:
"I have a new JMW 12.6 and wanted to install in a Micro Seiki RX-1500
Please can you provide the following specifications:
"The pivot to spindle distance is 300mm. The other parameters are not available as the computer they are on is being repaired. The alignment jig supplied with the arm will give you excellent results"
Does anyone believe this response ... I see no problem in providing this type of information ... Virtually all Tonearms manufacturers make this information available on their websites.
Oy Vey, as Harry Weinsfeld would probably say himself if he were frustrated.
As a VPI Scout owner awaiting the Classic, I must say I have succeeded in learning all the info I was looking for related to the respective VPI tonearms in the end, but it took persistence, ingenuity and lots of patience.
For weeks I couldn't get through to them on the phone as it was either busy or I would get an automated message that it was not a VM machine. What was the phone for then, I wondered? Email is a crap shoot; I've received prompt responses here and there, but also had to wait for weeks for an answer. My favorite was an automated replay before Easter that VPI would be closed for like 4 weeks in observance of the holiday and they will respond to emails when they reopen. Wow, I thought, that's some holiday break in tough economic times.
That said, once I got a hold of Mike, he was very helpful and gave me all the info I asked for. VPI is a strange company, no doubt, and their tremendous long-standing success most likely contributes to their rather idiosyncratic customer service model.
I am very grateful Actusreus for wanting to help me, but finally VPI responded to me.
According to VPI "the 12.7 geometry requires a mounting distance of spindle to pivot of 298-299 mm. Spindle to center of mounting is 265mm the pivot point is offset and is not where the mounting is".
Now I am even more confused because someone who has a dedicated Wallytractor for VPI JMW 12 tonearm series reported the following:
"The effective length is 315mm; pivot-to-spindle distance 302.1mm for JMW 12, 12.5, 12.6, 12.7 Tonearms"
Something is wrong here a difference of 1mm is not critical but 3/4mm difference is relevant.
Anyway since the VPI provides no information on its website here are the information to someone who needs them ... They are not accurate but better than nothing.
I also saw the Wallytractor add with the stated 302 mm for the spindle to pivot length. I have had a mint protractor made for my JMW 12 tonearm and made my own measurements.I measured exactly 298 mm for the spindle to pivot.From the info from VPI I'm sure 298-299 mm is correct.Hope this helps.
This is an old thread, but it caught my attention
because I have been trying to refine the alignment
geometry on my VPI 12.7 tonearm (mounted on a VPI Classic 3 TT). I recently overcame my reluctance
to buy a Feickert protractor, and since I already
own a Fozgometer it didn't make sense to cavil
over a few more dollars to do the job right. I
spent about an hour tinkering with the protractor,
and the spindle-to-pivot distance proved to be 297
mm. That's 1 mm shorter than the 298-299 mm range
stated by VPI, and roughly 5mm shorter than the
302 mm measurement mentioned in this thread. I
have no explanation for this anomaly, except
perhaps that VPI was a hair off mounting the
tonearm to the plinth. After I finished aligning
the cartridge, I used the Fozgometer to adjust the
azimuth, and eventually got the signal strength of
both channels to within 0.5 db of each other. Good
enough, said I.
If it's like my JMW 10 - and it looks like it is in photos - there should be a set screw on the left side, just below the height adjust knob. You can adjust the arm to spindle distance by rotating the arm base. I used the JMW jig and snugged the base into the jigs "vee". Measuring the pivot to spindle distance by ruler with the arm removed showed it to be spot on - 250 in my case. It had been maybe one or two mm long. That was enough to create sibilance and mistracking problems that drove me nuts for a year. I attacked the problem from every parameter and learned a lot in that year. Setting the digital scale to the side of the platter and taking the reading at the same height as the record surface is critical. I wonder if that is a unipivot thing. The Fozgometer is a fantastic tool. It got me in the ballpark but the best azimuth setting was found only by slight tweaking after the initially setting for balanced output. The difference was big in my case. YMMV
Only the original JMW 10 and 12 arms had a "dog leg" support that could be pivoted to adjust for S2P distance. 12.5 and 12.7 arms have a fixed support, therefore, you will need to adjust the entire base to achieve the proper S2P distance.