VPI TNT balancing

I�m currently using a VPI TNT 6 HR turntable (JMW 12.5 tone arm) along with a Shelter 501 cartridge. I have carefully leveled the turntable and rack using the small VPI level as well as a longer level (about 18�) just to be certain all is OK. I periodically go through the set up process to make sure that none of the adjustments have changed. So far so good. Here�s the problem � at least I think it�s a problem. In order to get the proper tracking force, the counterweight is virtually at the extreme end of the tone arm. Although I have never had a problem with tracking, the arm is rather unstable when cued on and off an lp. My manual indicates that the counterweight should be as close to the pivot point as possible in order to make the arm more stable. I suppose I could add another counterweight, but I�m afraid that will be way too much weight on the non-cartridge end. Has anyone had a similar situation, and if so, what was the solution? Thanks.
Hmm, your problem seems like an odd one? I wasn't aware that the Shelter 501 was such a heavy Cartridge?

Not to diss you, or you choice of Cartridges, but with such a Table, you should be well beyond such a meager piece to place on your Turntable. From what I have read, the Shelter is, oh well, not that good.

And not to diss the people here either, but many here are mid-fi users, and only a very select few will know anything about a VPI TNT Table.

In truth, you're even a multitude of steps above what I own, and consider good, which is an older VPI 19 MK-IV Table. Your TNT should stomp a mudhole in my Turntable!

But, I got what you don't have, a absolute killer Cartridge, the ZYX Airy 3X SB! And that Cartridge will stomp a mudhole in anything from anyone else under $5K
Of course a bold statement, I am a original at raising eyebrows, but it is true what I say.

All aside, and not to rock too many boats here, Mike, or even the master himself, Harry Weisfield will personally answer your questions if you call them.

VPI has crazy days, and hours though. I think they are closed monday, and friday. Regardless of this, they are a good company, just remember, don't get rude, and appease the pit bull woman who answers the phone, which is probably Harry's wife Sheila. Once you get past her, you got it made in the shade!

Other advice, there are probably dozens of folks who have the exact same set-up as you here, and can give you hands on help. Mark
I made one error in my response to you. That was there are many "mid-fi" users here! NOT! Some people here own Cartridges, that cost more than my entire Turntable-Arm-Cartridge! Sorry for my mistake, there are many here who forgot more than I know. Mark
I did sacrifice a bit on the cartridge to get the rest of my system in place. I'll be looking to upgrade the cartridge within six months or so. I'm happy to hear suggestions as to replacements.

As to my current situation, my dealer is going to contact VPI, but I understand they're on vacation for a couple weeks. Thought I would see if any one here had encountered this problem.
Add a three gram weight to the headshell. That will allow you to move the counterweight closer to the pivot point which is always a good idea.

Good luck.

Hello Wendell, Sorry, but this doesn't sound correct to me. If you re-read the original poster's comments, it sounds like he's saying that his counterweight is already at the very end of the Counterweight Stub (away from the Pivot) as it is.

Adding a 3g Headshell Weight will then mean needing even a more heavier counterweight. I'm thinking other counterweights are available from either VPI, or other parties if needed. Mark
Doh, you would think I would learn how to read!
Call VPI and request a heavier counterweight. That should solve your problem while minimizing total mass of the tonearm/cartridge.
Your problem sounds really bizarre! The Shelter only weighs about 8 grams, the stock counterweight should be applying proper tracking force close to the pivot point. You either have something seriously wrong or some really lightweight counterweight. Contact VPI.
Hi Wendell,
I know us folks are trying to help the original poster, and sometimes my friend, things can appear to be a bit confusing. I only hope us, or others have written here have helped the OP. We're all here of course for the very same thing, and that is of course to have ear to ear smiles when the stylus touches down on vinyl! :-) Mark
Thanks every one. As I mentioned, my dealer is contacting VPI - I believe they return on the 16th. Suspect hifibri may have hit on the solution, i.e., a heavier counterweight. I'm just a bit surprised that no one else has encountered this, as was pointed out above, the Shelter cartridge would not seem to pose an unusual load.