What's inside the plinth of your Garrard 401?

I will soon take delivery of a Garrard 401. I have seen pictures of the unit and it will come without a plinth. So - as I go through the Virtual Systems to look at plinths of 401 owners, I notice most of them are custom-made and very creative.

How did you make such a beautiful table? Did your carpenter do it? Did it yourself? What kind of wood and how much should you pay for it? And what's inside the plinth?

The day will get a garrard will sure include as candidate the just saw cairn & cairn base! Give it a look ànd congrats foy your deck!
Hi you stack 7 layers of birch plywood together and glue it.The size depends on how many arms you want and there sizes.If you want to get technical use hide glue.There is tons of info on the web just google it.KP
After trying both the stacked ply and solid wood, the plinth that jived with my 401 and the rest of my system was one that was based on loricraft's. Synergy must have been related to arm choice but it ended up being the cheapest to build. Except for having real wood glued to the top board by a wood craftsman i did the rest of the plinth. Total cost was around $50 (most of the materials i already had with me)

Wow! That's a beauty, Rodney!

The 401, I believe, is set at 50Hz, having being used in England. In the U.S., it needs a 60Hz pulley - what's this? (Sorry, I'm somewhat mechanically-challenged). If I don't change the pulley, would it damage the unit?

Yes you're right. Strobe markings on the platter is 50hz (someone told me that the 401 was a uk domestic model only). I actually had a power supply made to make it work at 50hz but it blew up so for the meantime i'm using a 60hz pulley which a friend helped me get thru ebay. Had to get the pulley twice as the first one that came was a bit wobbly. It just won't play music at the right speed if you use the 50hz pulley.

I hope everything turns out fine with your 401.
Get the 60Hz pulley, but don't buy the cheap version, which I believe is sold on eBay (but I could be wrong; the one on eBay could be perfectly OK). Search some of the Garrard websites for guidance on which reproduction 60Hz pulley to purchase; I believe the best one is made by a private individual in Europe, on a per order basis. The cheap version is not well machined and does not give stable speed.
Now that the hoopla is over over the Super Bowl, might life go back to normal?

The 401 I bought is a NOS, which means it has never seen the lignt of day. Nor spun a record; and surely needs lubrication.

During the last two days, I've been reading on this table. It is not as popular as the 301, but mechanically allegedly better. What gives the 301 a cult-like status is, eh, I really don't know, except it has a more old-fashioned look? Plays mono better? These are just some of the things I have learned about the 401.

About the plinth: There's a seller in Eastern Europe who custom-make them, quite nice. It costs about $110.00 and shipping is $130.00!

I will continue to explore other places for a nice plinth; shouldn't get too excieted because I still don't have it in my hands.

But I've read and seen some tables that are incredibly beautiful. I've also read that they sound very good.

Ngeorge : It appears you have located a real gem . I wish you well; with the right skill set either you or a highly qualified tech shall make your 'Table sing. FYI, I have a few friends that are purchasing custom made slate pliths , two stage affairs. They cost a bundel but they claim the sonics are better than anything out there. Check out the site, olswald mill audio , nee: products , slate pliths.
Thanks for the site, Crem1.

You're right, their plinths don't come cheap.

Rodney, Lewm, about the 60Hz pulley: If I don't use it, can I compensate the speed by adjusting the speed adjustor?

Sorry, I don't know the answer to your question about the 60Hz pulley and sped adjustment as I have never played with a 401. I do own a 301, but it is not in use because I still need to buy or build a plinth for it. I am currently too happy with my Lenco to worry about a plinth for the 301. But this is the reason I urged you to go to a Garrard specialty website. You will get all the guidance you need from those guys.

Re your remarks about 401 v 301, I'm pretty sure I've read on the web that the bearing/spindle/platter for at least the late 301 is identical to that of a 401, so, barring differences between the motors (minimal if any at all) and chassis' (possibly the 301 chassis is stiffer and better damped due to thicker metal), there should be very little difference in sonics between the two. The 301 has more of a cult status and so commands higher prices and more adulation, I guess.
George, with 50hz pulley still can't compensate the speed using the pitch control, though you can zero in on the strobe markings but still too fast. One alternative is to shave down your existing 50hz pulley to 5/6 of what it is (have a caliper to check the measurement and a strobe disc to verify speed)This route may even be a lot better than the ones you can get thru ebay. The pulley measurements for the 301 and 401 are actually the same though the orientation of the locking screws are different.

Crem1, those slate plinths are real beauties but as you said they do cost a bundle.

Lewm, I have heard a lot of good things about them Lenco's. I also have a 301, somehow if my memory serves me right the 401 seems to be heavier( Unless my mind has been playing tricks on me)could be due to the heavier motor. Just too lazy to check it now.
Ngeorge: FYI , Google "Garrard 301 turntable plinth" or go directly to the 6 moons web site to the 2005 articles regarding a 301 restoration.

There you can view several revealing photo's of the late genius , Terry Cain , who developed a superb 2-stage plinth as shown. The Plinth may go back into production soon , price has yet to be published.
Thanks for the info, Crem1, but how long do I need to wait for it to happen?

Wow! The Shindo Labs 301 is a real beauty - and a real up-there price, too!

I need to find a good carpenter. (I have a feeling this is going to take a while to finish this project. Sigh...:(

Ngeorge : I wish I knew .

Perhaps, an experienced wood worker with excellent visual skills could review the photos making you a copy ,sans the custom made brass parts ,that may be duplicated with generic type solid brass parts commonly sold on DIY web sites.

Just a note, I have a friend who applied the 6 moons refirb to his 301 . That was 2 years ago and he continues to tweek , but he loves the results. All the Best, Charlie