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Garrard type a turntable

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Garrard type a turntable

Postby R John » 22 Jan 2010 02:38

I first want to apologize if I am breaking netequette. My 83 year old father has Eico amp that he put together from a kit in the early 60's and aGarrard type a turntable. Recently the tone arm on the turntable stopped working ( will not automatically set down on the vinyl), the record still plays but as he is getting a little shaky it is hard for him to start it up by placing the arm manually. I am just trying to find any information that might help us fix this problem. Thank you
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Postby Alec124c41 » 22 Jan 2010 03:44

Welcome.
The usual problem with old turntables is that the lubricants in the mechanisms get stiff, and they need to be cleaned and relubricated. Not expensive or difficult, but it will take a little time.
There are others here who will be able to give you more specific pointers.
The Garrard forum is quite active.

Cheers,
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Type A arm does not work automatically

Postby josephazannieri » 22 Jan 2010 05:05

Yo R John:

I have an early '60's Type A that I have gone through and "restored," including having gone through the cleaning and relubrication process.

Before you start messing with the turntable, you might want to observe your father when he operates the unit. Although he is a little young for this to happen, he might be making a mistake in operation. There are 2 levers on a Type A that start it. In order for the arm to function automatically, the lever on the right, marked Automatic, must be used. It has 2 positions OFF, on left, and ON-REJECT on right. If he uses the left hand lever, marked Manual, and engages the position on right, marked ON, the unit will behave exactly as you describe. It will start turning, and do nothing else. You will have to pick up the arm and put it on the record. He could be doing this out of habit, from many years of having run it manually, or he could be making a mistake. Most constructors, (like me, even,) eschew automatic operation, and never consider the damned automatic function.

Normally, if the problem is grease or inadequate idler contact like Alec describes, the symptoms will be different. In the the automatic position the arm will lift and stop in the middle of its travel, and will hang up and be impossible to move or put down on record until you spin the turntable manually through the cycle. The turntable will slow down or stop during the cycle. I am not ruling this out, but if the wrong lever is being used and the unit is otherwiseOK, it may not be necessary to go through an overhaul.

I have some knowledge of these things, since I am charged with the care of my aged (93) mother. I do not mean to insult your father, but my mother sometimes has problems like this with her TV remote, or her small microwave, and the issue can sometimes be traced to a difficulty such as I have described, and taken care of with a reminder. You have to observe what happens. I just say to her, "Show me what happens, Mom," and she shows me, and then I can either fix the problem, sometimes by changing a remote function, or show her how to fix it. "If you want it to do that, just press the green button." If I do that, she's fine.

Like I said, I just think that an observation of the problem would be useful. Maybe you have already done so. But be sure that the right lever is being used when these symptoms occur. If it is a mechanical malfunction, we can go through some diagnostics to locate the trouble.

Good luck from another old constructor!

Joe Z.
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Type a Garrard

Postby R John » 22 Jan 2010 21:44

Thank you Alec and Joe Z for the responses. I appreciate the help. I was visiting with my father recently ( he lives 700 miles from me) and I tried the machine also, we are pushing the proper lever. When it is pushed and the arm that comes out to determine the size of the record is is held as we always did for years, the turntable spins and the arm lifts about a half an inch, hesitates for a second or two then settles down onto its stand and, if my memory serves the turntable then shuts off. I dismantled the turntable to some extent hoping to find a missing screw or broken spring but saw nothing. We did get out the manual and do some lubricating but saw no change. Any other thoughts would be greatly appreciated.

I am also attached to keeping this machine going as when my dad, who is color blind, was constructing the amp and I was about 10 I was the one who got to tell him the colors on all those many resisters etc that he was soldering together.

Thanks again

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Type A problems

Postby josephazannieri » 23 Jan 2010 05:43

Yo R John:

This is going to take a little work to figure out. What you are doing when you hold that sensing arm is that you are deceiving the Garrard's poor little changer brain and making it think that there is a record on the spindle waiting to fall when the record has actually fallen. That's OK. I have done it many times with mine. The problem is that some other lever has misplaced itself and is convincing the mechanism that the sensing lever has gone all the way to the center and it's time to shut off when actually it hasn't. The misplaced lever may be stuck in position due to bad grease or just ordinary wear.

You are going to have to take the turntable off to figure it out. You will need to take off rubber mat and use a fine screwdriver to lift the small metal plate at center. Take off the outer weighted rim, leaving the stamped metal turntable. You will then use 2 screwdrivers to push C clamp out of slot. Then lift turntable and carefully bump the circular edge of center bearing with a hammer and a wood block. You need 3 hands for this. Turntable should now come off. With turntable off, you will need to push the reject lever with the turntable off and turn the center bearing and watch the mechanism as it cycles with the sensor going to center. Then hold the sensor arm like you do and watch it again. This will reveal the problem. You should see something hanging up. You may have to watch from underneath as somebody else turns the bearing. Make sure that you observe all the levers and other items.

Also, take a look at that sensor arm, and see where it comes through under the turntable. The mechanism is fastened with a screw, and this may have come loose. Try moving the sensor to center by itself and see if the mechanism has come loose You should be able to figure out the appropriate position to reset it to if this is problem. Check arm motion sensor by moving arm to center by hand and watching its movement. The mechanism should take the changer trigger to the center of the turntable, right over the center bearing. All these levers should move smoothly and easily, unless they are controlled by springs or other levers.

Take a look and see. Hope this helps!

Good luck from the old disassembler!

Joe Z.
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garrard type a

Postby R John » 29 Jan 2010 22:37

Joe Z

Thanks for the instructions. I am forwarding them to my father and hoping that he and a friend can take a look at his machine. It may take a while but I will be in touch. Your help is much appreciated

R John
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Postby grooveman » 30 Jan 2010 05:48

Which spindle are you using? The tall/stacker LP spindle needs to be used if auto play is desired. If you're using the short/manual LP spindle, then you have to set the tonearm down on the record manually. Attempting to use the short/manual spindle when engaging the auto lever will result in what you're experiencing. The tonearm attempting to lift slightly and then shutting off. However, the tonearm should/will return and shut off automatically when used in the manual mode. This is from my experience in using my Type A.
Also, try removing the platter to inspect the condition of the idler wheel. If it's worn/cracked or needs to be cleaned/refurbished or rebuilt. It will not have enough torque to get thru the auto cycle. Especially at 33 1/3. A quick fix that sometimes works, is to use an eraser on the inside rim of the inner platter to give it a light layer of additional rubber. This sometimes helps a slightly worn or out of round idler by giving it just enough additional traction to cycle thru.
I also found that playing at 45 rpm thru the auto cycle will sometimes help get it to work automatically at 33 1/3. Hope this helps.
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more on Type A

Postby josephazannieri » 31 Jan 2010 03:36

Yo Grooveman:

Thank you for your post and your sincere attempt to help R John. I agree with your statements, and they describe exactly the way my Type A behaves. But R. John says that he and his father are doing something that changes the picture a little. They are using the reject position, and they are holding the sensor arm in the position that it would arrive at if there were a 12 inch record waiting on the tall spindle. I do this sometimes. I just drop the record on the short spindle and push reject and hold the sensor with my thumb. When I do that, mine behaves just as it would if there were a record in place over the turntable waiting to be dropped. The arm comes over and the record starts to play.

You are correct that if the sensor arm is allowed to go all the way to the center, the arm just picks up, waits a bit and drops back down, and the changer shuts off. But that's not what is happening here. The sensor arm is being held, not going to the center, and the unit is still shutting off. I took mine apart to see what was going on, and I concluded that to get the anomalous behavior, something must be sticking or hanging up. I can't get much more detailed by observation of mine, since mine is working correctly. That's why I suggested that R John observe his father while the malfunction was going on, and why I suggested that the turntable be removed and the cycle observed from top and from below. I am about at my limit, unless something appears in R John's father's observations, so any additional insights you could give would be helpful.

And thanks and good luck from the old Garrard user! (had 7 of them and still have 2)

Joe Z.
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Postby grooveman » 31 Jan 2010 04:03

I guess you learn something new everyday! I never attempted or realized that you could overide the auto sensor in single play, by holding it in place allowing the tonearm to set down automatically! Well I just did it on my Type A and it works! Now to figure out R. John's problem!
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additional observation

Postby josephazannieri » 31 Jan 2010 16:14

Yo R John:

In the discussion with Grooveman, something occurred to me.

You should have your father use the left hand (manual) lever and start the changer in the manual position. In that position, using that lever, the tonearm should not move at all, but the turntable should stay on and keep running until the manual lever is pushed back to the off position. If the turntable still shuts off, then the trigger arm at the center of the turntable that hooks the center bearing casting to start the changer mechanism, or the plate that pushes it to center, is hung up and needs to be freed and cleaned. You don't lubricate this one. It must be clean and slide freely. I cured mine with a little white rubbing compound.

Hope this helps!

Good luck from the old guy! Desi Arnaz had too many girls. Unfortunately, the only thing I have too many of is Garrards!

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