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Help from Shure ARM guru

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Help from Shure ARM guru

Postby Coffee Phil » 20 Jun 2018 21:24

I have a Shure M232 arm which came on my R-O-K turntable. Here is the owners manual: https://www.vinylengine.com/library/shure/m232.shtml

It looks like something off a kid turntable, but I think it is actually a decent arm.

It turns out I want to take it apart non-destructively. I tried heating the body where the arm tube enters to no avail. I managed to melt the insulation on the wires coming out of the arm tube. I can probably put RTV on the leads and get back.

This is a straight arm tube with an offset head-shell. I was looking to remove the tube and put a shorter tube with an SME socket in its place. It would then go on my Edison cylinder player. The plan was to retain the original parts so it could be restored to its original configuration if desired in the future. Is this possible and practical?

Phil
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Re: Help from Shure ARM guru

Postby KentT » 20 Jun 2018 21:51

I don't think this is going to quite work. Takes a lot to do to get it done modification wise. The arm is very decent. I use one presently.
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Re: Help from Shure ARM guru

Postby circularvibes » 20 Jun 2018 22:05

I am curious if it wouldn't be easier to take an S arm and simply shorten/straight the tube, drill the appropriate mounting holes to the rear of the arm and remount it to the pivot, then attach it to your cylinder phonograph or use it on a mounting block that can be placed when you need it. You would then end up with a functional counterweight and the bayonet headshell mount you desire. The other possibility would be to find the straight arm from a scrap Stanton turntable and mount it on a block in similar fashion.
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Re: Help from Shure ARM guru

Postby KentT » 20 Jun 2018 22:08

I think a short, straight Stanton tonearm is a much better idea for adapting for cylinder player duty. Agree with circularvibes. If your Shure arm is too damaged to repair, I'd like to have the headshell if that happens.
Last edited by KentT on 20 Jun 2018 22:10, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Help from Shure ARM guru

Postby circularvibes » 20 Jun 2018 22:08

I just realised something. Most Edison phonographs used a moving arm on a feed screw. Some used a moving mandrel. I do not know which you have. If your reproducer is the feed screw type, there used to be devices that you could mount a cartridge that screwed in place and had a counterweight. You might consider talking to someone in tool and die about making a mount for you. The ones I remember seeing used a Stanton 500 cartridge.
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Re: Help from Shure ARM guru

Postby Coffee Phil » 20 Jun 2018 22:37

Hi KentT,

If I did not care if it could be returned to its original configuration I could just cut off the arm tube, bore out the hole in the body and mount a short Newmark tube with the SME type socket. I can see however this is an arm with some merit and I haven't the heart to destroy it.

I just would think that if it became necessary to change the socket on the end that it should be possible, but it may not be. There is no set screw and no reasonable amount of force will budge the connector from the tube.

I just may restore the insulation on the wires in the tube and leave it be until I find a use for it in its OEM configuration.

Phil


KentT wrote:I don't think this is going to quite work. Takes a lot to do to get it done modification wise. The arm is very decent. I use one presently.
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Re: Help from Shure ARM guru

Postby Coffee Phil » 20 Jun 2018 23:08

Hi Kent and Circularvibes,

I think I can restore the Shure to its original configuration so I think the head and arm should stay together. As I remember the connector on the shell was a bit funky but still usable. I have an SME on my Kenwood and I own a Grace 940 which will take the same headshell. Since interchangeability to me is a good thing the Shure is getting displaced from the R-O-K by the Grace for convience more than any lack of merit on it's part. After I get the Shure back to its OEM configuration I'd consider sending it to a different loving home.

On the Stanton thing, I've thought of that in fact some about a year ago posted a picture of his conversion of a Stanton DJ table to a curved arm. I wanted to buy his old arm, but he seems to have fallen off the earth.

I'm looking at an arm on eBay now which came off of a Sony turntable. It is straight. I may be able to fit the Newmark arm to it. No worries about returning it to it's OEM configuration as I think it is just an entry level thing.

Yes, there was a device which would replace the reproducer in the Edison player. It was called an Owl and I believe it had a Stanton cartridge in it. Big B who used to post here had one. My Edison player was a basket case when I got it. There was only the stump of the carriage left, with the part which holds the reproducer (or Owl) missing. I have to extend the stump to form the base on which the straight arm which I end up with mounts.

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Re: Help from Shure ARM guru

Postby circularvibes » 20 Jun 2018 23:23

Hi Phil, I believe the OWL was a microphone that attached to the horn tube and recorded the acoustic vibrations of the original reproducer. I would be inclined to search ePay and other resources like the Canadian Antique Phonograh Society (and it's American equivalents) for a new carriage and have someone create an insert for you to mount a cart into. The only other detachable/non-permanent idea I can think of would be even more expensive. That would be a linear tracking arm like a Rabco that won't rely on the feed screw. A separate pivoted arm would create tracking error over the cylinder. As you mentioned using the stub of your old carriage, I would try for a Stanton arm and shorten it as needed. You would likely have to weight the counterbalance to compensate for the loss of armtube.
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Re: Help from Shure ARM guru

Postby Coffee Phil » 21 Jun 2018 06:04

Hi Circularvibes,

I was wrong about the OWL. I found the string with Big B's pickup and it is an ACT/2.

You have a post in that string. https://www.vinylengine.com/turntable_forum/viewtopic.php?f=96&t=79909

There is a picture of my Edison Standard as it was at that time. I have extended the stump since that time.

I was going to buy a complete carriage and did get one from the guy who sold me the machine as well as the two speed gear set. My half nut was pretty bad so I bought the carriage with what was supposed to be a good half-nut. The half-nut was no better than the one which I had so I told the guy about it. I was hoping he would send me a good half-nut but he got into a snit and told me to send the whole thing back and he refunded my money. I got a new replica half-nut from another source which is working well but I'm back to the franken-carriage.

I found a Sony straight arm which I think I can shorten and use. I am going to look at it again and bid if I think I have a reasonable chance of using it.

Phil

circularvibes wrote:Hi Phil, I believe the OWL was a microphone that attached to the horn tube and recorded the acoustic vibrations of the original reproducer. I would be inclined to search ePay and other resources like the Canadian Antique Phonograh Society (and it's American equivalents) for a new carriage and have someone create an insert for you to mount a cart into. The only other detachable/non-permanent idea I can think of would be even more expensive. That would be a linear tracking arm like a Rabco that won't rely on the feed screw. A separate pivoted arm would create tracking error over the cylinder. As you mentioned using the stub of your old carriage, I would try for a Stanton arm and shorten it as needed. You would likely have to weight the counterbalance to compensate for the loss of armtube.
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Re: Help from Shure ARM guru

Postby circularvibes » 21 Jun 2018 07:49

https://www.ebay.ca/itm/THE-CANAPHONIC-ARCHIVETTE-for-the-Edison-Columbia-Cylinder-Phonographs-NEW/200915806941?hash=item2ec783eadd:g:yvoAAMXQ2q9RayES

Hi Phil,
I just found this while surfing dangerously (to my wallet at least). I was also mistaken about the OWL. Seeing all the parts machines has rekindled an interest to build my own phonograph. I have an interest in listening to old Uncle Josh records. Now to consider which machine I would want to build. I would want a machine capable of playing most cylinders. Time for me to do more research...

Matthew
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Re: Help from Shure ARM guru

Postby Coffee Phil » 21 Jun 2018 08:22

Hi Matthew,

Oh Oh, what have I done?

Actually it should be fun. We will have to compare notes and pictures.

Phil



circularvibes wrote:https://www.ebay.ca/itm/THE-CANAPHONIC-ARCHIVETTE-for-the-Edison-Columbia-Cylinder-Phonographs-NEW/200915806941?hash=item2ec783eadd:g:yvoAAMXQ2q9RayES

Hi Phil,
I just found this while surfing dangerously (to my wallet at least). I was also mistaken about the OWL. Seeing all the parts machines has rekindled an interest to build my own phonograph. I have an interest in listening to old Uncle Josh records. Now to consider which machine I would want to build. I would want a machine capable of playing most cylinders. Time for me to do more research...

Matthew
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Re: Help from Shure ARM guru

Postby Coffee Phil » 21 Jun 2018 17:26

I bought this Sony arm. https://www.ebay.com/itm/163035186655

The arm tube comes off with screws so I can remove it and cut to fit. Unfortunately the socket is not SME compatible, but I have one of those little Newmark straight arms from KAB from which I can harvest the connector. The seller assures me that the pivot bearing is part of the arm.

I may be hearing cylinders soon and the Shure arm did not have to die.

Phil
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Re: Help from Shure ARM guru

Postby euclid » 22 Jun 2018 02:52

Coffee Phil wrote:I have a Shure M232 arm which came on my R-O-K turntable. Here is the owners manual: https://www.vinylengine.com/library/shure/m232.shtml

It looks like something off a kid turntable, but I think it is actually a decent arm. ......


I encountered many of these arms on Rusco, QRK, Gates, and other broadcast turntables in the 1970's. They were usually fitted with a Stanton 500AL cartridge with the tracking force adjusted to about 4 grams. In spite of there cheap construction and price, they worked OK and held up amazingly well under the brutal conditions at many radio stations in the US. Their primary problem was that the plastic threads on the headshell would wear out and break off.

This combination of arm and cartridge is fine for demo use. If I wanted to use the turntable for serious listening or frequent use, I would replace it with a modern low mass arm with the common type of headshell and a light tracking cartridge. I would also try to mount the new arm with as few mods as possible to the plinth (base). and carefully pack and store the original arm carefully so that I could restore the original configuration later.

Some of the old Rek-O-Kut turntables were very well made. They usually need new idler wheels because the rubber has hardened. Because they are rim drive the rumble will be a little high. One I have could be modded to belt drive using a variable speed motor.
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