My new alignment template generator

the thin end of the wedge
RobberOfBostonPlace
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Re: My new alignment template generator

Post by RobberOfBostonPlace » 21 Jul 2019 04:29

I have printed and tried out Hoffman's protractor several times to no avail. No matter what I do the protractor will not print to scale. I have a Fluance RT-85 turntable with an Ortofon 2M Blue cartridge. Every single time I print one of these and I measure the mm lines, it always measures after the 200mm mark, but not quite 201. Right in the middle between 200 and 201. I have an Epson XP-4100 series printer and a HP Deskjet 1010 printer. Both are pretty cheap. Any help is appreciated. Thank you.

Sunwire
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Re: My new alignment template generator

Post by Sunwire » 21 Jul 2019 04:50

From the ReadMe.txt file that is installed with the template generator program:
" Printout Accuracy: People obsess over this, and the hi-end (read expensive) template makers
will tell you that paper templates simply aren't accurate enough. Obviously you do want the
template to be as accurate as possible, but understand that there are many variables to
aligning a cartridge and that template accuracy typically will NOT be the limiting factor.

To the first order it makes sense to measure the longest X and Y distances possible, and then
set the printer correction factors to make those distances as close as you can. This is far
from the whole story, and in fact is NOT the best way. Paper changes size somewhat unpredictably
as it passes through the printer, not to mention with temperature and humidity. Note that
commercial printers (the people, not the machines) will condition their paper under controlled
temperature and humidity for several days before running a job. If they didn't, all manner of
alignment issues would arise.

With our home printers there are usually feed issues, so the "mapping" of the image to the paper
may not even be linear in both directions. All this sounds unmanagable, but these errors are
actually far less of an issue than they might seem.

Consider that the only part of the template that you actually use is a small part of the
page, a rectangle of about 1.5" by 5.5". There is no giant compass inside the printer drawing an
arc from the pivot point; the printer is purely a mapping device. Thus, the only area you care
about is that 1.5" by 5.5" rectangle. As a thought experiment, imagine that the printer had some
terrible non-linearity that divided the printout in half and moved the arm pivot mark three feet
to the right. You'd cut out your (accurate) template on the left and it would still work perfectly.

Since there will be second order non-linearities due to paper and feed issues, my current advice
is to adjust the X correction factor using the new 100 mm tic mark at the top of the page, and
the Y correction factor using the 180 mm tic mark at bottom left. That will insure that the area
you care about is extremely accurate. If more distant points are off a bit, ignore them. There
is also a new 100,100 crosshair you can check, but don't obsess over it or any points beyond
that. It's much more important that your INR, ONR and overhang distances are correct. If they're
correct, the radius arc will also be correct. Remember, optimizing the whole page, rather than
the area you're going to use, will generally REDUCE accuracy, not increase it!

Based on overlaying some CAD produced templates having known scale errors, a couple "rules" can
be suggested. First, try to get the scale within 1%, 99 to 101 mm on the 100 mm marks. This
should be very easy with most printers, often without touching the printer correction factors
at all. Second, use the inner target. The inner target will be less affected by errors of scale
than the outer one. With 1% error, you will still be within 0.15 degrees of the correct offset
angle, and obviously within 1% of the correct overhang. It should be reasonably easy to do better
than this, at which point your ability to align the cartridge to trace the arc and align to the
target will be the limiting factor, if not the construction and alignment of the stylus tip and
cartridge components themselves. "

Conrad Hoffman
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Re: My new alignment template generator

Post by Conrad Hoffman » 22 Jul 2019 21:31

Also, watch out for printer options like borderless printing. They can make the printer rescale and give the wrong size no matter what you do.

NOYB
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Re: My new alignment template generator

Post by NOYB » 24 Jul 2019 11:02

Minor enhancement ideas for the template generator.

Extend the X and Y measurement lines to cross in the upper left corner to make it possible to measure above the X line and to the left of the Y line. Rather than having to reorient to avoid obscuring the line. With the line obscured it is easy to be measuring at an angle.

A Y=150mm marker (just inside the cut here radius) so it is retained after cutting.
A Y=150 X=100mm marker.

Looked at the pivot line beta. Didn't like it. Since most people probably wouldn't use it, seems like it would make the template more confusing. Maybe an option check-box for those who want it.

Nice tool Conrad. Thanks for making it.

P.S. Buying expensive templates kind of limits the experimentation and takes the fun out of it.

NOYB
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Re: My new alignment template generator

Post by NOYB » 24 Jul 2019 11:14

Have discovered that the KD-5070 tone arm can be extended a few mm. Making it possible to do Lofgren alignments. Considering to go with Lofgren A and the typical IGR/OGR (63/145).

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Re: My new alignment template generator

Post by Conrad Hoffman » 29 Jul 2019 11:58

On enhancements, I haven't touched the code for this in several years, so I'm a bit scared of messing something up. It's been incredibly trouble-free and I'm way out of practice! The upper left intersection is at the 0,0 point of the printer and it would require shifting everything over and down to make the lines actually cross. That's more involved than I want to mess with right now. New measurement tics are easy enough and I'll look at that. What's the "pivot line beta"? I think I added an extra line parallel to the first grid some time back, but no idea why.

NOYB
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Re: My new alignment template generator

Post by NOYB » 29 Jul 2019 14:08

Don't understand how the x y upper left intersect could be 0,0 coordinate since the 100 and 200 mm markers cross the lines (above the x line and left of the y line).

Someone was asking for a line to line-up with the tonearm pivot point for some reason. So you made a beta for that. It's buried in this thread somewhere. I printed one out just to see what it was. But it didn't seem useful for me. And probably isn't for most people.

Thanks for your gift of this tool to the community.

Conrad Hoffman
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Re: My new alignment template generator

Post by Conrad Hoffman » 29 Jul 2019 16:18

Hmmm... You're absolutely right, the tick marks go beyond the lines, so the lines should be able to do it too. I'll have another look as I was probably changing the wrong number or by the wrong amount. That other line doesn't seem useful, so I'll comment it out. I have various features that have come and gone, but are still in the code to be brought back if needed.

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Re: My new alignment template generator

Post by Conrad Hoffman » 06 Aug 2019 13:10

OK, I fixed the crossing of the lines at the upper left corner, removed the confusing line and added a tic mark. The problem is, I haven't messed with this code in years and am terrified of introducing some subtle error. Anybody want to test it for me?

RobberOfBostonPlace
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Re: My new alignment template generator

Post by RobberOfBostonPlace » 06 Aug 2019 15:08

Conrad Hoffman wrote:
06 Aug 2019 13:10
OK, I fixed the crossing of the lines at the upper left corner, removed the confusing line and added a tic mark. The problem is, I haven't messed with this code in years and am terrified of introducing some subtle error. Anybody want to test it for me?
I'll gladly test it for you.

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Re: My new alignment template generator

Post by Conrad Hoffman » 09 Aug 2019 21:39

Did you get the file or my email asking if you got the file?

RobberOfBostonPlace
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Re: My new alignment template generator

Post by RobberOfBostonPlace » 10 Aug 2019 10:03

Conrad Hoffman wrote:
09 Aug 2019 21:39
Did you get the file or my email asking if you got the file?
Yes, found the email asking if I've got the file. Haven't got the file.

Conrad Hoffman
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Re: My new alignment template generator

Post by Conrad Hoffman » 10 Aug 2019 13:24

Just did a resend, we'll see what happens. Be sure to check junk mail and clutter as my dot com email address seems to trigger spam filters, as would the zip attachment.

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Re: My new alignment template generator

Post by Conrad Hoffman » 11 Aug 2019 05:20

Sorry, gmail rejects the attachment.

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Re: My new alignment template generator

Post by northa40 » 02 Oct 2019 17:58

Hi NYOB I'm a little late with my response but thought I should give you my 2 cents. Many years ago I had a KD-2050 with the same arm specs as you have with yours, and as I recall, I had my cartridge all the way to the end. As you can see from you data all the alignment geometry's you list have a longer overhang. I would use the stevenson and most likely have to twist the cart slightly to get the right angle. Good luck

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