Garrard SL-95 tonearm bearings: replacement

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jeffs22
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Garrard SL-95 tonearm bearings: replacement

Post by jeffs22 » 14 Mar 2019 19:23

In the course of working on my Synchro Lab 95, I made the classic rookie mistake: I removed the tonearm and shortly thereafter noticed a few tiny ball bearings on the workbench. Within the hour I managed to locate 13 of them. There should be 15. ](*,)

I measured with calipers (in metric) and got 1.59 mm, which converts pretty tidily to 1/16". I'm not looking for audiophile perfection (yet) but I don't want to make another goofy mistake. I looked at McMaster Carr and found the following:
https://www.mcmaster.com/9642k21

1/16" 440C stainless steel ball
rockwell hardness 60C
diamter tolerance +/- .0001"
appearance : mitrror-like

Q: Are these appropriate?

DSJR
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Re: Garrard SL-95 tonearm bearings: replacement

Post by DSJR » 14 Mar 2019 21:17

I'm sure they are, as the loading and speed requirements are pretty well irrelevant for this purpose. I needed balls for my Lab 80mk2 and found a UK supplier. I did order twice as many as I needed (16 from memory) and found a way of introducing the arm bearing 'shaft' into place but lifted an inch or two so I could fit the balls into place with tweezers. maybe a smear of light grease (or chainsaw oil as could be used on the main bearing shaft) might help keep the balls in place and hopefully A70BBen could come in with advice. i did my Lab 80mk2 dry and it was a fraught experience as the arm needed to be held in place while the auto-segment was slid up into place on the bottom end of the tonearm 'shaft' underneath and locked with the screw. usually, the slight marks left by the locking screw originally, can give a tie into getting the tolerances right and in my case, it was impossibly to close up the gap for vertical play although it's not bad at all and within spec.

Good luck ;)

jeffs22
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Re: Garrard SL-95 tonearm bearings: replacement

Post by jeffs22 » 14 Mar 2019 21:41

Okay, thanks. Yeah I guess the load is pretty light compared to most applications. Just wanted to make sure there were no other problems.

Putting it all together looks challenging. Still, I think I'm going to try it "dry". The good news is the bearings are sold in packs of 50.

DSJR
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Re: Garrard SL-95 tonearm bearings: replacement

Post by DSJR » 15 Mar 2019 13:36

I made a kind-of mistake with the Lab 80mk2 in up-ending the deck to fit the bottom linkage back while trying to hold the arm down on the ball race. the slightest vertical movement in the arm assembly results in the balls being dislodged. may be best to not up-end the deck and if you're VERY gentle and careful, it shouldn't be an issue.

A70BBen
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Re: Garrard SL-95 tonearm bearings: replacement

Post by A70BBen » 16 Mar 2019 22:09

Sorry...No help here! I put them into place one by one with tweezers whilst the arm is lifted slightly.

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