Are there any special considerations I'll have to take when aligning an s-shaped arm, or can I just use Hoffman's template generator for this too?
Luckily, aligning an S or J shape arm is exactly the same as aligning a straight arm (except for DJ arms with no offset angle) so no problem there.
There are three ways (or more) to approach the mounting
(1) Use the original mounting distance 214mm (229-15mm) and mount the tonearm / print a protractor for this distance. For a 214mm distance Baerwald geometry requires an extra 3mm of overhang and 1.7 degrees offset which may not be possible with all cartridges. In this case a Stevenson arc /universal protractor (+1mm, +0.7 degrees) could be used. Accurately aligned, the difference in error between the two geometries is minimal.https://www.vinylengine.com/tonearm_alig ... =calculate
(2) Calculate an optimum mounting distance for the alignment geometry you want to use. For an effective length of 229mm, a Linn mounting distance of 211mm should work well for Baerwald. This should leave the cartridge more central in the slots once aligned, although it will still require more offset angle than original.https://www.vinylengine.com/tonearm_alig ... =calculate
(3) Mount a cartridge centrally in the slots, measure the effective length and use this figure to calculate an optimum mounting distance as in (2). The advantage of this method is that you aren't relying on the accuracy of the manufacturers figures. note
measuring the effective length can also be used to double check the published effective length before using methods (1) or (2).
Fine, I guess, but what I'm slightly worried about is the 23.7 degree offset angle it uses. The headshell is specified with a 22 degree offset angle. But 1,7 degrees of difference really is minuscule, right? I'll probably be able to mount the cartridge at any angle I need, don't you think?
If you want to align accurately to the null points on the protractor you need to set the overhang and
the offset angle. Any other angle will result in different, or even no, null points. Even 0.5 degrees can have quite an effect on the resulting error.
For example, if you mounted your arm at 214mm and adjusted the overhang to perfectly follow a Baerwald arc, but ignored the offset angle grid and left the cartridge square in the headshell, you would end up with no null points and more than double the tracking error distortion!https://www.vinylengine.com/tonearm_alig ... =calculate