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Revisiting the Zeta

Discussion in 'classic' started by TPA, Nov 1, 2017.

  1. wylton

    wylton pfm Member

    Good advice I would say; I certainly do not intend to adjust the bearings on my Zeta. I think you also have to be very careful in how you go about assessing play in the bearings, because if you use too much force, you can end up creating play. In all honesty, I have not even tried to assess the condition of the arm; I took it out of the box to take a picture for this thread and then spent quite a time cutting the arm plate. It was quite tricky to find a position in the existing cut-out and even then, I had to rotate the position of the collar bolts in order to for the arm rest to be parallel with the side of the plinth.

    I think that this coming weekend, I’ll assess the condition of the arm to determine if it requires a service and once I’m happy, I’ll fit the cartridge and have a listen.
  2. jamie123

    jamie123 pfm Member

    very good advice mate,i too found a difference in sound between a small amount of play and no play,i was lucky and only had to adjust the very top bearing next to the bias adjuster. also i found the set screw when tighten also tended to nip up the bearing a bit more so that has to be factored in as well.
  3. TPA

    TPA Trade: Tiger Paw

    Yes, I forgot to mention that tightening the set screws then slightly alters the position of the bearing seats, as you say, it requires a lot of gong backwards and forwards. I did contemplate the idea of trying some ceramic balls and then quickly dismissed the idea with the prospect of going through the whole process again! I should have changed the wiring, and probably will do at some stage but I found the internal plug reluctant to move so will have to come back to that.
  4. jamie123

    jamie123 pfm Member

    lol i know the feeling,oh and the bloody cover plate nips it up a little too,i nearly got to the point of just leaving the bloody set screw loose lol.
    out of interest do you have a link for the ceramic bearings?
  5. wylton

    wylton pfm Member

    I mounted the arm and cartridge yesterday!

    I checked the arm over first & couldn't detect any play in the arm bearings, did a quick continuity check on the wiring loom and all was well. I intended to get it all set up and save the listening until today, but of course, I couldn't resist. I stuck on Be-bop Deluxe's Drastic Plastic & it was immediately obvious, that this was a top class combination! The sound is fulsome & fluid, with no overhang in the bass & very Pacey! The arm & Cartridge compliment each other very well, with an extremely clean and smooth sound quality.

    Last edited: Apr 8, 2018
    koi likes this.
  6. jamie123

    jamie123 pfm Member

    sweet as!
    Mine is in bits at the moment awaiting new bearings to arrive,after talking to TPA we both though something wasn't right,no matter how i adjusted the bearings i couldnt get smooth free play,so a strip down was in order.

    i found that all the bearing cups had 3 2.5mm ball bearings,except the bottom bearing which had 4 smaller bearings in,measuring all the cups and some internet research and logic tells me it should be the same. so untill the ceramic ones arrive this it what mine looks like :)


  7. wylton

    wylton pfm Member

    Best of luck with that!

    As I said, mine seemed ok, so I've left it. I thought J7 rebuilt your Zeta?
  8. jamie123

    jamie123 pfm Member

    actually there is no black art these tonearms,it all rather simple when when you look at the parts,the hard bit is adjusting the bearings.
  9. oldius

    oldius I miss baked beans and brown sauce.

    That's a beautiful 88. I had a 99 in a slate plinth and it was a wonderful deck.
  10. wylton

    wylton pfm Member

    Yes, I understand that, but I was just curious as to why you had to strip it down after it had already been rebuilt by Origami?

    Yes, they are very much the undiscovered treasure. I bought mine from a jumble sale many moons ago, complete with a Neat arm, for the princely sum of £1. It sat up in the shed for years! It was extremely noisy, but this was because some of the Lencos had hard idlers rather than the later rubber ones.

    I completely refurbished it, fitted new bearing liners, replaced the idler, and had the chassis and platter re-painted by our local powder coaters for £12! I sourced the slate from an eBay trader, but it was rubbish to be honest when I received it and it took a lot of work to get it looking as it does now. I designed the Aluminium base, and an ex-colleague made it for me, and he did an excellent job!

    Sound wise, it took a bit of work; experimentation with various materials between the slate and the Aluminium, eventually settling on cork & experiments with the platter mat, eventually settling on a glass mat topped by the Spotmat, which I made from a design on Lenco Heaven; not pretty (as Tony L said!), but it works well on this deck.

    The next stage, will be building one of the NSC’s (Nigel’s Speed Controller – again, a Lenco Heaven design).

    Regarding the arm, the exercise actually was more to do with improving the LP12 I have in the office system. I bought a Rega mount Kore sub-chassis a while back & needed a boost to the sound quality, but was limited to the old style Rega mount arms. I was going to buy another Audiomods arm, but this thread whetted my appetite for a Zeta and then, as if by magic, one appeared on eBay! This released the Audiomods Classic for the Linn; I’ve mounted it, but not had time to try it yet, it does look rather nice though – I’ll take a photo later.
  11. Joachim

    Joachim New Member

    Mounting an Ortofon SPU N cartridge on a Zeta arm: did anyone here use a nude SPU classic on a Zeta arm? The SPU has a low compliance (8 µm/mN) and requires a heavy arm, its weight with adapter is 15 g., and I want to use a tracking force of 4 g. Will the antiscating of the Zeta handle such a tracking force?

    On another turntable I am using an Ortofon SPU-A (in the short A-shell) in combination with a long and heavy EMT/Ortofon RF297 arm (which has no antiscating).
    For a short arm the Zeta is fairly heavy (eff. mass 16 g., with SPU N the total mass is above 30 g.), but maybe it is still too light for the SPU ....
  12. jamie123

    jamie123 pfm Member

    I have some heavy weights made for the zeta in bronze if you need them send me a pm
  13. Joachim

    Joachim New Member

    Thank you for your kind offer!

    I have mounted the Zeta on a turntable with a sub-chassis. With a heavier bronze counterweight the whole arm would become to heavy for the springs of the sub-chassis.

    I have heard that the Zeta (with the usual counterweights) works well for low compliance cartridges (Decca-London, Denon DL103, a nude EMT TSD15), but
    the nude SPU classic N has even a lower compliance and a higher tracking force than any of these cartridges. So I was wondering whether anyone here has
    tried the SPU on the Zeta ....
  14. 337alant

    337alant Negatively Biased

    This released the Audiomods Classic for the Linn; I’ve mounted it, but not had time to try it yet, it does look rather nice though – I’ll take a photo later.

    I also mounted an audiomods on an LP12 and it sounded really good

    [​IMG]LP12 by Alan Towell, on Flickr

  15. Bjork67

    Bjork67 pfm Member

    That is a thing of beauty.
  16. suzywong

    suzywong The Man who had no Naim

    Is the arm board supposed to “sink” at the back?
  17. sq225917

    sq225917 situation engineer

    Yeh of course, everyone wants an impossible to align cart. Time for a stiffer spring methinks.
  18. suzywong

    suzywong The Man who had no Naim

    Ah, I hadn’t thought of that.....I must check my LP12-Zeta.
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2018
  19. 337alant

    337alant Negatively Biased

    Actually the armboard was level, what you see is the classic LP12 top plate curve
    Anyway this photo was only to sell this turntable, I sold it and my michell Gyro
    I dont own any suspended sub chassis turntable now only DD and Idler type

    [​IMG]LP12-4 by Alan Towell, on Flickr
  20. jamie123

    jamie123 pfm Member

    im selling my zeta so if anyone wants some extra heavy bronze counterweight plates for their zeta or is missing 1 of their steel plates send me a pm.

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