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Thread: Adjustable Torque Screwdriver for cartridge screws

  1. #1

    Adjustable Torque Screwdriver for cartridge screws

    Hello,

    I have read that the precise amount of torque that is applied to the screws that fix the cartridge is very important, and that minute changes, as small as 0.01Nm, can make a diffence in the sound. One Linn dealer described his use of a Sturtevant Richmont CAL 36/4 adjustable torque wrench to precisely set the screws and find the best setting by ear.

    http://forums.linn.co.uk/bb/showthread.php?tid=8068

    Anybody here with experience in calibrating the torque of cartridge screws? What would be the best setting for a Lyra Atlas on a Schroder LT?

    If this is indeed the case, maybe we could make a table listing the best torque for certain cartridge/tonearm combinations. I suppose it will also depend on the cartridge screw used, in case it is not the standard one provided by the manufacturer.

    Cheers,

    VPN
    Last edited by VPN; 04-11-2015 at 09:10 AM.
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  2. #2
    [Industry Expert] Addicted to Best! Mosin's Avatar
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    I suspect that the idea has some merit, although the screw itself can be problematic because the threads are not polished to a level that they won't grab a bit along the way. Burs so small that you can't even see them can cause a small amount unequal resistance when tightening the screw, so I believe that the ear is still best.

    It brings up an interesting subject, however, and that is the difference that having evenly applied torque makes everywhere in the front end. For example, I use 10-32 rather than 10-24 screws to hold my bearing well in place because the finer thread allows more control. I also polish the threads. I use an air driven screwdriver that has a relatively precise clutch to tighten them. It adds to my costs, but I believe it is worth the extra effort. Then again, maybe we are just too OCD. Who knows?
    Win
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  3. #3
    Hello Mosin, Thanks for the input.

    It seems to me that the ears will be used for measuring/finding/feeling the best audio setting in any case. Perhaps the point here is to use a good adjustable torque screwdriver in order to help make very small changes to find the optimal point, instead of using a torque estimate given by a persons tactile sensitivity using just the hand and fingers.

    I think this is analogous to using an USB microscope to measuring and finding the best SRA. The best sounding position will be determined by ear, and it will probably be close to 92 degrees, but the microscope is used to help make repeatable, measurable, very small changes to find just the best spot.

    So one question that comes to my mind is: How much difference do you hear from a cartridge that is screwed not so tight vs. super tight? What differences do you hear?

    Perhaps important changes may be heard from 0.5Nm torque vs. 1.2Nm torque? If there is much difference, perhaps 0.92Nm is exactly the absolute best in a certain case (of cartridge/tonearm/etc), that one would only find by luck or by using a precision instrument to make very small torque increments, while listening to hear what sounds best.
    Digital: Totaldac Twelve SE + server, Innuos Zenith SE running Roon+Tidal Amplification: CH Precision L1+X1, 2x Krell FPB 750mcx Speakers: Modded Dunlavy SC-VI w/ Duelund crossovers Cables: Kubala Elation (speaker), Totaldac USB, Echole Omnia 3ft XLR, Echole Omnia 7ft XLR,Power: Kubala Elation and Absolute Fidelity Power, SRA Scuttle mk.3 Rack, SRA VR 3.0 platforms, Four dedicated lines, PS P10

  4. #4
    Member Sponsor [WBF Founding Member] Johnny Vinyl's Avatar
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    I never over-torque anything, but hey I'm up for a little more screwing if that's what it calls for!


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  5. #5
    Johnny, Considering that a cartridge has two holes, the point here is how forcefully one should screw each of the holes.
    Last edited by VPN; 04-11-2015 at 12:37 PM.
    Digital: Totaldac Twelve SE + server, Innuos Zenith SE running Roon+Tidal Amplification: CH Precision L1+X1, 2x Krell FPB 750mcx Speakers: Modded Dunlavy SC-VI w/ Duelund crossovers Cables: Kubala Elation (speaker), Totaldac USB, Echole Omnia 3ft XLR, Echole Omnia 7ft XLR,Power: Kubala Elation and Absolute Fidelity Power, SRA Scuttle mk.3 Rack, SRA VR 3.0 platforms, Four dedicated lines, PS P10

  6. #6
    VIP/Donor [VIP/Donor] jfrech's Avatar
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    Albert Porter over on Audiogon sells these. He says it's a difference you can hear....he has a Altas (but with SME arm)...maybe he has some thoughts on the proper amount of torque...

    I may buy one and play around with it soon...
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  7. #7
    John,

    Thank you! I will contact Albert. He is a great guy.
    Cheers,

    VPN
    Digital: Totaldac Twelve SE + server, Innuos Zenith SE running Roon+Tidal Amplification: CH Precision L1+X1, 2x Krell FPB 750mcx Speakers: Modded Dunlavy SC-VI w/ Duelund crossovers Cables: Kubala Elation (speaker), Totaldac USB, Echole Omnia 3ft XLR, Echole Omnia 7ft XLR,Power: Kubala Elation and Absolute Fidelity Power, SRA Scuttle mk.3 Rack, SRA VR 3.0 platforms, Four dedicated lines, PS P10

  8. #8
    VIP/Donor [VIP/Donor] jfrech's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by VPN View Post
    John,

    Thank you! I will contact Albert. He is a great guy.
    Cheers,

    VPN
    Albert is...very great. Found a link for you

    http://www.porterhouseaudio.com/inde...Ahex&Itemid=74
    Speakers: Rockport Altair 2
    Pre & Amp: Nagra HD Pre & Amp
    Cables: Transparent Magnum Opus on sources, Opus Gen 5 Pre to amps & speaker
    Power Transparent Opus, Opus Source Power Cords & Opus Power Isolators
    Power Shunyata DPC-6 v2
    Digital dCS Vivaldi full stack w/ Transparent Reference XL Digital cables
    Phono: Grand Prix Monaco TT, Spiral Groove Centroid, Clearaudio Goldfinger Statement v2, Nagra VPS/VFS/MPS
    Racks: Grand Prix Audio Silverstone F1

  9. #9
    Member Sponsor Addicted to Best! rockitman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jfrech View Post
    Albert is...very great. Found a link for you

    http://www.porterhouseaudio.com/inde...Ahex&Itemid=74

    Sounds great on paper...what are the torque specs from each cart maker ? I have never seen any specs published in this regard. I suppose this tool will allow for even torque spec for each screw...that is about it.
    Christian

    System Gear

  10. #10
    Member Sponsor Addicted to Best! mauidan's Avatar
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    The Wheeler Engineering Fat Wrench could be used for this and adjusted to the specs of cartridge maker:

    http://www.btibrands.com/product/fat...th-10-bit-set/

    I use my mine to check the fasteners on my speaker drivers.
    Aloha

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