Ekos II blow and swing test

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Defender
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Ekos II blow and swing test

Post by Defender » 2020-05-09 18:04

As my LP12 was bought used I wanted to check my Ekos II as best as I can if it has wear issues.

What I did is I set it up balanced with no tracking force.
Than I cut some post it notes into small squares of about 5x5 millimeters which I placed one by one on top of the cartridge - after I placed the 3rd on on top of the cartridge the arm turned down so that bearing seems fine.

Than I started blowing from the side onto the cartridge to see if I can move the arm to the end of the record (inner side). That also worked fine with very slight blowing and without the arm getting stuck somewhere.

Than I wanted to see at how much tracking force (edit: meant Antiskating) the arm would completely swing out. It did start moving out at 0.4g but stopped in the middle of the record and from there it needed a slight tip to move the rest.

It was swinging through completely at around 1.0g

Is this behavior strange (indicating a problem with the bearing) or is this procedure not telling much at all?
What are signs of arm bearing issues?
Last edited by Defender on 2020-05-20 12:15, edited 1 time in total.

ThomasOK
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Re: Ekos II blow test

Post by ThomasOK » 2020-05-09 20:03

Usually I would expect an Ekos II to move smoothly across the record from the runout groove back to the edge of the record at about .5 grams or less. If it has to go to 1.0 to get across I would say that is a bit high. The sticking point in the middle of the record is a bit worrying as that normally indicates a notch in the bearings. Does it happen in the same place each time? Sometimes it is a notch in one of the balls and it can move around over time, other times it doesn't shift.

The arm will probably still play records but if it has that sticking point and needs 1.0 grams to get past it I think it is likely not optimal. Linn will still service any Ekos arm and will install the latest bearings and retune them. In the US that runs $600 plus shipping to the North American service center. Shipping to and from Scotland, where all tonearm work is performed, is included in the price, as is return shipping to the dealer. I don't know what the amounts are in other countries.
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Defender
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Re: Ekos II blow test

Post by Defender » 2020-05-09 20:33

Thank you Thomas - that gives me reassurance - the last price I heard in Europe for refurbishing an Ekos Arm was at around 400,- Euro. I think thats a fair price and thats what I am going to do as budget for an Ekos SE is not available. I wouldnt want to sell the Ekos unrefurbished so sending it home is the way to go. It just leaves me with not being able to hear music for 2weeks or more :(

edit: got the price for the service in Europe which almost matches the US price its 550,- Euro including tax

Defender
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Re: Ekos II blow and swing test

Post by Defender » 2020-05-20 12:14

just a little update.
I did take out the arm to send it to service. As I was curious I performed a swing test.
The horizontal bearing did swing about 80x (which would indicate the bearing is fine)
The vertical bearing did swing about 40x (which would indicate an issue).

But the horizontal bearing has the issue so I am not sure if the swing test tells the complete story.
The arm goes to service today so lets see what Linn finds out.

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