Turntable Maintenance

 

 

Are platter bearings maintenance free?

Turntable bearings fitted to turntables from Pro-Ject Audio Systems are factory-equipped with a high-quality film of oil, which ensures years of friction-free function.
Regardless of the frequency of use, it is recommended to check from time to time if a sufficient protective oil film is present.

If a turntable is used with a of lack of oil, serious damage to the platter bearing may be caused.
To ensure adequate lubrication and prevent the premature wear of the turntable bearing, we recommend using our special lubricant 'Lube it' or 'Grease it', which can be obtained from any authorised dealer.
In extreme cases where a lot of dust / dirt is present it may be necessary to clean out the bearing with a cotton bud and penetrating oil such as WD-40, dry it with a clean cotton bud, and then apply “Lube-It” or “Grease-it” as applicable.

We offer “Lube-It” for all turntables with a classical bearing where the axle is mounted on the platter or sub-platter and the bushing is in the chassis. E.g T1, Debut Carbon.

We also offer “Grease-it” for all turntables with vertical bearings where the axle is mounted on the chassis and the bushing is in the platter. E.g. RPM, Signature.

 

Do I need to replace my drive belt?

Drive belts are another thing that will need periodically checking/replacing if you are to keep your turntable performing at it's best. The belt will inevitably dry out over time or become overly greasy and slippery from fingertips when being handled. This means it will likely lose grip and be less effective at rotating the platter perfectly, this results in an inexact speed and a higher chance of wow and flutter. Because of these factors we recommend you replace the belt every year, or at least every two years. This timeframe does not necessarily have anything to do with how often you use your turntable, because even if you do not play it and interact with the belt regularly, it can dry out.

Luckily we stock a wide variety of turntable belts in our UK warehouse, and can quickly order any that we don't. So if you are overdue a refresh, identify the belt you need via this webpage or get in touch with our helpful technical team.

 

What if I've not lubricated my bearings and damage has been done?

For one reason or another your platter bearing, tonearm bearing or (almost) any other component of your turntable has failed. Luckily, or skilled on-site technicians are available to help! Whether your deck is saveable with a bit of TLC and Pro-Ject know-how, or if a component is a write-off and needs replacing, our service department are able, in the vast majority of cass, to help. If you know the part you're after you can have a look in our product catalogue and let our Customer Service team know exactly what needs doing vi out booking in process. If not, you can reach our technical support team on 01235 511 166 who will be more than happy to troubleshoot with you and get your deck on the way back to top form.

Pro-Ject are proud of their after-sales ability and hold spare parts for almost every turntable they produce for many years, even after discontinuation. So even if you have an older deck it's worth contacting us to see if we can help, it might just save your beloved turntable and save you money on a whole new deck.

 

I'm experiencing a lack of detail; I suspect my cartridge is the culpit.

Cartridges, as you might imagine, also have a finite lifespan. Given enough time, or very heavy usage, there are a number of ways in which a cartridge may begin to sound sub-par. Firstly, the stylus, being the only part of a cartridge that actually comes into physical contact with your records, can wear out slowly; tracking the record grooves by its very nature involves a small amount of friction. Friction that bit by bit will grind away at your stylus.

Thankfully it is relatively easy to change a stylus, and often cheaper than replacing a whole cartridge - it will simply click on to your existing cartridge body and breathe new life into your vinyl spinner. Check out this handy series for advice on changing cartridges and setting up for playback.

Another aspect of turntablism that you should keep tabs on is the quality-of-life of your deck. Keep your turntable in too dry or too humid an environment and, over time, certain components may start to require some attention. In particular, the rubber of the cartridge suspension, which can dry out and harden given time anyway, are the prime suspect if you’re noticing a decrease in playback detail. There is no real way to repair this if it occurs, but thankfully modern cartridges, used in a good, thought-out environments, are notably improved over older models - easily lasting thousands of hours.

If you suspect that either of these things may be starting to happen to your cartridge there are a couple of things you can do to diagnose and combat them. Firstly, take your deck to your local dealer and they can help figure out what the problem is. Alternatively you can check for yourself with a test record that has a tracking test, like this one. This will give you an accurate sense of whether your cartridge is still in good condition.

 

You can find useful tips about turntable maintenance here.