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How easy is it to solder a cartridge clip?

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Posted on October 11, 2020 at 12:58:01
groovy.guru
Audiophile

Posts: 84
Location: Poway, CA
Joined: September 16, 2004
I have a Reed 3Q tonearm with integrated tonearm wire. It is a wonderful tonearm that replaced my Triplanar arm. The 3Q improved the sound of my vinyl playback system versus the Triplanar. It is very easy to make adjustments with the 3Q, especially VTA (it has a laser assisted alignment mechanism).

I am looking for someone who is able and willing to re-solder a cartridge clip, preferably someone in Southern California. The problem is with the "blue" wire, which is one of the four wires that connects to my cartridge. Lately, I get no sound in the left channel, but if I use a small screwdriver to push on the wire, at the end that connects to the cartridge, I can get the sound to return temporarily, but with a low level buzz through my speaker.

I contacted Reed and they think the problem is a loose solder joint where the clip is located and that it should be a simple re-soldering job for a technician. However, I can't find someone locally (San Diego) willing to take on the job. I suppose I could ship the tonearm elsewhere, but I would prefer to drive it to wherever it is going to be repaired. I would drive to LA if there's someone willing to do the job for me. Also, the dealer that sold the tonearm no longer sells Reed tonearms. The US distributor for Reed was not helpful, but Reed has been very responsive. My last resort would be to ship it to Reed, but they are located in Europe.

Any suggestions for a technician, or any other thoughts? Also, what would it take to re-solder the clip? Would the technician have to cut the end off the wire, resulting in a shorter section of wire?

Thanks in advance.

 

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RE: How easy is it to solder a cartridge clip?, posted on October 11, 2020 at 13:06:57
jedrider
Audiophile

Posts: 13223
Location: No. California
Joined: December 26, 2003
I would think one can just add solder as long as the wire itself is not broken, so you should examine it. If the wire must be cut shorter than you need a pliers and stripper and must be careful to achieve a perfect pull to strip the insulation. Will it still be long enough if that is the case? They at one time sold nice long cardas clips that would add back some exra length.

Find a kid who can do it for you and already has the tools.

Remove your cartridge first before attempting any operation on the wire.

 

RE: How easy is it to solder a cartridge clip?, posted on October 11, 2020 at 13:37:09
groovy.guru
Audiophile

Posts: 84
Location: Poway, CA
Joined: September 16, 2004
Thanks jebrider. I carefully looked at the wire, as much as I could see of it, under a usb microscope and did not see any breaks. I can't see what's underneath the clip though, so I am thinking Reed is right and that's where the problem would be located.

 

RE: How easy is it to solder a cartridge clip?, posted on October 11, 2020 at 14:22:35
BCR
Audiophile

Posts: 2254
Location: connecticut
Joined: April 7, 2009
Contributor
  Since:
November 16, 2014
Any jeweler should be able to solder it!

 

RE: How easy is it to solder a cartridge clip?, posted on October 11, 2020 at 15:05:01
groovy.guru
Audiophile

Posts: 84
Location: Poway, CA
Joined: September 16, 2004
Thank you BCR. I had not thought of that option. Thinking outside the box!

 

good lighting, steady hand, good eye, a solder gun with a fine tip (nt), posted on October 11, 2020 at 17:44:35
bouncy ball
Audiophile

Posts: 1096
Location: British Columbia
Joined: July 26, 2003
.

 

RE: How easy is it to solder a cartridge clip?, posted on October 11, 2020 at 17:48:07
BCR
Audiophile

Posts: 2254
Location: connecticut
Joined: April 7, 2009
Contributor
  Since:
November 16, 2014
You're welcome!

 

Here ...., posted on October 11, 2020 at 18:30:31
JDK
Audiophile

Posts: 15336
Location: Sydney
Joined: June 26, 2000
Contributor
  Since:
August 1, 2011

It's not as hard as it seems.


Keep Your Hands Clean,
John K

 

RE: How easy is it to solder a cartridge clip?, posted on October 11, 2020 at 18:54:58
Gary
Audiophile

Posts: 947
Location: New York, NY
Joined: April 21, 2000
If you have soldering experience and the right tools it isn't as hard as you might think. I did one of these about six months ago. One of the cartridge wires on my Kuzma Stogi broke off just behind the clip. I did the following:

1 - Uninstalled the cartridge.
2 - Used a little heat from the tip (fine point) of the soldering iron to melt a little of the insulation from the wire tip.
3 - Used an Exacto knife (very carefully) to scrape any remaining insulation from the wire tip.
4 - I have extra cartridge clips. Decided to use one rather than attempt to salvage the original clip. Before soldering made sure the new clip was a good fit for the Koetsu cartridge pins.
5 - Used my third hand tool to hold the wire and and the new clip together.
6 - Soldered the wire to the clip. Those wires are thin and fragile so caution is urged here.
7 - Waited a minute, tested with my multimeter for continuity. Success.
8 - Remounted the cartridge and listened. Both channels now working. No hum, no problem.

Believe me if I can do this anyone with the right tools can.

 

RE: How easy is it to solder a cartridge clip?, posted on October 11, 2020 at 19:38:43
groovy.guru
Audiophile

Posts: 84
Location: Poway, CA
Joined: September 16, 2004
Thank you to everyone who replied! Such a wealth of information here!

I have never soldered before so I am going to track down someone to do the repair for me. I recently bought a pair of 50 year old speakers to play with that need new capacitors and am intending to do my first soldering project soon. I might be able to handle a cartridge clip in the future, but that is something I would be very uncomfortable doing as my very first soldering job. At least I now know that the repair that I need could be done easily and that I will not need to ship my tonearm to Europe. Again, thank you so much for your responses.

 

RE: How easy is it to solder a cartridge clip?, posted on October 11, 2020 at 20:24:21
SgreenP@MSN.com
Audiophile

Posts: 3352
Joined: April 23, 2007
That is a common problem. What I do is push the clips onto the cartridge pins with my fingers, before installing the cartridge into the arm. This is a much easier and safer way

 

Be sure the jeweler knows what electronics solder is, posted on October 12, 2020 at 06:09:57
1973shovel
Audiophile

Posts: 9227
Location: Greenville SC
Joined: February 25, 2007
...and that they use it instead of what they make earrings with.

 

RE: How easy is it to solder a cartridge clip?, posted on October 13, 2020 at 05:20:46
suretyguy
Audiophile

Posts: 3000
Location: western Missouri
Joined: October 9, 2001
Probably not too difficult if you're not age 78 with great eye sight and steady hands! (Like me.)

 

RE: How easy is it to solder a cartridge clip?, posted on October 15, 2020 at 16:40:40
plastico
Audiophile

Posts: 39
Location: ontario canada
Joined: February 1, 2014
I soldered new clips on my RB 300 arm.I used a little block and I blue tacked the clip and the wire where it has to go.Then I used a 25 watt soldering iron with a fine tip.. It was fairly easy.
Cheers, Doug

 

RE: How easy is it to solder a cartridge clip?, posted on October 15, 2020 at 18:41:41
Bill Way
Audiophile

Posts: 1646
Location: Toms River NJ
Joined: May 28, 2012
Contributor
  Since:
December 14, 2012
See my reply to "I goofed up" about this.

WW
"They were running on fumes, dazed and confused, in a high-powered automobile."

 

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