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I goofed up !!

Posted on October 15, 2020 at 17:42:11
Tom B.

Posts: 4337
Joined: October 5, 1999
I was attaching a cartridge to a Rega PR3 tonearm and broke off the metal contact on the white wire. How can I get my TT back again !! The white wire doesn't have any open wire exposed. I have some contact wire that could connect to the broken wire if I had some very tiny wire strippers.

If it's too involved, who can I send it to that does stuff like this??? It's my TT that usually has my Stereo cartridge attached to stereo....uggghh

Thanks, Tom B.


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RE: I goofed up !!, posted on October 15, 2020 at 18:40:23
Bill Way

Posts: 1679
Location: Toms River NJ
Joined: May 28, 2012
If you can solder, you can do it.

You don't need to strip the wire; the soldering pencil heat will do that for you. Try it - touch the hot soldering pencil to the end of the wire. Or you can take a single-edged razor blade and scrape it against the insulation for the last 1/8th of an inch or so. (It's really hard to try to slice around the insulation as you would for bigger wire.) Remove the cartridge clip from the back of the cartridge and put it in a pair of hemostats or something to hold it. Tin it and remove any strands of wire hanging on. Then bring the wire to the clip and apply heat to melt the solder, holding the pencil tip at the joint of wire and clip.

"They got a handful of gimme and a mouthful of much obliged." Alberta Hunter


An ounce of prevention......, posted on October 15, 2020 at 19:30:45

Posts: 6434
Location: Portland, Oregon
Joined: May 26, 2005
February 1, 2012
...I put a dab of Elmers glue at the junction of each cartridge clip and headshell wire, applied with a toothpick. This won't happen again, and Elmers is easy to remove, in the event you want to sell the tonearm.

To strip headshell leads, I use a nail clipper, a steady hand, and a shot of single malt or a snort of meth. YMMV.


RE: I goofed up !!, posted on October 15, 2020 at 20:39:15

Posts: 3388
Joined: April 23, 2007
The way I install a cartridge is to push the pins on to the cartridge with my fingers....then install the cartridge in the arm. Since I've been doing this, I never broke one.

Remove the cartridge from the arm. Use a knife to get some wire exposed, and solder a clip on. Apply heat to the clip...add a touch of solder. Don't heat the wire. Never try to solder directly on to the cartridge.


RE: I goofed up !!, posted on October 15, 2020 at 20:46:47

Posts: 3775
Joined: June 15, 2020
'Don't heat the wire'

tip: use an appropriate size paper clip on the wire as a heat sink

you'll get a better solder joint

be well,


As to where you might send it for repair . . . , posted on October 16, 2020 at 05:00:53
Opus 33 1/3

Posts: 4126
Location: D.C. Area
Joined: February 19, 2014
Might be the ideal time for an incognito rewire of the arm. I had a RB300 rewired years ago for less than $150.

FYI, although named Brit Audio, it is a small family run business just outside Raleigh, NC. My rewired RB300 was returned in about 2 weeks.

Opus 33 1/3


+1, posted on October 16, 2020 at 05:42:02

Posts: 390
Location: NC
Joined: October 25, 2002
The Incognito loom is a substantial improvement over the stock Rega cable.


+++..., posted on October 16, 2020 at 05:50:18

Posts: 6802
Location: Glen Burnie, MD USA
Joined: December 18, 2003
The Incognito rewire is well worth the cost.

Life is is just samples thereof


Was gonna suggest this., posted on October 16, 2020 at 06:37:38
ghost of olddude55

Posts: 15382
Joined: July 14, 2017
Real fine wires, you can burn off the insulation.
Another thing--Cardas cartridge clips are EZ to solder. Really easy.
They're not expensive either.

The problem is not that there is evil in the world, the problem is that there is good. Because otherwise, who would care?


RE: Thanks Gentlemen for..........., posted on October 16, 2020 at 08:50:36
Tom B.

Posts: 4337
Joined: October 5, 1999
....for all your input. I'm grabbing my soldering iron today. With a bit of luck all will be well. I was thinking about an Icognito rewire at this juncture, but I'm broke for a little while.....spent too much money on Riverside and Prestige Jazz records over the past month! It can get a little out of control.

Tom B.


Soldering, posted on October 16, 2020 at 09:02:57
M3 lover

Posts: 5907
Location: SW Mich
Joined: May 29, 2005
July 4, 2007
Tom, I'll suggest you use a low watt pencil iron, maybe 25-30 watts. Too much heat will likely burn back more insulation than you intend. Don't ask how I know!

Tin both the clip and the wire first with a touch of solder, then heat the two together.

Take your time and good luck.

"The only cats worth anything are the cats who take chances. Sometimes I play things I never heard myself." Thelonious Monk


RE: Soldering, posted on October 16, 2020 at 17:48:12
John-from Seattle

Posts: 1063
Location: Tacoma
Joined: November 13, 1999
If he has a variable iron, he can dial it down and it should be OK.


RE: As to where you might send it for repair . . . , posted on October 17, 2020 at 09:45:59

Posts: 306
Joined: May 30, 2004
I can also recommend Brit Audio. They rewired my Rega arm after it developed an internal short. The work quality was excellent and they got it back to very quickly.


I stick the cartridge tag onto the end of a wooden toothpick., posted on October 20, 2020 at 14:08:32

Posts: 3340
Location: Southwestern Ontario
Joined: July 31, 2003
It makes it very easy to hold onto, and it won't conduct heat into your fingers or away from the cartridge clip. Make sure to hold it for 20 or 30 seconds so that the solder joint hardens properly. Just be careful when you pull the tag off the toothpick because you don't want to break it again.

OK, he's gone now. Good riddance to him. Let's never have to hear his name again ... until it is followed by the word "Guilty!"


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