A Second Tonearm on an SME Model 10

I was brave today, and altered the tonearm panel that Lee Drage made to go with an Acoustand pod. First drilled a 28mm hole centred 55mm from the nearest end of the SME cut out. This I enlarged with a dremel drum sander to 29.4mm and checked it was a tight friction fit over the subframe tower of the Model 10 TT. I made a cut-out in out so it would not touch the motor. Then I drilled a 3/16" hole in the subframe and affixed it with a nut and bolt, using a shim under it as I tightened it to make sure it was level (checked using a bubble level). Replaced the subplatter, tightened it down and remounted the Series IV and London Reference. Adjusted overhang, VTA and VTF. Now enjoying the first record!

The panel drilled and cut-out made:

Mounted to the subframe and bolted on. A good, tight fit:

Ready to play:

The hardest part was getting out the four bolts that hold the subplatter to the subframe—a lot of Loctite on them! One down, and one to go, but I'll have to wait until my hands stop shaking.


Second table done today:

Not so much a matter of heroics, but being cheap. I see SME now sell a dual arm version of the Model 12, for £15k, so a pair would be $29.6k CDN after tax. These cost me nearly nothing as I already had the tonearm panels from Acoustand pods, and just had to buy a set of hole saws and a tap and die set (and buying tools is an investment, right?) I'm surprised at how rigid they are: if I move the table by holding the new tonearm panels I can detect no play at all in the joint, which is a very tight friction fit around the subframe pillar and bolted onto the subframe to prevent rotational movement.

DeaR @dogberry  : Excellent job and looks as the Micro Seiki arm boards. Congrattulations ¡ ¡ ¡

Regards and enjoy the MUSIC NOT DISTORTIONS,


Nice work! Which cartridges are paired to the 4 arms? And how do you decide which one to use? 

From left to right:

1. M10/309 usually sports an MP-500, mostly because I'd rather change a stylus than arrange for a re-tip when playing a disk for the first time. The MP-500 also sounds far better than it should for a 1k cartridge. Spare headshells have a Kontrapunkt C, Sussurro Mk II and a Grado Statement 3.

2. Benz Micro LP-S

3. London Decca Reference.

4. Benz Micro Ruby 3 converted to mono.

So #4 gets used for mono records. #1 gets used for first time plays. #2 and #3 are for known good records in stereo, and which depends upon mood: romance or honesty.

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You're right, I am proud of it! And I think it is short-sighted of SME not to offer a kit for sale on the grounds that we Model 10 owners really ought to knuckle down and buy a few new tables instead.