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Tonearm on turntable wont stay on record

I have a pioneer pl 320 deck. every time tonrarm is put onto record it always returns imediatly to rest position, switches off then arm lifts up then goes down again with turntable continually rotating. turntable will only stop spinning by hand. Any ideas on how to solve this?

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Remove the motor assy and you will see the main nylon large gear, it had 2 metal cams under the one screw on top of it. One is the start cam and it must slide freely on top of the other one cam. Over time the grease binds up under the start cam and it doesnt move back in as the motor moves the nylon cogs around and so it start over gain and again. Degrease and lightly lube the metal cam so it moves freely by using your finger, reassemble and test.

Posted on Oct 30, 2010

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Problem with autoreturn of tonearm


This very much depends on the type (and vintage) of the
turntable.

Very old turntables used a system of mechanical CAMs,
slaved to the main plater. Once engaged (usually through
a hinged/retracted gear-tooth), the platter would spin the cam,
which in turn would lift the tone arm, move it back home,
shut off the power and disengage itself after one complete
revolution.

This system could be mechanically triggered with the power off,
just by swinging the tone arm towards the center, and spinning
the platter manually by hand. To fix it you had to make internal
mechanical adjustments, or replace worn out levers, wheels,
bearings, springs, etc...

A more modern turntable will use electrical sensors,
such as a micro-switch under the tonearm gimbals,
which is triggered as the tonearm swings towards the center.
A second switch is coupled to the stop/ return button.

Once the mech. is triggered, it can derive its power from the
plater (as before) or use a separate servo motor to lift
and return the tone-arm. The viscously damped cueing
mechanism can also be involved in lifting the arm during
the return cycle.

At the hi-tech extreme, a microprocessor can control the
whole works through the use of selenoids and stepping
motors with optical or magnetic sensors to trigger it,
position it and disengage it.

0) Note:
During all testing, remove the record and cover the
stylus with its protective gate to prevent damage.

If the stylus slides out of the cartridge, like it did on the
Shure cartridges, remove the stylus gently and put it in
a safe place to avoid damaging it. You do NOT want to
ever drop the stylus on the spinning rubber platter surface.

But leave the main head and cartridge in place for normal
tone-arm balance.

Turn off your amplifier, or turn down the volume to zero, to
prevent damage to your ears and the speakers if the needle
does fall when it shouldn't

1) Assuming that this is a fairly modern turntable, with
a gimbal mounted tone arm (the large double hung ring
bearing at the back for swinging both ways) and a
counter weight for setting the stylus pressure...

and possibly an anti-skating adjustment as well...

It is fair to assume that the cuing lever is what lifts
the arm vertically, regardless of the swing return mechanics.

2) The premature stylus drop (during return) is therefore
caused either by a cuing defect, or by lift timing,
either mechanical or electronic.

The stylus weigh setting is NOT an issue here, that
is determined by the stylus and cartridge specifications,
and must be set correctly to prevent record and stylus
damage.

Note that both too much and to little weight is BAD.
Too much weigh is obvious, but too little will cause
mis-tracking, distortion and premature record wear.

Similarly, and incorrect tracking pitch or yaw will also
cause early damage, as will incorrect anti-skating for
a particular stylus pressure.

3) First of all, test the cuing lever at several different tone-
arm angles, to see if it stays up, or droops down with time.

If there is a problem, check the springs, viscous damping..

Take the ****** apart from below, and see what gives.
Is it mechanical, hydraulic, or electronic ?

4) If it is electronic, you have a control/ timing problem,
which requires a service manual and a qualified electronic
tech to fix it.

You should be able to check any sensors, switches
or motor yourself, though.

5) If the cuing lift system is mechanical, check the levers
and cams:
What is driving it ?
Is it broken ?
Is worn out ?
Is it out of adjustment ?
Is it slipping ?
Is it stuck ?
Is one of the springs all stretched or missing ?

6) If the lift is hydraulic or pneumatic, check for leaks.

7) If the manual lift seems to work, but the automatic return
drops it...

why?
what is controlling it ?
how is it linked it to the arm return mech ?
Is there a coordination/timing problem ?

Have fun.
Please rate my answers.

Martin.

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Dear pap 55,
The feet are removable, can be open. To check the dead set you donot need to open it. Remove the power cord from the wall socket, check the contnuity with multimeter of the two pin plug after switching on power switch of the system.

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On pg 18 it says to load a recordable (blank) tape into the B side deck. Easy enough. Next comes the tough to discern part.
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