Rim Drive annual maintenance

Rim Drive annual maintenance

Postby Brf » Sat Dec 30, 2017 1:25 pm

Well, it’s time for my annual rim drive maintenance. Below is my procedure.

1) clean and polish the rim drive head unit
2) clean and re-lube rim drive bearing with white lithium grease
3) clean motor drive pulleys with isopropyl alcohol
4) re-lube the motor bearing shaft. 2 drops of sewing machine oil followed by lithium grease. The lithium grease provides additional lubrication, but more importantly, it creates a physical barrier from air born contaminant from entering the bearing bushing
5) replace the motor drive belts
6) replace the rim drive belt with an EPDM belt
7) balance and level the rim drive head unit
8) run in the new rim drive belt for 1-hour at 45rpm
9) check and calibrate speed
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Re: Rim Drive annual maintenance

Postby 10ovr » Sat Dec 30, 2017 4:04 pm

To bad they don't have Sticky's on this forum,, This would be a great one to start with.....
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Re: Rim Drive annual maintenance

Postby Johnny » Sat Dec 30, 2017 5:00 pm

10ovr wrote:To bad they don't have Sticky's on this forum,, This would be a great one to start with.....


I agree 100%, as with most of his other helpful tips and tricks.

Btw, that is the shiniest platter I have ever seen!
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Re: Rim Drive annual maintenance

Postby Buck115 » Sat Dec 30, 2017 5:22 pm

10ovr wrote:To bad they don't have Sticky's on this forum,, This would be a great one to start with.....

Actually, they do have a Sticky at the top of this page titled "FAQ: Check Here First!". Instead of filling up pages with Sticky's, they've put topics and links to Threads that provide solutions in one thread. This one just needs to be added to that Sticky with a link.
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Re: Rim Drive annual maintenance

Postby Bloodflame666 » Sat Dec 30, 2017 9:40 pm

How are you checking and calibrating speed without an ads?
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Re: Rim Drive annual maintenance

Postby Stringreen » Sat Dec 30, 2017 9:44 pm

What is the EPDM belt? All this seems to be good advice. Where do you lube the motors? I have something VPI sent me called magic lube. Where does that go? I check speed with an app and the test record. I also have a strobe, but I think the test record/app may be better. I have an SDS.....the new replacement doesn't allow for speed change, and couldn't be used with the rim drive at all.
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Re: Rim Drive annual maintenance

Postby YoungDave » Sun Dec 31, 2017 2:03 am

BRF, Not to change the subject, but I notice that the foot towers on your HRX extend much less above the plinth than do mine. The towers on the HRX that I bought back in 2004 extend twice as high above the plinth, and this caused me no end of trouble with dropped counterweight clearance. It is disconcerting to lift the arm off its rest and have the counterweight hit that huge tower right behind the arm! All these years I had just figured VPI was characterized by great concept, poor execution.

Don't misunderstand me - I love my HR-X - but those towers... I sure would like a lower tower like yours!

I wonder if anyone knows the history of these damned things - was the transition from the high towers to a lower tower one of the numerous, undocumented changes that seem to have occurred to all the VPI products? Is there a reasonable way to get these new, lower towers retrofitted? One of the many irritants with VPI is that there has never been any followup to alert me to upgrades, product changes, etc - the upgrades I have are the result of hearing about them accidentally... Even this forum was an accidental discovery - and boy, am I glad I found it!
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Re: Rim Drive annual maintenance

Postby Brf » Sun Dec 31, 2017 1:07 pm

Stringreen wrote:What is the EPDM belt? All this seems to be good advice. Where do you lube the motors? I have something VPI sent me called magic lube. Where does that go? I check speed with an app and the test record. I also have a strobe, but I think the test record/app may be better. I have an SDS.....the new replacement doesn't allow for speed change, and couldn't be used with the rim drive at all.



EPDM is a synthetic rubber (ethylene propylene diene monomer), which is the best rubber to use for a rim drive. Much better than silicon or nitrile. Place a couple of drops of sewing machine oil under the brass motor collars. I use a hypodermic needle filled with oil. Once oiled, place a dab of magic lube (which is lithium grease) around and underneath the brass collar.
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Re: Rim Drive annual maintenance

Postby Brf » Sun Dec 31, 2017 1:08 pm

Bloodflame666 wrote:How are you checking and calibrating speed without an ads?


I use a SDS motor controller. Rim drives require an external motor controller to dial in speed.
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Re: Rim Drive annual maintenance

Postby Brf » Sun Dec 31, 2017 1:16 pm

YoungDave wrote:BRF, Not to change the subject, but I notice that the foot towers on your HRX extend much less above the plinth than do mine. The towers on the HRX that I bought back in 2004 extend twice as high above the plinth, and this caused me no end of trouble with dropped counterweight clearance. It is disconcerting to lift the arm off its rest and have the counterweight hit that huge tower right behind the arm! All these years I had just figured VPI was characterized by great concept, poor execution.

Don't misunderstand me - I love my HR-X - but those towers... I sure would like a lower tower like yours!

I wonder if anyone knows the history of these damned things - was the transition from the high towers to a lower tower one of the numerous, undocumented changes that seem to have occurred to all the VPI products? Is there a reasonable way to get these new, lower towers retrofitted? One of the many irritants with VPI is that there has never been any followup to alert me to upgrades, product changes, etc - the upgrades I have are the result of hearing about them accidentally... Even this forum was an accidental discovery - and boy, am I glad I found it!


Yes, the HRX has gone through a series of refinements over the years. This is my second HRX, my first one had the much higher corner towers which were needed to accommodate the air suspension bladder that was later discontinued in favour of an air ball suspension. The last series of HRX have a much lower profile corner towers due to the fact the corner towers no longer contain the table suspension which are now carried out by the feet. I am not sure if your table is retrofitable, perhaps an email to VPI could give you more insight. You also have the option of installing a tonearm spacer which will raise you arm for more clearance
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