VPI | HW-19 MK-4 | HW-19 MK-3 - VPI Industries

Save the carton and all internal fillers and plastic bags. If you should ever need to
carry or ship the HW-19 Mk. 111 any distance, there is much less chance of it
suffering damage in transit if it is properly packed in its original carton.
Electrical Requirements: HW-19’s are designed to run on 115 VAC 60 Hz, or 230
VAC 50 Hz. The shipping carton shows which is the correct voltage for your unit.
Remove the corrugated sheet on which these instructions were lying. You will
see plastic bags with contents as follows:
A- 4- Rubber feet
B- Drive belt (with white powder)
C- Record clamp (black knob), 1 ¼” rubber washer, 3 3/8” plastic puck
Take out the three bags and put them aside. Remove large foam sheet and small
pieces. You will now see the dust cover (with hinges attached) in its plastic bag.
Lift out the cover and set it aside for now in a safe place.
Remove the corrugated sheet on which the cover was lying. The turntable’s main
chassis is now visible. Remove the white foam pieces and lift out the main
chassis. Be prepared for considerable weight.
Set the chassis on its side leaning against the shipping carton or other suitable
object. If you lean it against a piece of furniture or a wall, be careful that the
edge of the chassis does not scratch it.
NOTE: Be very careful not to turn the chassis upside-down. The spindle will fall out
and be damaged. Also, never rest the chassis either on the spindle or on the bearing
well, which protrudes beneath the chassis.
Once again, there is a corrugated sheet to remove. Do so and you will see the
HW-19 Mk.-3’s base.
Take the base out of the carton by grasping it on opposite sides and lifting
straight up. The four plastic corner blocks should fall off into the carton. If any
remain on the base, take them off and set them aside. They should be kept
along with all the other fillers.
Place the base straddling two sturdy chairs of the same height. This will give you
access to the top and bottom of the turntable during assembly. Now, remove the
plastic bag from the base.
1. Be careful not to damage the pulley and motor shaft.
2. Watch out for the line cord.
3. Be careful not to dislodge any of the coil springs at the base’s four corners.
NOTE: The hinge holders on the rear of the base are normally loose to allow the dust
cover to be attached. They will be tightened later on.
The last item in the carton is the turntable platter. Leave it in place until it is
needed later.
While the chassis is leaning against the carton or other support, remove the
tonearm board by unscrewing the six Phillips-head screws with a #2 Phillips
screwdriver. Be careful not to lose the washers found beneath the heads of the
screws. Set the armboard, screws, and washers’ aside for now.
If your arm board has a protective paper covering, DO NOT REMOVE IT!
The next step is to place the chassis in the base. The base should be arranged
so that as you face it, the motor pulley is at the left rear. Be especially careful
when putting the chassis in place to allow the pulley to fit through the hole. If the
chassis comes to rest on top of the pulley or if the edge of the hole catches the
pulley, the pulley and motor shaft may be damaged.
As you have discovered, the chassis is quite heavy. It is important to lower it into
the base carefully. The best way to lift the chassis is to use the Motor Cover
Plate and the tone arm hole (beneath the tonearm board removed in Step 2.1) as
handholds. Lift the chassis up and lower it straight down into the base.
Center the top plate within the base by sliding it about as necessary. There
should be an even clearance on all four sides. This is not super-critical. So long
as no side of the chassis touches the base, satisfactory performance will be
Remove the Motor Cover Plate by unscrewing the three caps on top. There is an
internal tooth lock washer atop each of the cover’s support posts (beneath the
plate). Be sure not to lose these caps.
If you have not done so already, remove the final corrugated sheet from the
carton. Carefully take out the Mk.-3’s platter and slip its plastic bag off. Clean
out the tapered hole in the platter’s center with a clean, lint-free cloth. Place the
platter on a clean, flat surface for now.
Going back to the chassis, clean the tapered section of the spindle with a clean,
lint-free cloth. Your chassis has an acrylic motor board, peel off the protective
paper covering.
Hold the platter so that the cork-covered surface faces down and carefully lower
it so that the spindle goes through the platter’s center hole. Please be very
careful when doing this. Resist the temptation to drop the platter onto the
Give the platter a good spin by hand. It should spin freely as if there were no
friction and it should take quite a while to slow down and come to a stop. If, on
the other hand, you feel noticeable friction and the platter does not revolve freely,
please contact your dealer or the factory for advice. DO NOT try to free up the
platter and bearing, as this will only make matters worse.
Assuming all is well, the next step is to seat the platter fully on the spindle. For
this you will need two parts of the MK-3’s record clamp. Take the frosted plastic
puck and place it over the spindle with the flat side down on the platter. Next,
screw down the knurled Delrin ™ clamp on the spindle over the puck. As you
tighten the clamp, it will press the platter evenly onto the spindle, seating it fully.
Make the clamp very tight but don’t overdo it. Leave the pliers and wrenches for
things such as plumbing repairs.
Before proceeding farther, wash your hands to remove as much of the skin oils
as possible. Moisten a clean, lint-free cloth or paper towel with Windex ™ and
wipe off the outer rim of the platter. Having done this, moisten a cotton swab
with isopropyl alcohol and clean the two grooves in the motor pulley.
Locate the plastic envelope containing the drive belt. Remove the belt, shaking it
as you do so to deposit the excess powder back into the bag. Shake off all loose
powder. Do not discard the bag. It contains sufficient extra powder to allow
repowdering the belt many more times.
Fit the belt around the outside of the platter. Next, pull the portion of the belt that
is adjacent to the motor pulley and stretch it to fit around the motor pulley’s top
(smaller diameter) groove. Replace the Motor Cover Plate. Make sure each
post has a lock washer atop it before putting the Cover Plate in place. Making
the caps finger-tight is all that is required.
If you have a blank (without armhole) mounting board: NOTE: DO NOT peel off
the protective paper from acrylic boards until after the armhole has been drilled.
The paper will help protect the high-gloss surface beneath the paper.
3.11 Put the arm board back in its original position and fasten it with three
screws on the right-hand side. You need only give the screws a few turns
by hand—just enough to keep the board from sliding around.
3.12 Using the arm manufacturer’s template and per their instructions, mark the
location of the tonearm hole.
3.13 Remove the board from the MK-3 so as not to get any debris on the
chassis, and drill the hole or holes using commonly accepted safety
practices including eye protection and gloves.
3.14 Go to Step 3.3 below.
If you have a pre-cut arm board: Confirm that it is the correct board for the arm
you are mounting. Fasten the tonearm to the board according to its
manufacturer’s directions. Do not attach the arm’s cable for now.
Place the board, with arm attached, in place on the Mk-3. Do not fasten it with the
six arm-board screws yet.
Look at the position of the chassis with respect to the base. If the right corner with
the arm in place has dropped more than 1/16” from its position without the arm in
place, you may want to raise the corner for cosmetic reasons. To raise that
corner, remove the board with arm attached and put it down carefully so as not to
damage the part of the arm that extends below the arm board.
With one hand, lift the chassis off the rear right-hand spring, using the armhole in
the chassis. With the other hand, rotate the spring counterclockwise. One
revolution of the spring raises or lowers it 1/16”. Replace the arm board. This
adjustment is only for cosmetics, so you need not spend an inordinate amount of
time on it.
Fasten the arm board to the chassis with the six screws. Make sure that there is a
washer under each screw head. Tighten each screw well.
Attach the tonearms cable according to its maker’s directions.
In most cases, the factory spring height setting will not have to be altered. The
chassis normally floats 1/8” to 3/16” below the top rim of the base. If it is within
these limits, no further spring adjustment needs to be made. If you do need to
make further adjustments, all but the left, rear spring can be reached from
beneath while the turntable is still across the two chairs. To reach the left, rear
spring, you will have to lift the chassis. Do remember to take off the belt from
around the motor pulley BEFORE lifting the chassis.
As a final check make sure that the chassis is freely floating in both the horizontal
and vertical planes. See that it is not touching any of the sides of the base and
that it is not touching the motor housing beneath the left, rear corner.
The MK-3’s on/off switch is on the left front of the base’s “skirt.” It is a push-push
type switch with two positions, “in” and “out.” Push it a couple of times and make
sure that it is in the “out” position.
Plug the MK-3 into an outlet that provides the required voltage as indicated on
the carton.
Depress the on/off switch. The turntable should start and come up to speed.
Please note that the MK-3 is not a broadcast turntable and does not come up to
speed within one revolution. The type of high-torque motor that is required for
such a rapid start would degrade the audio performance of the turntable.
In the unlikely event that the motor does not start, first check to make sure that
the wall outlet is “live” by plugging in a lamp or some other device known to be
working. If the outlet is live and the MK-3 does not work, please contact your
dealer or the factory for advice and needed repair.
NOTE: The motor will take from 5-6 hours to “break in.” In other words, the MK3’s performance will subtly improve during this time as the motor bearings
reaches their operating norm.
Place the MK-3 on the shelf on which it will be used. With the turntable running
at 33, the belt will run parallel to the chassis and within the middle 1/3 of the
platter. You do not have to be fanatical about this, leveling by eye is sufficient.
However, if you do want to be a fanatic, put a bubble level on the platter. Center
the bubble by rotating the base’s rubber feet to raise or lower each corner as
Place the dustcover on the MK-3 by slipping the hinge flanges into the sockets
on the rear of the base. Close the cover. Each of its front corners should rest on
one of the small round cork pads on the base’s front corners. If necessary, push
gently on the front of the cover until it does so. You may also have to pull up
slightly on one of the rear corners. Once the cover is squarely resting on the
base, tighten the screws on the back of the base’s hinge sockets with a No. 2
Phillips screwdriver.
Now that you have completed assembling your new MK-3, please take a few
moments to fill out and mail the warranty registration card. In the unlikely event
that you need warranty service, our having the card on file will make it easier for
us to help. If you take the additional step of sending a photocopy of your dealer’s
sales receipt along with the card, handling any warranty claim will be made even
easier for both of us.
The MK-3 offers speeds of 33 1/3 and 45 RPM. Speed is changed by moving
the belt from one groove on the motor pulley to another as follows: Turn off the
motor, remove the Motor Cover Plate, and with a clean finger, pull gently on the
belt and move it to the other groove. The smaller diameter groove is for 33 1/3
RPM and the larger for 45 RPM.
Replace the Motor Cover Plate and turn on the turntable. Make sure each post
has a lock washer atop it before putting the Cover Plate in place. Making the
caps finger-tight is all that is required.
The MK-3’s platter is made from materials that effectively damp vinyl disk
resonance’s. Using a mat on the turntable’s platter will be of no benefit and will,
in fact, degrade performance. To take full advantage of the platter’s damping
effect, it is necessary to use the supplied record clamp.
The record clamping system consists of three pieces: a rubber washer, a
specially machined plastic puck, and a knurled Delrin ™ screw-down clamp.
NOTE: Clamping brittle polystyrene or shellac records is not recommended. If
you want to clamp these disks, do not use the rubber washer beneath them. In
addition, clamp them very lightly to avoid the possibility of cracking the record.
Place the rubber washer over the spindle and gently push it down so that it rests
flat on the center of the platter.
Place the record to be played on the turntable. Next, take the puck and holding it
with the flat side up, place it over the spindle on top of the record.
Finally, take the knurled clamp and screw it down (flat side down) over the puck.
Tighten it enough that the periphery of the record is brought in contact with the
platter. You will notice that over tightening will sometimes result in the periphery
lifting off again. Do not over tighten.
After using the clamp system for a while, the proper amount of tightening will
become pretty much automatic.
The action of the clamp system is to provide uniform compression of the record
at the outer edge of the label area. First, the periphery of the record is forced
into contact with the platter. Then, the rest of the grooved area is pushed into
Keep the platter scrupulously clean. Since no mat is used on the MK-3, any dirt
can easily be transferred to the record—especially since the clamp holds the
record down under pressure.
We recommend that the dust cover be off when playing records. Under most
circumstances this will result in cleaner sound since the cover acts as a “sail”
catching acoustic feedback.
However, when the turntable is not in use, having the dust cover on is strongly
recommended. Remember that it is very important that the platter be kept clean
so that dirt is not transferred to the record.
In choosing a location for your MK-3, bear in mind that wall mounting is generally
preferred. Placing the turntable on a shelf mounted on a sturdy wall is usually
the best way to isolate the turntable from footfalls and other shock and vibration.
Alternatively, one of the steel and lead turntable stands may be used if the floor
is firm and does not bounce when you walk. There are a number of stands on
the market and your dealer will be able to advise you concerning which ones
meet your particular requirements.
If the MK-3 must be placed on a piece of furniture or in an equipment cabinet
which is not perfectly stable, things can be improved by wedging something
reasonably hard between the furniture or cabinet and the wall against which it is
placed. Please be aware that doing so may mar the wall and /or the back of the
piece of furniture or cabinet. Under most circumstances, you will then be able to
walk around while a record is playing with out the arm hopping around.
Use of the VPI Power Line Conditioner is strongly recommended (Commercial
Message!). It is our experience that a couple of benefits are derived. First, the
PLC isolates the turntable’s motor from the incoming electric line providing ultrastable line voltage and frequency. This results in cleaner overall sound. The
second benefit is that the PLC allows fine pitch control. Varying the line
frequency control on its front panel varies the MK-3 motor’s speed.
Hum—A low buzzing or humming sound heard whenever the amplifier or
receiver is switched to, “phono”, varies with the volume control setting, and is
heard when no record is being played. If hum is heard only when playing a
record, the hum is recorded on the record.
This is actually a
cartridge/arm/turntable problem. Usually all that is needed to eliminate the hum
is to run a ground wire from the turntable chassis to the chassis of the amplifier
or receiver. Simply attach a suitable length of thin, flexible wire (test probe wire
is ideal) to any convenient screw on the underside of the MK-3 chassis. Connect
the other end to the ground connector on the amplifier or receiver (if in doubt,
check the amplifier or receiver’s manual or call its manufacturer).
Depending upon the tonearm you are using, it may also be possible to run a
short wire from the turntable chassis to the arm’s ground connection under the
arm board. If this does not cure the hum, disconnect the short wire and run a
separate ground wire as above. If running a ground wire from the chassis does
not eliminate the hum, there may be a more complex problem involving the
particular arm/cartridge combination. VPI will attempt to provide assistance, but
please understand that it is not possible for us to be familiar with all the
numerous arm/cartridge combinations. You may also want to contact both the
arm and cartridge manufacturers.
Motor overheating—synchronous motors, such as the one used in the HW-19
Mk. 111, normally show a 30 degree to 40 degree C rise in temperature after
they have been running for a while. Therefore, you can expect that the motor
pulley will become hot to the touch. It’s perfectly normal. Relax and forget about
Motor does not turn smoothly—when they are turned off, synchronous motors do
not turn as easily as Induction motors. If you attempt to rotate the motor pulley
by hand, you will feel some resistance. You will notice that it “jumps” from
position to position as it turns. This is the result of the multiple-pole internal
permanent magnet. Again, it’s perfectly normal. Keep relaxing.
Noisy motor—some noise is normal from the type of synchronous motor used on
the MK-3. You needn’t be concerned unless: 1) you can hear motor noise
through the loudspeakers while playing records (make sure it’s not just with one
or two records); or 2) you can hear the noise from across the room when no
record is being played (not through the loudspeakers). If either of these
conditions is apparent, please contact your dealer or the factory for assistance.
The drive belt on the HW-19 Mk. 111 is made of pyrothane and, under ordinary
conditions, will provide long service. Dusting the belt every three months with
talcum powder will provide for a smoother start up and turn off. For optimum
performance we recommend installing a new drive belt every two years. There is
enough powder in the bag for many, many powderings. Seal the bag and shake
the belt around in it. Shake excess powder back into the bag as you remove the
belt. Shake off all loose powder.
The main bearing of the turntable and the bearing of the motor should both be
lubricated using 40 weight motor oil. Slick 50 is preferred, but any good motor oil
will do. One drop on the motor shaft, and two drops on the main bearing shaft
and two down the hole of the main bearing well, is sufficient.
NOTE: Compounds containing silicones are not recommended for use on or near
any electronic equipment. While silicone polishes give a high-luster finish,
another property of silicones is migration. The tiniest amount can spread itself in
an extremely thin layer, degrading electrical contacts. Once a contact has been
contaminated with silicone, it is nearly impossible to clean it completely off.
The MK-3’s dust cover and acrylic chassis may be cleaned with glass cleaner.
Do not use solvents, abrasives, or other glass cleaners of any sort. Make sure
not to drip any cleaning solution on the turntable or its base.
The platter should be kept scrupulously clean so that no dirt is transferred to the
record being played. Windex ™ is the best cleaner we have found. Note: any
cleaner must be completely dried off before placing a record on the platter. Be
sure to use a clean, lint-free cloth to wipe with.
The natural finish wood base has a hard lacquer finish. No care is needed
beyond a periodic dusting with a clean, soft cloth. The piano black finish base
may be cleaned only with Windex ™. Do not use solvents, abrasives, or other
cleaners of any sort.
VPI Industries, Inc. (VPI) warrants this unit against defects in materials and/or
workmanship for two (3) years from the date of purchase by the original retail
purchaser. VPI’s sole obligation under this warranty is limited to the repair or
replacement, at VPI’s option, of any part(s) found to be defective. VPI’s obligation to
repair or replace defective parts is the purchaser’s sole and exclusive remedy, and VPI
shall not be liable for any direct or indirect injury and/or property damage arising out of
the use of the product or defect in or failure of the product.
This warranty does not extend to any unit whose serial number has been defaced or
altered. Any product that VPI determines contains a defect or malfunction due to
incorrect installation, modification, misuse, or servicing by the purchaser, or service
technician not authorized by VPI to perform such service will not be warranted. This
warrantee does not cover trivial or cosmetic defects that do not impair the unit’s normal
VPI reserves the right to make changes in this product without assuming any obligation
to install such change in any product previously manufactured. This warranty to repair
or replace defective parts is in lieu of all other express or implied warranties of
merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose. There are no warranties that extend
beyond the description herein.
Some states do not allow exclusion of implied warranties or limitation of incidental or
consequential damages, so the above exclusion or limitations may not apply to you.
This warranty gives you specific legal rights, and you may also have other rights that
vary from state to state.
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