How to Care for New or Soundsmith Rebuilt Cartridges

How do I clean the stylus?? Do I use a wet cleaner each time, or often? NO!!!
 
A DRY soft brush is somewhere between good and “OK”, but it is far better is to use some DAP Bluestik* – this is the blue clay-like stuff you get in the stationery department made by DAP. It is used for temporary sticking things on walls and such. Use it just before or after every play. Option one is to craft a “pedestal" on the turntable base and place a small ball of DAP Bluestik* on the pedestal so that you can use the cueing mechanism to allow the stylus to drop onto the blu-stik. CAUTION: Be sure that the top of the DAP Bluestik* is lower than the stylus as it travels across. You don't want the stylus to hit the side of the DAP Bluestik*; it may damage your cartridge.

The other good option is to squash a small ball (half the size of a dime) FLAT (the thickness of a record) onto a heavy coin – such as a quarter. Then place THAT coin on the platter.  Then cue DOWN and up on the DAP Bluestik* several times. Be VERY carefull not to DRAG the coin or turn the platter when the stylus is down on the DAP Bluestik* or you risk damaging the stylus or cartridge. 

Do this several times, each time moving the DAP Bluestik* to a new spot when the stylus is raised, so that when it comes down it hits a new spot.
 
If you need to do this on a B&O table, make the pedestal JUST the right height so the DAP Bluestik* is JUST under the stylus position & push the arm down a tiny bit to have the stylus hit the blu-stik to allow the stylus to dig into the DAP Bluestik*.
 
Using this method every record should eliminate the need to wet clean ever, BUT if this doesn’t cure a distortion problem due to debris build up, then either use the supplied brush and some RUBBING alcohol (NO COLORING OR FRAGRANCE) and gently stroke the stylus back to front only. Only wet clean when the dry clean doesn’t work.

DO NOT WET CLEAN OFTEN - TO DO SO WILL POTENTIALLY CAUSE SEVERE DAMAGE TO THE STYLUS MOUNTING AND CAUSE THE DIAMOND TO COME OFF. USE THE ABOVE DAP Bluestik* METHOD.
 
If you don’t have a good VERY SOFT brush, purchase a WATERCOLOR brush with non-synthetic fibers, one that has bristles that are about 1/8” in cross section. CUT the bristles straight across with a small scissors, making them about 1/8” long. Break or cut off the wood handle so the brush is VERY SHORT, and has very little wood handle. This will minimize accidents and reduce jitter when handling and using.

*DAP Bluestik aka Fun Tak, Blu Tack, etc CLICK HERE

They Said What?

"The Soundsmith Carmen's ultra-low-mass MI assembly plays with more agility, is more naturally detailed, and sounds less stressed than any MC I'm aware of. Its treble is not dull or rolled off—it's just the most authentic treble I've experienced from a phonographic transducer." 

- Herb Recihert, Stereophile

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