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Changing a Thorens 124 closed slate plinth into an open style.

Discussion in 'classic' started by DAVEDWACK, Mar 10, 2009.


    DAVEDWACK pfm Member

    I've been toying with the idea of converting my traditional Slate Plinth into one of those open designs as produced by Slatedeck, ever since I read an article inferring that there could be sonic benefits to be gained, aside from the aesthetics (I must admit they do look very nice).

    The biggest problem as I see it is the removal of the 4 side pieces from the underside of the plinth top which I believe to have been fixed with a strong compound (epoxy resin?). Fortunately the slate base is loose anyway. Unfortunately the Stonemason's who made me the plinth some 25+ years ago are well gone so I'm unable to say for sure what was used to stick the side panels.

    I've tried to do a bit of rooting around and it seems that "heat" could be the answer as in oxy-acetyline (???).

    Any suggestions/advice would be most welcome.


    P.S. There is a picture of the deck/plinth which I loaded up in the "show us ya kit" thread from Feb '08 but I'm buggered if I can figure out how to pop it into this;)
  2. Tony L

    Tony L Administrator

    Here's the pic:


    Looks like granite to me rather than slate?

  3. stevec67

    stevec67 pfm Member

    No, it's slate.

    I really really would not butcher a lovely plinth like this. Get a mason to cut a new top plate, it will be very cheap, then you can DIY the legs.

    DAVEDWACK pfm Member

    Hi're a gent, thanks for doing the picture. Steve is quite right it is slate.

    Steve...I'd got it into my head that having a new top plate would cost a fortune. Now that you mention it, yes perhaps it'd be another way to go, for sure I could then keep whichever I preferred and sell the other one on. I've already ordered 6 brass levelling spikey things almost identical to the one's supplied by Slatedeck to use in a dual slated open plinth.

    What am I thinking of? Thanks Steve

    Any recommendations for a suitable (cheap) supplier/stonemason for a replacement top then?
  5. stevec67

    stevec67 pfm Member

    My pal had one made by a monumental mason, £120 for a slate box like yours. He got it mirror-imaged so the project stalled there, but for a simple plate (MAKE SURE HE KNOWS WHICH WAY UP IT GOES!) it would/should be sub £100.

    DAVEDWACK pfm Member

    Well if I can get something made up at that kind of money I'll be chuffed to bits. I'll have a look out for somebody locally then.


    DAVEDWACK pfm Member

    Well I failed at the 1st fence, the German supplier says he only has 2 of the 6 adjustable brass spikes which I ordered.

    Anybody care to suggest a "adjustable spike" supplier. I say spikes, I'm basically looking for something to separate the top slate plate from the base with enough distance in between to leave enough clearance for the "hanging motor". (Dunno what the distance is yet, as I've not taken the motor unit from the existing plinth). I could even get the plinth maker to do me 4 slate corner pieces as an alternative, which I think Slatedeck do on some of their plinths.

    Do any of the Thorens 124 owners out there happen to have a spare mushroom washer, the type which sits on top of the mushroom?

    Any advice gratefully accepted.

  8. Tony L

    Tony L Administrator

    Search on eBay, I bought a set of 4 spikes similar to the ones Slatedeck use for very little money from some seller in China. Nicely made too.


    DAVEDWACK pfm Member

    Thanks Tony, I found some from a Hong Kong seller but there didn't seem to be much adjust ment built in to them. It looks as though there's a few options out there so I'll keep on the look out.

  10. Tony L

    Tony L Administrator

    I got a set of these, more than enough adjustment to level a deck on an even slightly level table, nicely made and no silly audiophool price tag.


    DAVEDWACK pfm Member

    Thanks Tony they look ideal, I just need to confirm what the minimum distance between the top plate and the base needs to be, which I'll do tomorrow, now that my replacement arm's arrived. At the same time I intend to remove the whole motor unit, flip the plinth upside down and trace out a template for whoever I get to make me the top plate. My original template is long gone I'm afraid.

    Cheers and thanks for the link.
  12. lexi

    lexi pfm Member

    What a Plinth! Polished Welsh by the looks. Don`t try to separate as the resin beig harder will pull the sides of the slate away. Likewise any heat will "blow" the slate causing it to expand and break off.

    The only way to part that plinth is by playing something by a gay sounding Irish Country and Western?........singer? :D

    DAVEDWACK pfm Member

    LOL......I've now decided not to destroy it and once I get a new top made I'll decide which way to jump. I'm sure somebody told me it was Westmorland Slate wherever that is....Lake District somewhere?

    I tried Jonathan Richman - Jonathan Goes Country but it never even shifted the polish never mind parted the sides, obviously just not gay enough.:D

  14. andy831

    andy831 pfm Member

    Green Slate is often Precelly in Wales or Westmorland slate (I had a rather well tuned fireplace made out of the stuff a long time ago)

    Dave I have pm`ed you about a drawing for the plinth.

    DAVEDWACK pfm Member

    Thanks andy....PM replied to.
  16. 2 many boxes

    2 many boxes pfm Member

    Mind you don't give yourself a hernia!

    I remember Les told me once that he'd found when designing his racks that if you have a join between two separate masses the energy will flow from the lighter to the heavier one. So your base should increase in mass from the part nearest the turntable to the furthest one. And also the first slab should weigh more than the turntable itself.

    It might be interesting to see if the Slatedeck plinths do this.

    I suppose that the lower the slab then the less that needs to be cut out of it, so this might happen as part of the design anyway.
  17. lexi

    lexi pfm Member

    Westmoreland was my other guess. It`s even BETTER. Small Westmoreland are known as "Green Peggies". They are used on a lot of Church roofs as nothing but the best is good enough for The Glory Of God.......that was the theory anyway:D
  18. mudlark

    mudlark nearly half a clue

    My house has green westmoreland on the roof and it is just like the stuff that the featured deck sits on.

    The stuff is bloody expensive, I've just had my roof replaced. Second hand slates are three times the price of welsh slates (grey for the foreigners on here)

    Don't cut down the existing plinth or you will be committing a sin.

    If you want the lovely green slate try contacting honister slate.
  19. stevec67

    stevec67 pfm Member

    My folks have a slate hearth in polished Lakeland slate like the pic. Sadly the rest of it is a very dated 1980s stone affair that's been there since my Dad and I built it in that bloody awful winter of 1979, but they like it. Welsh slate is as you say grey and doesn't take as nice a polish.

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