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Lenco G75 - Worth the effort?

Discussion in 'classic' started by pauljdh, Mar 6, 2021.

  1. pauljdh

    pauljdh pfm Member

    I picked up a lenco G75 before Christmas and have only used it a few times. Its very original. I know little about the deck, Im a digital guy but have albums from way back so thought why not.

    It sounds average to my ears.

    How good, once setup can it be made to sound?

    I don't want to replace all the parts but rather interested in finding out how good a Lenco can be made in factory spec?

    What should I look at be doing first?
    Much appreciated
  2. divedeepdog

    divedeepdog pfm Member

    Basic service, clean and lube bearing and motor. Make sure it’s running at correct speed

    The arm is the weak link IMO, you can replace the V blocks and sort out external cable, but I’ve never been convinced.
    Linn Basic/Akito/Ittok will fit with a little bodge.

    Plinth too, it’s a big motor that really needs to sink it’s energy into a heavy base.
  3. Tony L

    Tony L Administrator

    As stated the arm is the weak link. It is very high-mass, the vertical V-blocks will have collapsed if not replaced, and the lateral bearing is largely open and can be well sticky by now. That said if working perfectly and you select a fairly heavy tracking low-compliance cart it should give a taste of what the deck can do. The Lenco’s strengths, even in stock form, is a remarkable solidity and rhythmic integrity. Certainly nit the oast word in refinement but it gets the architecture of the music right. I suspect a DL-103 might work ok in that arm but I’ve never tried one. I had a Shure M75EJ in mine back in the late ‘70s, but it was a far younger deck back then and my arm bearings were still fine. As ever with vintage audio it is hard to advise as condition is everything. If working exactly as it should with a well considered cartridge appropriate to the arm mass It should be very decent. Just be prepared to do some work to get it there!
    torstoi likes this.
  4. TonyScarlett

    TonyScarlett pfm Member

    I asked a very similar question on here about a year ago. I started off by following the guides on lencoheaven (if you haven't already joined do so immediately) on refreshing these decks (clean the bearing housing & replace the oil, regrease the motor bearings, replace the v-blocks in the arm etc, all extremely easy to do if you have a bit of mechanical eptitude).
    The deck sounded very nice after all this & I could have quite easily lived with it but seeing the builds on lencoheaven got me inspired so I made my own solid plywood plinth, replaced the brass bearing with a PEEK bearing & fitted an Ortofon AS-212 arm & Goldring 1042 cart.
    It now sounds superb & I have no desire to replace it. I would like to try the Denon DL-103R though.
    Pkay, torstoi, Rosewind and 1 other person like this.
  5. lexi

    lexi pfm Member

    I have an RB 300 fitted to my 75. Cut and shut the baseplate with a cut out, made a layer plinth and serviced the motor, bearings and mechs. The combo sounds fine with Pickering cartridge. Not a great believer in the sound of record decks really and with a spare motor here, this deck will do me ( 8 years with it now) My Lenco cost me £16 before things jumped up.
    Tarzan likes this.
  6. pauljdh

    pauljdh pfm Member

    Thanks, good info!
  7. pauljdh

    pauljdh pfm Member

    Thanks for the link for lencoheaven!
  8. pauljdh

    pauljdh pfm Member

    Crikey, that doesn't owe you anything. Id like to optimise the standard deck first before adding non standard parts but interesting!
  9. pauljdh

    pauljdh pfm Member

    Thanks for all your replies folks!
  10. divedeepdog

    divedeepdog pfm Member

    Nic Robinson likes this.
  11. Dowser

    Dowser Learning to bodge again..

    I tried many things on original arm, all the way to trying metal replacement vblocks - still rubbish. AS-212 is an easy fit and lifts performance considerably.
    torstoi likes this.
  12. brian2957

    brian2957 pfm Member

    Lenco Heaven forum has loads of information on the GL75.
    pickwickpapers likes this.
  13. awkwardbydesign

    awkwardbydesign Officially Awesome

    Nooo, don't go to Lenco Heaven! You'll never get out!
    I had a standard GL75...
  14. stevec67

    stevec67 pfm Member

    It's well worth the effort. As standard, you get 50 years of drying up, so it needs work to get it running as intended. After that, the arm is the weak link, and thereafter the sky's the limit.
  15. Rosewind

    Rosewind Lost in Translation

    Well worth the effort, I'd say.
    I traded for my upgraded one and I am very satisfied with the sound, the fast spin-up time and the quiet operation. Upgrades are:
    - Acoustand plinth in which the Lenco has been mounted with the speed changer pointing to the front right hand corner.
    - PTP6 top plate upgrade (integrated with the Acoustand plinth)
    - Bearing upgrade - the one sold on Hifiwigwam
    - Fidelity Research Fr24 mk ii. tonearm
    - Poul Ladegaard

    Last edited: Mar 7, 2021
  16. sktn77a

    sktn77a pfm Member

    The earliest reviews complained about rumble from the idler drive. You'll probably need a new idler and a good cleaning/oiling of the motor and bearings. It gets pretty good reviews when reconditioned, so it's probably worth the effort.
  17. 337alant

    337alant Negatively Biased

    Iv'e heard quite a few Lencos over the years and they are a very good turntable indeed when sorted
    The best I heard was a 75 in a slate plinth, PTP top plate and an Ittok arm, I compared it directly to my Garrard 401, Plywood plinth, 12" jelco Arm and there was next to nothing between them.
    So for me yes well worth the effort :)
    Rosewind likes this.
  18. fran

    fran pfm Member

    Well worth the effort. The path is well worn and runs pretty much like this:

    Lube and adjust motor bearings
    Check to make sure idler is not scrubbing, and that the idler bearing is free
    Adjust and correct speed as needed
    Mount to heavy plinth
    Dump the existing tonearm and fit something better. I would venture that a very basic homemade unipivot would outperform the stock arm (sell it, they seem to go for silly money).
    Perhaps go the route of a PTP system which greatly simplifies the heavy plinth task.

    There are considerably enhanced bearings available out there too, but these add significantly to cost as you'd expect. I think you would be hard pressed to get similar value for money from the modern equivalent (if you are up to doing the diy work yourself).
    Rosewind likes this.
  19. Nic Robinson

    Nic Robinson Moderator

    I thought mine was the only PTP slate Lenco with an Ittok!
  20. 337alant

    337alant Negatively Biased

    Very Nice Nic :cool:

    This is the one I was referring too, not as pretty as yours but sounded great

    [​IMG]IMG_1061 by Alan Towell, on Flickr

    Nic Robinson likes this.

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