Question about my clamps..

Discussion in 'Stringing Techniques / Stringing Machines' started by jhutch, Nov 5, 2010.

  1. jhutch

    jhutch Rookie

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    I have an alpha pioneer dc + and one of the clamps is so hard to clamp. I have to push really hard and it feels really grainy/sandy and feels like its gonna crush the string. The other one is very smooth and clamps easily. It is not that it is too tight because the string will slip if I loosen it a little. I was thinking about upgrading to some eagnas 3 tooth clamps if I cannot fix this problem. Any suggestions? I have also cleaned them a few times.

    Thanks to all that answer!!
     
    #1
  2. mad dog1

    mad dog1 Hall of Fame

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    have the clamp always been this way? or is this a recent development? also, maybe contact alpha? they have great customer service. if i'm not mistaken the clamps come w/ a 5 yr warranty.
     
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2010
    #2
  3. jhutch

    jhutch Rookie

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    It just started a few stringjobs ago. I might contact alpha if there is no way to fix it.
     
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  4. jhutch

    jhutch Rookie

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    Anyone...?
     
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  5. rich s

    rich s Hall of Fame

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    Did you take it apart to see what might be causing the problem?
     
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  6. jhutch

    jhutch Rookie

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    No I haven't. Would they still give me the warenty if I took them apart?
     
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  7. rich s

    rich s Hall of Fame

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    Typically you take them apart when you clean them..... that doesn't void the warranty.....

    You're not going to know what the problem is without taking it apart.
     
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  8. coachrick

    coachrick Hall of Fame

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    I would try cleaning the 'cam' part of the clamp and the surface it rides on. Alcohol would be my first choice. Just rub some on with a cloth and wipe dry.
     
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  9. mad dog1

    mad dog1 Hall of Fame

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    as others have mentioned, you'll want to take apart the clamp and see what's causing the roughness. there are some very small springs inside so just be careful not to lose those when you take it apart.
     
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  10. jhutch

    jhutch Rookie

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    What exactly am I looking for?
     
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  11. MuscleWeave

    MuscleWeave Semi-Pro

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    Have you tightened the base of the clamp that's giving you trouble? I called Mark at Alpha and he walked me through the procedure and was happy to help. My clamp stopped grinding while tightening on the string after that.
     
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  12. Tennisplayer01

    Tennisplayer01 New User

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    Is it the blue part that youre talkign about or the clamp its self
    Generally I would contact Mark as he is always here to help around. Which clamp do you have?
     
    #12
  13. jhutch

    jhutch Rookie

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    No it's not the base it's the clamp itself. I took apart the clamps and cleaned everything, if that doesn't work I will call Mark. Thanks guys.
     
    #13
  14. Tennisplayer01

    Tennisplayer01 New User

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    Have you oiled the piece that the clamp always slides on? that might cause the rusting if it does
    Sometimes i get that crackling noise its cause you need to put oil on it
     
    #14
  15. jhutch

    jhutch Rookie

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    I'll go put some oil on it, thanks.
     
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  16. MuscleWeave

    MuscleWeave Semi-Pro

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    The instructional video doesn't say anything about using oil on it. I wouldn't do that.
     
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  17. MuscleWeave

    MuscleWeave Semi-Pro

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    The base of the clamp is blue, and I have the stock clamps that came with the machine.
     
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  18. Tennisplayer01

    Tennisplayer01 New User

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    its to make it more slippery like wd40 kinda like thing i use slick grease when that happens it solves it
     
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  19. mad dog1

    mad dog1 Hall of Fame

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    you can lubricate the hinge of the clamp, but make sure the oil doesn't get on the surfaces that physically touch the string.
     
    Last edited: Nov 29, 2010
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  20. MuscleWeave

    MuscleWeave Semi-Pro

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    They recommend silicon for the tracks that the clamps travel along and rubbing alcohol for the teeth of the clamps. That's it. They didn't say anything about oil or WD40. Ask Mark what's going on. Tightening the clamp base solved the problem for me.
     
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  21. jhutch

    jhutch Rookie

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    When you say tightening the clamp base do you mean taking off that black rubber piece and tightening it with an Allen key??
     
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  22. kevoT

    kevoT Semi-Pro

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    Have you tried lubricant?
     
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  23. mad dog1

    mad dog1 Hall of Fame

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    i don't think he's having an issue w/ the BASE CLAMP. his problem is w/ the 3 or 5 tooth STRING CLAMP. OP is saying the clamping action on one string clamp is smooth when he clamps down on the string, while the action of the other is rough.

    OP, is this the part you're having problems with? one clamps smoothly while the other is gritty?
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2010
    #23
  24. jhutch

    jhutch Rookie

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    Yes that is the problem.
     
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  25. MuscleWeave

    MuscleWeave Semi-Pro

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    Yeah, that's what I mean. It's trickier than it looks. And I know the two things seem unrelated, but they both resolved together for me. Customer service at Alpha is dynamite. Please call them before lubricating your machine.
     
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  26. MuscleWeave

    MuscleWeave Semi-Pro

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    I just remembered, at around that time I cleaned my clamps' teeth with rubbing alcohol. Since then, I haven't had to over-tighten the clamp and there hasn't been any more grinding.
     
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2010
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  27. diredesire

    diredesire Super Moderator

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    Just send Mark an e-mail, he is extremely good about responding, I've gotten <1/2 hour responses, and I'm not even a customer. That's one of the perks of ordering an Alpha in the first place, great after sales service. He'll give you a very specific answer on how to solve your problem, and you won't have to fiddle with disassembling things and not knowing how to put it together, just call and/or e-mail, trust me.

    *silicone. You can find these at bike stores/autostores, (dry) silicone spray is commonly used for bike chains. You can also try white lithium grease, or graphite powder (used to clean guns). These are all going to work better than WD40. WD40 wasn't designed to be used as a lubricant, the WD actually stands for "water dispersant," it also tends to get a lot of grime/crap in it, and gums up.

    Edit: I dropped Mark a line for you, he might drop into the thread to help out.
     
    #27
  28. DrewRafter8

    DrewRafter8 Professional

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    I've had a similar problem with a clamp. I have the five tooth and the machine is almost two years old. You know how the clamp "locks" down? One of mine does not do this, rather it just squeezes the string and does not allow it to slip. It works fine, but I continue to worry about slippage because it never locks.

    I've been debating on whether the three tooth are an upgrade. I thought about just buying two of those. Any thoughts there?
     
    #28
  29. MuscleWeave

    MuscleWeave Semi-Pro

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    The grinding is back and it's not responding to cleaning very well. But I don't think lubrication is going to help. I might have to pester Mark again.

    MW
     
    #29
  30. jhutch

    jhutch Rookie

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    I oiled it with basic 3 in 1 oil on the latch and it is smoother, but I can still feels as if it's crushing the string.
     
    #30
  31. MuscleWeave

    MuscleWeave Semi-Pro

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    I'm going to try compressed air next. It sounds and feels like there are some metal filings in there.
     
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  32. Steve Huff

    Steve Huff Legend

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    1st--don't bother with the Eagnas clamps. The posts won't fit your Alpha bases.

    2nd--if you look at the clamp handle (the part you squeeze to tighten it), there's a rounded part that's up against the body of the clamp. As you move the handle down, you'll see that it kind of rolls over the body to a clamp tight. I have filed the shape of that before to get a better clamping feel, so that might work. Mark is good to work with, so don't hesitate to call him.
     
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  33. diredesire

    diredesire Super Moderator

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    I pointed Mark to this thread, but he wasn't able to log in for some reason to post, MW, shoot him an e-mail, he'd be eager to help you.
     
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  34. MuscleWeave

    MuscleWeave Semi-Pro

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    Thanks diredesire. I'll send him an e-mail to ask about this.

    MW
     
    Last edited: Nov 29, 2010
    #34
  35. jhutch

    jhutch Rookie

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    Let us know what he says if you talk to him.
     
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  36. MuscleWeave

    MuscleWeave Semi-Pro

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    Hi Kevin,

    I see that you bought this in May. A couple of shots of silicone spray in the pivot point will help this quite a bit.

    I normally require that clamps be returned first for inspection and repair. However, I'll send you another clamp and you can return that one.

    I have your address on file.

    regards,

    Mark



    On 11/29/2010 8:01 AM, Kevin McGovern wrote:
    Hello

    A few months ago, I purchased a Pioneer DC+ machine, and I am very happy with it. One problem though is that one of the clamps grinds while I am closing it on the string. I think I have it figured out how to close it properly, but not with the same smoothness and feel as the other clamp. I've cleaned it with rubbing alcohol four times so far, as I only string my own four racquets. Do you have any other information on how to improve the performance of this clamp?

    Thank you
    Kevin McGovern
     
    #36
  37. MuscleWeave

    MuscleWeave Semi-Pro

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    Following Steve Huff's advice above, for where to lubricate with silicone spray, the problem clamp operates even better now than the good one. It's good to know what to do when one of these clamps starts to deteriorate.
     
    #37
  38. jhutch

    jhutch Rookie

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    Can anyone please tell me where I can get silicone spray? Thanks.
     
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  39. mad dog1

    mad dog1 Hall of Fame

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    think this was basically what i said early in this thread. i recommended oiling/lubricating the hinge of the clamp. guess it would have been clearer if i said "lube/oil at the hinge/pivot point/cam of the clamp lever."
     
    #39
  40. MuscleWeave

    MuscleWeave Semi-Pro

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    I have difficulty going outside the recommended maintenance for the machine, without the customer services say so. And Mark is so accessible. On other topics, I value the information that I receive here.
     
    #40
  41. jhutch

    jhutch Rookie

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    #41
  42. mad dog1

    mad dog1 Hall of Fame

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    Last edited: Nov 30, 2010
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  43. diredesire

    diredesire Super Moderator

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    It's commonly used for bike chains, you can get it at a lot of hardware stores. Get the "dry" silicone lubricant.
     
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  44. MuscleWeave

    MuscleWeave Semi-Pro

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    #44
  45. struggle

    struggle Hall of Fame

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    Tri-flow is a common silicon lube found at many outlets as well.
     
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