So I received my Apex II...

Discussion in 'Stringing Techniques / Stringing Machines' started by AmericanTemplar, May 14, 2008.

  1. AmericanTemplar

    AmericanTemplar Professional

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    ...and I'm totally lost.

    It didn't come with an owner's manual or any instructions. It only came with assembly instructions. I put it together, but I don't know where to go from there. I looked through YULitle's videos to see if I might be able to piece together a curriculum that would enable me to get her up and running, but I'm pretty overwhelmed. I'm guessing that I should start by calibrating the machine, but I'm not sure how to do it. Since my stringing experience has been limited to the Klippermate that I've been using for the past couple of years I don't even have much of an idea of the purpose of a lot of the parts on more sophisticated crank machines. Can anyone give me some direction?
     
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  2. YULitle

    YULitle Hall of Fame

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    To calibrate it, you'll need one of the hex wrenches. On one side of the linear gripper, there is a black box shaped piece. It will have two large hex bolts that connect it to the gripper. Between them there is a smaller hex bolt. This is the lock bolt. "Around the corner" on the black box is yet another small hex bolt (it's recessed) of the same size as the last one I mentioned. It's used to adjust the machines calibration and is held in place by the lock bolt. In order to turn it, you must first undo the lock bolt a little. Turn the calibrating bolt counter-clockwise to make the machine string tighter, and turn it clockwise to make it string looser.

    Now, you need a calibrator of course. Test the tension with the calibrator. For example, If the calibrator reads 58 when the machine is set to 60, then you need to turn the calibrating bolt counter-clockwise.

    After you have it adjusted right, tighten down the lock bolt. Viola!
     
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  3. YULitle

    YULitle Hall of Fame

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    What other issues are you having?
     
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  4. Zhou

    Zhou Hall of Fame

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    Congratz.

    I have mine set up and ready to go. Mine is 5 pounds heavy at 60 so I called mark and he helped me. I am missing one of the allen keys to calibrate the machine and he is sending them to me.
     
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  5. AmericanTemplar

    AmericanTemplar Professional

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    Of the hex keys that they've provided, there is only one that fits into the hex bolt "around the corner." I'm guessing that there's no way around having that key?
     
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  6. AmericanTemplar

    AmericanTemplar Professional

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    I guess that we're in the same boat. So are you using yours anyway?
     
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  7. YULitle

    YULitle Hall of Fame

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    The one that fits for the lock bolt should be the same for the calibration bolt.
     
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  8. Zhou

    Zhou Hall of Fame

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    I have the allen key that fits the screw facing the racket.

    I don't have the allen key that fits the screw you must untighten before you adjust the screw facing the racket.
     
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  9. Zhou

    Zhou Hall of Fame

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    For some reason it is not the same on my machine.
     
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  10. YULitle

    YULitle Hall of Fame

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    Are you guys sure that you unscrewed the locking bolt enough?
     
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  11. Zhou

    Zhou Hall of Fame

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    What locking bolt?
    Do you mean the bolt that locks the calibrating screw in place?
     
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  12. AmericanTemplar

    AmericanTemplar Professional

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    Same here.
     
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  13. YULitle

    YULitle Hall of Fame

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    Yes. The one that is in between the two larger silver hex bolts.
     
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  14. Zhou

    Zhou Hall of Fame

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    Yes, I do not have a hex key small enough to untighten it.

    The smallest hex key I have fits the calibrating screw.
     
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  15. YULitle

    YULitle Hall of Fame

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    Well, THAT one should fit the locking bolt. Is there some sort of metal shard or other impediment that makes it artificially smaller?
     
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  16. AmericanTemplar

    AmericanTemplar Professional

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    No, it's noticeably smaller on mine too.
     
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  17. YULitle

    YULitle Hall of Fame

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    That's interesting... must be a design change. Guess that's why they didn't think to send the right sized hex wrench.
     
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  18. Zhou

    Zhou Hall of Fame

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    My internet is acting up on me.

    Pics to come in a second. Just need to upload them to image shack.
     
    Last edited: May 14, 2008
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  19. YULitle

    YULitle Hall of Fame

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    I'd love pics then. :D
     
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  20. Zhou

    Zhou Hall of Fame

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    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    Here are the pictures. They are not great but I think you can see that the smallest allen key does not fit.
     
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  21. YULitle

    YULitle Hall of Fame

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    I can't see the pics...
     
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  22. YULitle

    YULitle Hall of Fame

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    nvm, I looked at the HTML and went to the site. It's hard to tell that it is "visibly" smaller. But, it does look like it's in a slightly different location than where it is on the Revo. Only slightly.
     
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  23. Steve Huff

    Steve Huff Legend

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    You only need to recalibrate it if it's out of adjustment. 1st, call Mark. It's not like them to leave all that stuff out. I'm sure he'll download AND send you an owner's manual if it's available yet. It might not be as they had to do a last minute change of design due to a patent by the original manufacturer (when Alpha outsourced it).
     
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  24. Zhou

    Zhou Hall of Fame

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    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Sorry about earlier. Internet was acting up.
     
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  25. YULitle

    YULitle Hall of Fame

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    These situations are why I try to keep all the basic tools on hand at all times. :D I have hex wrenches of all sizes.
     
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  26. Zhou

    Zhou Hall of Fame

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    Man, I need to get some tools... We arn't that big on tools in my family.
     
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  27. YULitle

    YULitle Hall of Fame

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    There are so many times when I've needed tools and got them, so I've established a little bit of a collection. I used to do work on my car and that helped build the collection really quick.
     
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  28. AmericanTemplar

    AmericanTemplar Professional

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    The weather was so beautiful here I had to take a ride down to the beach. Anyway the machine appears to be perfectly calibrated at 60lbs. Should I go to work?
     
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  29. YULitle

    YULitle Hall of Fame

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    Oh yeah! :D All I can see that isn't covered in my videos that you'd need to know if how to pull tension. Let me know if there is anything I can help with.
     
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  30. AmericanTemplar

    AmericanTemplar Professional

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    Thanks YULitle! I think that I've got pulling tension figured out. I set the tension with the knob (the numbers on the knob itself indicate pounds?), put the string in the gripper and crank until the tension sets, at which point I clamp & then release tension?
     
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  31. YULitle

    YULitle Hall of Fame

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    You got it! Just be sure to hold the crank arm when you release the brake.
     
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  32. AmericanTemplar

    AmericanTemplar Professional

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    The brake that you are referring to is the one that sets itself when tension is reached right? So you need to manually aid the crank in releasing tension?
     
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  33. YULitle

    YULitle Hall of Fame

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    Yes, the little switch that pops out when the tension is reached. If you just push it in to disengage the brake without holding the crank arm, the crank arm flies around. also, the tension is released very quickly. It's all kind of bad. So, hang on to the arm when you are releasing tension.
     
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  34. Steve Huff

    Steve Huff Legend

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    Yes, that's a good point. If you don't hold onto the crank, it will twirl around and smack you if you aren't careful. Also, when you finish stringing, always set the tension knob back to zero (unless you have another racket to do immediately). Your spring will last longer this way.
     
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  35. iplaybetter

    iplaybetter Hall of Fame

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    behind you, but i have to be somewhere else by the
    you can see the crank procces in my horid vids
     
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  36. SW Stringer

    SW Stringer Semi-Pro

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    If I'm not mistaken the adjusting setscrew is 2.5 mm and the locking setscrew is 2 mm. That's the size allen wrenches (hex keys) that you'll need.
     
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  37. AmericanTemplar

    AmericanTemplar Professional

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    Well, I managed to string my first racquet last night. Switching machines is almost like learning to string all over again. I will try to post some photos soon & I will need to use it some more before I can give it a fair review. At the moment I would say that I'm satisfied, but there are a couple of little things that kind of bother me, like the paint job being pretty bad(I don't think that they used primer) and there were quite a few chips in the paint out of the box. Something that I don't really like about the clamp bases (not sure if this is normal, since my only experience is with a Klippermate) is that the locking lever doesn't stop once the bases are locked, so I often find myself over-tightening them and then having to use a lot of force to undo them. I can say that the stringbed appears to be much more consistent than it is with the Klippermate & although the Apex II is a lockout and the Klippermate is constant pull, the tension still seems higher on the Apex II. I think that I will definitely have to disagree with those who say that you can do just as good of a stringjob with a Klippermate as you can with a higher end machine, but I still think that it is worth learning to string on a Klippermate.
     
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  38. AmericanTemplar

    AmericanTemplar Professional

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    Oh, something else that I wanted to add is that stringing around a 6 point mounting system is much easier than I had expected. The posts really don't get in the way--at least they don't with my frames.
     
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  39. hollywood9826

    hollywood9826 Semi-Pro

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    The 6 point seemed fine to me. but my challenger 1 was the only machine i have ever used. I cant wait to mount my wise on that guy. Its sitting in the box at my house as soon i get time im putting that thing on there.
     
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  40. LttlElvis

    LttlElvis Professional

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    AmericanTemplar,

    The paint chip thing would really bother me. Especially for a brand new machine you were waiting for a really long time. The thing I liked about the Alpha Revo and Pioneer machines were they looked like a work of art. The paint and finish quality were first rate.

    This should be Alpha's best crank machine. Sorry, but I would return it.
     
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  41. nadalfan!

    nadalfan! Professional

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    Zhou is your old stringing machine still for sale? If so, how much u tryin to sell it for? Looking into the eagnas 300 cuz it looks like a good machine but I could be interested in yours....
     
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  42. AmericanTemplar

    AmericanTemplar Professional

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    I think that I can live with the paint job. After all of the trouble that I went through just hefting the thing up to my 3rd story flat on my own, I don't even want to think about doing it all over again--not to mention the fact that I've already gotten rid of the box and all of the packing materials.
     
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  43. AmericanTemplar

    AmericanTemplar Professional

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    So Zhou I'd like to hear what you think of your machine when you see this.
     
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  44. LttlElvis

    LttlElvis Professional

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    Well you can always post pictures and tell Alpha about it. You never know, they may send you a new one, and you can box this one up in the new box for return. I am serious about this.

    Believe me, those paint chips will start to bother you, so you might as well address the issue to them now. They are a good company. What's the worse thing they can say?

    Silent Partner sent my brother a ball machine. Something wasn't working, he called them up about it, and they sent him a new machine before he even boxed up the defective one. That's great customer service.
     
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  45. AmericanTemplar

    AmericanTemplar Professional

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    I will try to post some pictures later tonight to see whether I might be overstating the problem before I contact Alpha.
     
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  46. AmericanTemplar

    AmericanTemplar Professional

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    Just to give an update, Mark from Alpha contacted me a moment ago and was very adamant about his commitment to making things right. After speaking to him in person I trust that he is a very fair businessman who is worthy of the excellent reputation that he has garnered on this board.

    Anyway, I am going to send him photos and I'll let you all know what happens.
     
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  47. Zhou

    Zhou Hall of Fame

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    Hey sorry I didn't post earlier. I had a match that lasted a while and I didn't get home until just a little bit ago.

    I like my machine. I had a few paint chips on the clamps but nothing huge. Very small. Everything else is great. The clamp rails need to be cleaned but nothing is wrong.

    I am only missing the allen wrench to release the calibrating screw.
     
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  48. ambro

    ambro Professional

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    I got mine today and the paint is chipping in a few spots as well, but not a big deal. I do however, have a problem with the V-supports and the arms. One of the supports is lower than the other 3, so when the other 3 are flush, the fourth v-support is only touching the frame on top and is about 1/8" off on the bottom of the V-support. It is very irritating and the mounting does not support the frame as well as it should. I emailed Mark about it and am waiting for his response.
     
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  49. BigApple

    BigApple Banned

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    I just got my Plus 6500, a review to follow shortly! By the way, can the two main mounting posts move back and forth, so you can adjust the side mounts as you wish?

    -BA
     
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  50. AmericanTemplar

    AmericanTemplar Professional

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    So do you guys feel springiness in your clamp bases? Mine feel harder than I had expected to set.
     
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