Garrard 401 301 turntable restore renovate

The Garrard 301 and 401 "Factory Restoration" Service


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Classic 301 and 401 transcription turntables are now available as officially approved "Factory Restorations". Loricraft is the acknowledged leader in the restoration of these Classic units which were launched 50 years ago.

Due to pressure of work and limited production capacity we concentrate mainly on producing restored turntables in a plinth with a pickup arm.

Audio-Life now have a Garrard 401 in a Loricraft plinth on demonstration at their studio in Holland and have details of other Loricraft/Garrard products. Please check out their website for full details.

Dominic received his rebuilt 401 with Naim Aro arm and skeletal plinth in Nov 2007 and you can see photos of it and read the appreciative reactions to it in the forums he posted to.

Barry T, one of our North American customers wrote to us saying. "As to the restoration of Tom's 301, if I had not seen the "before", I would not have believed the "after". WOW, what a super job!!!!!"

P.S. from Switzerland wrote: "Dear Terry, your Garrard 301, fitted with the Ortofon AS309i arm, is the very, very best turntable I ever played or heard!". We did a full service on his 301 and mounted it in a 12" Ash plinth with the motor board drilled for the Ortofon 301 arm.

We are always interested in purchasing 301s and 401s of any quality. They can always be used for spares, and may be suitable for complete refurbishment as described below. We can also do this for your own 301 0r 401 turtables.

In summary, units can be shotblasted, re-enamelled, platters can be remachined, bearings can be rebuilt up to at least the original Garrard specifications, and knobs and linkages can be replated or replaced. Once the restoration has been completed, the units are subjected to several days of running in when they are checked and adjusted. Test equipment and special construction jigs used in the old Garrard factory before it was closed enable us to guarantee the units are set up to the original specifications.

We can supply Garrard turntables in the "Classic " original form, or restore your own unit to the condition that made these decks a legend. A number of arms such as the Rega RB300 and SME can be be factory fitted to them if required.

Among the many favourable press reviews are these:-

  • AUDIO magazine in Germany have published a great review of our restoration of a Garrard 301 from start to finish with a full test report and lots of photographs.
  • The music was always vibrant and passionate full of raw energy.... The sense of scale, power, and sheer oomph is simply unmistakable.... Jonathan Kettle, Audiophile.
  • It offered massive stability and precision.... the sound locked into place and acquired the not to be ignored, almost hypnotic quality of real music.... Andrew Cartmel, HiFi News.

To help you choose what you want to do, we have put together a list of frequently asked questions, FAQ, about the Garrard 301, and 401.

Here is some of the engineering work we carry out on the units as part of the servicing and restoration work.

  • We offer a periodic service where we strip and relubricate the motor and spindle bearing. We suggest this is done every 3 years following a major service. If you feel confident, you could tackle the other servicing yourself, we are happy to offer this service as a substitute for the major service. Typical cost from £195
  • A major service involves a complete strip down to the last nut and bolt. The isolation grommets are replaced on the linkage. The motor is stripped, cleaned and most importantly, has its oil reservoirs replenished (The oil is contained in large felt pads hidden around the spherical bearings.) The main spindle bearing is stripped, cleaned and lubricated. The lubricant is a special product for low speed bearings. Be warned: motorcar lubricants can be harmful! A service now starts from £400.
  • On the 301 a new electrical spark suppressor is often needed, these can be fitted free of charge as a part of the major service.
  • If the main bearing has been run without lubricant, the bearing shells will need replacing. These are non-standard parts and are individually made. 90% of decks do not need this. We can offer exchange bearings to the highest possible tolerance as a replacement or upgrade.
  • Idler wheels. We only have a very small supply of original manufacturer Garrard idler wheels. However we are able to restore the majority of wheels sent to us when servicing.
  • The 301 linkage is cadmium plated which is not very durable and is poisonous (wash hands after touching). We remanufacture and replate original linkages with zinc.
  • Resprayed chassis. If your chassis is looking less than pristine, we can restore it. This can be part of a major service or you can strip your own deck and return the chassis to us.
  • Platter respraying. As before, we can refinish the platter. There is an additional charge if the platter has strobe markings which have to be remachined.
  • New 301 on/off, speed and model plates. If yours are damaged, we can supply usually these as a complete set if this is part of a full service.
  • New 401 speed plate and knob inserts. Again as above
  • New 301 control levers. When transporting the 301, be very careful, these easily break. We have a limited supply of new ones which we only fit as part of servicing.
  • New 301 mats. We have remanufactured the original 301 mat as fitted to the majority. Due to small manufacturing runs, these have been more expensive than we would have liked. The quality is excellent and makes a big difference to the appearance of the deck.
  • Motor rebuilding. If the motor has been run without lubrication for some years, the bearings will become noisy, but regular servicing avoids this. Again, all the parts are non-standard and no original tooling exists. This involves much expense so please be very aware of the need for regular servicing. This carries a lifetime guarantee if the regular servicing is continued.
  • The renowned Loricraft Audio plinth, can be supplied for Garrard and other classic turntables. Please remember that other than rare original spares, the new parts supplied by Loricraft are genuine Garrard parts.
  • When shipping, we can supply a special Garrard transport box, (strongly recommended).

When buying a second hand Garrard 301 or 401, be aware of the need to pay a sensible price as much of the above work may still be necessary. Judging by the state of some units sent to us for servicing, after being purchased on the Internet, some of the descriptions of the quality are optimistic or based on superficial observations. Some dealers have proudly told us that they never touch the internals of the turntables because they are so well made. We leave it to your judgment as to whether you share their faith!

Typical prices are given because we make to order, so we are dependent on costs of the units we have to purchase and the costs of sourcing small runs of replacement parts.

The prices of the restored 301/401 turntables in plinths with arm boards but no pickup arm are typically about
  • Premium Restored Deck and Plinth - 301/402 - £2200
  • Special Edition Level with selected specifications - £2675

Please note, Loricraft Audio are licensed to use the original Garrard trademark. Wherever possible, we source from the original supplier to the Garrard company. A considerable amount of help has been given by many of the original employees giving us a unique ability to recreate to the original specification. We are very dubious about modifications to Garrard turntables, not least because the design is so durable if left as intended. We would like to thank everyone for the patient help offered to us by so many enthusiasts. Some projects have taken literally years to research.

We don't keep spares 301s and 401s and the many other models and variants as they are hard to find or remanufacture and they are needed for our own restoration work. Please click here to see links to other web sites which supply needles/manuals etc. for other Garrard models like the Zero 100. Please let us know if you are aware of other sites we should include.

We are always glad to hear from other enthusiasts who collect and restore the old classic turntables who might be able to help with the other models or the supply of spares. Where we can't solve the problems, we try to forward requests to enthusiasts who might. Please get in touch if you want to be involved. Links to web sites where repairs might be possible or question can be asked are included in our favourite links section. Please let us know if you are aware of others we should add.

Contact Page - To contact Terry or Martina about any of this equipment, please click on the following link to reach the Contact Page.


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