How to Repair Linear Tracking on a Turntable

Linear tracking refers to the type of turntable design where the stylus moves across the vinyl record in a straight line. According to, a resource for high-end Bang and Olufsen linear tracking turntables, the linear-tracking design prevents audio distortion issues and provides a cleaner sound overall. Still, if the tonearm on your linear-tracking turntable become unaligned, it can do more harm than good to your record collection. Fixing linear tracking is a matter of relubricating the turntable's tonearm.

Remove the plastic covering that may conceal the tonearm's bearings. Pry off the cover with a flathead screwdriver or remove the covering's retaining screws. In many cases, the tonearm's bearings are readily visible.

Use a clean rag to wipe down the tonearm and to remove any residual grease from inside the bearings on the back of the tonearm.

Apply a few drops of silicon oil inside the bearings and along the tonearm shaft. Use your rag to evenly apply the oil all along the shaft and inside the bearings.

Replace the tonearm's cover and any retaining screws, as necessary. Play a record on your turntable. This will work the lubricant into the bearings.


If this doesn't fix the problem, take the turntable to a repair technician. Do not attempt to dismantle the tonearm and replace worn-out bearings yourself. If you don't know what you're doing, it's easy to ruin the tonearm.

Things You'll Need

  • Screwdriver kit
  • Lightweight mechanical lubricant
  • Wash cloth
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About the Author

Ezekiel James began as a music writer in 2003. Since then, James has served as a writer for several music, technology and design publications. His work has been published on eHow, and in print for the "The Potrero View" and "Punk Planet." James is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Arts degree in journalism from Portland State University.