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FDP Forum / Fender Amps: Vintage (before 1985) / Stuck volume pot

Next 20 Messages  
Flat-Foot

Usa

Mar 10th, 2016 06:28 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic


I have had a 65 Bassman head for 15 years and just never really got around to messing with it. I recently replaced the tubes and fired it up. It sounded incredible but it was clear that the pots needed some cleaning. I used CRC quick dry electronics cleaner and rolled the knobs back and forth several times.

It worked a lot better but out of nowhere today my volume pot completely locked up. I'm at a loss here, any suggestions are much appreciated.

Thanks!

BbendFender
Contributing Member
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American Patriot

I'm on guard these days.
Mar 10th, 2016 06:32 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

You might try spraying it again but this tiime blow out the cleaner with compressed air.

Flat-Foot

Usa

Mar 10th, 2016 06:53 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I'll give that a shot. Should there be any kind of lubricant used?

I did respray it earlier. I took the knob off and was able to turn the shaft with a set of pliers but it felt like I was forcing it so I stopped. (This post is rich with innuendo)

roadhog96

USA / CT.

Mar 10th, 2016 07:37 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I don't know, I've never seen a pot seized up like that from contact cleaner. If you can't turn it with just your fingers then it sounds like something internally is preventing it from moving. I've seen them get tighter and rough feeling after there damaged from to much heat. I don't think a cleaner is going to fix it. Deoxit F5 is made specifically for cleaning carbon tract pots, it also has a lubricant in it. Contact cleaner works better for cleaning metal contacts like in switches and jacks. It will work on pots but it's not the best cleaner for them. Maybe the wiper broke and is wedged inside. Most pots can be opened up to inspect inside.

(This message was last edited by roadhog96 at 09:54 PM, Mar 10th, 2016)

Flat-Foot

Usa

Mar 11th, 2016 06:20 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I will try and take it out tonight to get a better look at it. Thanks for your suggestions.

Peegoo
Contributing Member
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Eat. Sleep. Guitar.

Repeat
Mar 11th, 2016 06:56 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Make sure the knob is not jammed too far onto the shaft. That can cause a pot to appear locked up because it creates resistance to rotation.

Remove the knob and see if you can rotate the shaft.

Flat-Foot

Usa

Mar 11th, 2016 07:20 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I took the knob off and I was only able to move it using pliers, it didn't turn easy at all. It's definitely jammed up somehow.



Peegoo
Contributing Member
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Eat. Sleep. Guitar.

Repeat
Mar 11th, 2016 08:53 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Wow... That is weird.

willie
Contributing Member
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Too Near Atlanta GA

Amp Tech Emeritus
Mar 11th, 2016 08:56 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Sounds like the carbon substrate is cracked and the wiper is stuck on the place where it is cracked.

w

Flat-Foot

Usa

Mar 11th, 2016 09:52 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Thanks guys, I will let everyone know what I find.



Steve Dallman
Contributing Member
*********

Merrill, Wisconsin

Age is just a number...mine is big
Mar 11th, 2016 10:02 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Between the shaft and the threaded collar is a lubricant. The contact cleaner may have frozen this lubricant.

Related...the first Tapco mixers used a propitiatory lube between the collar and shaft that gave the generic Alpha type pots a smooth and professional feel. However over time, this lube froze and all pots would not move. At first it was just if they got cold, and the lube would soften if warmed. Later, they just froze. No spray cleaner or lube would loosen it.

A similar thing is likely going on in your pot. Cleaner sprayed into the collar (from the knob end) may loosen it up, although washing this thick lube out will make the pot feel different.

amphead4
Contributing Member
********

Cincinnati, USA

Mar 11th, 2016 10:04 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Once I froze one by cleaning it with a contact cleaner that contained no lube. Was able to free it with a different where the shaft passes through the bush. (sorry, more innuendo)

Steve Dallman
Contributing Member
*********

Merrill, Wisconsin

Age is just a number...mine is big
Mar 11th, 2016 10:07 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

In Aspen Pittman (of Groove Tubes) first Tube Amp Book, he had some info by SRV amp tech, Cesar Diaz. Diaz suggested using spray Gunk Degreaser into the pots, quickly followed by WD-40. The Gunk would dissolve the lube and if not followed up quickly enough by the WD-40, the control would freeze.

It was very bad advice. There is no place for either product in electronic equipment. Many ruined their pots. WD-40 is not an electronics cleaner or lube. It is fish oil in an oil based solvent.



6G6

Texas

Fender power to the people!
Mar 11th, 2016 10:12 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I once had apot freeze up after using a cleaner with no lube.
I knew better, just got in a hurry.
Point is, it can happen.

Peegoo
Contributing Member
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Eat. Sleep. Guitar.

Repeat
Mar 11th, 2016 12:13 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I know a dude who tried brake cleaner on a guitar pot. The splats ate craters in the nitro finish.


NO, it wasn't me!

Flat-Foot

Usa

Mar 11th, 2016 02:43 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

This is what I used. I guess I need to find another product as this doesn't seem to lubricate, only clean.

http://www.crcindustries.com/catalog/images/Cleaners%20and%20Degreasers/05103.jpg

(This message was last edited by Flat-Foot at 04:45 PM, Mar 11th, 2016)

Roger Ball
Contributing Member
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Canada

More Mel Bay...less eBay
Mar 11th, 2016 03:17 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

"I know a dude who tried brake cleaner on a guitar pot."

Yeah, well I knew a dude who was addicted to drinking brake fluid.

He said he could stop anytime.

*rimshot*

roadhog96

USA / CT.

Mar 11th, 2016 05:32 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Deoxit F5 is available from a lot of sources, I just grabbed the link from the first place that popped up. Even Guitar Center sells it. This is not harmful to carbon track pots and it has lube in it. I use it and it works well.

Good stuff for cleaning pots

(This message was last edited by roadhog96 at 07:38 PM, Mar 11th, 2016)

Flat-Foot

Usa

Mar 12th, 2016 05:16 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I found a can of radio shack lubricated contact cleaner in my garage. I used a little of that and got the pot moving again. I am going to wait and order Deoxit to finish the job since it's so highly recommended.

I guess the CRC cleaner dried everything out. Lesson learned!

Thank you to everyone that answered this thread. This forum is a wealth of knowledge!

Steve Dallman
Contributing Member
*********

Merrill, Wisconsin

Age is just a number...mine is big
Mar 15th, 2016 11:00 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I've gone through quite a few cans of Deoxit Faderlube (F5). It is a lube, and not a cleaner, but since most cleaners just move debris off the trace, it works fine for "cleaning" pots.

The old standby used to be Radio Shack Color TV Tuner Cleaner. They sold two types. The cheaper one was the correct one.

When fluorocarbons were eliminated in these products, it was replaced with a new type, which was basically mineral oil in alcohol. Not nearly as good, but heck, if the elimination of freon and fluorocarbons stopped the hole in the ozone and global warming, it was worth it. ;^)

Next 20 Messages  

FDP Forum / Fender Amps: Vintage (before 1985) / Stuck volume pot




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