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FDP Forum / Guitar Mods, Repairs, and Projects / Who mfrs. quality pots and switches?

009
Contributing Member
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USA

Jul 16th, 2018 05:57 AM   Edit   Profile  

My cool orange Danelectro ‘59 NOS is becoming POS. It has two double/stacked pots. The bridge tone pot goes from 1 to 10 with a single mm of turning the knob.

The pickup selector toggle switch is similar, in that the toggle is rather loose/wiggles & creates static, and often won’t connect the bridge pickup without wiggling the toggle.

Not related, the previous owner boogered up the Phillips head of the smallest truss rod cover screw I’ve ever seen, and I may have accidentally stripped the threads on an apparent horiz. set screw at one of the bridge posts (well, I hope it’s the screw and not the bridge); saw a thin metal shaving.

Anyway, who makes really good quality, reliable pots and switches? I really don’t want another authentic Danelectro switch. The ones made for Gibson look substantial. I think these on-off-on switches have some sort of jumper mod to provide for neck-both-bridge.... Thanks.

Leftee
Contributing Member
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VA

Jul 16th, 2018 06:20 AM   Edit   Profile  

I’m not familiar with Danos at all, but StewMac offers quality pots and switches.

External link

Peegoo
Contributing Member
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Ooo that sandwich

is gonna get et
Jul 16th, 2018 07:19 AM   Edit   Profile  

Bourns is world-class. Nobody makes better pots, but you pay for it. I've never seen one wear out or go all wonky because they are sealed.

CRL is top-notch stuff and is widely used in many big-name and booteek guitars and amps. CRL also makes switches. The source is critical though, becasue most CRL stuff is outsourced from offshore. A small portion of their custom stuff is made in the US.

Switchcraft is good stuff for switches, jacks, and plugs.

wrnchbndr
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New Jersey

I'm back with the otters again
Jul 16th, 2018 08:28 AM   Edit   Profile  

I get no complaints from my clients when using CTS or even the small diameter Alpha economy pots sold by Allparts. I looked at the Allparts website and although they sell a 1Meg dual concentric pot, they specify that its an audio taper so I'd call them first before ordering.

Leftee
Contributing Member
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VA

Jul 16th, 2018 08:29 AM   Edit   Profile  

I used the Bournes low friction pots on a LP copy once. Really nice pots with excellent values and taper. But the low friction aspect was a bit annoying. They rotated too easy.

009
Contributing Member
*********

USA

Jul 16th, 2018 10:22 AM   Edit   Profile  

Thanks. I'll pull the pickguard off again and check for any ID nomenclature/pot values, etc., on these parts. I had it off a couple of weeks ago, thinking I could spray some pot cleaner/lube in the toggle switch -- it wasn't what I expected. All I could do is reassemble it. I'll reacquaint myself with pot tapers (volume vs. tone) and do some consumer research.

I've put the Dano aside and pulled out another guitar that could use a little daylight -- my Squier Duo-Sonic. What a neat little guitar. The neck is surprisingly beefy (for me), but its simple design is appealing -- two knobs and a switch, nicely grooved barrel saddles (not threaded), shorter scale for my shorter fingers. ;-)

Mick Reid
Contributing Member
*****

Australia

American-made in Oz!!
Jul 16th, 2018 04:25 PM   Edit   Profile  

"...thinking I could spray some pot cleaner/lube in the toggle switch..."

Not to get off topic but, personally I stay away from combination lube + cleaner sprays.
I prefer just a good single purpose electronics cleaner like CRC.

To add to what's been said, I use CTS and Alpha depending on my budget at the time. They both perform well for me.
However it's worth noting that with either of those brands, there are upper tier and lower tier products. I always use the upper tier ones if using Alpha.

Also, depending on the seller (Stew-Mac, Mojotone) the CTS are available in speced 10%+/- tolerance or the garden variety (10-20%) and priced accordingly.

edited: I was just talking about pots above. Switches I pretty much use CRL or Oak Grigsby only.

(This message was last edited by Mick Reid at 06:28 PM, Jul 16th, 2018)

009
Contributing Member
*********

USA

Jul 17th, 2018 05:17 AM   Edit   Profile  

I have a can of Radio Shack cleaner/lube, but I pretty much use the Deoxit products as separate applications. My experience, although limited, is that pot cleaning is a temporary solution, so I’m just going to replace both pots and the switch. I haven’t yet delved into this, so I’ll have to reacquaint myself with terminology, e.g., is ‘audio taper” linear or logarithmic? Does “audio” denote a volume or tone application? What taper designation is the opposite of “audio?” And is having the same taper type for both volume and tone OK (IIRC, no)? I’ve got a little reading to do.

Well, this is an opportunity for me to do some rewiring - I haven’t done this before. The “closest” I’ve come was to replace a two-wire electrical power cord with a three-wire on an old RIC TR-7.

I’ve looked at the Stew-MAC website first, as they have decent products and a limited/not overwhelming selection, but no dual concentric pots, although they do have a nice diagram of one on a “Learn” tab/section.

I am tempted, however, to buy one of Stew-Mac’s two pots-and-switch wiring harnesses and turn the Dano into something similar to a Squier Duo-Sonic.... (You can tell that my honeymoon with the Dano is over.)

(This message was last edited by 009 at 07:37 AM, Jul 17th, 2018)

Mick Reid
Contributing Member
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Australia

American-made in Oz!!
Jul 17th, 2018 06:02 AM   Edit   Profile  

If you do want to keep it "stock", have a look below. Top left image/item.

From the photos I've seen of that Dano (haven't seen one IRL) the 3-way switch just looks like a bog standard toggle like a Gibson or Epiphone.

The shop linked below also stocks 3-way toggles.

Danelectro concentric pot

009
Contributing Member
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USA

Jul 17th, 2018 07:01 AM   Edit   Profile  

Thanks. That sure makes it easy, but I was thinking about installing something “better” than another Dano pot; a Dano *style* one made by a first-class company. But, I guess there is a small percentage of duds within every manufactured product. I’m just interested in minimizing another breakdown.

Yeah, the toggle switch is just a rectangular “cube.” I’d like to get a nice beefy, sturdy replacement.

Peegoo
Contributing Member
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Ooo that sandwich

is gonna get et
Jul 17th, 2018 10:41 AM   Edit   Profile  

The Dano stacked pots are pretty low-quality to start with, and nobody makes a better one that is a direct replacement.

I like your approach: go with one vol, one tone, and a three-way Switchcraft (Les Paul style) switch.

Look here:

It's HBs, but the wire hookups to the components are the same.

Mick Reid
Contributing Member
*****

Australia

American-made in Oz!!
Jul 17th, 2018 04:28 PM   Edit   Profile  

"The Dano stacked pots are pretty low-quality to start with..."

Sorry for the bum steer on that one 009. I know bugger all about Danos. (obviously :^)

CTS does make a 500k/250k concentric pot which I'd think would work with those single coils but...

You & PG's idea of a simple 1V/1T circuit is always a good option. I really like that configuration on my 2 LP-style project guitars.


009
Contributing Member
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USA

Jul 17th, 2018 05:52 PM   Edit   Profile  

Yeah, I’ve been thinking about options all afternoon. I think, now, that I will go with the simple solution of 1V/1T. I’ll use pots of the same values as the Dano concentric, 100k and 1 meg. Thanks, guys.

Peegoo
Contributing Member
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Ooo that sandwich

is gonna get et
Jul 17th, 2018 06:15 PM   Edit   Profile  

GOOD plan!

Mick Reid
Contributing Member
*****

Australia

American-made in Oz!!
Jul 17th, 2018 07:05 PM   Edit   Profile  

Peegoo -

Just curious, what's the deal with the 100k & 1M pots in the Dano circuit?

edit to add:
I'm referring to the values and their not necessarily being the "norm" when thinking of single coils.

(This message was last edited by Mick Reid at 09:47 PM, Jul 17th, 2018)

009
Contributing Member
*********

USA

Jul 17th, 2018 08:17 PM   Edit   Profile  

I'm still trying to figure out the pot scheme. On my '59 Modified NOS, the top knob is tone control, which seems to correspond to the top pot on the concentric, 100k. But I'm reading, perhaps wrongly, that 100k is the volume pot....

Well, I just have to read some more.


I'm looking around, saw this:

PS - I thought about how the physical assembly and operation of a concentric pot must necessarily be. The narrow, inner shaft must go through-and-through the entire length, with the tone pot on the bottom (1 meg) and the tone knob at the opposite end, at the top. The volume pot (100k) and knob are sandwiched between them. This is my Einstein-like theoretical vision; I’ll pull a pot later and confirm.

Dano schematics, with narratives

(This message was last edited by 009 at 06:45 AM, Jul 18th, 2018)

rfrakes331K
Contributing Member
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IL USA

RonHalen Jokingly He Says
Jul 26th, 2018 08:11 AM   Edit   Profile  

What about Emerson's pre wired harness?

Emerson

Peegoo
Contributing Member
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Ooo that sandwich

is gonna get et
Jul 26th, 2018 02:16 PM   Edit   Profile  

Mick, the resistance (impedance, actually--because it's an AC circuit) of a Dano lipstick is quite a bit lower than a typical Fender pickup.

That's why they're super bright sounding and also why a non-standard pot works fine with 'em.

You can get stacked pots from the big names, but nobody makes a decent direct-replacement concentric pot for these things.

Mick Reid
Contributing Member
*****

Australia

American-made in Oz!!
Jul 26th, 2018 04:46 PM   Edit   Profile  

"Mick, the resistance (impedance, actually--because it's an AC circuit) of a Dano lipstick is quite a bit lower than a typical Fender pickup."

Ahhh, thanks P. I have no experience so far with lipstick pups.


FDP Forum / Guitar Mods, Repairs, and Projects / Who mfrs. quality pots and switches?




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