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cleaning pots

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by arther daily, Mar 13, 2001.

  1. OK chaps, I just bought a trace AH240 or (whatwever it's called) 300W head. Sounds really great etc...


    The master volume pot is dirty and crackles like the hand of God when turned up above about 6...

    I'm no elctronics buff, but I know a dirty pot when I hear one and I'm sure that I can clean it myself...

    What should I clean it with? - and how should I clean it?
  2. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

    You mean it sounds like some mad Argentinian bloke with stary eyes and weight/drug/ego problems? That would be a bummer! ;)
  3. i hate it when i dont get a joke...

    I'm really sorry, You've lost me completely...
  4. Arther,
    What I have done in the past is to use an electrical spray cleaner with lubricant. Sometimes this works, sometimes the pot has to be changed.

    Tandys used to stock it, but a couple of weeks ago I tried to buy some more, and was told that it was a discontinued Tandys product and that Maplins Electrical still stock it.
    Make sure you get the one with lubricant.
  5. Also,
    You will probably have to spray it in from the back or side of the pot. If you’re lucky there may be two small holes. Turn the control back and forward a few times whilst spraying in the cleaner.

    Hope it works for you.
  6. "Make sure you get the one with lubricant."

    "Yes, Dear".... - whoa!... Sorry flashback! ;-)

    Thanks, I'll try that next practice.
  7. yawnsie


    Apr 11, 2000
    Bruce is referring to a certain Argentinian footballer by the name of Diego Maradona. In the 1986 World Cup, young Diego thought it would be a laugh to punch the ball into the net in a match against England. An entire country (i.e. England) was less than impressed, mostly because of the fact that it was one of the most blatant acts of cheating in sporting history. Upon being questioned about this, Diego insisted that it was the "hand of God" that put the ball into the net - modest little fella, isn't he? ;)
  8. Oh yeah, of course...

    A very obvious joke that I was just tooooo slow to get. What a mong I be!
  9. I am English and 26 btw, so I remember it clearly... still went straight over tho!
  10. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    arther - another option in addition to Spike's; using a product named Caig's CaliLube MCL (Moving Contact Lubricant) relubes and leaves a protective coating on the pot. Just a shot is usually all it takes to flush out the crud causing the noise. It's available in the UK. www.caig.com lists the international contacts.

    Once you spray it on, rotate the pot's shaft back and forth to make sure it works its way in.
  11. Thanks rickbass1,

    I haven’t yet replaced my cleaner, so I think I’ll give CaliLube MCI a try.
    Just sent the UK agent an email.

  12. What about WD-40... or pure alcohol followed by a bit of vaseline (ooh-err missus!) wouldnt that do the same job?
  13. The only "job" you will have will be finding a new pot for your Trace :D
  14. Sssooo, Maybe I'll give that a miss!
  15. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    LOL! Well said, Spike. A solvent, (i.e., alcohol), can ruin the binding agents.

    One other surprise you don't want. Even though you know to unplug the amp before you open it up, don't touch any internal gizmos with bare hands even if the amp has remained unplugged for days. The caps can store high-voltage charge. :eek:
  16. :D
    I use the stuff from Maplin on my amps/basses- "Servisol 10 switch cleaning lubricant".
    it cost £2.50, so there's no excuse for trying any WD40/alcohol+vaseline antics on your amp:)

    that Cailube is probably better, but tracking down some in the UK might be tricky.
  17. kcm


    Jun 17, 2000
    Woking, Surrey.
    I've been told that WD40 leaves a residue on yer pot so it just attracts more crud, whereas Servisol evaporates. I had a well dodgy pot on me Status and Servisol sorted it. I found it in a local hardware shop and my local muso store ( Gigsounds of Streatham...plug,plug) has it too.
  18. wow, you live pretty close to me, kcm- I live in Wandsworth. I tried out a Squier 5 in Gigsounds a few weeks ago.
  19. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    Good deal, Spike. An article by Terry Buddingh in Bass Player turned me on to it. He's an amp tech for several manufacturers and has been one for some major bands.
  20. "wow, you live pretty close to me, kcm- I live in Wandsworth."

    What you get sent down for mate?..... Slapping?!!

    :) tee hee!!!!!

    OK, so I wont be trying the cheapy effect vaseline ting... there's Maplins about 100 yards from my house so I shall pop in on the way home... in disguise of course!

    Cheers for the advice about the guts of the amp, huge capacitors etc.... nice 1.

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