How to get smoke smell out of a pedal?

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by tlite, Jul 20, 2020.


  1. tlite

    tlite Supporting Member

    Aug 18, 2016
    Florida
    Just got a pedal I ordered off of Reverb and I could smell it instantly. Smells like an ashtray.

    Any tips for safely getting the cigarette stank out of a pedal?
     
    jdh3000 likes this.
  2. Matt Dean

    Matt Dean Supporting Member

    Jan 2, 2007
    SF (North) Bay Area
    Return it and get a different copy?
     
  3. tlite

    tlite Supporting Member

    Aug 18, 2016
    Florida
    Ya, I could- it's a Digitech Nautila I bought used at a decent price, and would rather avoid the return hassle if I can make it smell dandelion fresh again... but maybe I can't.
     
    Matt Dean likes this.
  4. Matt Dean

    Matt Dean Supporting Member

    Jan 2, 2007
    SF (North) Bay Area
    I appreciate that... you could try buying a couple of boxes of baking soda, then immerse the pedal in a bath of baking soda for a week, then buy a can of air and air spray the baking soda off and out of the pedal. I make no promises if the pedal will actually work after that, but I bet it won’t smell as much after that.
     
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  5. Stick it in a ziplock bag with plain unscented clay kitty litter for a day or two. You can put the litter in panty hose if you're worried about the dust entering the pedal.
     
  6. Peteyboy

    Peteyboy

    Apr 2, 2018
    Los Angeles
    One of those ozone generator gizmos will run u about $100 but it'll neutralize that stank.
     
    J-Bassomatic, JRA, Zooberwerx and 3 others like this.
  7. Mosfed

    Mosfed

    Apr 21, 2013
    Washington DC
    Partner - CCP Pedals
    Look it’s metal. Take the knobs off, clean it with isopropyl alcohol and it should be fine
     
    macmanlou, TinIndian, DavC and 8 others like this.
  8. Seriously, try the kitty litter. I opened my PA rack for a gig in a posh hotel non-smoking ballroom and it stunk to high heaven from the previous gigs in smoky bars. As a smoker, i'd never noticed. Anyway, I got home that night and made a "litter sachet pouch" out of of my wife's knee-highs and tossed it in the rack. The next week, everyone asked "Where's the smell?" From then on, I've kept one of those pouches in my racks and cases. I would think they also help absorb ambient moisture too.
     
  9. jebmd

    jebmd Gold Supporting Member

    May 4, 2009
    Lothian, Maryland
    If it still stinks after using a good cleaner, stick it in a sealed container with some coffee beans for a few days.


    *Edit- Throw away the coffee beans when you’re done :D
     
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2020
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  10. Peteyboy

    Peteyboy

    Apr 2, 2018
    Los Angeles
    All good suggestions!

    Except maybe mine...
     
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  11. MynameisMe

    MynameisMe Be kind. Supporting Member

    Dec 31, 2018
    Jax, Florida
    I bought a cheap bass from a guy one time that had a funk about it. Took me three cleanings. One with naptha, one with rubbing alcohol and the third with Murphy's Oil Soap. I ended up taking all the hardware off and soaking it on the Murphy's.
    Eventually the funk left it.
    Of course I changed out some of the sorry parts also. That helped also.
     
    AudioTaper and tlite like this.
  12. tlite

    tlite Supporting Member

    Aug 18, 2016
    Florida
    Did this, took the back off and airing out outside tonight. Wish I had some kitty litter handy. Man, that just sounds weird.
     
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  13. Set it in a bag with charcoal (plain BBQ charcoal will do) for a few days. Open any battery compartments. That usually takes the smell out.
     
    tlite likes this.
  14. Open the pedal, Choose a low humidity day, allow it to sit in the sun for roughly 12 hours outdoors where the sunlight is unadulterated. (I say open the pedal cause its most often the internals that stink, not the casing). Then I would put some dryer sheets in and around it in some sort of sealed container and let it sit until theres no stink.

    The UV of the sun will take out cigarette smoke smell, I used it to get the smell out of a jacket I got and in about 12 hours it was hardly smelling at all.
     
  15. tlite

    tlite Supporting Member

    Aug 18, 2016
    Florida
    I'll try the naptha tomorrow. And the Murphy's. And the kitty litter. So far it's been wiped down with vinegar Windex, isopropyl alcohol, used qtips to get into the hard to reach spots. Steered clear of wiping down any of the circuitry though.

    As of now still smells. Might have gone from Marlboros to Camel lights though.
     
  16. tlite

    tlite Supporting Member

    Aug 18, 2016
    Florida
    Sun! That should be easy enough to try. We have lots of that here. I may have to wait until January, though. Florida is slightly prone to humidity...

    May try it anyway.
     
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  17. Boil it in Pine-Sol.
     
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  18. tlite

    tlite Supporting Member

    Aug 18, 2016
    Florida
    Love that idea. I can freshen the pedal and make my famous Douglas Fir Spaghetti at the same time.
     
  19. MynameisMe

    MynameisMe Be kind. Supporting Member

    Dec 31, 2018
    Jax, Florida
    Odoban is eucalyptus oil mixture. Something like that you could put on a q tip. It pretty much kills any odor.
    I would be careful around the pots and circuits.
    I ruined a pedal with wd40 trying to free up a sticky pot. My bad.
     
    tlite likes this.
  20. Thehound

    Thehound

    Jul 11, 2011
    Canada
    Lysol wipes and lysol spray then let it sit for a week.
     
    tlite likes this.
  21. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

     
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