my pot crackles...

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by bottomfeedins, Apr 29, 2004.

  1. OK, so the tone pot in my T-bird was crackling an popping thru my amp (especially when it is NOT turned all the way up). I was told that contact cleaner would fix it. Well, it did, but I find that after a couple or three days (maybe 1 or 2 in between of non-use) it starts to act up again. Anyone know any other little tricks, or is it time for a new pot? :confused: Has By T-bird developed a nasty addiction :eek: ??
  2. Finger Blister

    Finger Blister

    Jul 8, 2003
    After you use the cleaner, sometimes you have to
    really move the pot back and forth all the way
    a bunch of times (100x).

    It may sound silly,
    but it's worked for me.
  3. Yeah, I do that (maybe not 100x). Between songs, I find myself rotating the pot back and forth. Must be part of my obsessive compulsiveness. :help: It's totally alright as soon as I put fresh cleaner in it, but I don't want to gob it all up and have the T-bird ODing on me... :eek: :bassist:
  4. Turock

    Turock Supporting Member

    Apr 30, 2000
    That's probably the seeds.
  5. ubersam


    Oct 12, 2000
    I second the seeds thing, take them out, they'll give you a headache.

    some scenarios I could think of:

    1. Not enough cleaning was done to suffeciently flush out the contaminants.
    2. Some pots (if not most) will have a form of conductive grease or lubricant for smooth motion. Some contact cleaners will dissolve that grease exposing the imperfections of the contact's surface.
    3. Pot is just plain worn out due to excessive use.

    If 1, spray with cleaner again. And as FB said, turn the pot back & forth - do that while cleaning, like right after you spray the cleaner.

    If 2, Use a different Cleaner, something like DeoxIt (Caig Labs). Or just apply some lubrication to the contacts, something like PreserveIt (also by Caig Labs).

    If 3, just replace the pot.
  6. rojo412

    rojo412 MARK IT ZERO! Supporting Member

    Feb 26, 2000
    Cleveland, OH.

    But seriously, I'd suggest a GOOD cleaner, though, like ProGold. Sometimes the radio-shack stuff is crap. But if they are not responding, get replacement pots, get Gibson ones to stay original. Anything will work though, if you aren't an original freak.

    One thing I haven't tried yet is a product we sell at the bicycle shop. It's disc brake cleaner and works like dry cleaning solution. If it did work, it would basically dissolve anything between metal and metal, whereas contact cleaner may just put it into a liquid and move it aside. This would mean that it could come back quickly when the cleaner dries up. I am not sure, though, what it is capable of melting, but I'll let you know...

  7. jammadave

    jammadave Rudderless ship Supporting Member

    Oct 15, 2003
    Wash DC metro area
    damn, i was hoping to be the first with the seeds comment - but y'all are too good.
  8. lbanks


    Jul 17, 2003
    Ennui, IN USA
    Jeeze, I wanted to make seed joke, too![​IMG]
  9. Dang !

    Saw the title and wondered if the seed issue was addressed. :bawl:
  10. That's what I was thinkin. Stinks too. :rolleyes:
  11. Disk break cleaner, eh? :meh: Yeah I'd definitely would want to experiment on a cheap junk bass first. As, for Gibson pots, I wouldn't go for anything else. The stuff I have is Peavy Funk-out.

    Seeds go great with dirt... :smug:
  12. pkr2


    Apr 28, 2000
    coastal N.C.
    I agree 100%, BF.

    Anything that acts as a solvent to the carbon/ conductive substrate will disolve the resistive element. Even if it doesn't ruin the pot right away, that doesn't mean that the pot wont fail later.

    I'm not saying that WD40 and disk brake cleaner wont work because I don't know for sure. The point is you don't know that it will work either.

    You can buy a cleaner that is made for pots or you can take a chance. I had just as soon not try to reinvent the wheel. :)

    Harrell S
  13. You got that right! Is contact cleaner a quick-evaporating cleaner? The Peavy Funk-out seems to work, but I have to keep adding it every week or so. It's great beacause the little straw that comes with doesn't fit so I have to hold the straw in one hand and spray with the other. Then I coat my hand and the back of the bass with it. Great fun! :ninja:
  14. Radio Shack has a Contact/Control Cleaner& Lubricant.

    Works well for me.
  15. Who makes Progold, and who sells it?
  16. rojo412

    rojo412 MARK IT ZERO! Supporting Member

    Feb 26, 2000
    Cleveland, OH.
    CAIG makes it and I bought it from the audio dept at Guitar Center. CAIG also sells it direct, from what the reviews of it were saying.
  17. Thanks for the Caig link. Damn!! So many choices. I'll have to research this. In the long run, I'll probably end up getting a new pot, but I'll need some of this stuff to keep it in the tip-top!! My T-bird is my baby. She ROARS!!! :bassist:
  18. rojo412

    rojo412 MARK IT ZERO! Supporting Member

    Feb 26, 2000
    Cleveland, OH.
    When I had the can (sold it to my boss to clean computers), I must have done at least 5 basses worth over the course of 2 years and the can was practically full. A little goes a L O N G way. Despite the cost, read customer reviews... it's worth it.