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New Pots...cheapest possible way?!

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by xolin, Dec 14, 2006.

  1. Hey guys,

    Long story short, I'm joining a band for gigs/small tour starting Dec 30, I'm piss broke, I have a cheap flamethrowing thingy for a soldering gun, and I need to replace the wiring/pots on my passive J (w/ passive bartolinis).

    Advice? I cant spend the 100+CDN to get it done at a music store.
  2. anonymous278347457

    anonymous278347457 Guest

    Feb 12, 2005
    your using a blowtorch to solder?

    I'd think that fire and wood/paint dont mix to well
  3. RWP


    Jul 1, 2006
  4. Its not a blow torch. Its a plastic cheap thing that uses a disposable lighter inside as fuel and makes a blue flame.

    I needed to use that cause i cant afford a gun AND pots. Its been working for keeping it in check for a few months, but the pots are not doing so well and I dont want em to conk out on stage.

    I know how to use a solder iron, I just dont have one.

    Thanks, but the point is that I need cheap pots/wiring!
  5. I am not familiar with your financial situation, but you can get a soldering iron for 10-15 bucks, and doing that once will be cheaper than rebuying pots and wires because you used some lighter type thing and fryed it all.
  6. as far as pots go (with your original question) you should be able to get them for no more than 5 dollars a piece.

    and no one you know has a soldering iron? try local (independant) music stores. often times if you know someone working there and ask niceley they'll let you use theyre bench. (and tools)
  7. Oh, they're that cheap at music stores? Cool, and I might just try that bench thing! Good plan, thanks guys!
  8. Phalex

    Phalex Semper Gumby Supporting Member

    Oct 3, 2006
    G.R. MI
    Have you tried contact cleaner instead of replacement? I believe that after market pots are of a much lower quality than most factory originals. Really, not much can happen to a pot other than the wiper getting dirty. I'd try cleaning the one that's in there first.
  9. tplyons


    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    On the contrary, I find this to be quite false, with the exception of higher end instruments. Pots are a place where most companies can cut corners without any customers noticing. Frankly, I do, and replace them often with CTS pots.

    IMO pots are not a place to skimp. Low quality pots will wear out quicker, and be more likely to fail.
  10. Scott in Dallas

    Scott in Dallas Commercial User

    Aug 16, 2005
    Dallas, north Texas
    Builder and Owner: DJ Ash Guitars
    Isn't there an electronics store somewhere in the area? Find one that sells surplus parts in bins to ham radio guys and robot builders. I bought a ~30 watt iron for 3 bucks and get audio taper pots for a buck apiece. If you can't afford that then you have bigger worries than getting your bass fixed. Seriously, if you can find one of those stores you can get everything you need to completely rewire your bass for about 10 bucks Canadian.
  11. ok, so what exactly do i need in terms of pots? I personally am not familiar with all that :/ I know very little about what I need. Pretty much all I know is I need 2 vol's and a tone for jazz, and was going to just ask advice at the store for which to get. I've heard about different ranges of frequencies, etc, yadayada, but I forget most of it. Biochem is my thing, heh.
  12. Scott in Dallas

    Scott in Dallas Commercial User

    Aug 16, 2005
    Dallas, north Texas
    Builder and Owner: DJ Ash Guitars
    It's a matter of choice, and you are going to have to do the research in order to make the best choice for you. I just rewired my Jazz and there are dozens of good pages with info, not including the threads on this board.
  13. RyreInc


    May 11, 2006
    Kalamazoo, MI
    You want 2 audio/log taper pots for the volumes and either another audio taper or a linear taper pot for the tone. 250k or 500k, its your choice; higher resistance = more treble. 250k is probably more common than 500k.
  14. ugh, ok so I went to the Active Surplus store, but they only had 500k pots and no way of telling whether it was audio/log or linear.

    I got 2 of them for the volume cause they were ridiculously cheap but is there a way of telling?

    And they didnt have 250s which I wanted...
    but yea I got a cheap soldering iron like you told me :)
  15. RyreInc


    May 11, 2006
    Kalamazoo, MI
    If you have a multimeter you can check the resistance when the pot is half way through its rotation. If the resistance is half of the total resistance (250k in this case), then it's linear taper. If it's much lower, about 25k maybe, then it's audio taper.
  16. ibz


    Apr 14, 2005
    Columbus, OH
    Atleast your in a much more reasonable direction than wanting to use a blow torch. :)
  17. :hyper:
  18. aquateen


    Apr 14, 2005
    cheap pots are not what you want to use. as tpylons noted, they wear out faster and become noisy. get some cts pots and you won't have to replace them next year. Fender uses 250k pots for tone and volume as the j pickups are single coil. 500k pots might end up sounding too harsh and overly bright. you'll want the solid shaft pots as the j bass knobs will fit them properly. the split shaft pots are used with Gibson knobs.
  19. In a pinch, wire 'em straight to the jack. crisis over.
  20. heheh, no.

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