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Stuck Knob

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by Davo737, Apr 28, 2004.


  1. Davo737

    Davo737

    Feb 29, 2000
    Syracuse, NY
    Here's an odd one. I recently picked up a used bass, and the previous owner had replaced a missing knob with one that has no screws or tightening mechanism of any kind. And, I can't pull it off, no matter how hard I try. The knob is just stuck on there - like it has been fused to the pot. I want to put a matching one back on, and was wondering if anyone knows of or has dealt with knobs like this. Thanks much!

    Regards,
    dave
     
  2. dave, I'm thinking someone may have used super glue or something like that to secure the knob. :meh: Bummer if they did.

    Have you tried using a pair of pliers or vice grips to pull it off? If you don't mind the old knob cracking, try one of those tools but be careful not to damage the pot!

    Good luck, and maybe someone else will have a better idea!

    [​IMG]
    Treena
     
  3. Davo737

    Davo737

    Feb 29, 2000
    Syracuse, NY
    Actually, I did try some vice grips. Pulled as hard as I possibly could - nothing. I didn't want to think that someone would actually super glue a mismatching knob onto an instrument, but I can't think of any other reasons why it won't budge. Ugh.
     
  4. are you sure it's not a collet fixing knob- ie. the top of the knob comes off to reveal a nut which tightens a sleeve around the pot shaft.
     
  5. Davo737

    Davo737

    Feb 29, 2000
    Syracuse, NY
    Yep. I'v never seen anything like it. I've been trying all night to get the thing off and it just won't budge. I've email the previous owner twice to find out exactly what it is, but haven't heard anything. I'll keep bugging him, though.
     
  6. ubersam

    ubersam

    Oct 12, 2000
    L.A.
    If it's super glue, acetone would dissolve it, so long as you can get the acetone to make contact with the glue.

    Have you tried WD-40?

    If you've pulled hard enough, there's a good chance the pot's contacts has been damaged - there'll be a detent somewhere along the sweep's travel that didn't used to be there.

    Anyway, good luck.
     
  7. Davo737

    Davo737

    Feb 29, 2000
    Syracuse, NY
    No, I haven't tried WD-40. I'll spray some up there and see if that helps at all. Thanks.
     
  8. pkr2

    pkr2

    Apr 28, 2000
    coastal N.C.
    grab a plain old wooden nail with a pair of vice grips- heat the nail to nearly red hot with a propane torch or a gas stove burner. use the nail to melt a notch in the knob almost all the way to the pot shaft. the heat will sometimes make the knob turn loose from th pot. If it doesn't pop right off, go around the knob 180 degrees and melt another notch and it will come loose every time. this will even work (most of the time) with a glued on knob, depending on the glue type.

    This method will destroy the knob but at least the pot will be undamaged.

    It goes without saying that this method has the potential to be dangerous, both to you and the bass if caution isn't used. Remember that you have created a little branding iron and it only has to touch the finish to mar it.


    Harrell S
     
  9. Davo737

    Davo737

    Feb 29, 2000
    Syracuse, NY
    Well, I heard back from the previous owner, and yes, he did super glue the knob on. :rolleyes:

    Pkr2 - I'll give that a shot - never would have thought of that one. Thanks.
     
  10. Lewk

    Lewk

    Oct 19, 2003
    any way you could get some super glue removal solution in there?
     
  11. Harrell, often in the last few years, you've complimented me on some of my more novel approaches to situations like this. Well, it's time to compliment you. That is just plain cool!! :bassist:

    But I want to understand better - does this work because the knob is some sort of white metal that melts at a lower temp than the steel nail?
     
  12. pkr2

    pkr2

    Apr 28, 2000
    coastal N.C.
    Actually, what i described was in reference to a plastic knob.

    a metal knob would be easy enough to heat up enough to soften the glue joint. Probably coould get enough heat on it with a Weller sodering gun.

    I should have made myself clearer. :)


    Harrell S
     
  13. Davo737

    Davo737

    Feb 29, 2000
    Syracuse, NY
    Ah, that sounds a bit easier. I'll give her a whirl and let you know how it comes out. Or off, hopefully. Thanks again!
     
  14. Excellent advice!! but don't use the wooden one. ;)
     
  15. pkr2

    pkr2

    Apr 28, 2000
    coastal N.C.

    :) :) :) ! I caught that typo after the first few hours but I thought no one would notice.

    From this point forward, don't do what I say. Do what I mean.


    Harrell S
     
  16. Davo737

    Davo737

    Feb 29, 2000
    Syracuse, NY
    Well, I spent about 2 hours trying to heat the knob, and nothing. I was just using a soldering iron - maybe I need something that can make it even hotter? I'm about ready to just destroy the whole pot and put a new one in since I have an extra pot laying around anyway. :mad:
     
  17. pkr2

    pkr2

    Apr 28, 2000
    coastal N.C.
    I'm sorry that it's giving you such a hard time. If you are using a pencil type iron, chances are that it wont produce enough heat to soften the glue.

    If you have access to a Weller soldering gun your chances would be better.

    By the way, Davo, what is the knob made of? If it's a metal knob you might try driling a 1/8" hole right down through the center of the knob untill you reach the end of the shaft. It's made of very soft metal. Place the bass on its back and put a drop or two of finger nail polish remover or acetone in the hole and give it a little while to soften the glue. Be sure to mask off the finish and be very careful not to get any on the finish.

    I would think long and hard before I attempted to remove the pot with the knob still on the bass. The knob will keep the shaft from coming out of the hole even if you could get the mounting nut off.If you absolutely have to destroy the pot, a Dremel tool with the proper cutoff disk should make pretty short work of it.

    Good luck.

    Harrell S
    PS
    I know that you are getting aggravated and that's understandable but try to be patient. Walk away from it for a bit and cool down or (if your at all like me) you'll screw something up bigtime.
     
  18. Davo737

    Davo737

    Feb 29, 2000
    Syracuse, NY
    Thanks again. You weren't kidding about getting frustrated - I was about ready to just hurl the bass out the window. The part that makes me angriest is that I couldn't have just left it alone. When it didn't come off easy, I kept trying and trying and trying until I somehow loosened the nut completely off. So now, the knob has to come of so I can tighten the pot back up. Ugh. If only I could just go back and not have touched it. But thanks a ton for the help, everyone.
     
  19. ubersam

    ubersam

    Oct 12, 2000
    L.A.
    I think that at this point the pot is already damaged that it would need a replacement. I would try the Dremel/cut-off wheel approach, just don't slip! :eek: Mask all surfaces of the bass except for the knob, of course. If you don't have a Dremel, this is a good excuse to get one ;)