Electronics > Repair

Repair faulty pot

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Hi. I have a number of guitar pedals which appear to have faulty and/or noisy pots. I have been looking at one in particular which, in live use, displays the symptoms "off or on full" with only 100% increase available. I have taken the pot apart and what I can see of the carbon (?) track appears to be in good condition yet when I place a multi meter at any two separate points on the track, I appear to have no circuit when I'd expect to have one. Is this a valid test that, if conducted at various points and distances on the track, proves that the track itself is operational (I am at the beginner end of the electronics scale) and, if so, can anyone offer any suggestions as to how to resolve the problem or a way to establish that the pot needs to be replaced.

Thanks in advance.

Deoxit Fader F5

Spray it in the pot, work the pot back and forth a few times, and voila just like new!

If it only gives you 0%/100% with nothing in between the pot may be open circuited on the hi (not ground) side. The carbon track becomes disconnected from the metal terminal where the wires are soldered. At 'full throttle' (name of a local band B.T.W.) the wiper hits the metal terminal and you get 100% volume. This happens a lot with pots. It may be un-repairable but replacement pots are easy to get and easy to install. When your reputation is on the line during a gig (Tune it or die!!  Remember that T-Shirt?) Just replace the pot and sleep better knowing you won't be "That guy" who brings questionable unreliable gear to the gig!!! (Like my keyboard player who owns the biggest pile of unreliable keyboards and sound gear!!!! It is a shit pile that goes together like a Tinker-Toy set with half the pieces broken or missing, but he won't let me bring my gear which mostly came from the Clair Brothers used gear warehouse and is in superior condition. He is a control freak and it is 'his' band.)
Sure wish I still had my ShoBud volume pedal given to me by a steel guitar player. I have an Ernie Ball now.

I'd suggest using conductive plastic pots as replacements, they tend to more rugged, longer lasting and smoother operating than Carbon ones.

wat 20 years, then post again  ;)


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