Deep cleaning tube sockets

guitarpedaladdict

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i need to clean tube sockets in an amp and deoxit alone is not cutting it. I was goin to try using pipe cleaners on a chopstick with deoxit, but wondered what those in the know would suggest?

I'm fully aware of voltage issues at play here and will be using a multimeter before sticking anything in the sockets ☠

Any suggestions?
 

Jeff Gehring

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6,201
I just use a couple of dud tubes that I keep around for the cleaning task: a noval and a plastic bodied solid state rectifier for the octals. Shoot the pins with DeOxIt, then plug and unplug the cleaning tube several times then re-tensioning octal pins as necessary.
 

guitarpedaladdict

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Thank you all for the input, the tooth brushes and ones on ebay were exactly what I was looking for.

Re: deoxit, I recently had an old Lexicon PCM unit serviced and the shop in LA told me to try and find the blue label version for future use. Mike, you are correct, something was changed about the Red version that can lead to build up on... your sockets... among other things.

I had a drop in plate voltage that would bounce back up a little bit after using the deoxit and another tube going in and out of the sockets, but would settle back to the lower number shortly after. I'm thinking the brushes and retention should do the trick.

Hawaii is pretty awesome for a lot of things, but electronics and guitar strings are not one of them...
 

guitarpedaladdict

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I'd look more to hazmat shipping reg changes...

- T
Thank Thom, makes sense.

While were at it, anybody have any favorite tools and tips for tightening the sockets after I'm done cleaning? Again, given my salt air challenges, I'm trying to become more self-sufficient in amp care.
 

swiveltung

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14,492
I've used those dental brushes or pipe cleaners. None is that great though. Be sure to tighten the sockets.
 

zenas

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8,759
Dammed salt air ! I live a long, long, depressingly long, way from salt water. But luckily every winter tons and tons of salt gets spread on the roads.
What's this have to do with tube sockets?
The electrical connectors on my 66 Volvo get messed up and no cleaner I've tried works. A wire brush does.
But I can't think of a wire brush that'll fit in a tube socket.

I'd be looking at torch tip cleaner from a welding supply place. Or a real small round file.
 

kinmike

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
1,808
Check out Caig De-Oxit Vacuum tube survival kit on Amazon. Damn if I can't figure out how to add the link.

How do you do that? It allows media embed for "Amazon Product" but won't accept it my url.
 

Pete Cage

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1,455
Has Deoxit changed their formulation? It doesn't seem to work as well as it once did.
I still have a partial bottle of Cramolin (from Caig Labs in the late '70s) and it smells nothing at all like the new stuff, so I expect a lot has changed. I save that stash for the tough jobs. FWIW, D100 is more effective than D5 on the stubborn stuff, as you might expect. But I have the best success from cleaning with a solvent (usually Gum Cutter) before using any kind of deoxidizer. It gets the crud/dirt/wax off first, rather than just smearing it around. Clean the pins, too; sometimes they are pretty cruddy...
 

Blue Strat

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30,183
I've not had great luck with D100 either. I'm going to move to a generic metal cleaner.
 
Last edited:

Timbre Wolf

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Has Deoxit changed their formulation? It doesn't seem to work as well as it once did.
I still have a partial bottle of Cramolin (from Caig Labs in the late '70s) and it smells nothing at all like the new stuff, so I expect a lot has changed. I save that stash for the tough jobs. FWIW, D100 is more effective than D5 on the stubborn stuff, as you might expect. But I have the best success from cleaning with a solvent (usually Gum Cutter) before using any kind of deoxidizer. It gets the crud/dirt/wax off first, rather than just smearing it around. Clean the pins, too; sometimes they are pretty cruddy...
FWIW, the current Deoxit D100 is listed as being "non-hazardous" - with 0% VOC. That exempts it from dangerous goods air or maritime shipping restrictions, so it is easy for OP guitarpedaladdict to get it in Hawaii.

The older Deoxit formulation, and Cramolin that Pete mentioned, consisted of 84% organic solvent, had 30% VOC content, contained n-Hexane as well as isopropanol. That flammable liquid is considerably more restricted for air and sea shipment, not to mention the high VOC content being discouraged these days. If you want a better cleaner, look to a hexane-isopropanol formulation. Caig seems to no longer carry such a product.

- Thom
 

guitarpedaladdict

Gold Supporting Member
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1,890
FWIW, the current Deoxit D100 is listed as being "non-hazardous" - with 0% VOC. That exempts it from dangerous goods air or maritime shipping restrictions, so it is easy for OP guitarpedaladdict to get it in Hawaii.

The older Deoxit formulation, and Cramolin that Pete mentioned, consisted of 84% organic solvent, had 30% VOC content, contained n-Hexane as well as isopropanol. That flammable liquid is considerably more restricted for air and sea shipment, not to mention the high VOC content being discouraged these days. If you want a better cleaner, look to a hexane-isopropanol formulation. Caig seems to no longer carry such a product.

- Thom
Thom, I do appreciate your uncanny ability to remove ambiguity from these kinds of discussions... thank you.
 

Blue Strat

Member
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30,183
FWIW, the current Deoxit D100 is listed as being "non-hazardous" - with 0% VOC. That exempts it from dangerous goods air or maritime shipping restrictions, so it is easy for OP guitarpedaladdict to get it in Hawaii.

The older Deoxit formulation, and Cramolin that Pete mentioned, consisted of 84% organic solvent, had 30% VOC content, contained n-Hexane as well as isopropanol. That flammable liquid is considerably more restricted for air and sea shipment, not to mention the high VOC content being discouraged these days. If you want a better cleaner, look to a hexane-isopropanol formulation. Caig seems to no longer carry such a product.

- Thom
I suspected a lower solvent content by the scent.
 




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