Pots are too stiff for smooth volume swells.

Discussion in 'Luthier's Guitar & Bass Technical Discussion' started by daphil, Sep 27, 2006.

  1. daphil

    daphil Member

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    Hi,

    I'm looking to find a way to loosen the pots on my MIJ Tele a bit, so I can do volume swells with my pinky fingers.

    Do I need new pots? What type/brand would be appropriate?

    Thanks!
     
  2. scottlr

    scottlr Member

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    I have seen a few Strats where the knob is pressed down all the way to the pickguard, which will make it stiff feeling. If that is the case, just pull it up a tad and it'll rotate freely. I can't recall ever having a pot on a guitar that was that stiff.
     
  3. clothwiring

    clothwiring Supporting Member

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    I've found that pots are different. I normally buy CTS pots and the tension varies greatly.
     
  4. Junior

    Junior Member

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    You could try a Bourns pot from Mouser. Very smooth, and easier to turn than a CTS.
     
  5. Jack Briggs

    Jack Briggs Member

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    Bourns pots are super easy to turn. Too easy for my tastes. If you get CTS pots from AllParts you're going to be getting the ones with the lowest rotational torque that CTS offers - about 6.5 in./oz. torque. I find them the best of what's made today. Of course, there's nothing like the '50's Centralabs..... ;)
     
  6. willyboy

    willyboy Member

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    FWIW most of the stiff pot issues I have ever encountered are becouse of a lack of lubricant or grease which is too thick inside the pot. This is easily remedied by trying a contact cleaner such as Caig Deoxit and a lubricant such as Caig CaiLube MCL which is specifically designed for faders, switches, and pots - awesome stuff. I use this as part of my regular maintenance on my guitars, pedals, and amps. I have seen this used by many techs in recording studios as well. It works wonders for old ceased-up parts as well. Check out the Caig website, lots of great quality products and can be purchased through them as well, although I just get it at the local electronics supply store.

    Cheers
    DM
     
  7. TAVD

    TAVD Guitar Player Gold Supporting Member

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    Try the lube 1st. Some pots like CTS that have the back cover attached to the bushing with those four little tabs bent over the edge. You can take a small screwdriver and gently lift between the bushing and cover to loosen the pot. Inversely, you can squeeze the tabs to tighten the pot.
     
  8. muddy

    muddy Member

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    cailube works like a CHARM!! i use my vol pot ala akkerman-style, and it NEEDS to be loose & slippery! otherwise, the mighty mite vol pots are ALL ready to go in this regard. but they can be hard to find. there is ONE ebay seller that has 'em.


    ml
     
  9. Chiba

    Chiba Gold Supporting Member

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    Clean it first and check the knob. If those things don't solve the problem, just replace the pot.

    --chiba
     

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