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tomt6257

Replacing Or Cleaning Scratchy Volume Pot

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The volume control on my JTV-69 is scratchy and I am not enthused about having to remove the pickguard and guts to get to it to clean or replace.  My concern is disturbing the electronics/wiring.

Does anyone have a suggestion on whether to try this myself or have a tech do it( none of which I found have Variax specific experience) or send it back to Line 6.?

 

 

Thanks

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I've never looked under there, but one would hope that you could just spray some contact cleaner in there without too much drama. You should never have to ship a guitar anywhere to deal with a scratchy pot...if it needs to be replaced, I suppose that may be more complicated with these guitars. I think I've only had one volume pot die completely over the years, so hopefully that's not necessary. Dirty/scratchy pots are a frequent problem, however, and if the only way to deal with it is to ship it to L6, they've set themselves up for a whole lot of headaches for a problem that should take 0.84 seconds to solve with an aeresol can.

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I agree with cruisinon2.  If the pot is scratchy I would not send the guitar for repair.  Ask for a replacement pot and do it yourself if you can.  Much less risk than shipping it.  (Or try contact cleaner but make sure you use the right stuff)

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I would strongly advise against anything labeled "Control Cleaner", as many of these leave a horrible oily residue that tends to get everywhere (and in my experience does not really protect things in the long term).  A very small shot of non-residue electronics cleaner should do the trick.  Spray it in an opening on the pot and immediately run the control back and forth through its full range a few times.  Watch your eyes when you push the button!  That stuff can come roaring back out at you :-)  

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Thanks for the great replies.    Upon further investigation the scratchiness only occurs when in the modeling mode.This has been covered (but not completely resolved) in another thread.  So its something software based rather than dirt/grit in the pot.

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On my 500 I get that when connected to workbench.  My JTV pots are silent when connected to my Pod500x.

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On my 500 I get that when connected to workbench.  My JTV pots are silent when connected to my Pod500x.

On my 500 I get that when connected to workbench.  My JTV pots are silent when connected to my Pod500x.

I've noticed that with the JTV, too. Odd, but never happens without being connected to Workbench, so I can deal with it while tweaking things...as long as its quiet through the amp.

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The noise is the communication between the PC and the Variax over USB.  The older variax does that too.  Every time you turn the knob, there is info sent between  the Variax and WB running on the PC.  Don't worry about this since it only does it when running WB.

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Friends, my 2012 JTV69s has the scratchy volume pot problem when in modeling mode only, and when using a 1/4" cable (haven't checked to see if it happens when using Workbench HD and the VDI cable). No scratching noise when in the magnetic pickup mode. When the Volume knob is rotated vigorously back and forth about 8 times, it will go away - but only for a moment - then the scratching sound quickly returns.

 

I also have a faulty input Jack (1/4") causing poor signal that's correctable if the Jack plug is wiggled around several times. This annoyance occurs with any Cable used. The condition is very bothersome, forcing me to sadly avoid relying on the JTV69s for gigging. I dislike the thought of spending $40+ to get a replacement Jack, and running the risk of worsening the guitar if I re-install the Jack incorrectly somehow. The nearest listed Line6 Authorized repairman is in North Jersey - a 3 hour drive from me, and I would prefer to avoid shipping the guitar due to risk. I've replaced many guitar electronics over the years and a Jack replacement shouldn't be too difficult, however, the Variax is a more sophisticated animal. I removed and inspected the JTV69s's input Jack to bend the pin in closer to the jack probe, but it really didn't solve the problem.

 

Any suggestions you can offer to remedy the above problems I'm having would be greatly appreciated. With thanks in advance for your reply.

 

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http://line6.com/support/page/kb/_/general-faq/cleaning-pots-and-faders-r816

 

@ tomt6257,... You could have a tech do it. However, I'm the guy at Line 6 who services

the guitars, and already have a good idea what it could be.

 

Pulling the pick-guard up yourself, if you don't have experience at his, is not a good idea.

It can get very involved under there. And I've already done a lot of these guitars.

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http://line6.com/support/page/kb/_/general-faq/cleaning-pots-and-faders-r816

 

@ tomt6257,... You could have a tech do it. However, I'm the guy at Line 6 who services

the guitars, and already have a good idea what it could be.

 

Pulling the pick-guard up yourself, if you don't have experience at his, is not a good idea.

It can get very involved under there. And I've already done a lot of these guitars.

Hello Mr. Psarkission,

 

Hoping you wouldn't mind sharing some advice and commentary, please. I removed the volume knob, nut and washer, then sprayed 2-3 shots of Electronics Cleaner (plastic-safe, non-lubricating) down along the pot shaft on both sides. All back together, rotated pot shaft 10-12 times, same noise only a little less. Removed knob , etc. again and gave 2-3 shots of Electronics Duster in same location. Same noise problem. Seems like the scratchy noise is eliminated briefly, then will return. If done very carefully, would removing the pickguard just enough to examine the Volume pot and repeating the previously-mentioned process be more effective, or are there any other suggestions I may consider at this point?

 

Many thanks for your valuable input.

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I always recommend the cotton swab, because it's more targeted and less messy.

Also, leftover fluid dripping into the cavity and messy with other things underneath

is a concern.  Always be aware.

 

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Contact cleaner is usually not the solution because scratchy pots are caused by the internal contact scraping across the resistor surface not sliding smoothly. Lubrication is what is needed so it slides smoothly. A tiny drop of 3 in 1 oil should do the trick if the sound is actually caused by the potentiometer.

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DO NOT use 3 and 1 Oil. DO NOT use WD40 or any silicon or petrol based lubricants.

These are semi insulator, and it will gum up and mess up the insides of the pot, and make things worse.

 

http://line6.com/support/page/kb/_/general-faq/cleaning-pots-and-faders-r816

 

70% to 99% isopropyl alcohol was a maintenance recommendation by the Audio Engineering Society (AES)

for tape heads, pots, switches and such, if you can't get the afore mentioned items in the link.

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70% to 99% isopropyl alcohol was a maintenance recommendation by the Audio Engineering Society (AES)...

To the masses: "rubbing alcohol"...

 

Contact cleaner is usually not the solution because scratchy pots are caused by the internal contact scraping across the resistor surface not sliding smoothly. Lubrication is what is needed so it slides smoothly. A tiny drop of 3 in 1 oil should do the trick if the sound is actually caused by the potentiometer.

Worst idea ever...

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Well, 45+ experience, and I used to buy and sell these chemicals when I did retail electronics.

And I was there (being a member of AES and IEEE) when AES gave the talk on the subject, which

is how I know what they recommended.

 

Rubbing alcohol,... yes, if possible, preferably with a higher isopropyl level. We use 99% here.

 

Trich and other fluorocarbons and MEK would be better, but those are unsafe and

so banned for consumer use.

 

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Well, 45+ experience, and I used to buy and sell these chemicals when I did retail electronics.

And I was there (being a member of AES and IEEE) when AES gave the talk on the subject, which

is how I know what they recommended.

 

Rubbing alcohol,... yes, if possible, preferably with a higher isopropyl level. We use 99% here.

Nobody questioned the recommendation...I merely provided a translation. Despite its presence in every medicine cabinet on earth, I guarantee most folks don't know "isopropyl alcohol" from weapons grade uranium...never mind that it comes in more than one concentration. But if you say "rubbing alcohol", the whole world knows exactly what your talking about...

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Ah, yes. Translation is good. You and I are aware, some out there aren't.

Good thing and I are here to inform. :)

 

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