Pot repair 101

Rob01 cyborg0 at midwest.net
Mon Jun 16 03:04:26 CEST 1997

  Oh, heres a little known secret for repairing pots, this might esp. be
helpful to those of you with pots that are no longer available for machines
such as the 303..
I had a pot go bad the other day, for which i had no replacement, so heres what
i did..
I checked the continuity between the two outer leads. These should read a value
equal to the pot value (ie. if the pot is 10k, you should read 10k between the
outer leads) Well, it didnt read 10k.. It read infinity.. uh oh..
Well, i carefully pried up the little metal tabs on the case and opened the pot
to see what was the problem, since destroying the pot wouldnt really matter,
cuz it didnt work at all in its present state, so what the hell..
Well, i found that there was a spot on the carbon wiper trace inside that was
pretty wore down. hmmm... carbon..
So, i thought, HOW the HELL will i get CARBON BACK on the trace?? I thought
about soldering  a little dab of solder on there.. nope, i figgered it wouldnt
hold to the carbon trace..
I thought, well, a pencil is carbon...unless its that crappy plastic lead..
Well, lo and behold, i checked for resistance,and the carbon (lead) of the
PENCIL was a pretty good conductor!
So i scribbled pencil on the worn carbon trace inside the pot, and BAM!!! it
worked like a charm!! I was getting the 10k ohm resistance between the outer
leads! YEHA!!
Then, i carefully put it back together, and it WORKED!!
So then i started to check out other pots that were crackly and acting up, and
i tried it a few more times, and it really helped out.. It was almost like
refurbishing a pot. 

I would use this only as a last resort for units that you cannot freely get
pots for, for other stuff, it would be easier to just solder in a new pot..
So, do you think the ppl who make pots just have a guy who scribbles on the PCB
of the pot? just kiddin..

             Zeros & Ones
The Mind Controls the Machine 
The Machine Controls the Body

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