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PLEASE NOTE: While the photos here are representative for this procedure, they may not be of the specific equipment you are repairing.

Important Disclaimer: This information is intended to assist you in repairing your keyboard, which is presumably no longer under warranty. Doing this type of work will almost certainly void any existing warranty coverage. Syntaur offers this information as a free service, and makes no warranties of any kind regarding its use. You are solely responsible for any damages, problems, or injuries resulting from opening up and working on your equipment. Unless otherwise indicated, the keyboard should be powered off and unplugged while these procedures are being done; otherwise, you can be exposed to potentially fatal voltages. If you do not feel comfortable or competent in performing these tasks, we strongly recommend taking your keyboard to a service center.

This page and its contents are copyrighted by Syntaur Productions, and may not be copied or distributed without written permission.

Cleaning Potentiometers

Caig DeoxIt
If your synth makes a crackling sound when you move the volume control, or the movement of a slider or rotary control gives a result which is otherwise sketchy, you may be dealing with a dirty potentiometer. While you may need to replace the potentiometer in extreme cases, a quick bit of cleaning can often work wonders - but you'll need to use the right stuff.

What we use in our repair center, and highly recommend, is Caig DeoxIt D5. Just a quick spray into the innards is usually enough to do the trick - we have even taken rotary pots that would not turn at all, given them a quick shot, and they were instantly as good as new! For a slide pot, spray into the slot where the shaft slides up and down. For rotary pots, find a spot where the stream can reach the inside (often, just above the solder lugs). After spraying - for about a half-second - just 'exercise' the pot for a minute, moving the shaft back and forth.

DeoxIt also works great for slide switches, phone jacks, and anything else where good electrical contact is necessary.

If DeoxIt does not cure your ills, the pot will need some more serious work, or replacement. If the pot is an obsolete part and no longer available, the next step would be to remove it (desolder it) from the circuit board, take it apart, and clean it - wiping the contact surfaces with rubbing alcohol on a cotton swab until they are clean. We have a video available showing how to do this on the Arp-style slide pots here.