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Re: Carlings bad...?

7/21/2000 3:26 PM
Ed Guidry
Re: Carlings bad...?
All of the Carling's I've bought were made in mexico. Does anyone know if they were ever manufactured elsewhere?  
The switches seem to be constructed sturdily enough. It may be a contact issue. I think these switches were originally made to handle much more current than the millivolts or few volts that it sees now.
7/21/2000 6:02 PM
zachary vex low v.s. high current
good point.  
these switches probably were designed for high current, and line voltage, where the contact is momentarily "welded" by the inrush current. i used them without any problem up until the last batch, when this problem surfaced. i think it was in the last 3 months or so that i started seeing failures. before that i went through a batch of 1000 of them without any problems. all of them said mexico on the side. i think carling has been making them in mexico exclusively for a few years.  
7/21/2000 6:30 PM

Maybe that's it.  
I had to go through 3 switches in this pedal before I got one that works. It DID act flaky on this 3rd switch, but at least for last night seems to have settled down.  
I will have to use it today to see.  
It's a bummer.
7/21/2000 7:02 PM
R.G. "Dry" Switching
Dry switching is the name in the switching biz for what we do in stomp boxes. A dry signal is one that has neither the voltage nor current to jump through a marginal size bit of crud. The difficulty getting dry switching reliably is why Bell Labs (remember them??) invented the reed relay - good contact materials in a glas capsule of inert gas.  
Older Carlings did switch dry signals reliably because they had a built in wiping action - the contacts actually came into contact and swiped past each other a bit before coming to rest. The swiping could carve through some amount of crud and was pretty good for even dry signals.  
I think Carling may have changed either their contact materials (more crud builds up), lubrication (more crud to build up) or internal mechanism (less wiping action), and I would be terribly suspicious that this is another instance of MBA Disease - we can save $0.001 per switch if it's not quite the same, and the customers we'd lose are ones that we don't care about anyway.  
This is NOT GOOD news for the effects arena. We don't have enough volume all put together to make any switch manufacturer notice unless we donate a few kilobucks up front.
7/21/2000 7:58 PM

All this high current, high voltage talk got me thinking of a goofy idea. Would it be worthwhile to maybe build a rig for "reconditioning" these switches? Say, a simple 120VAC circuit to switch on a lightbulb, or maybe something that draws lotsa more current?  
Your stompswitch acts up, you pull it from the pedal and plug it into this rig. Switch it on/off about 100 times to burn off the crud, then reinstall in pedal. Kind of pain to desolder/solder the switch in and out of your pedal-but maybe that's a workable problem if this idea has any merit.  
Maybe it's kind of like re-forming a cap... Then again, maybe too much of a hassle to be worth it-like reforming a cap...  
7/21/2000 9:44 PM
It's worth a try! Hey, Aron - you got a new/bad one to give this a go with?
7/21/2000 10:19 PM

Do you need one sent to YOU :-)  
Or does DOUG need one sent to HIM :-)  
Email me an address! :-)  
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