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Re: Input Jack, Pots, Switch, Tube Socket Maintenance

7/1/2005 6:26 PM
Re: Input Jack, Pots, Switch, Tube Socket Maintenance
Be patient and don't expect to give it one good bend into place. Gently apply torque to the blade repeatedly until it is nudged into place. Plug something into the jack to remove the tip contact pressure and also to make visible the clearance you have to work with. To tighten the tip contact, het behind it with your finger and push. But the shunt contact needs pliers. I use duckbills, like needlenose but wider. Grasp the blade near its base, and twist your wrist to urge the blade towards the tip blade.  
Once done, look for "scrub." When the tip blade contacts the shunt blade, the shunt should give a bit. A little motion. It is not sufficient that the blades just meet. That extra bit of motion after contact is called scrub because the two contact points tend to wipe across each other slightly, thus scrubbing the contacts each time. This helps them clean themselves.
7/2/2005 8:34 AM
Al Lang

I think putting a guitar cord in first, helps a lot.  
7/30/2005 2:16 PM

I was going to mention plugging in a guitar cord before you retension, this is the way I prefer.  
Now I have seen a lot more damaged jacks than ever and I think it is due to a wave of crummy metric imitation plugs that are not 1/4 inch to begin with, plus do not have the same length and distance to the tip, different tip shape, etc.  
Use only Switchcraft plugs into virgin Switchcraft jacks and your problems will be minimized.  
They do not seem as good when it comes to spring tension or corrosion resistance as they were in the '60's, but I imagine those were not as reliable as the ones in the '30's used by telephone operators for actual switching.  
Also, this is a good time to remind people to spray the pickup switch in your Les Paul with Deoxit, many times the maintenance interval is not much better than the switching jacks. Lots of times it makes players think they got better pickups instantly or something, and its so easy to do.  
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