Clarostat conductive plastic pots (380 & 485 series)

Hi:
I'm trying to find out if anyone has used the conductive plastic potentiometers for guitars and/or for volume pedals for pedal steels
and had positive results with them. Living on the coast with excessive salt air and sand is not exactly the ideal environment for carbon pots in terms of getting much useful life out of them.
I got some info of Honeywell's website and they claim a 1 million cycle life (rotational) for the 485 series and 100,000 cycle life for the 380 series with both having 1% dynamic noise and conform to MIL- R-94 specifications. Although they are a bit pricey--especially the 485 series, however, if they work as well as Honeywell's propaganda claims, they may well be worth the investment.
Any insights or thoughts would be sincerely appreciated.
http://sensing.honeywell.com/index.cfm?ci_id 046&la_id=1&catIdy843
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Unless you live in a palm frond hut right on the sand then regular pots are fine. If you get enough sand and salt into a carbon type to wreck it then nothings going to last long. The whole guitar should come unglued in about ..oh 6 months so why worry about getting 1,000,000 turns outta your pots?

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Keith Adams wrote:

Conductive plastic is quieter than carbon, right?

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No not THAT extreme but, the CTS 500s I'm using in my strats are good for about 10 - 13 months and start getting scratchy. For a pedal steel where pots really get a workout...forget it. Even the ABs I'm using last a year or less. ...and you are right, nothing really lasts on the beach. Cleaning them is a very short lived fix and subsequently become worse than what they were. It's not just the salty air...it's the prevailing winds that blow it everywhere and into everything.

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I don't like CTS pots in guitars. I've tried the ones from Hoffman Amps, Specialty Guitar, and Acme. The kinds with the smooth back, *and* that kind with the dimple in the middle. They were all scratchy, and hard to turn.
I use CGE pots, which are easy to turn, and they're not scratchy. On top of being better than the CTS garbage, CGE pots cost less
Neither one is as good as Stackpole pots were, but they haven't made those for a while. Buying used, or NOS Stackpole pots is too expensive for me.
Haven't tried Honeywell pots.
For me, the CGE pots last a couple years in a Tele, and then need cleaning. But you need to use Caigs DeOxit to clean them. RadioShack's "Contact/Control Cleaner Lubricant" stuff really isn't good for pots.
Pete
On 24 Mar 2007 05:03:29 -0700, "Igor The Terrible"

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-- We figured out how to travel through time at the speed of regular time... with plastic bags. --Nathan Explosion
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...
Spray DeOxit into pots, then nothing else, and see how long they last. __ Steve .
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You can get DeoxIT at most RadioShack's now, in kit form: http://www.radioshack.com/product/index.jsp?productId !04746&cp=&sr=1&origkwoxit&kwoxit&parentPage=search
Great stuff. I use it on everything from audio/video, computers, auto/ marine, etc. Lots of other products also, www.deoxit.com
Mike
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Keith Adams wrote:

If you need long live for your pots, go for the conductive plastic (servo quality) potmeters. I have used different kinds in demanding tasks, (Servo, steering wheel, gas pedals etc), where the wiper vibrates a lot, causing ordinary pots to fail within weeks. The conductive plastic ones have never failed me, also because the servo quality ones are better sealed and have better bearings. Livetime as steering wheel pot has run into several years.(but they cost a lot of money.)
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Igor The Terrible wrote:

I haven't used them in a while, but when I did, I loved them.
I really need to get some again. They last like crazy. At least they used to, and I assume they still do, or nobody would buy them. Especially at that price./
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How much are they ? Sounds like something I have to have but don't need
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Their carbon comp pots were selling for around $20.00; which were replaced by the conductive plastic units. The 485 series you have to go directly through Honeywell because they are special order items.

will put in your guitar for a l o n g time--if ever. I have no idea how much they are, but,I will find out sometime next week.
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I'm not a musician, but I have experience with a wide range of electronic components and their characteristics. I don't know the specifics on the pots that you've been discussing, but I would recommend that you take a look at sealed pots. It seems, from the discussion, that the pot elements are being contaminated and destroyed by airborne moisture and sand/grit. A sealed pot should eliminate those hazards and make the pot last a long time. Don't know the I don't know the physical sizes of the pots that you need for the guitars. Mouser carries several lines of pots, among them the Bourns Series 51 panel mount pots. They are available on both Cermet and Conductive Plastic. THey are listed on catalog page 542. If you don't have a copy of their catalog, you can search for their part number 652-PCW1J-C24-BAB103 and then download a copy of the catalog page for pictures and resistance values. Is $9.00 each cheap enough for you?
Mouser (and other distributors) usually carry a pretty good line of controls such as this... Just have to search for them. www.mouser.com www.digikey.com www.newark.com
Cheers!!!
--
Dave M
MasonDG44 at comcast dot net (Just substitute the appropriate characters in the
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...

But there's no place to spray the *magic goo*... __ Steve .
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Stephen Cowell wrote:

A sealed pot needs no magic goo. That's the joy of them.
Graham
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Ah... I see! __ Steve . but what do I do with my $15 bottle of goo?
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Eeyore wrote:

Your browser didn't show you the sarcasm tags, did it?
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A widely held misconception is that a "conductive" grease in needed in switches and pots..... if one thinks about it for a moment, conductive grease would obviously short things out. Many times a silicon based grease (non-conductive for sure) is used to add smoothness AND particularly in the case of switches to protect the contacts from exposure to the air with can corrode or tarnish silver or tin plated surfaces. Dan - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

electronic
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I wasn't aware of anyone else making conductive plastic units, but it's worth looking into. AB was the grail so far as pots go for steel players. It would be a miracle for a cheapy to last more than a few weeks.
There are pros and cons so far as sealed vs unsealed units go. In the past, carbon would eventually deteriorate and if it is a sealed pot, you basically tossed it. What has me wondering how would plastic hold up under the same set of circumstances. If a pot would hold up under a pedal steel player's volume pedal for a few years, they would, for all intents and purposes, be immortal in guitars.
Thanks for the heads up on the alternates.
PS
A company rep sent me a .pdf doc on the pots I mentioned above; and if anyone is interested wants a copy just send me an email and I will send it to you. I have no idea where it is located on their website-- if at all.

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Igor The Terrible wrote:

http://www.potentiometers.com /
--
Service to my country? Been there, Done that, and I've got my DD214 to
prove it.
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Igor The Terrible wrote:

I have no experience of Clarostat myself but Vishay-Sfernice's conductive plastic track pots are lovely for audio.
Graham
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