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Repairing a vintage Switchcraft switch

 
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Will
Up on his Whore Lore


Joined: 20 Dec 2006
Posts: 5328
Location: MADTOWN RAT 2011

PostPosted: Thu Feb 05, 2009 6:23 am    Post subject: Repairing a vintage Switchcraft switch Reply with quote

The SPDT-off switch in my '57 U1 has been broken for sometime. I replaced it with a cheap Carling from the Shack, but could never find a modern reissue of the og Switchcraft, which was bought in bulk from a bankrupt oven maker. Fixing it turned out to be simpler then I thought.
Here's a look inside:

Four tabs on the edge hold the fiber base on. There are 6 tabs towards the center that hold the contacts in place - DON'T REMOVE THOSE! Gently bend the four tabs back just far enough to slide the base out - they are VERY fragile.

Inside the workings are simple. The handle is connected to a stiff rubber (possibly Delrin) piece. This slides against a greased rocker with contacts in the middle and at either end. Indentations lock the rubber in place. The rocker is copper, and you can see the green corrosion which has built up over the last 51+ years. One side of the switch was dead; the other made contact but with 1k ohms resistance.

Using a bit of emery cloth, I gently cleaned off the corrosion and excess grease. I was careful not to sand any thickness off the metal. You can see how shiny the right side of the rocker is compared to the uncleaned left side.

After all the contacts were clean I gently pushed the whole assy back together and bent the tabs forward. Checking with a meter, both sides of the switch now work and read <1ohm resistance. SUCCESS!!!
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paul_
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Joined: 27 Jul 2006
Posts: 9303

PostPosted: Thu Feb 05, 2009 11:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Class fix-it thread.
_________________
Aug wrote:
which one of you bastards sent me an ebay question asking if you can get teh kurdtz with that 64 mustang? Mad

robertOG wrote:
fran & paul are some of the original gangstas of the JS days when you'd have to say "phuck"
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william
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Joined: 15 Dec 2008
Posts: 1186

PostPosted: Fri Feb 06, 2009 2:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

wow!

my silvertone's switch was messed up, and i ordered a "danelectro" 3 way switch from allparts, which has the same "handle" but a more compact body, which of course you cant see when it's installed.

i might restore my OG switch now, tho. or maybe just hold on to it and fix it when/if i ever sell the guitar.


thanks for posting! this could go in the guitar resources section, for reference.
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