J-Wire contact cleaning

Pulling out your hair? Don't know what to do or where to go? Ask in here.
Forum rules
READ: VSE Board-Wide Rules and Guidelines

If your Help request has been solved, please edit your first post in order to select the Image Topic Icon to let others know your topic has been solved.
Post Reply
User avatar
WhinyLittleRunt
Active Member
Active Member
Posts: 478
Joined: Fri May 19, 2006 1:41 am
Location: CT

J-Wire contact cleaning

Post by WhinyLittleRunt » Sat Sep 13, 2008 3:51 pm

Guys,
I own a Micromoog and I've always seemed to have a problem with the first octave E key. I have taken the unit apart and used alcohol on a swab to clean the contact bar and j wire but it only seems to be a temporary fix, if at all. What should I be using to clean these metal parts without damaging them or ruining their conductivity?

BTW the problem I experience is the note bouncing and jittering... which like I said, I have gotten it to work by cleaning with alcohol but it only lasts a few days if that. If it came down to replacing the jwire I could always use a guitar string or something like that right?
I like vintage synths....

sam
Expert Member
Expert Member
Posts: 1303
Joined: Wed Jun 21, 2006 10:09 pm
Location: Europe

Re: J-Wire contact cleaning

Post by sam » Sat Sep 13, 2008 9:32 pm

Some techs use erasures to clean these..
Lam memorymoog.Sonic six.Vp330 mk1.SH101.OSCar.ARP odyssey..multivox mx3000.Solina stringsynth.polivox
ms20/50.Andromeda. OBX.
Prophet 5 Pro-one. Wasp.EMS AKS.

User avatar
xpander
Synth Explorer
Synth Explorer
Posts: 1541
Joined: Sat Jun 02, 2007 7:15 am
Gear: UltraProteus, Xpander, 200e, Minimoogs, Radias, Prophet VS, PolyEvolver, Arp 2600
Location: los gatos, california
Contact:

Re: J-Wire contact cleaning

Post by xpander » Sat Sep 13, 2008 11:00 pm

you can always replace a j-wire, too. every problematic key from my old minis have all resolved themselves by playing regularly.

User avatar
WhinyLittleRunt
Active Member
Active Member
Posts: 478
Joined: Fri May 19, 2006 1:41 am
Location: CT

Re: J-Wire contact cleaning

Post by WhinyLittleRunt » Wed Sep 17, 2008 3:32 am

Cool...

You know what I actually ended up doing?
I didn't have a damn eraser in the house and I noticed that that one particular j wire was blacker than the rest and oxidized - so I ripped off a piece of a nail file, pulled the wire under the contact bar and lightly sanded it. Presto! I took a chance sanding it but now it works really good. I cleaned it off with alcohol after too.
I like vintage synths....

User avatar
xpander
Synth Explorer
Synth Explorer
Posts: 1541
Joined: Sat Jun 02, 2007 7:15 am
Gear: UltraProteus, Xpander, 200e, Minimoogs, Radias, Prophet VS, PolyEvolver, Arp 2600
Location: los gatos, california
Contact:

Re: J-Wire contact cleaning

Post by xpander » Wed Sep 17, 2008 6:33 am

awesome! the tech who worked on my Minis lightly sanded part of the bus bar as a last resort- it worked, despite being against all conventional wisdom of rubbing off the gold plating. :arrow: [-X

i was actually thinking of replacing all of the bus bars at a certain point, an almost unheard of procedure. but now they work perfectly and using them regularly really did make the sour notes go away, weird.

modorange
Newbie
Newbie
Posts: 6
Joined: Mon Jun 09, 2008 2:09 pm

Re: J-Wire contact cleaning

Post by modorange » Wed Oct 22, 2008 3:20 pm

I have heard of the buss bars being polished with chrome polish.

I was wondering if anyone goes through a certain "procedure" whereby a recently-purchased Micromoog (or other similar older analog) is cleaned and spruced up? For instance, do you open it up and spray all the contacts, and swab the j-wires, etc? I'm going to be cleaning up my recently-acquired Micromoog.

User avatar
xpander
Synth Explorer
Synth Explorer
Posts: 1541
Joined: Sat Jun 02, 2007 7:15 am
Gear: UltraProteus, Xpander, 200e, Minimoogs, Radias, Prophet VS, PolyEvolver, Arp 2600
Location: los gatos, california
Contact:

Re: J-Wire contact cleaning

Post by xpander » Wed Oct 22, 2008 6:54 pm

modorange wrote:I have heard of the buss bars being polished with chrome polish.

I was wondering if anyone goes through a certain "procedure" whereby a recently-purchased Micromoog (or other similar older analog) is cleaned and spruced up? For instance, do you open it up and spray all the contacts, and swab the j-wires, etc? I'm going to be cleaning up my recently-acquired Micromoog.
i always take them to my local tech to get all of the contacts cleaned & have it recap'd. it saves a lot of time & effort.

i know my Pro One had the contacts cleaned with Tarn-X, which apparently worked quite well because those contacts work awesome. it's just a matter of figuring out how you're going to rinse it, that stuff is caustic.

Steve Jones
Active Member
Active Member
Posts: 565
Joined: Wed Apr 23, 2008 10:40 pm
Real name: Steve
Location: Sydney
Contact:

Re: J-Wire contact cleaning

Post by Steve Jones » Thu Oct 23, 2008 8:58 pm

I clean the contact rails on synths all the time, and I use a soft white pencil eraser (NOT an abrasive ink eraser). I avoid anything that is abrasive including polishes, as the plating is very thin, and sanding it off will fix the problem beautifully by exposing bare base metal, but it will oxidise over very quickly, and you will be back to square one, whereas the gold plating tarnishes very slowly and should be preserved.

I normally remove the bus bars, clean them with the rubber, wipe with isopropyl alcohol and re-install. If there is further problems and the plating is intact, then the problem you are having is not with the bus bars.

I would suspect that if the only way that your problem was solved was by a tech sanding the rails, it was because someone in the past had already sanded them and removed the plating, and the only option was to do it again.

Cleaning the J-wires is much trickier, but they rarely need it as their contact surface is so small, repetitive playing will normally keep them clean.
Synthesizer service tech since 1982.
Synth parts and service, Sydney Australia.

Steve Jones
Active Member
Active Member
Posts: 565
Joined: Wed Apr 23, 2008 10:40 pm
Real name: Steve
Location: Sydney
Contact:

Re: J-Wire contact cleaning

Post by Steve Jones » Thu Oct 23, 2008 9:01 pm

modorange wrote:I have heard of the buss bars being polished with chrome polish.

I was wondering if anyone goes through a certain "procedure" whereby a recently-purchased Micromoog (or other similar older analog) is cleaned and spruced up? For instance, do you open it up and spray all the contacts, and swab the j-wires, etc? I'm going to be cleaning up my recently-acquired Micromoog.
Don't forget to do the 5 minute Micromoog / Multimoog VCF mod, it will improve bottom end noticably, and is only a matter of adding a single electrolytic to the exposed side of the PCB.
Synthesizer service tech since 1982.
Synth parts and service, Sydney Australia.

modorange
Newbie
Newbie
Posts: 6
Joined: Mon Jun 09, 2008 2:09 pm

Re: J-Wire contact cleaning

Post by modorange » Thu Nov 20, 2008 12:23 am

I read about this mod, it apparently improves bottom end on the Micro or Multi so they sound better as a bass synth.. a la Mini.. Do you have a link to a good step-by-step on this mod? Much appreciated.

BTW on the Micro I opened it up and sprayed all the pots out and got rid of all the dust and the keyboard contacts all actually work very well already.

I am having a bit of an issue with the pitch-bend ribbon, it skips to the highest note when depressed anywhere. It didn't do this previously.. and the surface of it is in good shape.

User avatar
WhinyLittleRunt
Active Member
Active Member
Posts: 478
Joined: Fri May 19, 2006 1:41 am
Location: CT

Re: J-Wire contact cleaning

Post by WhinyLittleRunt » Thu Nov 20, 2008 4:43 am

I am having a bit of an issue with the pitch-bend ribbon, it skips to the highest note when depressed anywhere. It didn't do this previously.. and the surface of it is in good shape.
Mine did this exact thing too when I fixed the contact strip. It worked fine at first, then after being on for a while and warmed up, it would do that where it would jump. I would turn it off and let it cool, then turn it back on and it was fine. It is working more consistently now but I have no idea what causes that....
I like vintage synths....

User avatar
guitarsandsynths
Active Member
Active Member
Posts: 520
Joined: Sun Apr 06, 2008 7:05 am
Real name: Angelo Metz
Band: Brazility
Location: Los Angeles
Contact:

Re: J-Wire contact cleaning

Post by guitarsandsynths » Fri Nov 21, 2008 6:28 pm

I clean mine with a pencil eraser. I don't remove de bars. I just rub the eraser carefully against the contact bar. I successfully cleaned my mini, sh 7, cs 15 and P5. I wouldn't recomend anything abrasive.
You can get j-wires at U$5 a pop plus U$6 for shipping form these guys: arcsound@ix.netcom.com
Good luck!
Minimoog ModelD Prophet5 Roland Jupiter8 SH7 GR9 CSQ100 TR606 TR707 TR727 Oberheim OB8 ARP2600 KorgVC10 Rhodes73 Wurlitzer 200A ClavinetII DOTCOM PearlDRX1 TamaTS202 Simmons SDS9

User avatar
snod_donkey
Junior Member
Junior Member
Posts: 248
Joined: Tue Aug 05, 2008 1:45 pm
Gear: Moog Minimoog - SCI Pro-One - Roland Sh-101 - Yamaha XS6 - Oberheim OB-Xa - Roland TD8 - Evans super Echo Tape Loop - Memeory Man Deluxe

Re: J-Wire contact cleaning

Post by snod_donkey » Tue Jul 14, 2009 9:25 am

I would not recommend sanding down the contact bar. This may work for a short while but i think the bar is gold plated. Sanding will remove this. What i found best was to simply remove the contact bar, this is easy to do. Just heat the end with a soldering iron and the it will pull out. Use a metal cleaning wadding which will polish the bar without too much abrassive action. This will sort it for years to come.... bit harder to do this on the spring wire contacts but again they are gold plated so dont go over the top with sanding or a file.......

ali_g12
Newbie
Newbie
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Jul 06, 2009 9:16 pm
Gear: Prophet 5, CS-80, Rhodes 73, Korg MS-20, Studio Electronics SE-1.

Re: J-Wire contact cleaning

Post by ali_g12 » Wed Jul 15, 2009 3:28 pm

The j-wires and bus bar on my prophet 5 have been giving me problems since I bought it. As a last reosrt I tried to improve conductivity with some silver conductive paint but this hasonly made matters worse. I think it is going to be a case of getting a new bus bar.

Does anyone know where I can get some gold plated wire? I guess it is around 2-3mm thick for the prophet 5 bus bar.

FlavioB
Newbie
Newbie
Posts: 12
Joined: Thu May 14, 2015 12:17 pm

Re: J-Wire contact cleaning

Post by FlavioB » Sun Jun 05, 2016 2:47 pm

Steve Jones wrote:I clean the contact rails on synths all the time, and I use a soft white pencil eraser (NOT an abrasive ink eraser). I avoid anything that is abrasive including polishes, as the plating is very thin, and sanding it off will fix the problem beautifully by exposing bare base metal, but it will oxidise over very quickly, and you will be back to square one, whereas the gold plating tarnishes very slowly and should be preserved.

I normally remove the bus bars, clean them with the rubber, wipe with isopropyl alcohol and re-install. If there is further problems and the plating is intact, then the problem you are having is not with the bus bars.

I would suspect that if the only way that your problem was solved was by a tech sanding the rails, it was because someone in the past had already sanded them and removed the plating, and the only option was to do it again.

Cleaning the J-wires is much trickier, but they rarely need it as their contact surface is so small, repetitive playing will normally keep them clean.
Hi and sorry for revamping such an old thread!
I could use some of your know-how and suggestions to clean the keyboard contacts of my Vermona Synthesizer. It looks like this (click to enlarge):

Image

What would you recommend me to do to get things clean and working ok again?
Thanks and regards,
Flavio.

Post Reply