1. Time for some upgrades in server hardware and software to enhance security and take AK to the next level. Please contribute what you can to sales@audiokarma.org at PayPal.com - Thanks from the AK Team
    Dismiss Notice

Tutorial: "Deep Cleaning" An Amplifier

Discussion in 'DIY' started by Machineghost, Oct 22, 2009.

  1. Machineghost

    Machineghost Ghost in the machine

    Messages:
    949
    Location:
    South Africa
    Mmmm - I am not so sure about the steam procedure. The detergent method dissolves oily residue and it then gets rinsed away with copious amounts of water.
     

     

    Please register to disable this ad.

  2. Machineghost

    Machineghost Ghost in the machine

    Messages:
    949
    Location:
    South Africa
    Hello Starbender

    If a transformer is powered up wet it causes serious damage...

    Tell me, why did you place the amp in a FRIDGE? Did I read that correctly?

    Some relays are not sealed and water will get inside. You must try and open them to dry the water out properly.

    Try getting the specs for the "sub transformer" and replace it with a similar voltage ratio unit. It is most likely a 110 vac - 12 vac unit.
     
  3. Starbender

    Starbender Gathering dust...

    Messages:
    564
    Location:
    Istanbul

    Sorry for my bad english :)
    It's should be 'oven'. Not Fridge.


    I checked the subtransformer yesterday. I removed metal cover and checked transformer visually. It looks like a bullet proof sealed.

    About relays; i studied carefully. I'm sure that they dried properly.
    I' trying to gather info about this subtransformer.

    Thanks a lot ;)
     
  4. doctorolds

    doctorolds AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,575
    Location:
    AR
    This is a great post with many comments from many other experienced people. My question relates to the detergent being used. Has anyone used "Simple Green" or "Mean Green" as the main detergent? If so, was it diluted? I have a few receivers that I am getting ready to clean up. I only see pictures from the ghost, which I find odd, but I will post some when my projects are complete. Thanks to all for the input.
     
  5. Machineghost

    Machineghost Ghost in the machine

    Messages:
    949
    Location:
    South Africa
    Is it the same as Wynns Kleen Green? If so it will work yes...
     
  6. ryfox0276

    ryfox0276 Active Member

    Messages:
    238
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    I used simple green undiluted. Same basic biodegradable cleaner. Watch out with scrubbing though because it can really foam up! I just used a simple paint brush to work it into all the nooks and crannies.
     

     

    Please register to disable this ad.

  7. Machineghost

    Machineghost Ghost in the machine

    Messages:
    949
    Location:
    South Africa
    It would be good if other posters that used this method can post some before/after pics... TIA
     
  8. doctorolds

    doctorolds AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,575
    Location:
    AR
    Machineghost, I have read through all pages of this post and have a couple quick questions.

    1. I have heard people rave about DeOxit and the results achieved, but that does not seem to be true in this post. Am I correct to assume that "Deep Cleaning" will produce better results with no lingering side effects?

    2. If the answer to question #1 is true then does this apply to all types of pots, L-Pads, variable resistors, etc.? Any thing specifically not to use this method on?

    3. I have a Pioneer SX-V90 Receiver from 1984-1985, part of the "Communication Series" I believe, see post #4 here: http://www.audiokarma.org/forums/showthread.php?t=35712. It has served me well all these years but the switches are very dirty and intermittent at this point and was wanting to perform a deep clean on it also. Anything to be cautious about, and will it work on these types of switches?

    Thank you in advance for your time. By the way, I have lots of other 1970's silver gear.
     
  9. Machineghost

    Machineghost Ghost in the machine

    Messages:
    949
    Location:
    South Africa
    Hi there

    Yes - this method has no lingering side effects when executed properly.

    Just be very careful with transformers - they must not be submerged in water at all. Remember to apply a small drop of lubricant to the tuning capacitor shaft (and related mechanics) after the wash and dry.

    The wash process removes all dust and sticky contaminant deposits from pots and switches and makes the units perform like new again. Just never soak the PCB and other parts in detergent/water for longer than what is needed to wash it clean.

    And remember - the PCBs and switches need to be DRY before you re-assemble. Dry it out properly using compressed air and a mild-heat source such as a hair dryer.
     
  10. vibroverbus

    vibroverbus Hack of All Trades

    Hmmm... I think "NO" is the answer to your question but maybe I misunderstand it. Basically this kind of washdown is an excellent process to use IN CONJUNCTION WITH DeOxit or other type of control cleaner/lubricants.

    I virtually never just do the wash down, but do both. Most often I disassmble top / front / bottom / etc panels and do the wash first. Then use DeOxit (sometimes another brand or type but most often that) on all the mechanical controls. DeOxit is required to penetrate and condition the control services and because it contains the magical oleic acid, will do some further cleaning to the internals.

    There are rare times that I have soaked pots first with cleaner / lubricant, THEN done the wash, THEN re-De-Oxited, but those are cases when I had something really abused and potentially corroded or crusty and I really wanted to slather on the cleaner/control-lube first, then use the wash to clean away the excess, then finally DeOxit for the final coating to leave on.
     
  11. doctorolds

    doctorolds AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,575
    Location:
    AR
    I was just wondering if applying DeOxit will leave a residue that may cause the controls to get dirtier faster versus not using it and simply doing a deep cleaning. It takes a fair amount of time to complete a deep cleaning and I only desire the best results.

    I know a guy that will actually drill a small hole in some plastic enclosed switches and spray DeOxit in there. I do not know if he seals them back up or not.
     
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2012

     

    Please register to disable this ad.

  12. vibroverbus

    vibroverbus Hack of All Trades

    You are half right - you don't want to use any of those oily-lube control cleaner / lube products on most audio pots because it does attract dust and gunk. But DeOxit and similar high end oleic acid (and other exotic goodies) containing cleaners are decidedly not a problem as long as you are judicious and don't fill the entire pot housing with liquid. Even then its so thin most runs right out but it's better to just do a nice moderate spritz and not waste the stuff anyway.

    But the cleaning effect and light lubrication you do get is highly desirable. Washing the board and chassis is no substitute for that, period.

    So if you "only desire the best results" then you should definitely do this. I guess the alternative would be "desire to get poor results" in which case you should continue to avoid DeOxit.
     
  13. doctorolds

    doctorolds AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,575
    Location:
    AR
    The intent of my post was to get further information on the use of DeOxit in addition to performing the deep cleaning method. If you refer to posts 20, 21, & 27 you will notice that DeOxit is not used or recommended.

    I have not personally used DeOxit, but I do read mostly good things about its ability to clean switches and pots. From your posts I see that you perform the deep cleaning and then use DeOxit as the final step, in addition to problem areas.

    Thank you for your comments! I do not know everything and am simply trying to learn a little more from others that have a bit more experience than I do.
     
  14. grinny

    grinny New Member

    Messages:
    8
    Well, I guess I should put my results here too...

    Few days ago, I saved a little Pioneer SA-408, and this is how it looked like;

    http://imgur.com/a/0qtSN

    There was barely some noise can be heard through headphones, and only hissing and cracking through my soundcard.

    I thought "Hey it's not that bad" and started following Machineghost's instructions...

    And it became into this;

    http://imgur.com/jO4NR

    Getting very clear sound, and enjoying music, thanks to Machineghost!

    Tho there're some things bugging my mind. For example, maybe you have noticed, the transformer is changed with some domestic one;

    http://imgur.com/pxOJl

    I can't find any info about the original transformer, so I'm not sure if this one is compatible with the amp. (I can play music with it somehow...) Would it be a problem if I keep using the same transformer?

    And now I realized that the left speaker lost almost all of it's volume. What makes this happen? When I play with the volume pot it sometimes comes alive and goes back again, with some hissing and cracking.

    Thanks for your help people, even this is a victory for my book!
     
  15. westend

    westend Audiopile

    Messages:
    10,204
    Location:
    Shorewood MN
    Some of the references for not using Deoxit in the posts you listed is about putting the cleaner on boards or other parts. You don't want to use Deoxit on those surfaces. Just cleaning the inside surfaces may be enough to also sluice out debris from the controls and switch surfaces but will probably do nothing to clean the oxidation off the inside of pots and switches. This is the intended purpose of the Caig chemicals, to remove oxidation from wipers and contacts.
     
  16. vc455

    vc455 New Member

    Messages:
    5
    Location:
    Portland OR
    Great thread. My question is about the DeoxIT. Which formula(s) are being used? I went to their web site and was surprised at the number of products they make.
     

     

    Please register to disable this ad.

  17. Gregory

    Gregory Soundco Kid Subscriber

    Messages:
    2,718
    Location:
    Potomac Falls, Virginia
    Deoxit 100% and Deoxit 5% (~95% solvent) in spray cans, Deoxit 100% (red) in a small brush bottle (which tips over and spills easily) and the Green FaderLube in a needle-top dispenser. I don't really know what that stuff is for. :scratch2:

    [​IMG]

    There's a needle oiler in the front right corner that I use on pot shafts, but only ONE drop, maybe two!

    That's what we call "juicing up your gear."


    -Gregory
     
  18. vc455

    vc455 New Member

    Messages:
    5
    Location:
    Portland OR
    Thanks for the info.
     
  19. dieterboels

    dieterboels New Member

    Messages:
    46
    New here

    Hello everyone,

    I'm new to this webstie (you can find me at the introduction page).

    I'd like to clean a few old amp's I recovered (I have a technics year '80, a sansui year '75, and an ITT also somewhere from the '70s I think). I also recovered other gear('50 tube radio for example :yes:), but will watch them after have cleaned the amps.

    I've found a few websites giving instructions on cleaning vintage amps, but how strict do I need to be for cleaning the amps?
    Why is this 'Deep cleaning' more usefull then a cleaning explained in following thread: http://www.audiokarma.org/forums/showthread.php?t=207005

    I also found next website http://www.instructables.com/id/How-To-Clean-The-Controls-On-Your-Amplifier/#, with a totally different approach, can anyone tell me what the advantages are and disadvantages of different methodes?

    I have no experience with working on amplifiers, only changed fuses now and then, but I'm studying electrical engineering, so I have experience with soldering, testing PCB's, I know little about amp-circuits, I also know (most of) the terminology.

    Fact is that I'd like to make this a part of my musical hobby(very attracted by vintage gear as it is the hype nowadays:D). I'd like to start by cleaning these amps, but maybe other simpeler things are better to start with, anyone suggestions for a starter? I'm also a musicplayer, suggestions conerning that are always welcome.

    I'd like not to damage any of my gear I have now.

    Thanks in advance for al suggestions and opinions.

    Greetings
    Dieter
     
    markkb likes this.
  20. Marty Socal

    Marty Socal Active Member

    Messages:
    405
    A cleaner that I found works very well, especially if you are dealing with Tobacco smoke residue or oil/grease residue is the "Purple Power" or "Super Clean" type cleaners you find at the local Auto Parts store. These cleaners seem to work better on oil/grease residue than the "Green" type cleaners, and are safer than the flammable petroleum cleaners at least in my experience.

    http://www.oreillyauto.com/site/c/d...ap?ck=Search_N0440_-1_3046&pt=N0440&ppt=C0090

    http://www.oreillyauto.com/site/c/d...ap?ck=Search_N0440_-1_3046&pt=N0440&ppt=C0090

    I have been using it in the shop for years, but read about using it for cleaning an old radio chassis here:
    http://www.californiahistoricalradio.com/2012/03/secret-weapon-chassis-cleaning/

    Using it full strength may strip any painted on numbers, etc., so dilute it to 25% cleaner, 75% water for delicate/painted surfaces. 50% works very well in most instances if 25% isn't cleaning well enough. 100% works for the worst crud, if you are not worried about stripping off the lettering, etc.

    Note: Be sure to wear latex or nitrile gloves if you have sensitive skin, as this cleaner will remove all the oils from your skin.
     

Share This Page