Here’s how to clean the faders on a Soundcraft 800. This isn’t exactly a tutorial, rather, it’s just a look at how I’m doing it on my mixer. These are Penny and Giles 1000-series conductive plastic type and are long out of production, so it’s best to keep them clean and working well. It’s time consuming, but an easy job once you get the hang of it.
According to P&G, you shouldn’t use contact cleaner on these faders, only distilled water. To do that, you have to take the faders apart, which is time consuming, but when you’re done, they’ll be properly clean and more likely to stay that way for longer. Cooper Sound published a guide for cleaning P&G faders. It refers to more recent models, but the instructions would still apply. You can find it HERE.
I did find one of the slider brushes with a broken solder joint. It was still electrically connected, but hanging by a a broken bit of solder. These are too delicate to resolder, so I carefully bent the brushes back into position and added a drop of super glue. Hopefully this will reinforce the brushes for a few more years, but I do need to be on the lookout for a donor console in good condition.
On this console, you don’t have to desolder the fader in order to remove and disassemble it, which is a huge advantage.
With everything apart, I cleaned out the dust with a cheap artist’s brush and cotton rags. The plastic strip was wiped with water and a paper towel and dried.
Assembly is just the reverse of the disassembly. Once you’ve cleaned one or two, it becomes a rather simple process, but be careful, especially with the delicate slider brushes. They are easily damaged and not easily repaired. Replacement is only possible by removing parts from an old mixer… I contacted Penny and Giles, and they told me they have no more repair parts and could not even suggest a replacement.
I lubricated the sliding parts on my fader with a tiny drop of light oil. Penny and Giles instructions specify a lightweight silicon oil. I used an oil designed for sewing machines.
After you’ve cleaned the fader, remember to place a small maintenance sticker on the fader that says “cleaned” along with the date. I have to do this, or I risk forgetting which faders I’ve cleaned and which I haven’t, and you don’t want to do these twice.
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