Dienstag, 1. Dezember 2009

ELGAM LUXOR ** Repairs

A nice Italian one i got pretty cheap. But then: Two notes were no go. Crap!

Good thing: The schematics were included. I believe the date of purchase was 1971. Anyway, that made things way easier.

First step: Get out those damn oscillator cards. This sucks, because you have to un-solder 7 wires for each card. And 3 of them are almost unreachable. Un-soldering is not so much the problem here.. But soldering the stuff back on surely is!

Anyway, i un-soldered the two bad cards, cleaned their back with 99% iso alcohol and properly re-soldered them. And: Tataaa: They are working.

I thought the vinyl cover of the wooden top looks just disgusting, so i started removing it so i could paint it.

(to be continued)


This is a lovely combo organ. Small and skinny, but a nice warm sound.

It worked for some time, but from one day to another, it has been dead. Haven't looked into it too much yet, but somehow cannot make anything out of it. Fuse seems ok, cord seems to be ok. But no power up.

This will be continued.

WELTMEISTER TO 10 ** Repairs

I recently bought a WELTMEISTER TO 10 (German Democratic Republic) which was a real mess. Keys totally bent, fuse gone, fuse lid gone, interior parts missing all the way.

First thing i wanted to fix were the keys. They could be pressed but came up way too high. Unscrewing the case showed that this was an easy fix: All the faulty keys had their ends (which hold them down) badly bent. At first i tried un-screwing every key and then re-bnding it, but that's too tricky. Found an easier way: Just pull the bad key waaaay up. The bent end should be visible now. Take a big screwdriver or something similar to re-bend the ends of the keys. Bend them over the top, so the key can slide back into its place properly. Now take a look at the whole thing from downside: The end is overbent. But that's no problem, just bend it into place, like you can see in the pick.

Missing key contact wires:
I already wanted to trash the whole thing when i saw that like 15 key contact wires were missing. But sometimes you just get lucky: When shaking the organ, nearly all the missing parts (ca. 30) came tumbling out. What a surprise! Among them were most of the wires! Yippee!

Check the pic to see the missing wires from the downside.

Replacing those bastards can be a little tricky. Have two screwdrivers ready. The pic should give you an idea how they should be placed.


This is just a quick one... I don't have any diagram or schemes for the Compact, so i found this out only by coincidence. Vibrato was dead so I unsoldered and re-soldered a few things and - bingo - found the relevant thing:

(click on the pic to enlarge)
Check the circled spot. Is the red wire loose? Re-solder it! If it's not, try unsoldering and then re-soldering.

Donnerstag, 29. Oktober 2009

Vox Jaguar and Gem Model P KEY CONTACT CLEANING

There are a lot of nice things about GEM Model P's and VOX JAGUARS. One of them is that you can access key contacts easily (unlike a Farfisa, e.g.). Just unscrew the two top screws and pull the keyboard up (pull it with the keys because the black plastic can break easily, specially with the model you see in the picture which has bass chord knobs).

You can now access any key contact you ever dreamed of. Give them a good scrub with Iso Alcohol 99% and pipe cleaners, toothbrushed or a cloth. Clean the soldering, too.

If a button is depressed, the it will make contact with the long metallic stick. When you're at it, pull out the stick and clean it well, too.
By the way, if some keys crackle or are far louder than others, this might be a "stick issue". Check if the stick sticks in place properly. If not, use some glue to fix it into its place.

On the last picture you can see the bottom of the bass knob section. the mechanism is the same, but it's tinier. you're having more key contact and more little sticks that are far harder to tackle.

Farfisa Compact Combo KEY CONTACT CLEANING

Ok, get ready to give your FARFISA COMPACT some serious spring cleaning (it's a joke, you're not supposed to clean any springs).
First, open up the baby. Unscrew anything that holds the big keyboard in place. You might also have to loosen some screws that fix some cables. If you're finished, you should be able to pull the keyboard out of the wooden corset.

In the picture: Two of your best cleaning buddies: Isopropyl alcohol (ONLY use the 99% brand NOT less, because it will eventually worsen things!) and pipe cleaners (use expensive ones because the cheapos will lose a lot of tiny hairs for which your Farfisa internals have no use for).

Lose any screw and cable (e.g. the white cord connected to the reverb unit) so you can pull the keyboard out and move it up vertically (lean it onto a wall, that's best, but be careful not to break anything, like the oscillator cards). Make it look like this:

Good work so far! Now you can access a lot of the key contacts. They are the tiny wires that are connected with the keys and mysteriously disappear into tiny holes. Use pipe cleaners to give them a healthy rub and get the dirty stuff off of them. Also, a toothbrush might come in handy.

As you can see, the interior of my Compact is pretty dusty. Spiderwebs, dirt, sawdust, fingernails, confetti... I even found some Pot in a Compact Duo once! Scrub away as far as you can get. The pipe cleaners make it possible to get into those tiny holes as well. Drench them in alcohol first.