#1
Hello,

I've had my 5420 for... probably over two months now, I seriously love it. I have a little problem though: the tone pot seems to be going bad. When I turn it down it makes no difference whatsoever - at first. Then occasionally as I play it'll make lots of scratchy sounds (I'm not touching it at that point). So I guess it's a no brainer I need to take it to a service center to have it looked at, it's under warranty anyway.

Now what puzzles me is that tonight when I was playing there was some weird buzz when I was playing the 5th fret of the highest string (not fret buzz, more like something is loose in there somewhere). And I noticed that if I (gently) shake it there is some sort of rattle going on. I tried peeking inside and even taking pictures but I don't see a loose wire or anything like that, especially around the tone pot. What could it be? Is it normal for something to rattle a bit when you shake it? Again, I'm not shaking it hard obviously, pretty gently.

Thanks!

EDIT: I'm reading some stuff about bridge rattle... it's not that. It seems to be coming from the lower bout. But I can stick my fingers in there and feel around the pots and nothing seems loose. The jack is secured, but it kind of sounds like it's coming from there though... or around that area in general... it's hard to tell. :-\
Last edited by OliveG at Jun 14, 2017,
#2
It is probably loose hardware.  Most of the time it's a truss rod that is loose and rattling inside the neck but if it's coming from the lower bit of the guitar it could be the nut on one of the pots or a jack has become loose.  Make sure all your nuts holding electronics in place are snug and there is at least a little pressure on the truss rod.   There is also a good chance that the scratchy pot has something loose inside of it and that is causing the rattle.
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#3
It's still under warranty, have an authorised Gretsch service center take a look at it.
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#4
Yeah, I'll probably take it to the Guitar Center nearby tomorrow, it's my closest Gretsch service center. Thanks. A loose nut sounded like a genius eureka idea but unfortunately I checked and it's not that. It's definitely not the bridge. I can feel the pots and their wires through the f-holes and it doesn't seem to be coming from them... It sounds like it's coming from the input jack actually. But it's hard to tell. Can a pot develop a rattle?
#5
OK so I was about to leave for GC to have it looked at but I thought "let me try again before I leave so I don't look like a fool when I get there" and sure enough the tone knob is working now. :-\ So maybe all it needs is a cleaner? Can anybody recommend something? What's the go-to contact cleaner for pots? I had a little issue with my ES-335 pickup selector and I thought it was broken, took it to GC and the tech there just sprayed it with some of that stuff and it worked wonders... but I'm guessing for pots (enclosed) you need something different?
#6
get some deoxit and clean the pot.
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