Firstly, keep the assembly clean, tight and well aligned. Sometimes it's just a matter of cleaning everything and tightening the nuts and set screws. The metal parts are all machined, cast or stamped non anodized aluminum (minus the knob head which has a chrome enamel, use a chrome polish on that). This means that you should not use high heat and should avoid acids and caustics lest you want dark oxidized parts (no dishwasher, no high temp ultrasonic, no simple green baths). If this has happened to you you can remove the oxide with phosphoric acid, acetone, or simply by using a polish (rubbing compound works well). If your shaft is catching you should clean it then polish/wax it, alternatively rub it down with a plastic safe oil. If you find the set screws backing out often loctite might be a good investment. When you're in there though look for any potential problems as listed above, and you might as well replace the bushings even if they look fine. Do not wash the pot, and if you do mistakenly let it dry for a long time before you plug it back in.
You might have noticed that the construction of the SDVX volume units are fairly sturdy and overbuilt. However they have one weakness, and that is to lateral torque, as the part that endures all of that is one plastic bushing, at the top. A common infamous playstyle, handblading, encourages this kind of force. Arcade ops have tried posting signs
but ultimately depending on who plays on your cabinet you may find yourself replacing this part often or they may end up eventually looking like this
. I suspect that knob was missing a washer, the top bushing was basically gone and the setting tabs on the torque converter had broken off. I'd recommend putting in a new top bushing every time you change your switches or as needed. At ~50c/u they're inexpensive and easy to stock up on. The bottom ones usually stay in pretty good shape.
Lubrication is an option that will help reduce regular wear on the bushings, though it will not defend against handblading, and is nonstandard as the parts used are "self lubricating". Try to pick something that is plastics safe, specifically for POM plastics and nylon. I use Super Lube grease
, using an 18G syringe
as a precise applicator. You can try lubricating the torque limiter too and it won't hurt it as that uses magnets to lower the torque, however it's pretty hard to get apart as it is a plastic bearing. Further, since it is a bearing it would probably be better to use a viscous oil
instead of a grease.
If you are interested in replacing the plastic bushings with a more robust lubricated metal bushing solution, see the discussion thread for this page.