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Tip : Beefing up 1/4 inch jack sockets

Discussion in 'Electronic Repair' started by N Cook, Dec 15, 2007.

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  1. N Cook

    N Cook Guest

    The notorious problem with band/stage amps, the guitar/mike leads making
    poor contact inside the sockets.
    For anyone saying replace, move to another thread.
    I don't see the point in replacing with much the same, that will also weaken
    at the bend, over a few years of use.
    The tip contact has to repeatedly lift over the tip and then drop down into
    the groove. The ring contact/s don't have to do this so rarely a problem
    there. Coupled with more "leveraged" movement at the tip with lead tugging.
    Requirements some 2mm silicone rubber cord from a fishing/angling supply
    Hama/Perler/Pearler beads about 2.5mm internal bore, (small coloured plastic
    rings) for making "mosaics" on a sort of pegboard from kids/craft shops
    Bit of looped copper wire as a "needle threader"
    Artery forceps, again from an angling shop, or similar tool.
    Thin nose pliers
    Assuming chassis mounted , then cut a piece of cord 100mm long.
    For pcb mounted ones then about 120mm and suitable 4x 2.5mm holes drilled
    through the board. Being rubber you can safely deill through a track or two
    if constricted space (caution if for speaker sockets).
    No need to desolder any wires.
    Pics below are against 1mm square graph paper.
    First one takes about 10 minutes to complete and about 5 minutes each, when
    familiar, for the chassis mount socket type.
    First shows the "needle threading" action.
    Second is the main assembly, thread 2 beads onto the doubled-up cord leaving
    a loop.
    Place a third bead in this loop and pull the tails to tighten in place.
    Place in orientation over the contact as in the pic.
    Take one tail around the pin edge furthest from the mounting panel, under
    the socket and back up the other side of the other pin.
    Grab this tail with pliers, 10mm back from the free end, and slide through
    the bead in the loop, the cord will be under a bit of tension.
    Anchor the free end with forceps.
    Lace the other tail to form a cross under the socket
    Reuse the threader , pushed through the bead in the loop.
    Trap the free end of the second tail in the threader, a few mm back, and
    pull back through the bead.
    2 such pieces of cord will anchor themselves quite well in a bead but to be
    sure, balance up the 2 free tail ends and anchor both together with the
    forceps, while finishing off.
    You can then pull the bead through the loop to its final locked in position.
    Position all the sections of cord and top beads so near enough equal tension
    Remove the forceps and melt a spot of hot melt glue between the 2 tail ends
    The insertion and pulling-out force for any 1/4 inch plugs is then noticably
    greater and much more reliable contact in use.
    Makesure the hot-melt or beads are not near any hot components when
    And guitarists can throw away those cans of contact spray
  2. Meat Plow

    Meat Plow Guest

    That's actually a good idea. I've seen many problems with those kind of
    jacks over the years. The are especially vulnerable when used in stomp
    boxes and other stuff on the floor.
  3. N Cook

    N Cook Guest

    My guitarist clientele are much approving of the technoque although it seems
    somewhat crude, but then the action of these sockets is pretty crude.
    A bit more clarification I missed out.
    The bead in the loop is placed at the "hinge" end of the contact.
    The outside diameter of the bead/s size chosen seems to move easily in the
    in the moulding of the socket for all the ones I've tried it on, mono and
    Some people may think that the socket shown has a carbon insert as contact,
    not the case, a dimple that the lighting suggests is black.
  4. msg

    msg Guest

    N Cook wrote:

    That would be a good name for a band ;-)


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