Bourns Pots arrived in the mail today

jonesy

GLOBAL WIRING GURU
MLP Vendor
Joined
Mar 28, 2008
Messages
17,384
Reaction score
4,689
BOURNS


I contacted Bourns and told them I was interested in some of their pots and they sent me 3 nice sample packs with a variety of many different models.

I am going to be testing these pots out over the next few weeks and will post up some feedback on them.

Anyone else using the Bourns pots? If so what models and what has been your experience with them?

Thanks, jonesy










 

Jakeislove

Senior Member
Joined
Jul 4, 2010
Messages
13,399
Reaction score
9,752
What's so different about them compared to your normal product?
 

jonesy

GLOBAL WIRING GURU
MLP Vendor
Joined
Mar 28, 2008
Messages
17,384
Reaction score
4,689
What's so different about them compared to your normal product?
Well one of the biggest differences you would notice at first glance is that the modern Bourns pots have blue & black plastic cases. Many of the other models look similar to other brands I you may have seen.



I normally use CTS & Alpha pots but have heard some good things about Bourns so thought I would check into what they have to offer. I am going to be measuring what they actually read, check the tapers, and see how solidly they are constructed. I also plan on wiring up some Test rigs with them and see how they sound in an LP and a Tele. :naughty:

I have already noticed a few things about them, but I am going to wait and do a solid review after I have spent some time checking them out.

The only model I could not get is the EVH potentiometers. They are designed and sold exclusively to Fender/EVH. Bourns is not allowed to sample or sell these parts to any other customer without a letter of authorization from Fender :hmm:
 

jonesy

GLOBAL WIRING GURU
MLP Vendor
Joined
Mar 28, 2008
Messages
17,384
Reaction score
4,689
I will Pinky :thumb:
 

59lespaulmann

Senior Member
Joined
Oct 18, 2008
Messages
309
Reaction score
39
Sounds great! Please let us know. Cant imagine them being better that the ones i got from you but, who knows?
 

MrRhoads

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 24, 2008
Messages
3,612
Reaction score
241
Interesting :)
Can´t wait for the first review.
 

jonesy

GLOBAL WIRING GURU
MLP Vendor
Joined
Mar 28, 2008
Messages
17,384
Reaction score
4,689
Sounds great! Please let us know. Cant imagine them being better that the ones i got from you but, who knows?
So far I have not seen anything in these samples of the Standard models that rivals the quality of the 10% CTS pots that I have been using...but Bourns does offer the 95 & 82 sealed pots and a huge variety of "Specialty Pots" in low, standard and high torque, (stiffness of turn) and they also sent me some blender pots, Push pull pots and several other models that would allow me to offer my customers more wiring options. :naughty:

They sent some DPDT split shaft push pulls that seem to be made nice and some solid shaft DPDT push pulls which I have not run across before. The solid shaft push pulls would be great for wiring mods on Tele's that use the Dome knobs with the set screws etc.

I will post some pics and more information as I get time to properly evaluate each of the different models Bourns sent me. ;)
 

5F6-A

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 16, 2007
Messages
10,170
Reaction score
2,560


The only model I could not get is the EVH potentiometers. They are designed and sold exclusively to Fender/EVH. Bourns is not allowed to sample or sell these parts to any other customer without a letter of authorization from Fender :hmm:
that's a shame!! :(

Keep the info coming!!
 

Indyclone

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 10, 2010
Messages
3,599
Reaction score
1,656
I'd gather just from seeing them that there is one advantage over CTS..

The sealed backs would keep dust and runny solder out.
 

Raz59

Senior Member
Joined
Sep 8, 2009
Messages
1,009
Reaction score
28
I'd gather just from seeing them that there is one advantage over CTS..

The sealed backs would keep dust and runny solder out.
Not just that, a sealed potentiometer's taper won't oxidize as fast as the CTS stock pot. And the conductive element should have some differences...so the sealed Bourns is more constant (reliable?) in the long run, I think.
 

jonesy

GLOBAL WIRING GURU
MLP Vendor
Joined
Mar 28, 2008
Messages
17,384
Reaction score
4,689
Pics courtesy of WD Music Website...

Bourns® Model 95 Premium and
Model 82 Vintage Guitar Potentiometers








Some information from Bourns PDF I downloaded...you also need to consider that this is their take on their product and is not necessarily my opinion or thoughts on them.

STANDARD CARBON POTENTIOMETERS
Standard carbon potentiometers have been a staple in the electric guitar industry for
many years. All-in-all, guitarists encounter a common dilemma with standard carbon
guitar potentiometers that can wear quickly and/or become noisy or “scratchy” in the
output with frequent use.
Commercially available potentiometer spray cleaners may temporarily reduce the noise
output of a carbon potentiometer. However, the cleaner typically removes lubricant from
the element, which can further shorten the rotational life of the potentiometer. Specially formulated
lubricants have been created to minimize noise and to meet the expected
rotational life of the potentiometer.
Resistance tolerance plays a major role in the overall tone of an electric guitar. Carbon
resistive inks can shift in excess of 15 % with changes in temperature and humidity
due to the hygroscopic characteristic of the carbon resistive ink. Although there are
commercially available 1 % tolerance carbon potentiometers with a hefty price tag,
expectations that the potentiometer will maintain the tolerance in the actual application
over an extended period may be unrealistic.


POTENTIOMETER DESIGN

Bourns has over 60 years of experience in development of potentiometers and associated
proprietary resistive inks that are used in military, aerospace, and medical applications
where reliability is key and tolerances are critical. The Sensors and Controls Product Line
has now developed a full line of high grade potentiometers customized for use in electric
guitars with the same conductive polymer resistive inks.
Materials used in construction of the pot contribute to the stability and performance of the
pot. Conductive polymer inks that are used in high grade Bourns® potentiometers are silk-screened
onto ceramic elements and fired at much higher temperatures compared to carbon
inks that are sprayed on phenolic substrates. The result is a much more stable element and
a longer life potentiometer with excellent performance characteristics over temperature
and humidity changes seen in the actual application. The multi-finger contact spring design
enhances clarity of tone while minimizing extraneous noise. The housing seal protects the
internal components from the effects of temperature, humidity and dust.
Audio tapers can play a major role in the performance of an electric guitar if the player uses
the potentiometer for an effect such as a volume swell. Bourns® Model 95 Premium and
Model 82 Vintage Guitar Potentiometers are designed with a specific audio taper to provide
a desirable gradual increase in output without “dead spots,” or areas of sudden level increase
that may be encountered with lesser grade potentiometers. Together, the element and a
multi-finger wiper system produce true sound and tone clarity, providing the guitarist with
many years of service.
Bourns® Model 95 Premium and Model 82 Vintage Guitar Potentiometers are available
in 250k Ω and 500k Ω standard resistances with audio taper. They are also available with
knurled split-shaft and solid shaft configurations, and long or short bushing to fit all
standard electric guitar styles.
The Model 82 Vintage Guitar Potentiometer has a proven track record with several well known
artists who installed this potentiometer in the late 1970s when it was originally
released. These potentiometers continue to provide uninterrupted service today after
30+ years. Guitarists who spend hours in recording studios and who have an affinity for
perfect sound will benefit by upgrading their standard potentiometers to Bourns® Model 95
Premium and Model 82 Vintage Guitar Potentiometers.
 

gtr-tek

Fumble Fingers
Joined
Mar 24, 2010
Messages
2,594
Reaction score
865
Cool! I've heard of these and I guess a lot of folks don't use them due to the different appearance. So what, I say! I'd like to try some out. Will you be offering these as singles or only in kits if you do offer them?

Thanks!
:cool:
 

Big_dawg

Senior Member
Joined
Oct 31, 2007
Messages
2,096
Reaction score
210
how do you solder to a plastic case - or do they have a metal base??
 

jonesy

GLOBAL WIRING GURU
MLP Vendor
Joined
Mar 28, 2008
Messages
17,384
Reaction score
4,689
how do you solder to a plastic case - or do they have a metal base??
Good question. :thumb:

The Bourns 95 & 82 pots with the sealed plastic cases come with a ground washer that has a a little tab that you can solder the ground wire on to. So instead of soldering the tab back to the pot case like on a CTS pots you need to run a little jumper wire from the upper lug of the Bourns pots back to the washer or to ground.

There is a wiring diagram included in this PDF from Bourns that shows what I was talking about in more detail.


http://www.bourns.com/data/global/pdfs/bourns_82_and_95_grounding_appnote.pdf
 

jonesy

GLOBAL WIRING GURU
MLP Vendor
Joined
Mar 28, 2008
Messages
17,384
Reaction score
4,689
Cool! I've heard of these and I guess a lot of folks don't use them due to the different appearance. So what, I say! I'd like to try some out. Will you be offering these as singles or only in kits if you do offer them?

Thanks!
:cool:

Right now I am wading through all the data sheets and trying to get as much information on them as I can. Then I plan on building a few harness's with the samples they sent me and test them out in a couple of my own guitars.

I have not decided if I will be using these Bourns pots in any of my production wiring harness's or offering them in the Tonemojo DIY kits, that will depend on how things go with the test rigs etc.

There are some things that I do like about several of the models Bourns offers, just want to do a fair and honest evaluation before I make any decisions. ;)
 

jonesy

GLOBAL WIRING GURU
MLP Vendor
Joined
Mar 28, 2008
Messages
17,384
Reaction score
4,689
Here are the Bourns EVH pots, Low Friction Controls and are available in 500K/250K and from what I have read are the same pots used in the Fender Custom Shop EVH Made in USA Wolfgangs. :D



 

Mouse

Senior Member
Joined
Nov 2, 2008
Messages
2,715
Reaction score
3,929
Jonesy, I've tried their conductive plastic line in my vintage style amps.
The extended rotational life is great but they do seem to have their impact on sound so I get back to carbon trace potentiometers. We all missing vintage thick doublebaked carbon longlife traces not found anymore in todays short life carbon potentiometers.
I admitt never tried bourns in guitar but I have in wah pedal and they are allright. if I remember correctly Roger Mayer have them in wah-wah line.
 

jonesy

GLOBAL WIRING GURU
MLP Vendor
Joined
Mar 28, 2008
Messages
17,384
Reaction score
4,689
Jonesy, I've tried their conductive plastic line in my vintage style amps.
The extended rotational life is great but they do seem to have their impact on sound so I get back to carbon trace potentiometers. We all missing vintage thick doublebaked carbon longlife traces not found anymore in todays short life carbon potentiometers.
I admitt never tried bourns in guitar but I have in wah pedal and they are allright. if I remember correctly Roger Mayer have them in wah-wah line.

Great information Mouse, I really appreciate your input. I was wondering myself how the Carbon vs Polymer (?) track/links would affect the Tone in a guitar. :hmm:
 


Latest Threads



Top