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Post new topic E9 knee levers don't return string back completely
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Author Topic:  E9 knee levers don't return string back completely
Parr Bryan

 

From:
Nacogdoches,Texas
Post  Posted 14 May 2024 8:33 am    
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Hello all,
I have a 1990 era Carter S10.
The knee lever that lowers string 8 (E to Eb) will not let the string return to E but I get a slightly flat E.
On the bottom I notice the spring that returns it back to E doesn't pull the mechanism back. I can push it back with my finger.
So, should I apply some type of lubricant to these moving parts (which I don't know what they are called) ?
Thanks guys.
P.S. If I use the knee lever that raises the E's then the 8th string E I'm talking about will go back. Which is what I had to do at a VFW last Sat nite. Oh what fun.
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Jerry Overstreet


From:
Louisville Ky
Post  Posted 14 May 2024 9:24 am    
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Try lubing. Might help get rid of some debris or sludge. Likely the problem is return spring is too weak to pull the scissors all the way back to the stop plate.

I don't have the Carter here, but I don't believe they have adjustable return springs. Probably need to cut off a round of the spring to give it more pull.

Wish all steels had adjustable return springs. The process of shortening then working the end coil is tedious. Be careful not to poke a hole in your finger if you do this. Whoa!
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Richard Sinkler


From:
aka: Rusty Strings -- Missoula, Montana
Post  Posted 14 May 2024 9:49 am    
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Definitely lube first. If you have to cut a loop off the spring, be aware that it will increase the resistance on the lever making it a little harder to push. I removed one loop on the spring for the half stop to make the half stop on string 2 a little more positive.

Jerry, poking a hole in a finger is just an added bonus. Winking
_________________
Carter D10 8p/8k, Dekley S10 3p/4k C6 setup,Regal RD40 Dobro, Recording King Professional Dobro, NV400, NV112,Ibanez Gio guitar, Epiphone SG Special (open D slide guitar) . Playing for 54 years and still counting.
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Bobby D. Jones

 

From:
West Virginia, USA
Post  Posted 14 May 2024 11:07 am    
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I'm with Jerry and Richard, Lube first.
Check the spring on the 4th string close. Is it the same as the other springs.
Carter springs and MSA Classic springs look very close.
But a Carter spring is stronger.
If the spring has been replaced could be the problem.

CAUTION: If you have to unhook springs to shorten or trade for stronger spring. Loosen the string.
If you unhook the spring on some guitars, The string tension will pull the changer finger and lower lever out of position. "Then its a whole new ball game", Getting the finger and lever back into proper location.

Good Luck on this project, Happy Steelin.
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Parr Bryan

 

From:
Nacogdoches,Texas
Post  Posted 14 May 2024 12:52 pm     Which lub ?
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Thanks Familly !
So, I have wd40,breakfree, and balistol.
Which should I use??
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Bob Carlucci

 

From:
Candor, New York, USA
Post  Posted 14 May 2024 1:24 pm    
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Which lever is it??.. If its a reversing lever that has 2 fulcrums pushing against one another, use GREASE where they contact.. Carter had a serious design flaw on those reversing levers, where the aluminum would gall so badly where the opposing fulcrums made contact that the metal would become so rough the the lever would actually stick.. Spray lubes will work for only a short time.. I played Carters for many years, and i used white grease as it stayed put, and after a while the contact areas wore more uniformly, and i only had to do a quick wipe with grease every 6 months or so... If that change is on a lever that moves left please check the reversing mechanism first... bob
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C Dixon

 

From:
Duluth, GA USA
Post  Posted 14 May 2024 4:44 pm    
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It happens on many PSG's after time. And IF the lubricant does not help; the changer has to come out. And that is a GREAT Hard thing. And if that's the problem; I would strongly suggest; you send it to a good Fixer of PSG's. Others on this SGF can tell you. I used to do that. But with my 92 yrs old; I can't do it, any more.

May Jesus help you. And I will Pray.

C.

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Nelson Checkoway

 

From:
Massachusetts, USA
Post  Posted 14 May 2024 4:51 pm    
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NEVER use WD-40. It’s formulated to displace water, not properly lubricate. It will eventually turn to a dried up amber sludge and attract and trap dust. Light machine oil or a synthetic like Tri Flow is a good way to go.
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Jerry Overstreet


From:
Louisville Ky
Post  Posted 14 May 2024 7:41 pm    
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Not familiar with Ballistol, but an internet search describes one of their products as a multipurpose oil lubricant.

This, 3 in 1, sewing maching oil, gun oil, engine oil...any of these will do the job.

After lubing, operate the scissors several times...it may take a few reps to get the oil down in there.
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Dennis Detweiler


From:
Solon, Iowa, US
Post  Posted 14 May 2024 8:01 pm    
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I'm guessing the return spring needs to be slightly shorter for more tension. I replaced all of the return springs on my MSA's with slightly lighter ones from Ace Hardware. I had to cut off several coils because of the lower tension springs, but both of my guitars have a lighter touch on the knee levers.
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Bob Carlucci

 

From:
Candor, New York, USA
Post  Posted 15 May 2024 3:48 am    
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Look I lived with this problem for years on carter guitars.. the first thing that the OP needs to reveal is which levers are involved.. if its left moving levers, its those 2 opposing fulcrums that grind together.. mine got so bad on my Carters the levers would only return half way.. Things like Ballistol will work for an hour.. maybe..I had to use grease once that metal got rough enough... It was a dumb design, and maybe it was fixed at some point but I had 2 carters and they were both the same.. It could be they got a bad batch of metal on some guitars, because I have not seen a lot of other complaints, but my carters which were heavily used on the road for years displayed this issue on the reversing levers that moved left... bob
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I'm over the hill and hittin'rocks on the way down!

no gear list for me.. you don't have the time......
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Parr Bryan

 

From:
Nacogdoches,Texas
Post  Posted 15 May 2024 10:14 am    
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Thanks,
Ok, my E's are on my right knee (MSA setup, not Emmons). RKR lowers and RKL raises.
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C Dixon

 

From:
Duluth, GA USA
Post  Posted 15 May 2024 11:14 am    
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Parr Bryan wrote:
Thanks,
Ok, my E's are on my right knee (MSA setup, not Emmons). RKR lowers and RKL raises.


That might be; that Maurice Anderson (one of the owners of MSA); who didn't like "Nashville County Music". So when the first knees came on; there was ONLY one knee on PSG's. And Buddy Emmons did it (I believe)! He set it up like this: 3 Pedals and 1 knee: "B to C#, A. G# to A and E to F#. And the RKR knee was: C# to D and the bottom E to Eb (D# in the "Key of E"! But only a few, says that.)

Now Maurice (a dear friend) passed away, in 2013. And may Jesus rest his Precious Soul. Amen!

C.


P.S. I wrote a book in 2008: "The Evolution of the Pedal Steel Guitar". And if any one; would like one on DVD's. It's low. Just "PM" me up.
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Larry Allen


From:
Kapaa, Kauai,Hawaii
Post  Posted 15 May 2024 3:27 pm     Lube
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The best/easiest/cleanest is Tri-Flow Pin Point Lubricator.. Good tip from the Forum Many Years ago Very Happy
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Bob Carlucci

 

From:
Candor, New York, USA
Post  Posted 15 May 2024 4:28 pm    
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Parr Bryan wrote:
Thanks,
Ok, my E's are on my right knee (MSA setup, not Emmons). RKR lowers and RKL raises.

Ok, not the reversing setup. you have yours set up just like mine was.. standard MSA... Sounds like it might just need a return spring.. Couple of things.. Lube everything that moves on that pull from the lever back,... retension or replace the spring and replace the string.. That should take care of it...
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I'm over the hill and hittin'rocks on the way down!

no gear list for me.. you don't have the time......
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Tony Prior


From:
Charlotte NC
Post  Posted 16 May 2024 1:29 am    
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Listen to Bob and Carl- If this is a 90's Steel, it is now 30 years old . It may just be tired, too much gunk/dirt build up in the changer finger which is designed to work freely. It may just be time to pull the changer and do a complete cleaning, polishing and new lube. Adding lube may not be the solution. Pulling the changer is really not that big of a deal, take pictures, take your time . I've pulled changers half dozen times, Emmons, Carters, Sho Buds-. When they were put back together they were totally different instruments , smooth as silk !

BUT-I would first change the string, then add lube at all of the contact points. Start there, it may be that simple. I would not add oil to the changer as a first step, the changer finger is the last part of the pull system , not the first.


These are mechanical systems , maintenance matters.

Have fun good luck !
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Pro Tools 12 on WIN 7 !
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CURRENT MUSIC TRACKS AT > https://tprior2241.wixsite.com/website
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Parr Bryan

 

From:
Nacogdoches,Texas
Post  Posted 21 May 2024 12:21 pm    
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I got it fixed. Thanks to all for your help. I lubricated with breakfree but that didn't work. So rather than clips coils off of a spring I used one on the steel that had never been used and swapped it with the one with a problem.
Thanks again everyone!!
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Jerry Overstreet


From:
Louisville Ky
Post  Posted 21 May 2024 12:33 pm    
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Glad you got it sorted. I don't know why I didn't think to suggest the swap as I just did the same thing on my old Fender Artist about a month ago...swapped out about 3 of them.

I guess they just get fatigued from all the stress over the years.
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