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Introduction to Military Specification
(Mil-Spec) Potentiometers

variable resistor symbol

RV Series Information

Specifications

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Part number breakdown.

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RA Series Information

Specifications

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Part number breakdown.

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Potentiometer Characteristics

A potentiometer simply is a three terminal variable resistor, and its most common use is as an adjustable voltage divider. Informally people call potentiometers “pots”

RV series potentiometers are a carbon element military grade potentiometers made on par with the Department of Defense Mil-R-94 specification. They are listed on the QPL (Qualified Parts List) for Government and Military use. They are made out of a carbon element, the terminals are gold plated to improve conductivity, the shaft is stainless steel to insure durability, and the housing is made out of brass. The resistance range for RV series potentiometers with a linear taper is 50Ω -5MΩ, and the resistance range for a log or reverse log taper pots is 150Ω-1MΩ. The RV series potentiometers are environmentally resistant to humidity, vibration, and shock resistant as per the Mil-R-94 specification. The operating temperature of all RV series potentiometers is -65° Celsius to +125° Celsius. All RV series potentiometers have a rotational life of 25,000 cycles and a load life of 1000 hours at 70° Celsius making them very durable.

potentiometer taper graph

RV Series Potentiometers

RV series potentiometers are military grade potentiometers made on par with the Department of Defense Mil-R-94 specification. They are listed on the QPL (Qualified Parts List) for Government and Military use. They are made out of a carbon element, the terminals are gold plated to improve conductivity, the shaft is stainless steel to insure durability, and the housing is made out of brass. The resistance range for a linear taper is 50 ohms to 5 meg, and the resistance range for a logarithmic taper is 150 ohms to 1 meg. The RV series potentiometers are environmentally resistant to humidity, vibration, and shock resistant as per the Mil-R-94 specification. The operating temperature of all RV series potentiometers is -65° Celsius to +125° Celsius. All RV series potentiometers have a rotational life of 25,000 cycles and a load life of 1000 hours at 70° Celsius making them very durable.

RV2
  • Suitable for both military and commercial applications
  • Gold plated terminals, one piece brass housing, and a stainless steel shaft
  • Custom shafts and bushings
  • Special tapers
  • Fourth (center) terminal
  • Attached switches
RV4
  • Suitable for both military and commercial applications
  • RoHS and REACH complaint and contain no conflict minerals.
  • Gold plated terminals, and stainless steel shaft and housing
  • Custom shafts and bushings
  • Special tapers
  • Fourth (center) terminal
  • Attached switch
RV5
  • RV5 potentiometer provides a low profile with lateral lug terminals
  • One piece housing and bushing, and stainless steel shaft
  • Special tapers
  • Custom shafts
RV6
  • Suitable for applications requiring high reliability and a compact size
  • One piece brass housing and bushing, and stainless steel shaft
  • Compact size
  • Special tapers
  • Custom shafts and bushings
2RV7
  • Suitable for both military and commercial applications requiring multiple elements
  • Dual potentiometer
  • Gold plated terminals, and stainless steel shaft and housing
  • Custom shafts and bushings
  • Special tapers
  • Fourth (center) terminal
  • Concentric shafts
  • Attached switches
RV8
  • RV8 potentiometer was designed for PCB applications requiring a rugged potentiometer.
  • Stainless steel shaft
  • Compact size
  • Board washable
  • Special tapers
  • Custom shafts and bushings
Series Wattage Terminals Switch Mechanical Rotation Operating Torque Rotational Life Mounting
RV2 1 Watt 3 No 300° 1 oz/in to 6 oz/in 25,000 Cycles Panel
RV4 2 Watt 3 Yes 314° 1 oz/in to 6 oz/in 25,000 Cycles Panel
RV5 1/2 Watt 3 No 300° 1 oz/in to 6 oz/in 25,000 Cycles Panel
RV6 1/2 Watt 3 No 295° 5 oz/in to 6 oz/in 25,000 Cycles Panel
2RV7 2 Watt 6 No 314° 1 oz/in to 12 oz/in 25,000 Cycles Panel
RV8 1/2 Watt 3 No 295° 5 oz/in to 6 oz/in 25,000 Cycles Panel, PCB

Part Number Breakdown for RV Style Potentiometers

An example: RV4 N A Y S D 103 A

RV4 N A Y S D 103 A
| | | | | | | |
Style Bushing Switch Temp. & Moisture Characteristics Shaft Style Shaft Length Resistance Value Taper & Tolerance
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8

1. Style

  • RV2
  • RV4
  • RV5
  • RV6
  • 2RV7
  • RV8

2. Bushing

  • N = Standard
  • L = Locking
  • S = Panel & Shaft Seal

3. Switch

  • A = Without Switch
  • B = SPST Switch

4. Temp. & Moisture Characteristics
Y = As per MIL-R-94

5. Shaft Style

  • S = Slotted
  • F = Flatted

6. Shaft Length

  • B = 1/2" Lead
  • A = 5/8"
  • D = 7/8"
  • G = 1 1/4"
  • J = 2"
  • K = 2 1/2"
  • L = 3/8"

7. Resistance Value
Total Resistance Value in Ohms: First 2 numbers are significant digits, 3rd number is the number of zeros.

8. Taper & Tolerance

  • A = Linear 10%
  • B = Linear 20%
  • C = Log 10%
  • D = Log 20%
  • E = Rev. Log 10%
  • F = Rev. Log 20%

RA Series Potentiometers

RA series potentiometers are wire-wound military grade potentiometers made to the Mil-R-19 specification. They are listed on the QPL (Qualified Parts List) for Government and Military use. They are made out of a wire-wound element (copper-nickel alloy), the shaft is made out of nickel plated brass making it very durable. The resistance range for a RA10 is 15Ω-2.5KΩ and it comes only in a linear taper. Resistance range for a RA20 pot is 1Ω-50KΩ and it comes in a linear, log, and reverse log taper. The RA30 pot has a resistance range of 1Ωt-25KΩ for a linear taper, and a log or a reverse log have a resistance range of 10Ω-7.5KΩ. The RA series potentiometers are environmentally resistant to humidity, vibration, and shock resistant as per the Mil-R-19 specification. The operating temperature of all RA series potentiometers is -55° Celsius to +125° Celsius. All RV series potentiometers have a rotational life of 25,000 cycles Celsius making them very durable.

RA10

RA10

  • Nickel plated brass shaft and bushings
  • Locking style bushing
RA20

RA20

  • Nickel-plated brass shaft and bushings
  • Locking style bushing optional
  • Panel and bushing seal optional
  • Flatted shaft optional
RA30

RA30

  • Nickel plated brass shaft and bushings
  • Shaft & mounting seals optional
  • Locking bushings optional
  • Flatted shaft optional
  • SPST rotary switch optional
Series Wattage Terminals Switch Mechanical Rotation Operating Torque Rotational Life Mounting
RA10 1 1/2 Watt 3 No 300° .05 oz-in to 6 oz-in 25,000 Cycles Panel
RA20 2 Watt 3 Yes 300° .05 oz-in to 6 oz-in 25,000 Cycles Panel
RA30 4 Watt 3 Yes 300° .05 oz-in to 6 oz-in 25,000 Cycles Panel

Part Number Breakdown for RA Style Potentiometers

An example: RA10 N A S M 102 A

RA10 N A S M 102 A
| | | | | | |
Style Bushing Switch Shaft Style Shaft Length Resistance Value Taper
1 2 3 4 5 6 7

1. Style

  • RA10
  • RA20
  • RA30

2. Bushing

  • N = Standard
  • L = Locking
  • S = Panel & Shaft Seal(Standard)
  • T = Panel & Shaft Seal(Locking)

3. Switch

  • A = Without Switch
  • B = SPST Switch

5. Shaft Style

  • S = Slotted
  • F = Flatted

6. Shaft Length

  • A = 1/2"
  • B = 5/8"
  • D = 7/8"
  • G = 1 1/4
  • K = 2 1/2"
  • L = 5/16"
  • D = 7/8"
  • M = 7/16"

7. Resistance Value
Total Resistance Value in Ohms: First 2 numbers are significant digits, 3rd number is the number of zeros.

8. Taper

  • A = Linear
  • C = Log.
  • E = Reverse Log.
 
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Federal Connectors is a supplier of Military Connectors, Military Fuses, Military Potentiometers, Military Resistors, Military Relays and other electronic components to the US government and various subcontractors. Our team at Federal Connectors has been serving government agencies and industrial organizations throughout the electronics community for over 25 years. We provide our customers with an easy shopping experience and reliable fulfillment.

Datasheets and Resources

Federal Connectors not only provides our customers with great products at exceptional prices. We also offer our customers access to our vast library of resources, which includes everything from datasheets to technical drawings.

The most recent datasheets and specifications on RV and RA Series Potentiometers can be downloaded by clicking on the pdf icons. Major manufactures of the RV and RA Series Potentiometers include Honeywell/Clarostat and PEC.

Datasheets
RV Series RA Series
Series Datasheet Series Datasheet
RA10 RV2
RA20 RV4
RA30 RV5
    RV6
    2RV7
    RV8