Another pickup wiring resource thread! - Page 2 - Jemsite
Pickups & wiring Discussion about pickup types, replacements, recomendations, switching, wiring diagrams and sustainer systems for ANY guitar, JEMs included.

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post #16 of 93 (permalink) Old 03-25-2011, 05:51 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Another pickup wiring resource thread!

Every time I see a "How do I wire a ......?" thread, I'm going to answer with a link to this thread...



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post #17 of 93 (permalink) Old 03-25-2011, 06:51 PM
 
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Re: Another pickup wiring resource thread!

just to add, there's an article on my blog that explains how guitar switches along with some other components of guitar wiring - coil tapping, volume and tone pots, treble bleed circuits, etc
Here's the link http://diy-fever.com/misc/guitar-wiring-101/
Cheers
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post #18 of 93 (permalink) Old 03-28-2011, 05:44 PM
 
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Re: Another pickup wiring resource thread!

thread really needs sticky'd
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post #19 of 93 (permalink) Old 03-28-2011, 08:41 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Another pickup wiring resource thread!

Yeah--there's a ton of useful info that covers almost every type of question that gets asked in this section.....



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post #20 of 93 (permalink) Old 04-03-2011, 12:40 AM Thread Starter
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post #21 of 93 (permalink) Old 04-08-2011, 12:18 AM
 
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Re: Another pickup wiring resource thread!

STICKY PLEASE

thanks for all the info.

Last edited by jimistephen; 04-08-2011 at 11:00 AM.
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post #22 of 93 (permalink) Old 04-08-2011, 06:07 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Another pickup wiring resource thread!

More great and useful info to compliment this thread:

http://alexplorer.net/guitar/mods.html

Here's a very obscure mod that may help some folks. I remember seeing a thread or two about getting shocked when touching the strings. Here's the fix:
"Shock Proof
This is a fairly old modification that most people know about, but almost no one has installed in their instrument that I'm aware of. It does not affect your sound at all, but it is reputed to be a potential life-saver.
Basically, this mod isolates yourself from your "string ground." A guitar has two grounds, one through the output and another ground that, particularly on Stratocasters and other guitars with tremolos, grounds to the strings. Typically this is through the tremolo, then the springs, and finally to the spring claw where the wire is almost always attached. This is why you can ground out a bad cable by touching the strings, bridge, or tuning keys of most guitars."

"Wiring
I won't bother with an actual schematic here because this is another very simple (and cheap) modification. The idea is to isolate the rest of the guitar's electronics from the string ground. Between these two sections you wire in a small value cap and a relatively high value resistor in parallel between the string ground (i.e., connection to the bridge) and the rest of the circuit. A typical set of values might be a 0.02 µF capacitor with about a 250k Ohm resistor."



"How it works
If you happened to be holding a typical guitar in your hands at the time when ground in your amp happens to fail, you would become the path of least resistance to the ground. With the modification described above in place, the resistor blocks the full current from reaching you (well, maybe; personally, I have some doubts) although the capacitor would allow you to feel the voltage change. If you feel something tingling (or worse), you would probably think to get away from your gear before it gets you.
So how could your ground go bad? Well, I'm sure there are other ways, but water will do the trick. That will short the circuit under the right (or wrong!) circumstances. I witnessed this first-hand when I went to watch a friend of mine play several years ago. He and his band were playing under a bandstand in a park after it had rained. Even though things were sheltered, the ground was still very wet and it was very humid as well. Throughout the night, enough errant charge was able to arc through the circuitry to repeatedly shock my friend. At first we thought he was just putting us on and spazzing out for effect, but apparently this really hurt... though not enough to stop him from playing for more than a couple beats. Thankfully, I've never experienced this."



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post #23 of 93 (permalink) Old 04-08-2011, 07:10 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Another pickup wiring resource thread!

...and here's some more good and useful info:
• Should I use 250K or 500K pots?

250K and 500K pots are the most common pots used in passive guitar circuits. Using higher value pots (500K) will give the guitar a somewhat brighter sound and lower value pots (250K) will give the guitar a slightly warmer sound. Higher value pots put less load on the pickups which prevents treble frequencies from bleeding to ground through the pot. The convention is to use 500K pots for humbuckers as well as hotter single coils, since hotter pickups can tend to sound darker and can use more highs. 250K pots are commonly used on traditional single coils that can tend to sound bright so added warmth of 250K works well. A personal favorite of mine is to use 300K pots for single coils which provides a very subtle increase in brighteness.

• What is the difference between Audio and Linear taper pots?

Linear taper pots provide 50% resistance at 50% rotation (eg. On 5). Audio taper pots generally provide 10% resistance at 50% rotation, although there are variations where some manufacturers produce pots with 20% resistance at 50% rotation. Either way, this tends to provide a more gradual audio reduction.

• What is a No Load tone control?

A no load tone control works just like a standard tone control from settings 1-9 but at 10 the pot and capacitor are both removed from the circuit, thus eliminating the path to ground that exists with standard pots even in the full treble position. The end result is that the only load on the pickup is the volume pot. From a tonal standpoint this equates to increased output and brightness when the pot is on 10. The reason for this is that the reduced load allows more output from he pickup to come through and reduces the amount of high frequencies that bleed off to ground.

• What is a blender pot?

A blender pot allows you to blend (mix) the neck pickup or the bridge pickup into the signal which will provide you with 2 extra sound, namely: bridge/neck (very Tele like) as well as all 3 pickups on simultaneously. If the 5-way is in the neck position, it blends in the bridge pickup. If the 5-way is in the bridge position it blends in the neck pickup. You can dial in as much or as little as you want. For example, one of Lindy Fralin’s favorite ways to use blender wiring is add just a little bit of the neck pickup to warm up the bridge pickup.

Blender pots ideally should be “no-load” pots (see above) so when the pot is on 10 the pot is completely removed from the circuit, and therefore not loading the circuit in any way (think “true bypass”).

Here is a summary of how the blender works in relation to the 5 way selector switch:

POSITION

ORIGINAL PICKUP COMBO

BLENDER FUNCTION

RESULTING PICKUP COMBO

1

Bridge

Blends in neck pickup

Bridge/Neck

2

Bridge/Middle

Blends in neck pickup

Bridge/Middle/Neck

3

Middle

Non-functional

Middle

4

Middle/Neck

Blends in bridge pickup

Bridge/Middle/Neck

5

Neck

Blends in bridge pickup

Neck/Bridge

• How does the tone capacitor value affect tone?

The most common value capacitors for guitar circuits are .022 uf and .047 uf (where uf is the symbol for microfarads, sometimes referred as MFD). The tone pot and capacitor are wired together to form what is called a variable low pass filter. This means as you dial in the tone pot only the low frequencies pass to the output jack and the high frequencies are grounded out. The selected capacitor value will determine the "cutoff frequency" of the filter. Larger capacitors (eg. .047 uf) will have lower cutoff frequency and sound darker when dialed in because a wider range of frequencies is being reduced. Smaller capacitors (eg. .022 uf) will have a higher cutoff frequency and sound brighter when dialed in because only the high frequencies are cut. The convention is for humbucker equipped guitars to use .022 uf capacitors and single coil equipped guitars typically use ..047 uf capacitors. However, feel free to experiment. Some like to use .033 uf capacitors since they are in between .022 and .047.

• What is the famous Clapton “woman tone” about?

Eric Clapton often used smaller than normal caps on his tone controls and then rolled the tone all the way off to create what he referred to as "woman tone". This would give him a rather subtle, warm, yet beefy sound that had a great growl to it and provided a rather creamy distortion when overdriven. A good value cap to use for this effect would be a .015 uf capacitor.



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post #24 of 93 (permalink) Old 04-08-2011, 07:16 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Another pickup wiring resource thread!

Some cool wiring mods that people ask about:

1 - Phase reverse switch
Suitable for: Most guitars with two or more pickups.

Materials required:

1 - DPDT mini-toggle switch or Push-pull Volume or Tone pot
Hook-up wire
A very simple modification that can give a very useful additional tone for your guitar is a phase reverse switch. The concept is very simple - fit a double pole, double throw (DPDT) switch to reverse the connections to one of your pickups when it is activated. This will only be noticeable when the pickup is used in conjunction with another pickup.

As the two pickups are located in different positions along the length of the vibrating string, they will pick up different wave shapes, with a differing balance of harmonics. By mixing these two signals together out of phase, certain frequencies will be cancelled out, whilst other frequencies will be reinforced. The resulting tone is "comb filtered", reminiscent of the effect given by a phaser or flanger pedal with the sweep turned off. Sonically, this gives the guitar a bright, "hollow" tone.

Please note that it is not recommended to try this mod on a pickup with a metal cover that is connected by a single core screened cable - this would result in the metal cover being connected to the "hot" audio connection, which would inevitably cause hum and noise pickup.

On a guitar with two pickups, you can modify the connections to either pickup - check to see which is the easiest to apply it to. On instruments with three pickups, it is best to fit the switch to the connections from the middle pickup - this will give two different "out-of-phase" sounds.

You can use either a separate DPDT mini-toggle switch (Easier, but you will need to drill an extra hole in your guitar) or replace one of your guitar's volume or tone pots with a push-pull pot - this is a standard pot with a switch "piggy-backed" that can be actuated by pulling out or pushing in the shaft of the pot.

2 - Coil tap switch
Suitable for: Guitars fitted with one or more humbucking pickups with three or four conductor wiring.

Materials required:

1 - DPDT mini-toggle switch or Push-pull Volume or Tone pot
Hook-up wire
This is probably one of the easiest and most effective mods that can be done. The concept is very simple - just bypass one of the coils of a humbucking pickup to turn it into a single coil pickup. Many modern production guitars do use this technique, however there are a huge number of instruments in use that could incorporate a coil tap, but do not.

This mod can be performed on pickups that have a single core plus screen connection, but this does involve dismantling the pickup - if you have any doubts about your ability to do this successfully (or have a vintage instrument), please do not attempt it! A competent repairer will be able do this for you for a reasonable fee. If you feel up to doing this yourself, please see the section on Coil Splitting below.

If you are coil-tapping two pickups, you can use one switch to switch both pickups together as shown below, or use separate switches for independent control of both pickups - this is great for live performance, allowing you to (say) switch from a single coil in the neck position to a fat bridge humbucker tone for a solo.

The illustration shows a single wire leading to the coil tap on the pickup, however, with 4-conductor pickups, this would be replaced by two wires joined together. Please note that no wiring colours are shown for the connections to the pickup, if you do not have access to the pickup manufacturer's data sheet, please check my Pickup Manufacturer's Colour Codes page for more information.



3 - Series / Parallel switch
Suitable for: Guitars fitted with one or more humbucking pickups with four conductor wiring.

Materials required:

1 - DPDT mini-toggle switch or Push-pull Volume or Tone pot (per pickup)
Hook-up wire
Whilst the tonal difference between series and parallel configuration is not as great as that given by coil tapping a humbucker, it does have the advantage of being fully humbucking in both positions - I find that it is very effective on the "hot rails" strat style pickups, and the parallel configuration gives a very convincing "tele" sound in the bridge position with this style of pickup.

Again, if you wish to use this mod on pickups that have a single core plus screen connection, you will need to dismantle the pickup - if you have any doubts about your ability to do this successfully (or have a vintage instrument), please do not attempt it! A competent repairer will be able do this for you for a reasonable fee. If you feel up to doing this yourself, please see the section on Coil Splitting below.

If you are coil-tapping two pickups, you will need to use separate switches for independent control of both pickups as all six tags of a DPDT switch will be used to switch one pickup.

As in the example above, no wiring colours are shown for the connections to the pickup, The drawing below shows how the switch should be connected to a 4 conductor wired pickup, in its standard configuration. Please check my Pickup Manufacturer's Colour Codes page for more information.



4 - Independent pickup switches
Suitable for: Instruments fitted with three pickups.

Materials required:

3 - DPDT mini-toggle switches (3 position - centre off)
1 - Additional Tone Capacitor (optional).
Hook-up wire
This is a very nice mod, as it gives an enormous range of sounds - 13 (usefully) different configurations, by replacing the normal 5 way switch with three separate in-phase/off/out-of-phase switches. Yes, I know that 3, 3-position switches can give 27 different combinations, but half of them sound identical - ie bridge in-phase/mid out-of-phase sounds exactly the same as bridge out-of-phase/mid in-phase.

This does involve drilling some holes in your instrument's scratchplate, and some quite fiddly wiring, but it really does open up a great range on tonality from your instrument.



Wiring independent pickup switches
Remove the original 5-way switch, unsoldering all connections from it (HINT - make a quick sketch showing which wire goes to each switch terminal).
Carefully drill 3 holes (diameter to suit your switches, usually 6mm), one at each end of the slot, and one in the middle of the slot - hold the drill steady to make sure it does not "wander" down the slot.
Fit the 3 mini-toggle switches in the holes and tighten the mounting nuts with a box spanner.
Solder the two wire links on each switch in position first, then the four links connecting together pins "a" and "b" on each switch.
At this stage, you need to consider how to wire in your tone controls - if your instrument just has one single tone control, this will usually be hard-wired in to the volume pot, and you will not have to change anything, if, however, your instrument has two tone controls, these should be connected as shown in the drawing below - you should unsolder the ground connection from one tag of each tone pot so that none of the tags are grounded (it is ok to leave the metal body of the pot grounded). If your instrument has only one capacitor "shared" between both pots, you will need to purchase another (your local TV repair shop should come in handy here!), make sure it is the same value. Use a short length of heatshrink sleeving or pvc insulating tape to insulate the connection to the capacitor, as shown in the drawing.

The standard arrangement on stock Strat type guitars is to connect the top tone control to the neck pickup, and the bottom tone control to the mid pickup - this is the arrangement shown in the drawing above. Personally, I prefer to connect tone pots to the mid and bridge pickups, but this is down to taste - experiment!
Finally, connect the pickups to the switches, and the two wires from the "a" and "b" tags to the volume pot on the guitar.





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post #25 of 93 (permalink) Old 04-09-2011, 04:34 AM
 
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Re: Another pickup wiring resource thread!

Quote:
Originally Posted by AlaskaBat View Post
I had this in one of my guitars a couple of years ago and it made it noisy. Could be that it was my fault somehow, but if you you find yourself in a similar situation, try bypassing it with a piece of wire and see if that kills the noise.
Cheers
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post #26 of 93 (permalink) Old 04-09-2011, 05:09 AM
 
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Re: Another pickup wiring resource thread!

Let's not forget the Suhr Blower Switch mod either.

http://www.lonephantom.com/2011/01/s...-modification/
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post #27 of 93 (permalink) Old 04-19-2011, 05:54 AM
 
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Re: Another pickup wiring resource thread!

Can we get this stickied too please mods?
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post #28 of 93 (permalink) Old 04-19-2011, 01:41 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Another pickup wiring resource thread!

Quote:
Originally Posted by LonePhantom View Post
Can we get this stickied too please mods?
Don't think it's going to happen, bro...



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post #29 of 93 (permalink) Old 04-19-2011, 01:56 PM
 
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Re: Another pickup wiring resource thread!

This is a gold mine. Hopefully more people voting for stickied will make it happen. Please sticky, its useful
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post #30 of 93 (permalink) Old 04-22-2011, 11:32 AM
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Re: Another pickup wiring resource thread!

Stuck...
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