I never heard of THIS - Jemsite
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-13-2012, 05:33 PM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: memphis
Posts: 56
I never heard of THIS

I built (wound) my own humbucker just for kicks.
Both coils at 4500 loops.
Soldered them out wire to out wire so that the juice would flow in opposite directions - hence the humbucker idea.
Basically just another simple humbucker...

Long story to get to the end so I'll just hit the big finale.

One start sire is soldered direct to the input JACK.
The other goes to one position on the 5 way selector switch.
One wire leads from there to the output JACK.

No volume control, No tone control in the circuit.

Here's the kicker.

There are numerous positions on the 5 way switch that
SHOULD have no connection and therefore shut OFF the pickup completely.
But sound comes out in EVERY position selected!
There is no OFF position.
Ex. position 3 on the selector has no contact on the 2nd and 3rd post of the 8 little connectors. EITHER ONE. verified with a ohm meter of course.
But putting the selector on 3 stills makes sound!

I have swapped out 3 different 5 way selectors and the same thing happens every time.

I don't get it but for some reason, electricity flows no matter WHAT I do.

If there is an electrical engineer out there with a reason why this happens, I would really like to hear it...

Gonna wire in a STOCK pickup tonight and retry but there is no reason it sould be any different.
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-13-2012, 05:59 PM
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: California
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Re: I never heard of THIS

I may be misinterpreting your description but it sounds like you have one of the two coils of your humbucker wired directly to the output jack, while the 2nd coil goes through the switch. Thus you will ALWAYS have 1 coil "on" and sending output to the jack. The 2nd coil which goes through the switch gets turned on or off by the switch position, so essentially what you've done is created a split-coil scenario. When the switch is positioned such that your pup is "on", you are running as a humbucker. Any other switch position results in a single coil - that is always on.
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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-13-2012, 06:24 PM
 
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Re: I never heard of THIS

+1

Sounds right to me
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-14-2012, 02:11 AM
 
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Re: I never heard of THIS

+1, the same to me, makes sense
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-14-2012, 03:26 AM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: memphis
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Re: I never heard of THIS

maybe I didn't explain it clear enough but no.
I made a 2 wire pickup - 1 wire goes in and around the first coil - then it proceeds directly around the other coil before coming out.
1 wire in 1 wire out.
1 wire does connect directly to the jack input.
After going through the entire pu and back out, it goes to the pu selector switch.
The switch in the #1 position should send the signal back to the other side of the jack and out the guitar.
Any other position - or at least SOME of the positions on the selector switch- should leave the signal dead - guitar effectively OFF.

I even resoldered to 2 points on the switch that NEITHER are hot in position 4 - so BOTH wires should be open circuits - it still plays.
In EVERY position.

No matter WHAT I do, sound comes out in EVERY position on all 3 switches I have used.
And even weirder still, I swear it sounds darker and thicker as the switch is clicked closer to the position nearest the neck of the guitar. But I'm willing to conceed I may be imagining that, even though I have tried HARD to "quit" hearing it do it...

I'm about to remove the volume and tone pots completly from the guitar here in a minute and try a stock 2 wire pickup. Remove a few variables.

This thing has me thinking that the "flux factor" i.e string vibration over coils and wires with no actual contact has something to do with it.

I've never actually seen a guitar that would go SILENT at any particular position of a pickup selector switch - completely OFF - so I'm still not sure what is going on here.
OFF with a SEPARATE switch yes, but not from the selector switch.

And maybe it is backfeeding somehow if I connected to the WRONG 2 points of the jack.
Maybe a ground issue???
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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-14-2012, 03:54 AM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: memphis
Posts: 56
Re: I never heard of THIS

OK
Life is back to normal.
I changed the wires on the input jack and all is well.
I now have OFF positions.
Still pulled the volume and tone pots out but they weren't connected anyway.

Just a little rehab on the guitar and I can get back to my original intention.
I'll tell you about that if it works...

But I'll say this much, the guitar presently has an 11 position varitone (homemade) and a stacked volume/tone knob so it's getting a lot of cool sounds out of it.

The final product may be wayyy cooler though.
Should know REAL soon now that I got THIS straight.
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-14-2012, 12:06 PM
 
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Re: I never heard of THIS

Quote:
Originally Posted by rlslavik View Post
maybe I didn't explain it clear enough but no.
I made a 2 wire pickup - 1 wire goes in and around the first coil - then it proceeds directly around the other coil before coming out.
1 wire in 1 wire out.
1 wire does connect directly to the jack input.
After going through the entire pu and back out, it goes to the pu selector switch.
The switch in the #1 position should send the signal back to the other side of the jack and out the guitar.
Any other position - or at least SOME of the positions on the selector switch- should leave the signal dead - guitar effectively OFF.

I even resoldered to 2 points on the switch that NEITHER are hot in position 4 - so BOTH wires should be open circuits - it still plays.
In EVERY position.

No matter WHAT I do, sound comes out in EVERY position on all 3 switches I have used.
And even weirder still, I swear it sounds darker and thicker as the switch is clicked closer to the position nearest the neck of the guitar. But I'm willing to conceed I may be imagining that, even though I have tried HARD to "quit" hearing it do it...

I'm about to remove the volume and tone pots completly from the guitar here in a minute and try a stock 2 wire pickup. Remove a few variables.

This thing has me thinking that the "flux factor" i.e string vibration over coils and wires with no actual contact has something to do with it.

I've never actually seen a guitar that would go SILENT at any particular position of a pickup selector switch - completely OFF - so I'm still not sure what is going on here.
OFF with a SEPARATE switch yes, but not from the selector switch.

And maybe it is backfeeding somehow if I connected to the WRONG 2 points of the jack.
Maybe a ground issue???
I'm not sure if you're just wording things incorrectly or if you are misunderstanding how a passive pickup works but your description is still incorrect. There is NO "input" wire on a pickup - there is ONLY output...

The magnet in the pickup magnetizes a small portion of the string where it is directly above the magnet's pole. The coil surrounds the magnet (as you know cuz you wound it yourself). As the string vibrates, it induces an EMF in the coil according to Faraday's Law (E = -dPhi/dt, or the EMF is inversely proportional to the change in the magnetic flux with respect to time). When the string vibrates at some frequency, it's magnetized segment produces a changing magnetic flux through the coil. The changing flux induces the EMF in the coil which is then fed to the amp.

The point of all that, besides precisely explaining the physics of a pickup coil (physics rocks!) is to demonstrate the reason there is NO "input" wire on a pickup. BOTH wires are OUTPUT wires. Also, your jack does NOT have "input & output" - it is an OUTPUT jack only. Its poles are simply hot (output) and ground. So while it's still unclear what you've done with your changes, assuming your schematic is similar to before but you did something different with the output jack (sounds like you connected one of your coils to the jack's ground pole, thus completely eliminating it from your output path) it sounds like you have effectively killed one of your coils so that you are now ONLY running in single coil fashion. When you have an "off" position, it is because the one coil that is being allowed to output (through the switch) is off. This would also explain the sound getting "thicker and heavier" as the switch is moved into the 1-pos. This is the position that allows the most signal to pass out of the pup (the 1 coil you have wired to output). As you move away from the 1-pos on the switch, you will still have some signal passing through, but it is less, this the thinner, weaker sound.
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-15-2012, 07:35 AM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: memphis
Posts: 56
Re: I never heard of THIS

good stuff - and I don't/can't argue any of it.
I am a mechanical engineer - not electrical. EMF and the like are a bit confusing to me.
Any rate, the pickup pair CANNOT be separated in this thing.
To use better terminology than the last post- each separate coil has a "start" point and an "end" point when physically winding it, the start point being the 1st time the wire wraps around the bobbin, the end point being the last time around - i.e. the outer wire, with the start wire buried under 4500 wraps of wire at the center, the end of it however exiting for connection purposes. Each individual coil is essentially identical to the other.
The END wire of the 1st coil is soldered directly to the END wire of the second coil to "buck" the hum of each other. Placed side by side - picturing a DC circuit in my head for simplicity - the current therefore travels in opposite drections in the 2 coils. Standard humbucer stuff.
BUT, the connection point of the 2 separate coils is buried between the 2 bobbins and only accessable if I physically remove 1 bobbin from the base with a screwdriver. This is a 2 wire humbucker. I did not WANT split pu ability and therefore did not build it with the ability to do so. There is NO WAY to hear just one coil or the other. One wire "in". One wire "out" of the SET.
So when I referred to input/output wires, I should have said start wires or end wires.
Same thing in general with the jack.
That being said, the START wire of the pu SET connects to one leg of the jack and the END wire of the pu set connects to the other leg of the jack.

And yes, for ONE moment, all seemed correct after resoldering the jack.

However, now it back to square one.

Position 1 on the switch should play the pu normally.
Position 3 should turn it effectively off.
The two points on the 8 pin - 5 way - switch I soldered it to are both hot in pos. 1 and
both "dead" in position 3.
But once again, this thing plays in either all 5 positions of the flip switch or - when resoldering the jack again - is dead in all 5 positions.
I have not been able to get back to the "dead" at position 3 ONLY that was working last night.
I have resoldered to various points on the switch and swapped out the jack with a spare new one and keep getting the same result.
The pu still checks out around 10k ohms - I haven't messed with IT.

Tired of the confusion, I'm going to install a stock new 2 wire pu right now to see what happens.
There is SOMETHING going on I don't understand.
I am on a mission to figure it out.
Next post coming soon.
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-15-2012, 08:04 AM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: memphis
Posts: 56
Re: I never heard of THIS

yep, new pickup works correct.
As I expect mine SHOULD have.
It's HAS to have something to do with the way I grounded it inside the pu or lack thereof.
It's late.Been up all night.
I'll get to it tomorrow...
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-15-2012, 12:15 PM
 
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Re: I never heard of THIS

I think you found your problem. Without an internal ground AND both hot wires going to the output.....your always hot or always off. depending on how you wire the output, the switch is acting as a thru-put (always hot) or a ground (always off). You need to ground the pup to the switch then to the output ground. Both hots can be wired to the same lug on the switch, on individual lugs on the switch, or the output jack hot.
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post #11 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-16-2012, 02:22 AM Thread Starter
 
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Re: I never heard of THIS

gottit.
Adding a ground wire inside the pu from 1 wire to the frame makes it all work correctly.

thanks for the help, although I STILL don't understand the whole EMF thing.
But that was what much of this was about - figuring things out from the inside out.

thanks again.
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post #12 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-03-2012, 02:49 AM Thread Starter
 
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Location: memphis
Posts: 56
Re: I never heard of THIS

here's a quick update.
the reason I did all this was to try something new.
I wrapped a THIRD coil - 3000 turns - around the combination of original coils.
Wired that path to a separate point on the 5 way switch.
pos 1 - original pickup only.
pos 2 - original pu plus the additional 3000 coils - then to output.
Hope was to see a major power / crunch increase when I kicked in the extra coil.
Even figured to run the 2nd section thru an extra potentiomater so that gain could be adjusted.
With a SPRING loaded pot, it could act as a one finger - push lever/switch - that would automatically return when you let go.
Idea being a crunch/gain spring loaded lever - attack on demand.

But, even wrapping low ohm coils, I get the same result every time.
More like a power SOAK.
Duller sound - loses lots of high end, and lower volume output.
So much for THAT idea.

But the only one who never fails is the one who never tries...
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post #13 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-06-2012, 02:42 AM
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
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Re: I never heard of THIS

Sounds like you're having fun! :-)
I think what you've done in your second wire-up, is create a mini step-down transformer.

When the strings vibrate they cause a small current to flow to your amp. By wrapping another coil with less wires around the first two, some of the energy from the inner coils will be induced into the second outer coil.

Because you don't get anything for nothing, what you are doing is introducing a load, which will reduce high frequency response considerably, and load all other frequencies.

I would predict a muddier, quieter output.

But I could well be talking rubbish! :-)
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post #14 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-09-2012, 05:28 PM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: memphis
Posts: 56
Re: I never heard of THIS

well, that WAS the outcome...

I couldn't figure out WHAT would happen so I just built it.

NEXT!
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