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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey everyone

First post here - I just bought a SA160 and I'd like to upgrade my pickups. I am thinking about a Mo' Joe in the bridge and maybe a Satch Track in the neck. I guess you know who my hero is.

Anyway, a DiMarzio tech sent me a wiring diagram. It says the pots have to be 500K-W (volume) and 500K-D (tone). As you can see in my pictures, I have A500K (tone) and B500K (volume). Beside the 500 being common, I'm not sure what the other letters mean.

Also, has anyone here done this upgrade?
 

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Hey everyone

First post here - I just bought a SA160 and I'd like to upgrade my pickups. I am thinking about a Mo' Joe in the bridge and maybe a Satch Track in the neck. I guess you know who my hero is.

Anyway, a DiMarzio tech sent me a wiring diagram. It says the pots have to be 500K-W (volume) and 500K-D (tone). As you can see in my pictures, I have A500K (tone) and B500K (volume). Beside the 500 being common, I'm not sure what the other letters mean.

Also, has anyone here done this upgrade?
All that the letters on your pots mean are that one of them is a logarithmic potentiometer also known as audio taper and the other is linear. They're completely fine and you don't need to change them.

By fitting the JS signature pickups you're basically changing the guitar from an HSS to HSH pickup configuration since the new neck pickup is really a single coil-sized humbucker, I think the conversion should work well with the coil tap options available in this configuration if the switch can be wired correctly, if not then you can change the switch for a 'superswitch' type 5-way switch normally fitted to HSH guitars.
 

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Your existing pots will work. If you're not having problems with them there's no real need to replace them.

A500K and 500K-W are audio (logarithmic) taper. Most folks recommend using audio taper for volume (since changes in volume are perceived logarithmically), but Ibanez uses these for tone. B500K and 500K-D pots are linear taper. Similarly these are often recommended for tone, but Ibanez uses them for volume.

There are no hard and fast rules in guitar wiring. Feel free to swap the volume and tone pots and see if you like them better.

Since you're a Satch fan and are already re-wiring things, you might want to think about putting in push-pull pots. Joe's guitars have a high-pass filter on one push-pull and a coil split on the other. Here's how Joe's HH guitars are wired. With an HSS (or HSH with the Satch Track) configuration yours will be a little different, but this shows you how the push-pull pots are used.

 

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Just to keep the wiring simplified, you could just lower the middle pickup and not connect it. Just a thought... Cool project though! I've always wanted to play an SA to see what the necks feel like.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Hey

Thanks a bunch for your answers. I think I will put a cruiser in the middle. I assume if I do this I won't have to change the switch?

As for how it plays, I have a few Jacksons, an RG, Schecter, a BC Rich, and this one feels the best for me. It's a lower end model being the 160 but being a lefty, the options are extremely minimal. It's nearly impossible to find any S in lefty outside of the 160. So I got this one and am going to upgrade it.

Jody
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Hey everyone

The responses have left me with another question. It was mentioned that I may need to get another switch like a superswitch. I had a look at the stock SA160 wiring diagram and the new diagram from DiMarzio and I don't see why. however, this is not my area of knowledge at all. I was wondering if someone could clarify this.

I'd just like to know if I have to get this before I bring everything to the guitar shop.

cheers,
 

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Hey everyone

The responses have left me with another question. It was mentioned that I may need to get another switch like a superswitch. I had a look at the stock SA160 wiring diagram and the new diagram from DiMarzio and I don't see why. however, this is not my area of knowledge at all. I was wondering if someone could clarify this.

I'd just like to know if I have to get this before I bring everything to the guitar shop.

cheers,
I only mentioned it because I didn't know what type of switch the SA160 came with, if you've looked at the standard wiring and it already has a superswitch then you don't need one.
 
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