Have any soldering or guitar wiring advice?


I still haven’t done anything with my box of goodies from Guitar Fetish to beat up that New York Pro Strat clone.  It’s not that I’m nervous, I just haven’t had time to sit down & get it done yet.   I’m also still open to any tips/tricks/advice.

I wrote to Joe Gore of the Tone Fiend blog (if it’s not in your reader, it should be) and he gave me a cool link to videos (besides the ones on his killer DIY page)…  Installing Pickups.

I also recently came across these cool blog posts from Guitar WTF (another good follow!):

I did buy one of these from Harbor Freight…

Jumbo Helping Hands with LED Lights (item#65779 )

Think it will help?  Everyone seems to say it will. I might need a sponge too?

I’ve gotten some decent tips from Facebook, SMG, and Misfits Central.  What else do I need to consider as far as pots & capacitors?

How would you connect the dots here?  What pots & capacitors would you use?

How would you wire this?

How would you wire this?

Should I do the 7-sound thing?  What if I want the neck & the bridge both on at once?

Should I replace the pots while I’m in there?  How do I tell if they’re 250k or 500k?

I’m guessing a wiring diagram with my proposed setup doesn’t already exist out there, not even at Stew-Mac.  Looks like these cats will make one for $30, but I think I can do that myself.  (Although a very rough one.)

I need a crash course in guitar wiring, I guess.  Ha ha.

I also might try to setup a work bench/space in the basement so I don’t ruin the dining room table.

What about a push-pull pot with a poor man’s Black Ice circuit?

Should I get a book?

I know I’m over-thinking this.  There’s too many options.  Ha ha.

8 responses to “Have any soldering or guitar wiring advice?

  1. The rule of thumb for pot values tends to be 250k for single coils and 500k for humbuckers. The lower the value the more the highs get rolled off. That being said, it is totally up to your ears. Many people prefer 250k on humbuckers as it gives them a thicker, less gainy tone. It also cleans the pickup up more when rolling off the volume. If you are a high gain player a 500k or even a 1 meg will give your tone more definition and allow it to cut through the mix better as it will add more highs. Some Les Pauls came with 300k pots, kind of a compromise.
    To find out what value your pots are you will need a multimeter. You would select ohms on the meter and put the leads on the outer two lugs of the pot. Note, even though a pot may be labeled 250k, I have measured anywhere from 215k to 270k of actual resistance.
    If you are trying to really zone in on a particular tone you can actually alter the resistance of a pot by adding a resistor in parallel (between the outer lugs). Ex. a 500k resistor in parallel with a 500k pot will make it 250k. If you want a 300k pot out of a 500k pot add a 750k resistor. Here is a parallel resistance calculator if interested.

    http://www.1728.org/resistrs.htm

    Hope this helps.

    • Wow, that does help! I’m just going to solder what I have, then go from there to see if I like 500K, 250K, or a compromise. Perhaps a capacitor is the answer?

      I really want to try the sound. Sometimes I go for a sound that I think I want, not the sound I actually want.

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