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Left Handed Pot Wiring Question

Discussion in 'Tele-Technical' started by Boblets, Sep 13, 2013.

  1. Boblets

    Boblets Friend of Leo's

    Sep 15, 2008
    Brisbane Australia
    I have a new 2012 American Standard Tele.

    The volume and tone controls seem to function as on/off with no gradual variation in tone or volume.

    Does anyone have any ideas on how I could rewire the pots to get them to work?

    I don't mind if they roll clockwise or anticlockwise, I would just love to have my new guitar function as I imagine right handed ones do.

    Thanks in advance for any suggestions.

  2. trev333

    trev333 Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

    if your pots go from 0-10, say.... where on the dial is the cut off point?... around 8?

    some pots have a taper that's all up the top and other have a more gradual sweep...

    if the capacitor on the tone pot is an .047 change it to a .022 for a more usable sweep... less mud...

    if you want your V pot to work off the bottom in a more gradual way.... read up on "treble bleed caps"... an .001 cap across the V input/output lugs can give you that sweep off the bottom to top......

    cheers.. good luck with it..;)

  3. Leftysquire

    Leftysquire TDPRI Member

    Aug 22, 2012
    You most likely have log taper pots, the resistance curve is opposite of what you need as a lefty. You can flip the outside connections of each pot to correct this, but the pot will work backwards and have the right taper. Or get reverse-log pots (left handed) and wire them the same way as the ones you have. I switched to a linear taper pot for volume and like the feel of it better. Hope that helps.

  4. Rufus

    Rufus Tele-Afflicted

    Apr 13, 2004
    NW Atlanta
    Unbelievably, Fender wires it's left handed guitars this way.
    At least that was my experience on a new Southpaw Tele around six years ago.

    Go to the Fender website and compare the wiring diagrams of a left handed and a righthanded guitar of whichever model you own. Look at the tone pot and notice which lugs the wiring is connected to.

    To fix the lefty, you basically unsolder the wire on whichever of the outside lugs it's soldered to and then solder it to the lug on the other side.
    Leave the center lug wired as it is.

    Now it works correctly.

    Amazingly, Fender can't seem to train its workers to do this correctly on left handed guitars. Come on, it's only 2013...someday they will actually give a damn.

    You actually expected a new guitar to work correctly?

    Just one more of many reasons that I assembled my own from quality components (USACG) instead of settling for the substandard stuff they try to pass off on us lefties.
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2013

  5. jefrs

    jefrs Doctor of Teleocity

    Nov 20, 2007
    Newbury, England
    You cannot wire a Log pot backwards for a lefty, you need a reverse-log pot. This is a Log pot only the track runs backwards

    The tone pot needs to be a Log pot (forward or reverse) the vol pot can be a Linear.

    Me, I would use right-handed pots wired righty. That way they are the same turn as any other control pot.

    It's a bit like encountering a left-handed screw thread, it ain't natural even for a lefty to turn that the wrong way.

    When wiring a pot, check by turning it to "10" and figure out which end the wiper is now touching - this is the top, the hot connection on the vol pot.

  6. Rob DiStefano

    Rob DiStefano Poster Extraordinaire Vendor Member

    Mar 3, 2003
    NJ via TX
    essentially, you need a linear volume pot and then flip the outside lug wires. don't do that to an audio taper pot.

  7. Boblets

    Boblets Friend of Leo's

    Sep 15, 2008
    Brisbane Australia
    Thanks everyone for your help.

    I am still not sure but from people have said what I think I can do is get a couple of CTS lefty linear pots and replace the originals. Having said this, something tells me I really should use an audio pot for tone.

    I guess I could write to Fender to ask them how to get my guitar to work, and why us lefties miss out on the Delta Tone pot.

  8. jefrs

    jefrs Doctor of Teleocity

    Nov 20, 2007
    Newbury, England
    No such thing as lefty linear pots, they're ambidextrous, same both ways.

    If you find someone offering lefty linear pots, they're pulling your wire;)
    Pick up a left-handed hammer whilst you're there.

    You can use a linear pot for volume and you can wire it to roll lefty. But why? Surely by now your'e used to controls rotating clockwise to increase. Most vol pots are Log, I prefer linear for better fine control, and no notches (Log pots are 4 linear tracks joined end to end).

    But the tone control is another matter, it has to be a Log pot. A linear pot here does a lot of nothing and then instant mud. It is used as a variable resistor, at 250k they do nothing, they don't do anything much until they drop down to about 150k which is about 9 on a Log pot but a hair above 5 on a linear.. The taper is all wrong for a tone control.

    For a tone control you either use a Log pot wired righty, or try to find a 250k Reverse-Log pot that fits a guitar and its knob. Genuine rocking horse poo.

  9. billgwx

    billgwx Tele-Meister

    Nov 6, 2009
    Centereach NY
    My left handed Tele and P-bass tone controls had the same issue. Yes it is frustrating, as I want to be able to make on-the-fly tone adjustments, especially for the Tele for instances when I want to tame the twang. My tech got hold of lefty pots to fix them. So far so good for the P-bass...I get the Tele back from the shop in a few days.

  10. jefrs

    jefrs Doctor of Teleocity

    Nov 20, 2007
    Newbury, England
    How does that work for you when you switch over to twirling the knobs on the amp, other guitars, radio, cooker, screws, taps, etc, etc.?

    That tone pot needs to be logarithmic so I guess you are getting a reverse-log pot.

    There are a number of pot tapers. We are familiar with linear and logarithmic. The log pot we use in the guitar is a 10% but there are also 30% and things like lin/log and "S"-taper (log/reverse-log, weird). I cannot remember all the prefix letters used, an M/N is a dual-gang log+reverse-log to the centre detent as used for panning and in a P/J.

    My entire family were left handed, so I got to be either-handed/right. I write right-handed but can write (scrawl) with the left, or use scissors lefty. I shave lefty.

    Both myself and my completely left-handed father would be thoroughly confused by a pot that turned the 'wrong' way ;)

  11. trev333

    trev333 Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

    ""I would just love to have my new guitar function as I imagine right handed ones do.""

    the Fender factory would use the same components for both handed guitars,,, so a RH one would have the same control plate/action at the V&T dials.... on that model... as yours... flipped to suit...or just moved across...

    I like my volume to be more gradual as well... though some guitars I've got do have the V all at the top.... like yours... strats as well....

    I've collected 3 teles from the same year.... one of them had a much better V sweep .. the other two were closer to all top..... the tone controls were much the same sweep... (same cap)

    when I opened them up for a look under the control plate.... I found the "best" one.. my fav..the one with the full sweep... and the nicest neck "tone"... had an old .001 treble bleed cap on the V lugs.... everything else between the 3 was the same ,pot #'s, ,etc...
    the PU's must be similar as well I would expect... same year/era...?...

    I guess I have a soft spot for the bleed mod since... and use it/try it on most builds..

    it's all weird science...;)... Oh!...and solder...:)

  12. jefrs

    jefrs Doctor of Teleocity

    Nov 20, 2007
    Newbury, England
    The linear volume pot is more gradual at the top end (10-5). It is less suited for big swells but more suited for fine setting the volume on the fly.

    I like them, not everyone does. They are ambidextrous, just wire up arse about face.

    The tone pot is a problem, it does have to be logarithmic but a lefty wired one will have to be that reverse-log pot. I find a 250k 'log' suits all instruments except a 2+2 control system.

    Now talking to lefty players, I've found that whilst most like the pots in the right place, they are happy with the clockwise to increase normal motion, because all other control pots turn that way.

    As a right-handed player, I'm just as adept at turning the pots up as down, it doesn't take some special skill to turn it one way or the other.
    And yes, I can and do use my left hand to turn knobs on the amp and elsewhere, even the guitar whilst playing sometimes (reach across).

    What components one uses in the tone control is always a matter of personal preference and experiment.

    Pickups in a strat can be turned top to bottom to get the pole stagger right, alnico poles can be moved to re-stagger them (careful). The tele neck is or should be flat topped under the can (which spreads the field anyway so pole stagger is less significant) but the tele bridge modern stagger pickup needs to be built left-handed because you cannot top for tail it. The flat topped vintage pickup doesn't care.

  13. AllroyPA

    AllroyPA Tele-Meister

    Aug 27, 2010
    Rofo, PA
    I suppose your points are very informative, but I am more confused after reading them. :confused:

  14. sjtalon

    sjtalon Poster Extraordinaire

    I'd give my right arm to be ambidextrous.

  15. jefrs

    jefrs Doctor of Teleocity

    Nov 20, 2007
    Newbury, England
    I am confused by this. :confused:

    Have you read the thread conversation?

    Which word did you not understand?
    Perhaps something was lost in translation?
    I'm quite happy to simplify it if you wish.

  16. AllroyPA

    AllroyPA Tele-Meister

    Aug 27, 2010
    Rofo, PA
    Go for it ....

  17. jefrs

    jefrs Doctor of Teleocity

    Nov 20, 2007
    Newbury, England
    :confused: No, you are still not making sense.

    Can you use complete sentences?

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