Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups
Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups
Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups

Strat-Diagram for tone control on bridge PU

Discussion in 'Stratocaster Discussion Forum' started by hapichap, Mar 3, 2008.

  1. hapichap

    hapichap TDPRI Member

    Oct 24, 2007

    I did a forum search and saw a lot of comments about it but can someone supply a diagram to add tone control to the bridge PU on a strat. I would like to use the 1st tone for the neck and middle and the 2nd for the bridge (but I would be happy if the 2nd tone controlled the middle and bridge).

    I had a link for this but the link is now dead.

    Any help would be appreciated.


  2. Deaf Eddie

    Deaf Eddie Friend of Leo's

    Mar 17, 2003
    Sunny San Diego, CA
    An edit of the Fender drawing...

    This will add the bridge pup on the (lower) mid pup's tone control. It is the way the AmStd (Delta-Tone) Strats are wired.


    If INSTEAD you moved the jumper from the lower tone control to the bridge lug on the 5-way (fuschia line to green dot), and jumpered the middle tone control to the neck and mid lugs (blue and fuschia dots), you would get the neck and mid on the middle tone control, and the bridge on the lower.

  3. OGAL

    OGAL TDPRI Member

    Feb 8, 2010
    I'd like to do this to my strat. Is this mod difficult to do , require soldering ?


  4. Ronsonic

    Ronsonic Tele-Afflicted

    It requires soldering. Not difficult at all, but does require basic electronics chops.

  5. guycalleddave

    guycalleddave Tele-Meister

    Oct 10, 2011
    Grand Rapids, MI
    kind of resurrection an old thread here, but wouldn't it make sense to tie in the bridge pick up with the neck tone control (for a standard 5 way switch). To me this would allow for independent tone controls for each pickup for each position.

  6. waparker4

    waparker4 Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

    Nov 9, 2011
    Philadelphia, PA
    Sounds cool. Do it

    I will just be removing the tone completely from the middle pickup and moving it to the bridge.

  7. stnmtthw

    stnmtthw Friend of Leo's

    Apr 2, 2012
    New Mexico
    Alternatively, you could remove the wires from the switch to the tone pots and jumper the middle (output) of the volume pot to the middle (input) of one of the tone pots. That would give you all three pickups on the same tone knob, if that's your thing. I did it to my Strat and it sounds great.

  8. TeleMan59

    TeleMan59 Tele-Meister

    Apr 7, 2011
    I just did this mod for the first time. I don't understand why Fender didn't make this a standard item on their strats. Makes the bridge pickup useable again for the cost of a piece of wire.

  9. tedro

    tedro Tele-Afflicted

    Apr 4, 2010
    7th Galaxy
    wiring help

    if you look at post number 2, here:

    and read the bottom where it says: "If INSTEAD...."

    that is what i have. neck + middle on same tone knob, bridge on bottom knob by itself.

    question: is there an easy way to drop the middle pup from the control, so it has none...while retaining the neck alone...then the bridge alone (as the bridge is now). so the middle has no tone control?

    i'm hoping i can simply clip or lift a single wire. --keep in mind my wiring is already as in post #2's BOTTOM PARAGRAPH.

    thanks in advance. OOPS, i meant to start a new thread, sorry!

  10. Deaf Eddie

    Deaf Eddie Friend of Leo's

    Mar 17, 2003
    Sunny San Diego, CA
    Yup, just clip the jumper to the middle lug. That's how Jimmie Vaughan Siggies are wired...


  11. tedro

    tedro Tele-Afflicted

    Apr 4, 2010
    7th Galaxy
    double check:
    so, the added (fuschia) jumper (removed in your new pic) clip that at either end or remove it, right?
    wherever mine is, that small added jumper is what connects the middle to the neck tone knob?

    i wanna lift a leg to try it, right?

    Deaf Eddie, your the best!

  12. Duffy

    Duffy Tele-Holic

    I think the bridge tone mod is one of the best mods you can do to a strat. It makes the bridge pickup so much more useful.

    I have some of mine so the bottom tone knob just controls the bridge; and on others I have the jumper so the bottom tone knob controls the bridge and the middle pickups. This later mod is not used by some players because it tones down both the bridge and the middle when playing in the number 2 switch position, and they like to have the middle pickup "wide open" to give more brightness to the sound.

    I like them both ways and like to be able to control the tone of all the pickups when they are individually selected.

    This simple mod would probably eliminate the need by many players to change their bridge pickup in order to get a different tone. I think it is a good knob to know about.

    If you don't know about soldering and want to try it, get some "lead containing" electrical solder wire from Radio Shack and buy some "paste flux". Apply a small amount of past flux to the site to be soldered to as well as to the part to be soldered to the site. Use a low powered pencil type soldering iron of approximately 15 watts, maybe a Weber soldering iron available at True Value hardware stores. Heat the soldering site and part to be soldered, wire, until the paste flux smokes slightly - this is the flux "burning off" impurities, oil, etc., from the soldering site. Then immediately apply the solder to the base of the two things being soldered at the site. The heat should draw the solder into the two parts making a strong joint.

    The flux will keep the solder from "balling up" and rolling off of the solder site. You want the solder to sheet out when melting. This way it adheres to the base of the soldering site for a good connection. You also want to use as little heat and as little solder as possible to get the best connection. You should not have to "pile up" the solder into a hump. This indicates that you didn't use flux and that the solder is not wanting to sheet out and stick to the base of the soldering site; therefore it balls up into a big heap. This is generally not a good soldering joint and could be the source of the guitar not sounding right when reassembled and tested. Also make sure all your ground wires are soldered down with good solder joints. Most noise after changing pickups or messing with the wiring comes from ground wires that are not grounded well, either because they were pulled around and the joint was weakened, or because they were even pulled loose or the solder joint cracked.

    Actually soldering is very easy, inexpensive to acquire the tools, and can be fun to do.

    Good luck with the bridge tone mod. A tech would probably do it for ten dollars or less. But it is a good idea to learn soldering skills if you would like to do future mods on your guitars, such as changing pickups, electrical components, etc.

  13. waparker4

    waparker4 Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

    Nov 9, 2011
    Philadelphia, PA
    Just make sure that the wire that leads to the neck tone control comes off that neck pickup lug on the switch. If that is the case clipping the jumper will work. If not you will also have to move the wire feeeding the neck tone control to that lug on the switch

  14. Duffy

    Duffy Tele-Holic

    I would advise drawing a sketch of your current wiring arrangement or even taking a close up picture of it with your digital camera.

    This way if you move the wrong wire or don't get the right results, you will be able to bring it back to normal and try again.

    If you get it all messed up and can't remember exactly where which wire goes where, it could cost you a trip to a guitar tech.

    This should be a very simple mod. I have the bridge tone control on mine and did most of them myself. I have done the bridge only tone mod where the middle is completely open and the one that lets you control the middle and the bridge with the bottom control knob, individually or combined.

    I have not seen a need to have the bridge and neck pickups on at the same time - I guess that is what you are trying to do by messing with the neck switch wire??

  15. emilinn

    emilinn NEW MEMBER!

    Sep 5, 2010
    Just added the jumper wire for toncontrol of the bridge on my Strat and finally the bridge pickup is useful.

  16. BryMelvin

    BryMelvin Tele-Afflicted

    Jan 4, 2014
    Arivaca AZ
    not really that would mean both "quack" positions would have highs loss due to two tone pots in parrallel. You would need no load tone pots to make it work for a lot of people.

  17. varakeef

    varakeef Tele-Afflicted

    Sep 7, 2007
    I notice this is a 7 year old instruction, but I'm after this "instead version": I want the upper tone pot to control both neck and middle pup and the lower tone pot to control just the bridge pup.

    There's two green, blue and fuxia dots in the picture, but are these the right ones, the ones I've connected with red lines? (And the fuchia lines from Deaf-Eddies picture are to be ignored completely?)


  18. Deaf Eddie

    Deaf Eddie Friend of Leo's

    Mar 17, 2003
    Sunny San Diego, CA
    No, with the jumper you've added, your 5-way won't give you 5 different combos - you'd get: bridge / all three /mid+neck / mid+neck / mid+neck.

    Put the jumpers on the OTHER side of the 5-way, like in my drawing.

    CLIP the lead between the mid and bridge pup lugs, and run that "purple" lead from the lower pot to the bridge lug instead. Then, jumper the neck and mid lugs together...

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