Fender S1 switch... Tele version or Strat version ?

Discussion in 'Tele-Technical' started by GearGeek01, Feb 21, 2020.

  1. GearGeek01

    GearGeek01 TDPRI Member

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    I have 2 Fender guitars with the S1 switch.

    1) 2018 Fender (MIM) Classic Player Baja Tele

    2) 2028 Fender American Elite Stratocaster

    My problem is... the S1 on the Elite Strat doesn't seem to have a very good spring in it. When it is depressed, its hard to tell if it is in or our until I play something.

    Compared to... the Tele-style S1 on the Baja Tele, which has a really nice tight spring, and all it takes is a simple glance to the volume and you can tell which setting its on. When its in, it sinks down into the knob vert nice. When it of off, you can see the shiny top of the switch poking slightly up from the knob (as it should be). I love the Tele's switch... the Strat style kinda sucks (so far anyways).

    -------------------------------

    If I might interject a small opinion here... seems like this could have been done with some type of mini toggle switch... but that's my 2 cents...

    -------------------------------

    Anyways...

    I'm wondering if any of the tech masters out there in TDPRI might have some advice for taking care of the Strats S1 issue. I have a couple three ideas...

    1) It might just need some contact cleaner... bam... fixed

    2) Replace the Strat style S1 with a Tele style one (Strat one is a traditional looking Strat control knob, the Tele one is a knurled metal knob similar to what you usually see on a Tele + the Tele switch fastens on with a set screw, which I like the idea of...)

    3) Install a mini switch (or 2 or something) in place of the S1 and turn the volume pot back into a regular CTS volume pot (if that's even possible on this version of a Strat)

    I suppose since they both use the same switchable pot, that there is no difference except for the knob itself. I just like the Tele knob better. The tele knob is metal, the Strat knob is plastic (but matches the other knobs on the guitar... ugh)

    Here is a picture of each of these different switches.

    They both use the same pot...

    Tele S1 - 03 - Copy.jpg


    ----------------------------------------

    Here's the Strat style, disassembled and assembled

    Strat S1 - 01.jpg
    Strat S1 - 02.jpg


    Here's the Tele style, disassembled and assembled

    Tele S1 - 01.jpg
    Tele S1 - 02.jpg
     
  2. RodeoTex

    RodeoTex Poster Extraordinaire

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    I've always wondered what they even did
    I'm guessing the Tele S1 equates to a 4-way switch and the Start S1 gives the neck and bridge pickups together.
    Sorry to hijack, but I've always been curious.
     
  3. Dirty Dave

    Dirty Dave TDPRI Member

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    I have one on my Baja Tele, and it's pretty redundant, since I never alternate between on an off.
    It's just always in the depressed position.
    I was considering either taking it out & putting in a regular 4 way, - or just putting a normal knob onto the pot, and ditching the switching option.
     
  4. tah1962

    tah1962 Tele-Afflicted

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    I’m not a fan of the S1 switch. I replaced the one on my American Deluxe Telecaster with a 4-way switch and it works fantastic. No popping, problems with it staying depressed, etc.

    Ironically, my son called me a couple weeks ago and said the S1 switch on his American Deluxe Telecaster wasn’t working. He wanted to spend as little as possible to fix it so I ordered him a new switch and replaced the broken one for him. You can get a replacement switch for $25-$30. If you have intermediate soldering skills it’s fairly easy to replace.
     
    Kevin Wolfe likes this.
  5. moosie

    moosie Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    The S1 is a 4P2T, identical to two DPDTs (typical push-pulls, mini-toggles) ganged together.

    Sometimes you need the extra pole(s), like if you're using it for phase switching, AND you want the little HOoP capacitor on one leg, AND only in parallel mode, not series.

    But sometimes I think Fender uses it for the cool factor. And the push-push IS nice, in my opinion. Replacements are pricey, though.

    As mentioned, the 2012 American Deluxe Tele used it for switching the parallel middle position, to series. Uses 2 poles. So, totally unnecessary. Could have used a toggle, or push-pull. Or, simply a 4-way.

    EDIT: series switching like that only requires two poles, but for some reason Fender wired it using three. Needed to justify the 4-pole switch? Always seemed odd, to me.

    FWIW, on a Strat, you only need a push-pull or toggle to get Neck + Bridge.


    As for the OP issue, I assume since you've dissected it, you have determined it's the actual switch travel that's the problem, and not some slop in the extender pin, etc?

    If you buy a new one, be careful, there are two types (both made, for both Tele and Strat, so really four types). Avoid the one fully encased in black plastic. The pot terminals are extremely weak, and snap right off with minimal bending. I've ruined two of them that way.

    The problem is that sometimes sellers use the open frame image, and then sell whatever they happen to have, so you may need to specify that you only want an open-frame type.


    Screen Shot 2020-02-22 at 07.56.08 AM.png Screen Shot 2020-02-22 at 07.55.47 AM.png
     
    Teleterr likes this.
  6. GearGeek01

    GearGeek01 TDPRI Member

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    To Rodeo Tex:

    My Elite Strat is an HSS version (they also have an SSS version of course), and here is the explanation of what happens when you engage (push in) the S1 switch on the HSS Elite Strat... (IMHO, a couple of mini switches would have been better and not so "gimicky" and would be more reliable over the long run... for an $1,800 guitar)
    S1 Switch on an HSS Guitar.jpg

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    I also have a Baja Tele that has an S1 switch, here is what happens when you engage (push in) the switch on that guitar...

    S-1 switch off:
    Position one: bridge pickup only
    Position two: bridge and neck pickups in parallel
    Position three: neck pickup only
    Position four: neck and bridge pickups in series
    ------------------------------------------------------
    S-1 switch on:
    Position one: bridge pickup only
    Position two: bridge and neck pickups in parallel and out of phase
    Position three: neck pickup only
    Position four: neck and bridge pickups in series and out of phase

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    I got the Baja Tele wiring info from this Fender page:
    https://www.fender.com/articles/tech-talk/how-the-s-1-switch-gives-you-more-tonal-options/

    Also at the above link is the wiring for...
    - American Elite Strat SSS version
    - American Elite Telecaster (seems like a waste on this one, simple series/parallel push/pull would do the same and be more reliable)
    - Classic Player Baja Telecaster (same as I listed above, I have this guitar, too)
    - James Burton Telecaster (which is a 3-PU Tele)
     
    RodeoTex likes this.
  7. GearGeek01

    GearGeek01 TDPRI Member

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    This link covers the American Deluxe Strats that have the S1 switching...
    http://www.deluxeguitar.com/207/the-fender-american-deluxe-stratocaster-s-1-switching-system/

    According to this site... (depending on what year Deluxe Strat you have...)

    On the 2004-2009 series Fender Deluxe Stratocaster the pickup switching works as follows:

    5-Position Blade and 2-Position Push/Push S-1TM:

    S-1 Switch Up (off):
    Position 1. Bridge Pickup
    Position 2. Bridge and Middle Pickup in Parallel
    Position 3. Middle Pickup
    Position 4. Middle and Neck Pickup in Parallel
    Position 5. Neck Pickup

    S-1 Switch Down:
    Position 1. Bridge Pickup in Series with Middle Pickup
    Position 2. Bridge Pickup in Parallel with Special Capacitor and in Series with Middle Pickup
    Position 3. Bridge/Middle/Neck Pickups with Neck and Bridge Pickups in Parallel and in Series with Middle pickup
    Position 4. Neck Pickup in Parallel with Special Capacitor and in Series with Middle Pickup
    Position 5. Neck Pickup in Series with Middle Pickup

    ----------------------------------------------------------------

    On the 2010 series Fender American Deluxe Stratocaster the pickup combinations with the S-1 switch are as follows:

    5-Position Blade and 2-Position Push/Push S-1TM:

    S-1 Switch Up (Off):
    Position 1. Bridge Pickup
    Position 2. Bridge and Middle Pickup in Parallel
    Position 3. Middle Pickup
    Position 4. Middle and Neck Pickup in Parallel
    Position 5. Neck Pickup

    S-1 Switch Down (On):
    Position 1. Bridge, Middle and Neck Pickups in Series
    Position 2. Bridge and Middle Pickup in Series
    Position 3. Middle and Neck Pickup in Series
    Position 4. Bridge and Neck Pickup Out-Of-Phase, and in Series with Special Tone Capacitor
    Position 5. Bridge and Middle Pickup in Series and Out-Of-Phase, and in Parallel with Neck Pickup

    ----------------------------------------------------------------

    Here’s a list of the 2013 5-Position Blade and 2-Position Push/Push S-1TM:

    S-1 Switch Up (off):
    Position 1. Bridge Pickup
    Position 2. Bridge and Middle Pickup in Parallel
    Position 3. Middle Pickup
    Position 4. Middle and Neck Pickup in Parallel
    Position 5. Neck Pickup

    S-1 Switch Down (On):
    Position 1. Bridge pickup in parallel with Neck & Middle pickups in series
    Position 2. Neck pickup in parallel with Middle & Bridge pickups in series
    Position 3. Middle and Bridge pickups in Series
    Position 4. Neck & Middle pickups in series
    Position 5. All pickups in series
     
  8. GearGeek01

    GearGeek01 TDPRI Member

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    I'm thinking any thread without pictures is useless... haha... so here is the same guitar I have in Olympic Pearl from the Fender Dealer Portal web site photos... :)

    New these are $1,700-$1,800... I walked across the street from my house and saw this one hanging on the wall at the local pawn shop in super mint shape, came with the original Elite case, and inside was all the original case candy and COA...

    $675 out the door !!! OOO-Weeeeeeeeee !!!

    In case you are wondering what the little pus/push mini switch is doing between the tone controls...
    - (HSS only >>) Push-Push "Passing Lane" switch to engage Bridge Pickup and bypass tone controls (SSS model doesn't have this)

    American Elite Stratocaster HSS - 01.jpg American Elite Stratocaster HSS - 02.jpg American Elite Stratocaster HSS - 03.jpg American Elite Stratocaster HSS - 04.jpg American Elite Stratocaster HSS - 06.jpg American Elite Stratocaster HSS - 07.jpg
     
  9. moosie

    moosie Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    Point being... the S1 is just a switch, like any other, and can be used for a near-infinite variety of things.

    For instance, I just wired up a Nashville with a superswitch and an S1, which allows me to get all the singles, all the parallels, and all the series combos.
     
  10. Milspec

    Milspec Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    The S1 switch is better off replaced for traditional in my view. The concept is cool and you can really open the door to a lot of new tones with it, but I don't know many players that really stray from their favorite postiions very much to begin with. Hell, the 3-way on a Tele works fine for me and I only use 2-3 positions on my strat for that matter. The rest of the tones are just not for me.

    I have viewed that S1 appraoch as Fender's version of a varitone. Wide range of options available, but you really one find a couple of them useable so not all that valuable. If you do like it that much, just replace the switch and judging by the failure rate of them you will have many chances to do so in the future as well.
     
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