please help me grok my series wiring mods

Discussion in 'Tele-Technical' started by Topstone, Oct 26, 2021.

  1. Topstone

    Topstone TDPRI Member

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    G&L Bluesboy 20210929_01 signal flow_05.jpg
    (long)
    Greetings! This is my first post here. My actual question is in the 3rd paragraph below. :)
    On my G&L Bluesboy I've replaced the stock bridge & it's 6 brass saddles with a heavy Gotoh bridge from Stew Mac b/c when I got it as a SDOTD from MF it was the twangiest twang that ever twanged... and I'm really a dual-humbucker guy. But the neck is just great ...and, I've got time to experiment with the thing. I've got it sounding pretty killer at present, despite that the replacement pickups I chose are honestly not really so well-matched. The whole beast is a product of knowing just enough to be dangerous. :). The very mild tone cap (0.0047uF) I installed is just perfect for this axe.

    So I've been sent to my room to think about what I've done, and I'm just stuck, man. I'd love some help sussing-out what's happening here ...even moreso than correcting things. I started with the Fralin diagram for series wiring a 4-position Oak-Grigsby. At it's heart, I'm not grokking the 4-position series circuit thing fluently. Having one PU's - go straight into the other's + makes intellectual sense... but my brain goes a bit numb with the diagram logic. I'm fluent with recording console signal flow, and a solid novice perhaps at reading guitar amp circuit charts... but guitar circuits with this grounding business and complete vs. incomplete circuit is new to me. Recording consoles have always seemed to be just inputs and outputs: the paths either flow or they get brick-wall stopped. Having a guitar circuit go through a pickup, connect via ground, or a tone pot connection acting as both input and output are a bit maddening to me right now.

    My question is "why does my parallel setting with the bass-cut engaged sound ballsier than the series pickup setting without that bass cut?" Am I accidentally eliminating the parallel wiring by having added that 220K resistor at the principal bridge lug of the PU selector? The pos.3 parallel is distinct from the pos.2 series tonality, and louder. Really a great sound! fwiw, the bass attenuation switch is there —as intended— but barely perceptible with pos.2 series or pos.4 bridge-only. I'm pretty certain I don't hear it at all in pos.1 neck only.

    Surely the "bass attenuation" Cap should've been placed in the humbucker's path, but this happy mistake might be the reason the "parallel" (pos.3) selection sounds as ballsy as it does.

    Second, the idea of the 220K resistor I installed directly at the PU switch Bridge + connection was for it to be in parallel w/ the 500K Vol. pot and make the single-coil "see" a mellow ~153K pot instead. I'm pretty sure it's actually wired in series by mistake, though... which yields 720K (?).

    A couple things... opposing my diagram, the Seymour Duncan "Quarter Pounder" (tapped) instructions say black is ground, white is hot, and red is the mid-coil tap. I re-soldered B & W this evening to that spec and it's weak as hell. So I put back white as hot and black as ground and voila! Also... if I don't ground the red tap wire, I get silence... so I've grounded red as well as black. Also, I'm pretty sure the tiny length of grounding wire on the base plate is still intact. My bridge is also grounded. I did buy the PU as a "demo model" in like-new condition. Am I missing something obvious?

    fwiw, my custom pickguard and control-cavity plate are polycarbonate (pseudo-acrylic), and so have no shielding... but the cavity itself is painted.

    Re: series wiring, can someone please tell me in general if wiring the bridge into the neck sounds different from neck into bridge? I haven't found that discussion yet.

    Opinions on the stock G&L ASAT Classic humbucker vs. the Golden-Age HB are very welcome. Should I put the original back in? When I installed the GA it didn't seem very different at the time.

    Thanks for hanging in there with me!
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    Guitar Rewiring 1497 2.JPG
    Guitar Rewiring 1496 2b.jpg
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    Guitar Rewiring 1494 copy.JPG
     
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2021
  2. moosie

    moosie Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    The wiring in your printed diagram shows:

    1: bridge
    2: parallel
    3: series
    4: neck

    Position 1 being where the switch tip is pointing to the rear. That matches the lug numbering on the blade switch.
     
  3. moosie

    moosie Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    Also, more of an FYI... you show all the grounds, including the jack, grounding out at the human. That's not correct. If it were, the guitar would be silent as soon as you took your hands off the strings.

    The grounding happens through the output jack, to the common side of the amp circuit. You can test it. As long as you don't have an isolating / elevated circuit in your amp, you can clip a continuity meter to the guitar hardware, and to the common side of the amp's wall plug. > Beep! <
     
  4. moosie

    moosie Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    Your 220k resistor is wired correctly to drop the load in positions where bridge is active.

    What's your thinking re the 15k resistor in the tone circuit?
     
  5. moosie

    moosie Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    In general, blade switch wiring for a 4-way/series scheme is very nearly impossible. At a glance, one more pole is needed. One for each pickup's hot and one for the neck common, which needs to be manipulated for the series connection (bridge + connects to neck –).

    But we only have two poles. So we cheat. Hardwire neck hot to the vol pot. The neck pickup is always ON! Not really. The way we shut it off is by lifting the other end, the common. So now one pole for bridge hot, and one for neck common. Voila!

    Another but...

    You should add the anti-noise jumper to quiet position 1 (bridge). When the neck pickup is 'off' (ground lifted), the coil with it's hot lead connected, acts like an antenna. The fix is to short the neck pickup back to itself. Now it's just like any random loop of wire in a circuit. Does nothing. Makes no noise.



    foo.jpg
     
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2021
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  6. eallen

    eallen Friend of Leo's

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    I didn't sort thru it all but am confident Moosie has it nailed.

    My 1st impression though it to wonder the need to make anything as simple as a tele layout so complicated. A 5-way is a real simple move for a SH with coil splits. A super switch is one which is a pain to squeeze in a tele cavity because of their gargantuan size. The best option is a Schaller Megaswitch M. They have a couple wiring options on their site. They are standard on my builds anymore.

    https://schaller.info/en/megaswitch-m
     
  7. Wooly Fox

    Wooly Fox Tele-Meister

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    I got a Tele size 5 way superswitch from Oak Grigsby in my Squire Tele from a UK seller on eBay.

    4 pole 5 position Narrow Super Switch.
    Oak Grigsby part no. 52026.

    Fitted in the cavity perfectly, no idea if Stew Mac or some other US retailer has these too.
     
  8. Topstone

    Topstone TDPRI Member

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    Thank you so much for your explanations! If I understand correctly, my lug numbering is correct but my 4-way PU switch numbering is backwards. Tapping on the various coil pole pieces of course confirms the PU switch toward the neck is in fact the neck PU & toward the rear/bridge is the bridge PU.

    This revised diagram corresponds to my handwritten mess: the grounding isn't "star grounding" at the buddha. Ground wires mostly connect to the volume pot... a couple to the tone pot.

    This raises the elementary issue for me: does it matter these are soldered to the pot(s) vs. a separate ground lug screwed into the shield-painted cavity floor, for instance? For that matter, does lug 3 of our standard volume pot need to be soldered to itself (the volume pot casing) or can we wire it to a star-grounding point... or to the output jack (-) for that matter?

    A couple more questions to follow...
    G&L Bluesboy rev 06.jpg
     
  9. Topstone

    Topstone TDPRI Member

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    Thanks again! This article http://guitarwiring.blogspot.com/2010/11/warm-sounding-telecaster-wiring-mod.html
    states, “The 15k resistor is connected with the tone capacitor in the series circuit. This type of wiring will make your tone control a little bit more precise and smooth. It will not make your guitar sound too dull.
    When the tone knob will be turned to 100% - it will be working like a typical tone control with a pot turned to 85-90%.”
     
  10. Topstone

    Topstone TDPRI Member

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    I’m sure my parallel pu selection and series pu selection sound as they should. It’s just that engaging the bass-cut seems to have a radically different effect on the sound when the PU selector’s set to parallel… as if I’m in series (but this sounds even a bit stronger & deeper than the series PU selection. I’m thinking of posting some sound clips of this when I have more time.
     
  11. Topstone

    Topstone TDPRI Member

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    Thanks for your input. To add a master Series option, I put (this is) a 4-way Oak-Grigsby switch… not a 5-way SS …in this G&L ASAT BB. Gave the humbucker it’s own coil-parallel/series toggle, and now I’ve got several more very useable sounds! Looks more complex than it is, imo.
     
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  12. moosie

    moosie Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    I wonder if the ebay seller is ToneShapers.com. They special order these from O-G, and to my knowledge they're the only ones to do so. You can buy direct on their site. Not sure if they ship internationally.
     
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  13. Topstone

    Topstone TDPRI Member

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    …Forgot to add the jumper you suggested to my revised signal flow diagram!
     
  14. moosie

    moosie Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    Fender historically numbers blade switch positions with 1 rear-most. The diagram (ignoring what the legend says) is correct for positions 1:bridge, 2: parallel, 3: series, and 4: neck.

    If you like that order, you need change nothing.

    What's wrong is the diagram legend. It has positions 2 and 3 reversed.

    But the numbers on the switchbitself in the diagram are correct.

    Keep in mind the lug numbering is reverse to the position of the switch tip. The switch is on an axis, and as the wiper rotates to the rear, the switch tip moves toward the headstock.
     
  15. moosie

    moosie Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    No, doesn't matter. All grounds must connect together, and to the common side of the output jack.
    Re the 15k, yep, that's what it does, just not sure why it's needed. Up to you.
     
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  16. moosie

    moosie Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    Why do you have the bass cut cap only on the bridge pickup? I'd think either global, or neck.
     
  17. Topstone

    Topstone TDPRI Member

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    Here's a single MP3 with all pu positions with and without my mild bass-cut.
    Thank you so much for taking a moment. I'm wondering why such a volume boost at the parallel position when I engage what's supposed to be bass cut...
     
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2021
  18. moosie

    moosie Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    You might want to put an audio file in soundcloud, etc. Much safer than opening downloaded zip files.
     
  19. Topstone

    Topstone TDPRI Member

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    that’s an acknowledged mistake… and it’s what’s led me here!
     
  20. moosie

    moosie Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    Do you have a corrected diagram showing reality?
     
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