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Strat wiring: 2 volume, 1 tone and '2 pole single wafer superswitch'

Discussion in 'Tele-Technical' started by robinn, Apr 17, 2021.

  1. robinn

    robinn Tele-Meister

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    Hi there,

    I have a strat I'd like to rewire. There's a (humbucker sized) p90 in the bridge that works best with a 500k volume pot. I was hoping I could use a second volume pot for the 2 regular strat single coils in the middle and neck position. I don't really understand electronics I usually just follow the diagrams ;-) and I'm running into some extra trouble since I have what I believe is a '2 pole single wafer superswitch'.

    I came across a wiring diagram on in another thread that uses this in nashville-wiring that makes sense to me. It features both bridge and neck in the third position, which would be my preference. Is it possible to add a bridge-only volume to this wiring? I can't figure it out.

    Other suggestions more than welcome. Thanks in advance!
    [​IMG]
     
  2. Jay Jernigan

    Jay Jernigan Tele-Afflicted

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    You can run the bridge pickup through a volume control before going to the switch. In order to make the volume controls independent, you have to reverse the in and out leads on both volume controls.
    I didn't dissect your switch wiring; that may or may not be correct. It looks different from anything I have ever used but that doesn't mean it's wrong.
    The neck/middle volume control will act as a master, regardless, I think, but you can blend the bridge up to it in combo positions, so you may as well not reverse the leads depending on how you want it to behave.
    If the switch is giving you the right combinations, disconnect the bridge and put it on a separate pot, send the output back to the switch, see how that works.
     
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  3. 2HBStrat

    2HBStrat Tele-Afflicted

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    That doesn't appear to be a superswitch. It looks like an aftermarket import switch to me. FWIW I also use a 500k pot for my HSS projects.
     
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  4. moosie

    moosie Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    It's an OG switch. 2 pole super. Oriented just like the big 'un, just sliced in half longways.

    I can look at this tonight, but not before, sorry (I am the author of that diagram). Hopefully someone else can help sooner.
     
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  5. 2HBStrat

    2HBStrat Tele-Afflicted

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    The superswitch that I'm familiar with are 4 pole...
     
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  6. robinn

    robinn Tele-Meister

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    Thanks for your replies. I'll dive into it again. Moosie, it would be wonderful if you could take another look at it, but no hurry.

    The switch is actually from a 90s mim tele that had a humbucker in the neck. I always assumed it was a regular 5-way, but its different. It looks like this:

    [​IMG]
     
  7. moosie

    moosie Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    https://toneshapers.com/oak-grigsby-lever-switch-5-way-2-pole-superswitch.html
    https://www.philadelphialuthiertools.com/electronics/switches/5-way-2-pole-super-switch-oak-grigsby/
    https://guitarelectronics.com/5-way-2-pole-pickup-selector-switch-oak-grigsby/

    and more...

    All identical, with interesting price differences. Toneshapers is my go-to place, as they're also the ONLY seller of the narrow 4-pole super switch, which will fit in a Telecaster.
    https://toneshapers.com/switch-5-way-oak-grigsby-4-pole-superswitch-narrow.html

    I'm still busy in the shop, I'll look at the diagram tonight, promise. :)

    By the way, Fender used the 2-pole super in the James Burton Tele. Perhaps others, I don't know.
     
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  8. 24 track

    24 track Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    I did a similar wiring with the mid pickup on its own volume control and used a 3 way switch , neck& bridge on one volume control , mid on the second all pickups through a TBX tone control this way i could use all 3 pickups at once and not have to drill any new holes.

    wiring 1.jpg
     
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  9. moosie

    moosie Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    I recommend deciding on the function first, and choosing hardware second. You severely limit your options if you start with a switch that you happen to have on hand, and try to design around it.

    What do you really want the circuit to do? Ignore the HOW for a moment...

    If all you want is to have each pickup see it's optimal pot resistance, there's a better way involving a resistor. By conditionally placing it across the pot (parallel to the pot), the net result is a different value. Use a single 500k vol pot, and a 470k resistor. Engage the resistor when neck or middle are active, and they see an effective 250K.

    But if you really want to control the level of the bridge separately, then you need to decide how the bridge pickup is connected. You could run the pickup direct to it's vol pot, bypassing the switch. This allows independent operation, but without a switch, there's no way to turn it off without spinning the volume down. I can't think of a single stock wiring that's like this. It's too annoying. There's always a switch and a pot.

    Finally, you can run all three pickups through the switch, and not only choose which ones are active, but which vol pots the output goes to. This requires a full four-pole super switch. If installing in a Tele cavity, get the narrow one from Toneshapers.

    I can help with the wiring, but these things need clarification first.
     
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  10. Collin D Plonker

    Collin D Plonker Tele-Afflicted

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    +1
     
  11. moosie

    moosie Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    In that scenario, it's not wired as a vol pot, but as a blend (two lug, no ground). As you say, master volume.

    That's quite different than a separate volume pot. All depends what the OP wants, of course.
     
  12. Jay Jernigan

    Jay Jernigan Tele-Afflicted

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    Watched a video, some years ago, featuring Jimmy Herring and a 2HB Strat. It had 2V, 1T, like a Flying V. I'm the first to admit that I haven't researched the super switches, I understand that they avail you of many options, and if you can tap two separate outputs, you can send them through separate volume controls at that point and then parallel those signals.

    Edit: too early in the morning...
    You could put the N&M on a switch, 3 or 4-way, send that to one volume, wire the B through another, parallel those signals and make the volume controls independent. Shucks, it's still too early, but it is another option, especially if you are primarily a bridge pickup guy.
     
    Last edited: Apr 18, 2021
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  13. robinn

    robinn Tele-Meister

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    Fair point. Yes, ultimately I just want each pickup to see its optimal pot resistance. If I could achieve that with one master volume, even better.

    I've had a blender pot on my strat in the past, but I'd rather not have that again.

    Thanks all for the replies
     
  14. moosie

    moosie Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    Hey Jay, to clarify, this solution is different than your earlier comment, suggesting simply running bridge to a 'volume' pot (really a blend in that configuration), and then to the switch. You probably know this, but for the rest of us...

    The difference is that the Gibson master tone wiring has each pickup wired to it's own volume pot, direct. Then the two vol pots go to the switch.

    The problem, of course, is that it doesn't work with THREE pickups. :)
     
  15. moosie

    moosie Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    Earlier, I spoke vaguely about adding a resistor. It's a common solution. But it, like many things, gets complicated when three pickups are involved.


    With a two-pickup guitar, like a Tele, you have a 500k vol pot, and one pickup sees 500k by default. The other pickup has the resistor applied, and the net resistance is 250k. With a regular blade switch, you can wire it one of two ways: so the parallel position has 500k, or so it has 250k.

    The only way to do it in a three pickup scenario is with a full super switch. A full pole is relegated to conditionally connecting the resistor.
     
  16. Jay Jernigan

    Jay Jernigan Tele-Afflicted

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    Absolutely right.
    That is the educated approach.
    I have to admit that I was spitballing.
    Does sound like something I might try on one of mine though.
     
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  17. 2HBStrat

    2HBStrat Tele-Afflicted

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    It can work with three pickups. I wired a Strat up with three volume contols. Each pickup was wired to an individual volume pot, then to the switch, then the hot wire to the jack went from the switch...
     
  18. moosie

    moosie Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    Of course. What doesn't work is three pickups with two pots.
     
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