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Very Naughty '72 Custom Upgraded

Discussion in 'Telecaster Discussion Forum' started by THX1123, Apr 15, 2021.

  1. THX1123

    THX1123 Tele-Meister

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    I just finished completely rewiring my very naughty 2004 Mexican '72. It is much improved. This guitar kept failing on me. I got very sick of constantly troubleshooting it and putting it back together only for something else to fail. The neck pickup just started randomly failing and defied diagnosis. I decided to completely re-do all the electronics. She had to be in time-out in the corner for several months with her wiring hanging out because I was very angry with her being consistently contrary. I nearly became violent and got the circular saw.

    I used solid coper wire for everything except the ground wires. It is wired like a Les Paul now instead of the more complicated and frankly confusing original wiring. I think the two volume knobs interact better now.

    I put a Mojotone WRHB in the neck and a Fralin in the bridge. The bridge plate and bridge are from my 1999 '52 RI (I put Callaham ones in that 15+ years ago). The only thing left inside this axe that is original is one cap on the bridge tone pot. It now has CTS 500K pots, that really opened the top end of this guitar up. She also got a fret polish and new pickguard screws.

    I should have photographed the wiring harness before I put it back together. This thing was a royal pain to get back together in the routing channels under the pickguard despite my painstaking efforts to make the harness to fit perfectly on my cardboard soldering pattern. I won't be opening this up again unless I really have to.

    I don't plan on selling this, so the investment was worth it to me. It will be one of my gig axes once we can start gigging again. It inherently has that kind of plucky Beefheart-ish or Gang of Four sound (maybe a touch of D. Boon as well) that some Teles have. The guitar is MUCH improved by the pickups and wiring/component upgrades. Both pickups react very well with a Tube Screamer and my Prince of Tone.

    zz1.JPG zz2.JPG
     
  2. Deeve

    Deeve Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

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    very naughty - will you be spanking it?
    :eek:
     
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  3. THX1123

    THX1123 Tele-Meister

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    Yes sir. She will get all the spanking she deserves.
     
  4. Alamo

    Alamo Doctor of Teleocity

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    Whip it good. whip it real good. :D

     
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  5. GuitarsBuicks

    GuitarsBuicks Tele-Holic

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    "I know a guy he's got a lot to loose...Takes her out to dinner, buys her new clothes. That's the way the world goes round." - John Prine
     
  6. Fendereedo

    Fendereedo Poster Extraordinaire

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    It's all about what works for you. Nice work.
     
  7. bender66

    bender66 Poster Extraordinaire

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    What is the difference between the original and current wiring scheme?
     
  8. THX1123

    THX1123 Tele-Meister

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    As I understand things the pickups typically go to the pots, then from the pots to the toggle switch, and then the output of the toggle goes to the output jack. I found the original wiring confusing, and my example had clearly been messed with by a previous owner. The toggle appears to go back to a volume pot, and the pickups seem to actually go to both volume pots. Perhaps someone else can explain this, I can't. I also didn't like the tiny little wires they used, and the 250K pots felt like they were choking the neck pickup. fender-72-telecaster.png
     
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  9. Killing Floor

    Killing Floor Friend of Leo's

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    Nice! If you're throwing Boon or Gill in the description I know that's a badass! And nobody alive understands why they wire that way.
     
  10. THX1123

    THX1123 Tele-Meister

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    Yeah! I got lucky with this one. I bought it last fall. I've owned these before, but those other ones didn't have the same big neck and that kind of tone that we are talking about. Once I had an ASAT that was very similar, maybe more like a Chrissie Hynde sound...never should have let that one go.
     
  11. AAT65

    AAT65 Poster Extraordinaire

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    They’ve certainly drawn it to look confusing but it is wired just like a Les Paul. Each pickup goes to a volume and a tone pot, then the outputs (wiper) from the volume pots goes to the switch and the switch output goes to the output jack.
    Those 2-way + gnd sleeved wires (from the neck pickup, gnd to the switch) cause some of the confusion, all those black lines (some of which are wires, some are arrows labelling the wires, and some are pickguard edges) all drawn the same width definitely contribute too!

    Nice guitar though — enjoy! Well worth investing some effort in making it sound right for you.
     
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  12. Flaneur

    Flaneur Friend of Leo's

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    I think the circular saw is a step too far. Maybe pull up Craigslist on your phone and wave it, in front of the guitar? :rolleyes:

    I like the idea that some guitars just lend themselves to certain music, though. Is it a Jeff Moris Tepper guitar, or a Bill Harkleroadster?
     
  13. THX1123

    THX1123 Tele-Meister

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    I see now. I am glad I chose to ignore the old wiring and start over with what I know would work.
     
  14. bender66

    bender66 Poster Extraordinaire

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    Thanks for this. I have a vintage '72 harness with 1meg pots going into an ash Custom body. I wanted to double check it for continuity over before installing. Even bought a cunife for the neck pos instead of the faux WRHB I had in my parts.

    I'm not a fan of that low pot value with HB's either. Some people do. Who am I to rain on their taste?
     
  15. THX1123

    THX1123 Tele-Meister

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    Tepper-ish. That kinda plucky but still full sound. Sorta like it is compressed even when it isn't.
     
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  16. THX1123

    THX1123 Tele-Meister

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    Last time I played a real Cunife (1990's?) I was clueless about them so I have no reference. I wanted a new Fender reissue one but they seem to be hard to get. No one had or has them in stock.

    I looked at the Lollar and Fralins WRHBs but the Mojotone got good reviews and the price was very good. It took about a 6 weeks for them to wind it for me and ship it. It is working for me. I had the Fralin bridge pickup prior to buying this Tele. With the 500K I now have the treble at 5-6 on the bridge, but WOW the neck opened right up! I just got a Catalinbread Epoch Boost in the mail today. I am betting it will pair very well with this guitar.

    I use this axe a lot but sometimes I still get a bit wary putting too much into it. I could end up putting $600 into a $450 guitar. Then again the New Mexican Fenders are that much and I don't think they have a big old neck like mine does.
     
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