Wide Range Humbucker In Neck Position, Which Pots?

Discussion in 'Tele-Technical' started by CWP0126, Jul 1, 2017.

  1. CWP0126

    CWP0126 Tele-Meister

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    Hi everyone,

    I was hoping the forum could help me with this because I tried searching Google and couldn't find a definitive answer.

    I am gathering parts for a '69 Tele body I have and I am using all '60s and early '70s Fender parts as much as possible. The body was routed for a humbucker, so I am considering putting an original WRHB in there, not a reissue. I have a '70 Fender single coil bridge pickup, and the '66 250k pots.

    Will the 250k pots work ok with the bridge pickup and WRHB, or will I have problems with the pickups not blending with each other?

    I like the sound of the guitar in this video, and nice playing too! It apparently has an original '70 in the neck and the WRHB is a '72, but they didn't specify the specs on the pots. Any suggestions would be appreciated! Thanks!

     
  2. tessting1two

    tessting1two Tele-Meister

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    To my knowledge the WRHB pickups always used 1meg volume and tone pots versus the 250k used in single coils. The happy medium would be to use 500k pots or, if you were retrofitting a Thinline, 1meg pots with a 220k resistor (and possibly a .001 cap in parallel) to give them a usable taper. I'm just not sure how the WRHB would sound with 250k pots...probably very dark. And your bridge pickup with 1meg pots may be quite harsh. I think 500k would be the right starting point and then let your ears decide.
     
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  3. Tony Done

    Tony Done Friend of Leo's

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    Since it is a covered humbucker type, I would go 500K as a compromise, as suggested by tessting1two.
     
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  4. CWP0126

    CWP0126 Tele-Meister

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    Thanks for the advice y'all! I went ahead and bought a '74 WRHB. I'm going to wire it all up with the 250k pots and see how it goes, and new pots are cheap enough I can experiment with the 500k if I need too. I really wanted to use the '66 pots though.

    Take care!
     
  5. tessting1two

    tessting1two Tele-Meister

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    Vintage pots only matter to collectors on vintage instruments. There is no functional or tonal difference except you are installing a 50+ year old part. If I was going to spend more than $20 on a pot, it would be for the current Precision Electronics pots. They look like the old Centralab pots, built like a tank and turning them is a physically pleasurable experience. https://www.tubesandmore.com/products/potentiometer-pec-guitar-audio-solid-shaft
     
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  6. LoveHz

    LoveHz Tele-Holic

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    On a Squier VM Custom I use 250k pots for the bridge pickup (a Duncan Broadcaster) and 500k pots for the neck WRHB. Yes, I know it's not a 'proper' WRHB, but they do seem to have made an effort to voice the HB to get the tone into the right sort of ballpark -- it is certainly well away from the normal PAF sort of sound.
     
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  7. CWP0126

    CWP0126 Tele-Meister

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    Thanks tessting1two -
    Great point, I had originally wanted to do this project with all OG parts from the '60s and '70s as much as possible, but I also intend to play this guitar. I guess I may have to compromise to have a decent player.

    Thank you for the link, they look like great pots!
     
  8. CWP0126

    CWP0126 Tele-Meister

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    Hi LoveHz,

    Thanks for the reply. This guitar is your standard Tele, so one knob for both pickups to share front and back for volume, and one knob for tone on both pickups.

    I'm not familiar with the VM Custom, but it sounds like it has the four knob controls like an old Deluxe or Custom, with individual volume and tone controls for each pickup. Let me know if I am wrong.

    How do you like it? Do you like the pickups and the tone you are getting?

    Thanks again!
     
  9. JORear

    JORear Tele-Meister

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    I just got finished upgrading a 72 Reissue Telecaster Deluxe. My original 72 Thinline uses 1M Pots, but when I upgraded the Reissue I went with 500k. The original is a little brighter. I love the tone I get from the 500k pots. If you want original tone, use 1 M pots. I wouldn't use anything below 500k. Brandon Wounds has a nice WRHB at a reasonable price. He can do an upgrade to an existing WRHB or sell you a new custom wound WRHB.
     
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  10. adjason

    adjason Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    I'd go 500k 1 megs in my tele custom are really bright/loud
     
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  11. jtwo

    jtwo TDPRI Member

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    This probably isn't something you'd want to do with a real wide-range, but if you wire the humbucker in parallel instead of series, you can use 250k pots all around.

    Parallel wiring brightens and lowers the output of the 'bucker so you get a better match volume-wise between the two, and there's no fiddling with resistors or constantly rolling around the tone pot trying to get the neck not to sound like mud and the bridge not to sound like an icepick.
     
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  12. teleplayr

    teleplayr Tele-Holic

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    Look for a volume pot for a Shawbucker Strat., the first run. They can be found online.

    They used a stacked 500/250 pot instead of a standard 250. 500 for the humbucker the 250 for the bridge.
     
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  13. arrgee

    arrgee NEW MEMBER!

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    Interesting about using a stacked pot like that. There might be an easier solution. If you use a typical 'stereo' (stacked) potentiometer of 500k ohms, you could put a 510k ohm resistor in parallel with the track that you'll be using for the single-coil (bridge) pickup, which would make that track effectively equal to a 250k pot (510k in parallel with 500k = 252.4k, which is close enough). Connect the 500k track without the additional resistor to the humbucker (neck) pickup. That way the humbucker sees a 500k load, while the single coil sees a 252.4k load, and they're both happy.

    You could do this with a dual 1M pot as well. Use 330k across the half of the pot used for the single-coil, which will give that one a 248k load (again, close enough).

    What I don't know is how that would act when both pickups are switched on with the pickup selector switch (middle position).

    Just an idea...
     
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  14. Robert H.

    Robert H. Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    I have 250 K pots in my '72 MIM Thinline (WRHBs) and it sounds great to me...
    I did put a Lollar in the neck slot - real improvement over the Fender RIs.
     
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  15. hrstrat57

    hrstrat57 Tele-Afflicted

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    I think the 74 WRHB neck/single coil bridge best compromise will be 500k pots. The vintage WRHB are best with 1m pots...

    Let us know how your rig responds to experimenting.....and pics plz, lotsa pics!



    I have a 72 Fender FSR ri Thinline with Fender USA AVRI WRHB swap from orig mexi pups (which were yuk) and left the Pots stock.

    Lollar recommends 500k pots for his version of WRHB as does Brandonwound

    Again, your rig will be pretty unique and should be awesome.

    Please report back !!
     
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  16. Old Tele man

    Old Tele man Friend of Leo's

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    1MegΩ if you want it bright, 500KΩ if you want it normal, or 250KΩ if you want it muddy (my Tele has original WRHB with 1Meg).
     
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  17. LoveHz

    LoveHz Tele-Holic

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    "I'm not familiar with the VM Custom, but it sounds like it has the four knob controls like an old Deluxe or Custom, with individual volume and tone controls for each pickup. Let me know if I am wrong."

    CWP0126: The Squier Classic Vibe Custom has the standard Tele control set-up — one volume and one tone on the usual chrome plate. The Squier Vintage Modified Custom, which we're talking about here, has a normal Tele bridge pickup and a WRHB at the neck. There are volume and tone controls for each pickup (like a Les Paul) which means it's easy to have different pot values for each pickup. It's not the greatest sounding guitar on the planet but it's certainly good enough to meet a particular requirement I have for certain gigs — a bluesy, jazzy-ish sort of sound at the neck (tone rolled back about halfway) and straight ahead Tele twang at the bridge. I really like the feel of the neck on mine and I have no complaints at all about the fret job.
     
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  18. CWP0126

    CWP0126 Tele-Meister

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    Thanks for the replies everyone, lots of great advice here!

    There has been a change of plans. This body was routed for two humbuckers, and the single coil bridge plate won't cover the route. I has going to have the bridge route filled and rerouted for the single coil, but i thought what the heck, I might as well try it with two humbuckers first, and if I don't like it I can always fix it back to single coil later.

    I went ahead and bought another 70s WRHB. I will use the 1meg pots, just one master volume and tone on the standard plate. I am going to use a chopped down bridge, and this thing has also been routed for a Jazz trem like Old Tele man's, should be pretty cool.

    I'm looking for pickup rings for the WRHBs. They are out there but not many people make them.

    I will post pics after it is all together. Thanks again for all of the advice!
     
  19. Telenator

    Telenator Doctor of Teleocity Vendor Member

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    You could just buy a Fender pickguard and then cut rings around the pickup routes. The screw holes are already in there. Might look real nice on your guitar.

    We have black Delrin pickup rings, but they're smaller than what you need for the Fender size rout. Ours are designed to work with our templates which make a much smaller and neater appearance on the guitar.
     
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  20. CWP0126

    CWP0126 Tele-Meister

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    Hi Telenator,

    I was hoping you would reply to this thread. I have been to your site and checked out your rings. They look really nice and I have been wondering about them!

    So, you're saying if I route the body to fit the original 1970s WRHB specs your rings wont cover the routes? I'm not sure I understand.

    This is a '69 Tele that has been routed for HBs in both the bridge and neck position, but not routed for WRHBs. I've laid them on the body and additional wood needs to be removed to make them fit.

    Can you tell me the dimensions of your WRHB rings, OD, so I can see if they will work?

    Thank you, and thanks again for replying!
     
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