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Wiring And Pickup Advice Qestion


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I would like to get some advice from you more experenced builders. I am new to the board and started playing guitar again after many years off. I have an Ibanez SZ520 I would like to mod the pups and their wiring to suit the sound I am looking for. I would like more of a Jazz sound and to dampen the harsh sound of the bridge pup. The guitar has 2 humbuckers, 2 volume pots and 1 tone pot with a 3 way switch. I want to make a three pronged approach to correcting the sound. The pickups are presently wired to be single coil and in parallel in the center position. I do not like this sound, I would like to make this dual humbuckers in the center. I have the wiring from Ibanaz on my guitar and the higher SZ1220 that is wired dual humbuckers. Question is the wires are different, the wiring on my guitar is N+(red), N-(black), S+(white), S-(green) and gnd. The wiring for the 1220 shows only a ground the red wire. The wiring dirgrams are here for additional info. SZ 520

SZ 1220

Do I just wire the N- to the S+ and insulate this, then run the N+ to the pot and the S- to the gnd side of the pot?

Second I would like to replace the pots and cap. I have read some of the back articles on the pots and caps. I do not want a real hot pup as I want a Jazz type sound like you would hear from the Gibson ES335. The standard pot is 500K, but the cap is unlabeled and I assume a .022 cap like the 1220. Should I replace the pot with a like suzed better quality pot or drop to 250K pot? Change cap to .033 from the the .022? Basicaly a what pot and cap will point me in the right direction for the warmer sound? Where can I purchase the pots and caps, anyone offer a link?

Last is pups, if I need to replace them and I am sure I will, can someone offer a suggestion on what to use and a link. Years ago there were few choices now I can just go nuts over the selection.

Thanks in advance for helping this 50 year old with the work.

John M

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i'll let someone else answer about the pots, caps, etc. but the sound you're looking for will start with the pups. i'd start by going to di marzio's webb site and take a look at their humbuckers. you're might want something in their paf selection. paf joe or fred possibly. their site is very helpful in describing the technical aspects of their pups, the sound and even what other pups go with them. and there are sound clips of each. once you've picked the pups there are wiring diagrams there and in the tutorial section here to help you choose your options.

another choice is to look up bill lawrence on line and call him. he'll spend time on the phone with you helping you with your specs and then make you what you want. good guy and very helpful.

good luck with your project.

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You can rewire that toggle switch to a standard Gibson style toggle by simply rewiring the pickups as normal humbuckers, and only switching the hot leads (using half the switch). Using 250K pots may get you close enough to the 335 sound to avoid having to swap pickups. On those pickups, green is ground, black splices to white and red is hot. HTH.

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unclei

I looked up Dimarizo on the pups. I liked the write up on the PAF Joe you mentioned and the Breeze for the bridge. I am going to try the wiring and the caps & post second before I try the pups. Found Bill Lawerence and I will also give him a call. Thanks

lovekraft: Thank you! I am off tomorrow and I will try this in the morning. I will also give the new caps and pot a shot.

Thanks you both very much for the advice!

John M

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unclej,

The job did not go as well as I would have liked. The bridge pickup worked fine the neck did not. Very thin and nasel sounding. Basically no base and weak mids. The bridge has 2 times the base and volume. I tried reversing the green and red, same effect. I tried the black and white on the hot and ground with green and red shorted. No luck. I removed the rear from the cirtcuit and the front works in the stock config, ie green red shorted, in the middle posirtion. In the neck again tin can sound. Like the old AM radios in the late 60's. Very bright, thin and weak. I now figure the 3 way went bad. Now after all the wiring changes the neck pot is puking. :D Wiggle the pot and it works or cuts out. Sigh, going to order 3 new pots, a cap and 3 way today.

Thanks for the advice, I am hedging on the pups right now. Not sure what I am going to do.

John

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It sounds like that over-complicated toggle is your problem. OK, it's multimeter time - you need to measure the resistance between each pair of wires on the neck pickup, and you need to make a table for the toggle switch showing which pairs of lugs have continuity in each switch positon. With that info, we can draw up a wiring diagram, so there's no dubt about what you're doing. Unless the shaft is noticably loose in its bushing, it sounds like you may have some trash in that pot - some compressed air or a squirt of TV tuner cleaner might clear that up.

Sorry you're having problems, but don't despair - Ibanez hasn't yet built the guitar that we can't bend to our will! :D

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Thanks for the help. I removed all the wires on the neck pup, switch and pot. I will remove the pot and clean with cleaner in the AM. Here is the pup data. I have this in excel.


blk-rd	4.55k	wt/bl  r-gr	9.04K

blk-gr	6.2 M	wt/bl-rd	4.5K

blk-wt	4.6M	wt/bl-gr	4.5K

rd-gr	4.5M	rd/gr  wt-bl	9.04K

rd-wt	7.0M	rd/gr-wt	4.5K

gr-wt	4.51K	rd/gr-bl	4.5K


Switch

Neck

O X X

	O	X	X

	O	X	X

	O	X	X


CTR  	

	X	X	O

	O	X	X

	O	X	X

	X	X	O


Bridge  	

	X	X	O

	X	X	O

	X	X	O

	X	X	O

The continuity is from left to right only, no diagnals. Ctr using #r - #c
 

1-1 <==> 2-1

             2-2 <==>3-2

             2-3 <==>3-3

1-4 <==>2-4

Glad to hear you can make the Ibanez understand :D

Thanks

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lovekraft;

No go :D I tried red hot, green gnd, bl/wt shorted; gr/rd shorted, black gnd, white hot, blk/white shorted, red gnd, green hot. Bridge sounds fine, neck like a week telecaster. weak tin sound with no bas at all. Bridge sounds much better on mids and bass :D I just did the red wire on the neck dirct to the center of the switch, removing the switch. Same. I removed the v pots by soldering the green and shield to the tone gnd. red to center on the tone, bl/wt shorted. Same results. OK, here is a weird one. I just ran a wire from the white/black shorted pair to gnd and the volume is back and I have some bass???? This should have effectivly shorted everything. I now have 3 of the 4 wires at gnd potential. I am confused! I am going to ro ride my bike and think about this. After pedaling 30 miles against the wind as it is blowing 20+ here today, I should have a clear mind and sore legs

I apperiate all the help!!

John

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OK, try wiring red to white and black to hot - I've no idea why the pickups would be wired differently, but it sounds like the two coils are out of phase with one another, and that might just resolve it. :D

I wish I had it sitting in front of me - it's so much easier to do it than to try to clearly describe what you need to do to diagnose it! Hopefully that'll get you back on track.

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lovekraft,

I treid that and still no go, same sound. I ended up with a devation on the stock wiring. The bridge I left alone as that worked, then I wired the neck like the bridge on the stock format. Red - hot, green - gnd, white & black shorted and to gnd on the switch. Now both pups are wired the same and it works. I did run the black/white on the bridge to switch ground also. This did not make any difference on that pup like it did on the necek unit. go figure :D I may end up changing the pups, but right now the wife has said no as I need to pay my taxes :D .

Thanks for all your help!!!

Question, is not a humbucker 2 coils wired in series? This wiring has got me wondering. Running 3 wires to gnd and one to hot tells me I have gronded out one of the coils, but it does not play that way. What would 2 coils in parallel do?

Thanks

John

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