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User01
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ok, this is an extremely n00bish question and i am a n00b so go easy on me please.

i am about to install my emg actives into my guitar, and i have to solder the braided emg 81 cable to the back of the tone pot.

and i was wondering if it was ok just to tape the wire to the back of the pot. because they would both be in contact with each other right? or am i missing something?

i wanted to do this because i heard that overheating a pot could completely ruin it, and im a n00b so im thinking that its likely to happen to me.

if this isnt method isnt possible, then could somebody give me some tips and pointers on how not to ruin your pots when soldering the braided cable to the back of the tone pot?

cheers

user01

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You could theoretically do it but the results would be less than mediocre. I can't imagine the contact being enough, nor can I imagine it sticking for more than a day. I've never heard of a product that will do it effectively, but I haven't seen the whole world of electronics techniques. :D

Proper soldering technique will ensure that you do not ruin the pot. If the wire is properly tinned, you shouldn't need to contact the pot for long enough to heat it up to 'ruination'.

Absolute worst-case scenario: you buy a new tone pot to replace the one you ruined. I really don't think that'll happen if you proceed with normal precautions; however, I wanted to mention it because it wouldn't be the end of the world.

Greg

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Dude, you can solder it. Just tin the braid on the wire first and tin the back of the pot too. You won't have any problems if you don't use more than a 25 watt iron and leave the heat on the pot for more than 3-4 seconds. You can do it, just sack up and be confident in yourself.

Don't take the easy way out and use tape. It won't sound good at all when the ground connection is that weak.

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i had a customer bring me a pawnshop guitar that he'd purchased yesterday that "didn't work right." whoever pawned it had evidently replaced the stock pickups but he litterally twisted the wires around the lugs on the pots and taped the grounds. i had a chuckle and then soldered it all up and it worked properly. so no, tape doesn't work well at all and no, i've never ruined a pot by overheating. i know it could happen but seldom does.

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ok, thanks for the help people and im a bit more confident now, i just have to make sure i get a 25w solder iron and follow your tips and guides.

just one question

Just tin the braid on the wire first and tin the back of the pot too.

what is tinning? like how do tin the braid and the pot? i dont think i know what your talking about.

well thanks again

cheers

user01

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ok, thanks for the help people and im a bit more confident now, i just have to make sure i get a 25w solder iron and follow your tips and guides.

just one question

Just tin the braid on the wire first and tin the back of the pot too.

what is tinning? like how do tin the braid and the pot? i dont think i know what your talking about.

well thanks again

cheers

user01

how do you tin

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"Tinning" refers to coating parts in soler before you actually start soldering things together. For example, you would head the wire up with your soldering iron and melt solder onto it, ditto with the pot, THEN solder them together - it makes it a lot easier.

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If you are soldering-challenged, go to the auto parts store and get a crimp-type wire terminal that fits over your pot's mounting bushing and crimp your grounds to it. Use a star-washer if you can find one the right size between the pot and the terminal. It ain't right but it works. Look at kit guitars. Some use this.

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I've fried a pot before!

It was a cheapy from a local electronics store, and I used my dads 100 watt iron.

no matter what I did the wire wouldn't stick(turned out they had a coating on the back which must be filed off or burned through). And when I say I fried the pot, i mean that the resistive track melted and messed up the taper(sudden increases). So if you want to, sand or file the back of the pot to rough up the surface then try.

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Helpful idea for the lugs, but he needs/wants to solder to the back of the pot, too.

:D The bushing on a standard pot is connected to the case - hence anything connected to the bushing doesn't need to be soldered to the back of the pot. It ain't traditional , but it's just as effective as the way Fender does it, and there's no chance of destroying a pot by overheating it.

For that matter, there's no compelling reason to use a pot as a ground point - it's not often seen outside of guitar electronics, and certainly offers no advantages other than convenience. Ideally, so long as all grounds go to the same spot, the cavity shield would be the best ground point.

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For that matter, there's no compelling reason to use a pot as a ground point - it's not often seen outside of guitar electronics, and certainly offers no advantages other than convenience. Ideally, so long as all grounds go to the same spot, the cavity shield would be the best ground point.

Ok so now I feel like a moron. I thought I had a pretty good grasp on guitar electronics, but I've been grounding to the back of the pot, and then running it to the shield. You just saved me a lot of hassle, thanks for the heads up.

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Like any craft, a lot of the way we do things is a direct result of the way it's always been done - there's nothing wrong with the way Leo wired a Telecaster in '56 (although shielded cable would have been nice), it's just not the only "right" way to do it. Besides, we always forget that lots of traditional methods come directly from production oriented solutions that have simply been imitated until they became a de facto standard. There's always another way to flay that feline. :D

Don't forget that the pot cases still have to be grounded for maximum shield effectiveness.

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I think the reason why he wanted to solder the shield to the pot is because that's the way it's done on the EMG diagram--and it's the way it was done with my EMG-SA set wiring harness. It just looks cleaner and you're going to get a really good ground connection.

I don't trust crimp terminals as far as I can throw them.

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I don't trust crimp terminals as far as I can throw them.

:D If you use a telephone or a computer, or drive an automobile, you not only trust 'em, you didn't even notice 'em. Unless they're under tension, crimp joints are just as good as solder joints, except perhaps in a corrosive environment. There's nothing intrinsically superior about either method, so do whatever you're comfortable with - if you have difficulty making a sound crimp joint, by all means, solder! It's a big world, and there's more than enough room for more than one way to do things.

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If you use a telephone or a computer, or drive an automobile, you not only trust 'em, you didn't even notice 'em.

Actually, the dealership has been trying to track down a bad connector in my car for some time now that has caused all sorts of problems. I wouldn't exactly call telephone line jacks exactly uber-reliable, either...

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LK, I am about to lose all respect for you because you know what "feline-flaying" is! THAT means you are still doing it the old-fashioned way! I thought you were up-to-date on all these important issues. Tsk, tsk, tsk. You could redeem yourself by telling me why my 7868s overheat every third time I turn my amp on.

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my partner at the store started his own line of short scale basses and has had tremendous success using star grounding and thorough shielding. his guitars have absolutely no hum no matter what environment they're played in..no sixty cycle hum and no flourescent light hum. i'm going to copy his wiring on my next custom and i'll be sure to let everyone know how it works and maybe a step by step description of how to do it.

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I just coat the back of the pickguard (or the control rout in a none pickguard guitar) In either foil or conductive paint than ground that. Than that will tough the pot and it gets grounded there. But no I haven't fried a pot either. I have a 30 watt iron and I left it on there for like a minute and it got so hot that I burned myself prety bad before I figured out to sand the back of the pot :D It will get rid of any weird coatings and make a nice rough surface that the solder will want to stick too.

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Doc, I'm surprised at you - sure, I used to do most of my feline flaying the old-fashioned way, but ever since I purchased the new Quantum-Enabled Acme FF2000, even Schrödinger's cat ain't safe! :D

All I know about 7868s is that I never could afford the amps that used 'em - that classic hifi stuff is way over my head (and my budget)!

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