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Greasebucket Q


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So I'm currently shielding and star-grounding a Highway-1 strat. While fiddling with one of the tone pots, one of the tone cap leads snaps off next to the cap. So, I have to rebuild the tone circuit. No big loss; I can upgrade to film caps while I'm at it. However, while getting the old cap off the pot and ground lead, I noticed that some heat-shrink tubing was hiding what turned out to be a 4.7KOhm 1/4W resistor, wired in parallel to only the one lead of the cap.

My question is, why? It's wired in parallel to a bare wire, so the bare wire is the obvious path of least resistance. If it were wired in series for a Duncan mod, or in parallel with the cap itself, I'd understand that, but I fail to see what useful purpose this thing could serve there.

It may help to give some background on the Greasebucket, because while every retailer can tell you what it does, few can tell you how it works. Having ripped one apart, I feel qualified to at least describe it. The normal tone circuit has a lead from the volume pot or pickup to the wiper lug, and to the "0 position" lug has a capacitor that then feeds to ground. On this Greasebucket circuit, the tone cap is still there (with the added resistor afterwards as mentioned above), but the lead from the pickup comes instead to the "10 position" lug. From there, a treble bleed cap (.001uF) connects that lug to the wiper lug. I can imagine that this makes it extremely hard for bass frequencies to enter the tone circuit, but I'm at a loss to explain how this design change, as advertised, allows you to roll off treble without the bass frequencies getting louder. I guess that's my second question if someone wants to explain it to me. I have a simple Paint-drawn schematic at home, I'll post it when I leave work.

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I figured it out; apparently the resistor is simply in series, and the way they did it, to be fast, was simply to solder both leads of the resistor to one lead on the cap and then clip the cap lead. I didn't notice this when I was diassembling the circuit earlier.

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