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Will This 2hb Wiring Scheme Work?


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Hey everyone, I'm new to the forum (and wiring mods, but I think I'm starting to get it) and I was hoping someone could take a look at this wiring scheme:


It's a modification of this 21-sound scheme for 2 Humbuckers; I added a second pot for individual HB tone control and a switch to toggle the HBs in/out of phase (SW4), which should bring the number of possible combinations to 42. Did I get the phasing scheme right?

I also plan to merge the tone pots with SW3 & SW4 using push/pull DPDT switches (SW3 push = HBs in parallel; SW4 push = HBs in phase). Anything I should know before I do that?

The HBs are Seymour Duncan Invaders on a lower-end Epiphone SG (other mods: scalloped frets 17-22, removed pickguard, deeper cutaway, roller nut & bridge, Bigsby B500 vibrato, Grover locking tuners).

Any and all feedback would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

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I can't comment on if it'll work or not - I'm not an electrician. What I can do is tell you about my experiences.

My main ax:

2 Bartoloni HBs, both wired with a series/paralell switch

phase switch

3-position blade switch

1 volume

1 tone

This effectively gives me 12 separate tones.

It's not all it's cracked up to be. The variation of the tones are sometimes so subtle that you sometimes can't tell the difference. Don't get me wrong - if you're doing a tone comparison & switching back & forth listening for the change, it's there. In reality, it's a completely different story. The difference just isn't enough to warrant the wiring in some instances. And this is with 12 tones. Bump it to 21, or 42 if your wiring works...

I'm going to guess that the tonal difference between a HB wired in series and a coil-tapped HB is so minimal that it would need to be pointed out to be noticed. Add in a couple of effects and you might as well not even have the option.

The bigest tonal differences I have are the series/paralell on the bridge and the phase switch. The neck s/p switch mellows the tone a bit, but not very much. The phase switch IS great, there's not arguement here. For my rig, the difference doesn't really get pronounced until I put the bridge in series.

Another consideration for you is what type of music do you play? As I said, too many effects will render the whole thing moot. Heavy, thick, modern metal distortion will also negate the switching.

Here's another way to look at it. With two pups, there are three tones available. Think of it as three points on a line. The length of the line is finite, and the three spots are fixed and equally spaced. Adding in 2 more spaces will be noticeable differences on the graph. Adding in 40, and the difference from point 17 to point 18 becomes almost nothing.

I hope this helps.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Finally finished!

I had to change the circuit around as I had made a fatal flaw in the phasing setup. I had to ditch the "toggle between humbuckers in series/parallel" function and make both SW3 and SW4 "in/out of phase" push/pull for the neck and bridge humbucker, respectively. I'll post an updated, tested schematic shortly.

I can actually hear significant tonal differences even with wicked metal distortion. And the guitar looks great, but seeing how I literally just broke my digital camera (:D), pics will have to wait.

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Well, there are a few two-pickup combination tones that are hard to make out (neck in series + bridge in parallel, etc.), but I was really surprised at how many distinct options I have. When only one HB is selected, or when both HBs are on the same setting, the tonal differences are very clear.

Since I had to change the wiring, I haven't tallied the total number of tones. The HBs run parallel to each other (I could easily replace the volume pot with a push/pull pot to toggle between HBs in series/parallel). I can select neck HB, neck + bridge HBs, or bridge HB. Each HB has its own tone control and the following settings:

1) Coils in series in-phase

2) Coils in series out-of-phase

3) Coils in parallel in-phase

4) Coils in parallel out-of-phase

5) Coil cut

Turns out my camera lens is still alive; only the display is broken, so I can still set up pics with the viewfinder. Here's a stock photo of what the guitar looked like before:


And here is the after:



The wiring nightmare:


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