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Telecaster Deluxe Partscaster Build


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Hello everyone,

I'm about to start to build a Telecaster Deluxe style guitar.

This is my first build so I will be looking for loads of advise please.

The guitar will have 2 humbuckers with a 3 way switch and a piezo bridge.

I'm looking to wire the magnetics and piezos through another 3 way on/off/on switch for magnetic/both/piezo operation.

My first questions are...

- Do I need to shield the cavity as the pickups are humbuckers ?

- Do I need to ground the bridge as it already has a ground built into the piezos ?

- I'm also having a Bigsby tremolo - do I need to ground this ?

Many thanks in anticipation.

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Hope the first build goes well for you, my advice is to take your time and enjoy the building experience. It's easy to get excited once the construction phase is complete and the finishing starts and then do a rushed finishing job that your not happy with.

To help with your questions. Being humbucking(noise cancelling) pickups there is technically no need to shield your cavities in this build, however, it will help in making the guitar whisper quiet if thats what your after.

In all electric builds its paramount to ground your bridge. In most troubleshooting questions regarding buzzing from an electric, the first question that gets asked is "is the bridge ground?" As far as the piezo ground being enough, i'm not sure as i haven't used a piezo system. One of the other experienced guys i'm sure will chime in. I would say run a ground to the bridge anyway so when the passive side only is on it has a good ground. This will also ground the bigsby as the strings are in contact with it.

Chad. :D

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Personally, I'm not a big believer in shielding cavities. It's a controversial topic, for sure. I prefer to shield the wires instead (not the ground ones though). As for that Bigsby, let me just explain the principle. It's not actually the bridge you want grounded as much as the strings themselves. Since the strings make a conductive connection with the bridge, that's a good place to ground them. It would help to know specifically which bridge you're trying to use, but as long as there's a conductive connection between the strings and the central ground point, you're good. If that's working, the tremolo will be grounded anyway, because it's connected to the strings too.

Let me just offer one more suggestion as well. Take it or leave it. One thing you could do to avoid an extra switch is use a 5 position blade switch (a Strat switch) instead of a 3 position blade switch (a Tele switch), and wire it as follows:

1: Bridge pickup only

2: Bridge and neck pickups

3: Neck pickup only

4: Neck pickup and piezo

5: Piezo only

You eliminate the possibility of the bridge pickup in combination with the piezo, but imho, the neck + piezo is where the money is anyway. Visually, there will be no difference, except that there will be one less toggle switch. You just have to use a Tele switch tip. If you decide to go that route, and need any help with wiring diagrams, anyone here (including me) would be glad to help.


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