Help with wiring a Push/Pull on guitar with single volume knob?

Discussion in 'Pickups, Electronics & General Tech' started by Alex Leverell, Jun 29, 2017.

  1. Alex Leverell

    Alex Leverell SS.org Regular

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    Hey guys, got a Ibanez RGDIX6MPB with Bare Knuckle Juggernauts installed and I'm trying to figure out how to install a CTS 500K Push/Pull pot in place of the volume pot for more versatility/options.

    Is this possible with this guitar? (Been having trouble finding examples/wiring diagrams)


    If possible, what are some good ways and configurations to use the push/pull pot in?
    (e.g. split coil/coil tap series parallel)

    What are the differences between these configurations?


    Would really appreciate some help from as I'm not very experienced, thanks in advance:)
     
  2. saminator

    saminator Do you even praise, bro?

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    Push-pull pots can be very handy. There's a couple things you can do with them, but you'll probably have to choose one.

    My favorite use for them is an on-off capacitor. If you don't know, a capacitor on a volume pot will retain high frequencies when you roll the volume down. This can give you a bright, chimey sound when your volume is rolled off. It's similar to a single coil sound, but not quite the same.

    Another thing you can do, and you mentioned this already, is coil split. You can turn off a single coil on BOTH humbuckers this way. I think coil tap is slightly more involved, but similar nonetheless.

    Series-parallel switch seems like a cool idea, but I've never done it before. A humbucker wired in parallel has a brighter, slightly thinner sound. Not sure if you can switch two humbuckers on one switch though.
     
  3. Drew

    Drew Forum MVP

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    Anything's possible, but I think you're going about it the wrong way.

    What do you want the guitar to do that it isn't doing now?

    Depending on the answer to that question, a push-pull (or something else) might be an answer. Knowing what you want is the critical first step though.
     
  4. CapnForsaggio

    CapnForsaggio Cap'n (general)

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    Easiest push pullmod would be to put both pickups into single coil mode.

    It requires a DPDT (dual pull, dual throw) switching pot. Get a "long shaft" if you need it.

    The RED/WHITE pairs from each pickup (should be soldered together and insulated now) will each land on a separate "Pull" (middle lugs).

    the 2x outside lugs that show continuity with the center 2x lugs when the pot is "down" should not hook to anything.

    the 2x outside lugs that show continuity with center 2x lugs when the pot is "up" should be connected together and soldered to the ground at the back of the pot.
     
  5. Kaff

    Kaff SS.org Regular

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    Also, If you go the Push/Pull route, make sure the pot fits depth-wise in the cavities if you don't want to route more material away. There are smaller and bigger ones on the market.
     
  6. Alex Leverell

    Alex Leverell SS.org Regular

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    The guitar came with a 12 pin 3-way switch, does that complicate matters at all compared to using a regular DPDT switch? Seem's like split coil might be the way to go, would the switching system be similar with the pot in up position. So bridge position on the switch would be single coil bridge pickup, middle would be inner coils and neck position would be single coil on the neck pickup?

    Would using single coils on the neck and bridge position lack the hum cancelling and create more noise? Because the idea of parallel on the neck and bridge position with inner coils on the middle position sounds like a nice idea but I don't know if the wiring would be possible with so few components?
     
  7. Alex Leverell

    Alex Leverell SS.org Regular

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    Basically I'm trying add options for 'twangier' sounds with as simplistic an control interface as possible whilst minimising hum/grounding issues. I'd ideally like not to add additional pots or switches as I don't use volume or tone controls much. Though with my inexperience in electronics I'm somewhat ignorant to how much is realistically doable.
     
  8. bostjan

    bostjan MicroMetal Contributor

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    Cool!

    So, a split coil humbucker will sound kind of like a single coil pickup, but it will hum like a single coil, too. If you put two of those together, you get a pretty cool sound, like inside coils or outside coils.

    Series/Parallel coil switching is different altogether. I personally prefer this option. The series humbucker sounds like a regular humbucker. The parallel tone is maybe difficult for me to accurately describe, but it's definitely a totally different tone. The output drops a little in hotness, and the mid frequency totally changes character, yielding what many call a "brighter" sound, but I think it's a bit misleading, because it's more like a low mid cut to my ears.

    There's also the option of having both humbuckers in series or parallel with each other, which is another way to get a much different tone, but only when both pickups are engaged. But, confusingly, this would also be called "series/parallel" switching. You could technically even have each humbucker wired to a switch for series/parallel, and then have a four way selector switch for 1. bridge, 2. parallel, 3. series, 4. neck. That way, you could have each pickup in series or parallel, and then you could also have all four coils in series or all four coils in parallel, or a mixture.
     
  9. CapnForsaggio

    CapnForsaggio Cap'n (general)

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    Honestly, 8/10 techs you take this guitar to are going to fudge up the mod anyway... but that is what I would recommend. It should be like $40, including the new p/p pot.

    I can tell by your second post in this thread, that you are over your head with this mod. Your existing pickup switch has NOTHING to do with whether or not your new DPDT pot is grounding out some coils.

    It's OK to not be good at this electronics stuff. It is difficult, and takes time to learn. It is NOT OK to go soldering about without knowledge.

    Good luck.
     
  10. Drew

    Drew Forum MVP

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    Ok, two comments -

    1) I personally prefer true split coils to a humbucker wired in parallel, but if you want a twangier sound that doesn't hum, bostjan is right and a series/parallel switch is probably ther way to go.

    2) Cap'n is probably right here, as well - if you're not sure what you're doing and reasonably comfortable with a soldering iron, then you're probably better off just bringing it to a good tech. Tell him you want a push/pull tone pot that switches both humbuckers from series to parallel, and let the tech figure out the rest of it. Soldering a guitar isn't that hard once you get the hang of it and is totally worth learning, but it's confusing as hell if you don't know what you're doing, and is hard to do unless you own a good soldering iron... Which will cost you more to buy than to pay someone to do the mod for you.
     
  11. KnightBrolaire

    KnightBrolaire baritone6/8 string hoarder

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    Drew is dead on. coil split will give you the twangy sound, though there will be some hum. In my experience though parallel doesn't really deliver the same kind of twang as coil split. Soldering isn't difficult, but finding a good diagram/not burning your components up (which I've done quite a bit while learning) can be the tricky part if you want to do anything complicated.
    Here's a diagram for what you want:
    http://www.dimarzio.com/sites/default/files/diagrams/2h1ppsplitv_3w_all.pdf
    The only difference for the wire colors since you're using bare knuckle is that green on the diagram would be the black wire on the juggernauts.
    also are you sure that it's a 12 pin 3 way switch that came with your guitar? most ibanez have import models like this :
    [​IMG]
     
  12. Alex Leverell

    Alex Leverell SS.org Regular

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    Thanks for the help guys, I've done some soldering, just swapping out parts like pickups and pots, though not changing configurations, I'll give that diagram a go and see how I do, any tips on grounding to the CTS pot as the back is plastic rather than metal?
     
  13. CapnForsaggio

    CapnForsaggio Cap'n (general)

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    The push pull pot will have a metal "ground tab" that hangs off the housing.

    Just use that. If you have too many wires to land, sometimes, I will solder a small "ring" of wire to the tab.

    The secret with soldering these type of parts is a smokin hot solder pen. 40W or better, 650F approximately. Solder fast.
     

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