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50s wiring- yay or nay?

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    50s wiring- yay or nay?

    My semi-hollow Ibanez is coming on Monday and, like I said in that thread, it will be getting a pickup swap (SD Seth Lover) and an entire electronics upgrade. I spent the day ordering my various parts and watching YouTube videos and one of the videos I watched was this one on 50s wiring vs modern wiring:



    I really liked what the 50s wiring option did so I'm just wondering if others have tried it and what they thought about it. Did you keep it or go back to modern wiring? I've reading that high gain doesn't work well with the 50s wiring and that's fine for me since this particular guitar isn't for that type of playing.

    #2
    If you dig it, give it a spin.

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      #3
      I have 50s wiring in my Esquire. For clean through to mid-gain rock it's awesome, really helps keep the clarity of the pickup when you roll the volume off. I keep that guitar in D-standard for playing Gaslight Anthem covers, as an example of the kind of gain I'm talking about.
      I haven't tried anything crazy heavy with it, but for that stuff I'm usually at full on both volume and gain so I doubt it would make any difference for it anyway.
      Either way it's an easy swap back if it turns out you don't like it.

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        #4
        Ok, so I see an issue for me but maybe it's not an issue. As shown in the video, the 50s wiring mod bridges the capacitor between the volume and tone pots:



        My problem should be obvious once you see the guitar:



        The volume and tone pots are far apart and the f-hole is between them. There's no way to bridge the two pots with just the capacitor itself. So, in this situation, do I just connect the capacitor to the volume pot and then run a "jumper" wire from the other end of the capacitor to the post on the tone pot? Or..............

        ...Is there another way? While Googling, I found this discussion thread on The Gear Page and this exchange in particular:


        "thanks. looks like i need to ground the first lug of the tone pot and the 2nd leg of the tone put gets connected to the first of the volume with a cap between???"

        Yes, but that's the part that doesn't matter. You can have the cap go from the tone pot to ground, and it will work the same. Gibson always found it convenient to ground the tone pot and use the cap leads as a jumper to the volume pot. Fenders often have a wire jumper.

        What matters is whether the tone circuit is connected to the "input" or the "output" of the volume pot. As Walter said, however it's connected now (wire jumper or cap jumper), just move that connection on the volume pot.
        To me, this implies that the capacitor doesn't actually need to span between the volume and tone pots for this to work. Is that so? I'm confused once again..

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          #5
          ​​Im into 50's wiring in all my guitars. I dont play heavy except to entertain myself.

          The cap between the pot isnt a huge deal. Let me grab a couple of diagrams that show it so its more clear. The tone function can happen in a couple places without altering its effects.

          Click image for larger version

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          Attached Files

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            #6
            There's no polite way of saying this: this is MM.org; here, Rohloff make bicycle chains. That's it.

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              #7
              Originally posted by Cameron View Post
              ​​Im into 50's wiring in all my guitars. I dont play heavy except to entertain myself.

              The cap between the pot isnt a huge deal. Let me grab a couple of diagrams that show it so its more clear. The tone function can happen in a couple places without altering its effects.

              Click image for larger version

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              Awesome, thanks Cameron. I'm adding that to my reference library for sure. I just worked on the wiring for this yesterday. I decided to run a jumper wire between the volume & tone pots. I cut one end of the capacitor short & soldered it to the volume pot output as you would normally. The other end of the capacitor was soldered to the jumper wire and then heat shrinked for protection (yellow wire in this photo):


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                #8
                I tried it in my strat - it's not bad, and especially clean it's another fairly elegant solution to the "high pass" problem where your signal gets darker as you roll the volume back, as the high end deteriorates quickly. This fixes that... but it's been forever so don't quote me on specifics (save that I know I talked about it here or the old site), but I remember not liking what it did to the volume taper under gain.

                For a semihollow which you're not likely to use for anything beyond BB King levels of gain, it's certaily worth a try... and I'd think a jumper cable should work.

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