- Gear Diary
- Guitar Circuit Wiring
- Guitar Potentiometers
- Guitar Preamp Cable
- Guitar Tone Capacitors
- Guitar Treble Bleed
- Pedal Building
- Photo and Video
- Semi-Hollowbody Electronics
- VOX AC15
I’m going to upgrade an Epiphone DOT Studio that I recently picked up and I’ll be putting two additional POTs in.. I have a request, would you please send me a link to your wiring diagram and would you PLEASE make a crude template showing where your POT and selector switches are positioned in relationship to each other on the guitar? I want the installation to look as stock (personal use but…) as possible. Thought about going to GC and making one but didn’t think they’d appreciate me pulling off the knobs. Haven’t been able to find a template in three days of searching 🙂 Thanks again
Tonight I pulled the knobs off my Epiphone Riviera P93, and used some calipers to measure all the spacings. The Riviera should be representative of a typical Gibson 335-style guitar like the Epiphone Dot and Sheraton. I took a picture and added some crude annotations (click to enlarge). Note, all the measurements are in millimeters.
It looks like you’ll need to swap the placement of your Dot Studio switch and volume pot, and add a couple new holes down below the f-hole for your second volume and tone.
You’ll also need to revise the wiring. The Dot Studio has a single master volume and tone, and will need to change that to individual volume and tone controls for the two pickups. I made a sketch of the wiring diagram for this 3-pickup Riviera, which will be an interesting reference, but won’t be exactly what you want since your Dot Studio only has two pickups. Instead, try this wiring diagram for a typical 335-style guitar with two humbuckers, 3-way selector switch, two tone and two volume controls.
Good luck with the project! Share some pictures when you’ve completed it.
Thanks Pete for the permission to post this here!
In this Tech Tips Newsletter I would like to focus on the electrical property known as inductance and how it relates to the performance characteristics of passive magnetic pickups.
Summary: Understanding the inductance values of passive magnetic pickups provides insight into the expected performance and may be a more reliable metric than the more commonly found direct current (DC) resistance values. Inductance is measured in Henrys [H] and ranges from 1.8 to 2.5 H for typical strat style single coil pickups and from 3.2 to 4.6 H for PAF style humbucking pickups.
One of the most common and well understood electrical properties used to characterize passive magnetic pickups is DC resistance (DCR). Typical values of DCR for strat style single coil pickups range from 5.5 to 6.5 k-Ohms; humbucking pickups often have DCR values in the range of 6.5 to over 12 .0 k-Ohms. DCR values can be useful in comparing similar pickups which are wound with the same wire gauge. In general, for pickups of a specific design and made with the same wire gauge, as the DCR value increases one typically observes higher output (as measured in mill Volts [mV]) and a shift in the peak of the frequency response curve to lower values (reduced output in the treble frequencies). In comparing the performance of pickups of very different size, shape or geometry or with coils wound with differing wire gauge, the DCR values may be less helpful. Here is a specific example of this issue: consider two otherwise identical strat style single coil pickups, each with 8,500 turns on their respective bobbins, but one wound with 42 AWG wire and the other wound with 43 AWG wire. The DC resistances were found to be different: approximately 6.2 k-Ohms for the 42 AWG coil and 8.1 k-Ohms for the 43 AWG coil. The inductance values for these two pickups, however were very similar: 2.41 H for the 42 AWG coil and 2.28 H for the 43 AWG coil. The output voltages for these two pickups (as measured at the peaks of their respective frequency response curves) were: 102 mV for the coil wound with 42 gauge wire and 103 mV for the coil wound with 43 AWG wire. From this we can see that the inductance values were a more reliable indicator of output voltage than the DCR values for these two pickups.
Let’s take a look at what happens in a typical passive magnetic pickup in an electric guitar or bass. When the strings of the instrument (which contain iron or nickel) vibrate, it causes the magnetic field of the permanent magnets in the pickup to rise and fall or fluctuate at the same frequency as the string vibration. This changing magnetic field induces an alternating current (AC) electrical field in the coil windings of the pickup and a voltage difference is generated between the ground lead of the pickup and the output lead of the pickup. This time varying voltage is typically in the range of 50 to 300 milli Volts. This is the output signal from the pickup which travels through the volume and tone controls of the instrument, through the instrument cable and ultimately to the input of the amplifier.
Inductance is the property of the magnetic pickup which relates the changing magnetic field to the AC current in the coil of the pickup.
Here are some important concepts to keep in mind regarding inductance as it relates to magnetic pickups:
- Inductance is directly proportional to the square of the number of turns of coil windings in the pickup. If the coil windings are doubled, the inductance will increase by a factor of 4. Inductance is helpful in predicting the output of pickups as the output of a pickup increases with the number of turns in the coil.
- The inductance of a pickup can be changed by placing iron or nickel containing parts inside the coil or near the coil. The property of materials which affects inductance is called Permeability. Permeability for empty space is vanishingly small (10-7 H/meter); permeability for magnetic materials can be 100 to 100,000 larger. An iron or nickel object within the coil of a pickup will increase the inductance of the pickup. In many single coil pickup designs such as a typical strat style pickup, permanent magnets made of alloys of aluminum, iron and nickel (hence the common name AlNiCo) are located within the pickup coil. In P-90 style pickups adjustable pole pieces made of mild steel are located within the coil and bar magnets under the coil. P-90 style single coil pickups often have inductance values of from 4.9 to 6.8 H. Jaguar style pickups have AlNiCo rod magnets inside the coil and an external “Claw” polepiece outside the coil with inductance values from 2.5 to 3.2 H.
PAF style humbucking pickups can have inductance values ranging from 2.8 to 4.5 H. Blade style single coil and humbucking pickups can have quite large inductance readings (6.0 to over 9.0 H) depending on the size of the blade pole piece and the number of coil windings).
Inductance measurements of magnetic pickups require an inductance meter and are typically made at a specific frequency (1 kHz). I use an EXTECH LCR meter (Model 380193); measurements are made in series mode setting of the meter.
Here are the important points regarding inductance as it relates to passive magnetic pickups:
- When comparing the data available for pickups the inductance values may be a better indicator of performance than the DCR values especially for pickups having different design features.
- The inductance of a pickup is increased by adding more turns to the coil and by adding iron or nickel parts inside or near the coil windings; both of these changes will increase the output of a pickup and quite often shift the peak of the frequency response curve to a lower value.
I hope you find this information useful.
The Engineering Handbook, CRC Press, 1995 pp 1117-1119
I bought my very first guitar for $200 in 1985, at Spitzer’s Music in Concord. At the time, I thought of myself as a keyboard player and was pretty clueless about guitar. But I loved the sound of guitar, and really wanted to be a part of that world. The salesman at Spitzer recommended this used 1978 Takamine F-375S, and I just took his word for it. More
Just saw this picture on John Mayer’s Instagram from last week’s show at Madison Square Garden. Take a look at his crazy floor rig in this shot. It’s so big, it stretches across three pedal boards in an arc in front of him. And a lot of the pedals are hidden offstage in a Bradshaw rack (shown in this 2010 rig rundown video with his guitar tech).
My band plays a number of outdoor gigs every year, and I usually need to wear sunglasses to survive the gig.
Aside from the sunlight-triggered-wah-freakout issue I wrote about last year, the HD500X works fairly well in the sun. The light rings around the footswitches tend to disappear in bright light, but the main display seems to maintain reasonable visibility. More
My 2012 series on DIY Guitar Pedal building continues to draw visitors to planetz. I just went through and updated a few stale links, and I noticed that I never really posted entire table of contents for the series. So here it is. I also added these links to the top of each page. Better late than never!
- Intro to DIY Pedal Building
- Beginner’s Course in Sketchup, Modeling a 125B Guitar Pedal Enclosure
- Drilling a 125B Guitar Effects Pedal Enclosure
- Pedal Enclosure Finishing: Surface Prep, Priming and Painting
- Using GIMP to Create Pedal Artwork
- Printing and Applying Waterslide Decal to Pedal Enclosure
I also made a youtube playlist: DIY Guitar Pedal Building
I’ve used the classic A-frame OnStage stand forever, but its time to upgrade to something better! There have been too many near misses, where my guitar nearly fell off its stand. And, these strange reactions between the foam and the guitar finish are just not worth it.
This is the Ultimate Support GS-1000 Pro. It has a very unique design with a sturdy asymmetric tripod base and telescoping top yoke that basically guarantees that the guitar won’t tip over.
They’re really taking modeling to the next level. The Helix sounds amazing, looks amazing, feels amazing.
The Helix addresses all the issues that I have with myHD500X – the legibility/visibility of the small screen, solid tuner, clean boosts, scribble strips over the buttons so I don’t need to remember what’s what. And editing on the Helix looks so simple and natural, compared to the HD500X. More