Introduction: Guitar A/B Switch

This instructable covers how to make an A/B switch (designed for a guitar).

The whole instructable is split into three main sections:
Step 1 looks at my research and prototyping.
Steps 2-3 look at the simple switch – the basic concept which can be modified to fit many situations.
Steps 4-5 look at mounting the simple switch to a guitar - only a Gibson-style is shown, but others could be used.

Each main section will begin with the necessary equipment and parts for itself.

I hope you like it! Please feel free to comment!

Step 1: The Basic Switch: Method

Solder wires to each prong of the switch, unconnected to each other. 

Point the underside of your switch towards you, so that there are 2 prongs down the sides and 3 across.

Look at the diagram. Each prong is represented by two letters and sometimes a number. G=Guitar, A=Amp, T=Tip, S=Sleeve. The Gs and As refer to which jack to solder to. The Tip and Sleeve are the sections of the jack.
Solder as the diagram shows.
e.g. The top left prong should be soldered to a wire which is, at the other end, soldered to the sleeve section of the jack for the first amp.

Finally, solder two more wires to the guitar's sleeve. Solder one to the first amp's sleeve, and the other to the second amp's sleeve.

The amp that is active will be the one which has its sleeve at the same side as the tip of the switch. If this is unclear, simply test it.

Apply, and enjoy!

Step 2: Guitar Mounted Switch: Ingredients

This varies dependent on guitar.

For a Gibson-style guitar (I used a Vintage SG copy), you will need the following parts and equipment:
1x Guitar
1x Guitar Jack
1x DPDT switch
Wire (single core)
Drill
Guitar jack-sized drill bit
Switch-sized drill bit
Soldering stuff (not shown)
Screwdriver (for back cover) (not shown)

Step 3: Guitar Mounted Switch: Method

For a Gibson-style guitar (can be modified to work with others):

Remove the back cover. Unscrew the nut holding the jack in place. Desolder the jack, taking careful notice of which wire is connected to which section of the jack - sleeve or tip. In my case, the tip was connected to the white wire, and the sleeve to the uncovered wire.
Solder two short wires to the wire that was connected to the tip of the jack. Point the bottom of the switch towards you so that there are three prongs across and two down. Solder the two new wires to opposite corners of the switch's prongs (one to the top right prong and one to the bottom left prong).
Solder a short wire to each remaining prong of the switch. Keeping with the switch's orientation from before, solder the wire from the top middle prong to the tip of the guitar's original jack. Then solder the wire from the bottom middle prong to the tip of the other jack.
After this, you should have 2 unused prongs on opposite corners of the switch. Solder the wire from the top left prong to the sleeve of the guitar's original jack. This should mean the top row is connected to only one jack.
Solder the one remaining wire (the bottom right) to the sleeve of the other jack. This should mean the bottom row is also only connected to one jack - but not the same one.
Solder two short wires to the wire that was originally connected to the sleeve of the guitar's jack. Solder these to the sleeves of the two jacks (one wire to each jack).

Unplug your soldering iron, put the soldering stuff out of the way, whatever, you don't need it any more for this project.

Drill, using the appropriate bits, two holes - one for the extra jack, one for the switch. I put the second jack next to the first, and the switch between the volume/tone knobs. Fit the pieces through and screw the nuts on.

Enjoy!

Comments

author
myosff (author)2013-10-13

very nice

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