Step 4: Adding switch control

Now that we have the new wire connected to the pickups we have to decide what to do with it!  In my case, I decided to just put a switch to toggle single/dual coil modes.  I put the schematics on this step as well for convenience.  As you can see, once we have this new wire installed we can easily implement any of the options I've drawn here (except the last one which was a later idea.)  

If your not lucky enough to be replacing an existing POT with a push/pull POT, then you'll have to find a place to install your new switch or new POT.  You'll have to carefully drill the hole and put it in it's place.  I used a little slide toggle that needed a rectangular hole, so I cut it out with a dremel.  

If you're just adding a switch like I did, then all that's left to do is connect the new wire from the pickup to one side of the switch and a wire from the other side of the switch to ground.  My switch is a DPDT type so that I can connect both of my pickups this way.  I had considered 2 switches so that I could change them independently, but I was lacking the space inside the cavity of my guitar.  

That's it! I encourage you to explore some of the other options in the schematic drawings though.  There might even be a great idea that i missed!
<p>Some strats have 2 humbuckers and a single coil in the middle. Is this necessary? What kind of sound would that produce? Could that set up we wired to switch to a 3 coil / no humbucker configuration upon the flick of a switch?</p><p>thanks</p><p>Mike</p>
<p>Strats come in a several configurations to give players a variety to choose from. When you ask &quot;is this necessary?&quot; the answer is no, but it gives strat lovers options other that being locked into the &quot;normal&quot; 3x single coil configuration of the original strat. I've seen S-S-S, S-H-S, H-S-H, H-S-S... In all of these configurations, there is a 5 position switch that allows to choose to use any 2 adjacent pickups or any 1 alone. The chosen pickups work exactly like any other 2 pickup system except that they are placed under the strings differently (the distance from the bridge has a HUGE effect on tone BTW) which is the reason for having multiple pickups in the first place!</p><p>You could wire the 2 humbuckers to act as single coils together or independently exactly as I have done in this -ible. Just leave the single coil in the middle alone. I would be tempted to only do the neck pickup. Turning this one to single coil would help to achieve that bluesy tone that is sought after and leaving the bridge a humbucker will keep the volume boost (and hum reduction) you need near the bridge. At the bridge the string can't move as much, so it is inherently lower volume unless you adjust that pickup closer to the strings... hope that helps.</p>
<p>Thank you! If I chickened out, what would it cost if someone else did the wiring you suggest ?</p><p>thanks again. Nice article!</p>
<p>Nice job, clearly done , and appreciated! BTW, I'm new to electron-driven guitars but have read/viewed Scott Grove's important youtube vid on the matter of always keeping all pickup volume and tone knobs at max .. </p><p><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="281" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/a59LXPQ_l54" width="500"></iframe></p><p>and so I ask of the advisability of taking advantage of fact that the innards of the guitar are now fully accessible for your mod, so why not at same time change all 'Vol' and 'Tone' knobs to be perm mod'd to be always at 'Max' .. leaving tone controls to be managed totally by one's amp ..</p><p>Would seem to be a no-brainer on a cheap guitar, but totally stupid on any expensive one ... as i understand that *any* mod to a valuable guitar ruins it's resale value .. even a mod that improves the device..</p>
I wouldn't do that. The reason being that I use the volume knob sometimes to tune the dynamic range of the guitar on the fly when using a tube amp on the verge of overdrive. Essentially, when the tubes are just breaking up, you can get a more overdriven sound by turning the volume knob up a little and then get a cleaner sound by turning down. You can also just play harder or softer, but the volume knob gives you further dynamic control. If you want it maxed out, it's easy to just turn it all the way. Then still have the control there if you ever want it. Even if it's just to keep the guitar quiet when you're not playing.
Thanks ... i just learned something ... Your knowledge of all this is very comprehensive .. Appreciated!<br>
Fascinating discussion clear, thorough, good pics and informative.<br> <br> I wonder if the hum on single coil is induced 60 cycle into the strings.<br> <br> Would running on battery power in a 60 mile radius ( away from power lines )<br> desert give a clean sound on a single coil, you think ?<br> <br> A
Thanks for the nice comment!<br> <br> The single coil arrangement is susceptible to two types of noise. One (usually called hum) is interference from the 60Hz mains power. The other (usually called buzz) is from things like radio transmissions and sounds like static. There is no electrical connection to the strings, so all of the induced noise is from the pickups. There have been some shielded single coil designs that used special magnet materials to reduce hum.<br> <br> Running on battery power in the desert would eliminate the hum... but, I don't think you can run far enough away to escape the buzz.
Thanks for the knowledgeable opinion :) <br>

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