50's wiring for 4 conductor humbucker?

Discussion in 'Tonefreaks' started by fb009, Dec 14, 2012.

  1. fb009

    fb009 Junior Member

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    i recently purchased SH-2 and SH-4 mistakenly with 4 conductors. i've upgraded to 50's wiring. i just want to know does wiring of pickup matter 50's wiring, or do i just install them according to Seymour Duncan's Standard Wiring For 4 Conductor Humbucker or 2 Humbucker 2 Volume 2 tone and 3 way guideline ?

    [​IMG]

    could not find the picture for Standard Wiring For 4 Conductor Humbucker, but here's the pdf link http://www.seymourduncan.com/images/products/electric/humbuckers/501005-110.pdf
     
  2. foxtrot

    foxtrot Senior Member

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    As far as I can see (not an expert) you should be able to wire 50s without a problem with your 4 conductor pickups.

    Just wire it up like that SD picture you posted, except get rid of the wire connecting the bottom (left side in that picture) lugs of the vol and tone pots and switch the caps to the middle to bottom lug on the tone pots and connect them to the middle lug on the volume pots.

    In other words, just treat the black wire as the hot wire from the pickups just like you would for 2 conductor 50s wiring. Then, ground the bare & green wires and solder together and tape the red and white wires like that picture shows.

    That PDF link from SD is the same as the picture you posted, isn't it?

    That's actually the wiring scheme I use, on my Studio Deluxe with 4 conductor pickups and 2 push pulls (came with that wiring scheme actually) and on my Traditional plus with 2 conductor pickups. Only difference is I ground the caps to the back of the volume pots instead of the tone pots (which makes no difference).
     
  3. hbucker

    hbucker Senior Member

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    Tie off the two extra leads (as instructed) on the p.u. and it becomes a 2-wire pickup.

    You don't have the authentic grounding screen around the wire, but that's not going to change your sound, IMO.
     
  4. GitFiddle

    GitFiddle Premium Member

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    I rewired my 89 MIK Epi LP with a Jonesy's 50s harness and the exact same pickups you are using. Mine also came with 4-wire leads. I wired mine up just like the diagram you posted and everything works like a boss. Never dreamed my old Epi could sound so good. :thumb:

    Just like Hbucker said, you just wrap off the red and white wires and tuck them away out of sight. You can still use them in the future if you are so inclined to do coil-tapping etc.

    Before:
    [​IMG]

    After (looks a little messy but works great):
    [​IMG]


    Good luck and welcome to MLP. :thumb:
     
  5. matt@msscguitar

    matt@msscguitar Premium Member MLP Vendor V.I.P. Member

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    The SD diagrams don't depict 50's wiring. Here's what you want:

    [​IMG]
     
  6. fb009

    fb009 Junior Member

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    your one is right but it depicts Single Humbucker. what i meant was about 4 conductor Humbucker wiring, isn't it? correct me if im wrong. :)
     
  7. GitFiddle

    GitFiddle Premium Member

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    fb009,

    I think what he means is that your diagram for a 4-conductor pickup, is depicted as standard or "modern" wiring and not the 50s wiring. The only difference between standard and 50s wiring is the way the tone caps are hooked up.

    A single wire humbucker is actually two conductors. The inside black wire is the hot lead and the outside shielding is the ground lead.

    With a four-wire humbucker, you simply modify the wires, so it is the same as a two conductor pickup. The red and white wires are connected together to cancel each other. The green and bare wire are combined as your ground and your black wire is still the hot wire.

    The difference that makes it 50s wiring is that your tone caps are connected to the middle lug of the volume pots and the left lug of the tone pots. In these diagrams, the red hot lead would be the black hot lead on the SDs, and the shielding (soldered to the pot casing) would be your green and bare wires combined.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  8. fb009

    fb009 Junior Member

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    by "shielding" you mean soldering green and bare wire together on the back of the pots, does it also called grounding ?
     
  9. FFXIhealer

    FFXIhealer Senior Member

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    Ok, everybody, take a moment to read this post carefully.

    '50s wiring DOES NOT REQUIRE YOU TO CHANGE THE TONE POT'S WIRING.

    I'll say it again, this time for those of you who don't believe me. YOU DON'T NEED TO CHANGE THE LUGS ON THE TONE POT TO DO '50s WIRING.

    LEAVE the cap on the center lug and bend the right lug back to ground. Just don't mess with it.

    The difference between Modern and '50s Wiring is that you connect the capacitor NOT to the pickup lug (bottom) on the volume pot, but to the switch lug (middle). That's the ONLY CHANGE YOU NEED TO MAKE.

    '50s Wiring and Modern Wiring differ not in how the Tone pot is wired up, BUT IN HOW THE VOLUME POT IS WIRED UP.

    When someone's asking you for help on an EXISTING WIRING SETUP, talking about changing it from modern to '50s, quit telling them to do soldering steps that make absolutely no difference. You're making them do extra work they don't need to do...steps with a hot soldering iron...steps that could lead to damaging wires or components if they're not super-duper careful.

    Again, STOP TELLING PEOPLE TO DO STUFF THEY DON'T NEED TO DO.

    You guys put so much faith in wiring diagrams on the internet, but have you even ONCE looked at it from an electrical/mechanical standpoint to see if doing it will make ANY lick of difference?


    Now, with that being said, there IS a tonal difference between having the tone pot BEFORE the capacitor (the cap goes to ground and you have a separate wire going to the volume pot) VS having the tone pot AFTER the capacitor (as in most Gibson Les Pauls, SGs, etc.). If THAT is the case, then you have to decide whether that change is something you want to do and whether you like the way your tone pots operate like that.

    Here's why: We all know that pots don't cut/block all frequencies equally. If they did, we wouldn't have things like "Treble bleeds" on volume pots and such. So the resistance of the pot acts like its own frequency filter. This is the same thing as the Capacitor acting like a frequency filter.

    When the Tone pot is at 10, it has the full 500K or whatever resistance in series with the capacitor. As you turn it down, that resistance drops eventually to 0, allowing the signal to ground. The Capacitor allows the treble frequencies to pass through to ground (silencing them), but prevents the bass frequencies. That's why the tone pot works the way it does.

    So if those two components are in series, do you want the capacitor filtering your frequencies before the Tone pot's resistance does, or do you want the capacitor to filter your frequencies AFTER the tone pot's resistance does?

    Some people will again claim that this is 6-and-1/2-dozen of the other, but then some people claim they can hear the difference in pot values, the difference between this pickup and that pickup, etc. Whatever works for you...

    The whole thing about Series wiring VS Parallel wiring, electrically, is the difference between Modern wiring and '50s Wiring.
    [​IMG]

    Look at the diagram. I've "redrawn" the whole guitar wiring diagram in a standard electrician's wiring diagram.

    If you look at the right pictures, you can see the BIG difference between Modern and '50s Wiring. But the tone pot wiring, strangely enough, looks virtually identical, even though the in/out wires have been reversed (like in most '50s diagrams). Why is that? Because electrically, they're both operating EXACTLY THE SAME. You have the exact same resistance either way when the dial is turned to the same point. It makes NO DIFFERENCE if you put the cap in the middle and the ground on the end than if you put the CAP in the middle and the Ground on the end.

    Have I beaten this horse to death yet?
     
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  10. GitFiddle

    GitFiddle Premium Member

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    I have four LPs wired just like the 50s style diagram I posted. I assume they are wired correctly since I bought them as pre-wired 50s harnesses and simply added the pickup and switch connections. All four work and sound fantastic.

    You better wire it the way FFX said, or we both may get a whoopin'. :cool:

    :laugh2: :laugh2: :laugh2:

    Thanks for the clarification FFX. :thumb:

    Yes, I meant the green and bare wire (on the SDs) soldered to the same location, should be the equivalent of the outer metal woven shielding wire on a two-conductor pickup.
     
  11. matt@msscguitar

    matt@msscguitar Premium Member MLP Vendor V.I.P. Member

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    Everyone is an expert I suppose...
     
  12. matt@msscguitar

    matt@msscguitar Premium Member MLP Vendor V.I.P. Member

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    It doesn't matter if you use single or 4 conductor wiring. The way the pots and caps are wired is what determines 50's versus Modern style. I posted 50's style.
     
  13. darth Nihilus

    darth Nihilus Senior Member

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    ***Moved post***
     

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