Volume Pot Problem with 50s wiring?

VILLANOVA

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So I wired my les paul with 50s wiring.

500k CTS pots all around, all audio taper

Neck Humbucker is a SD 59 w/.223 cap
Bridge Humbucker is a SD 59 w/Vintage BumbleBee

Everything works fine, but I've noticed that my volume controls do nearly all their lowering from 10 -->about 7 on both pickups. I know it's not the volume pots since they didn't have this problem with the way my guitar was previously wired.

I followed this schematic:
http://www.dominocs.com/Gibson/WiringLibrary/wiring50s.jpg

Is this just a part of the 50s wiring? Did I do something wrong?
 

slowhand0461

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Try Linear taper pots...... For the Volume....They give a smoother roll off
 

VILLANOVA

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Linear? I read that linear taper, unlike audio reach 50% at half-rotation. Whereas audio taper reached 50 % farther than half-rotation, giving them more room to play around with in-between settings.

Wouldn't that make audio a better choice?
 

slowhand0461

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Not trying to be smart.....Maybe jonesy and hillbilly will correct me(hopefully)..
But you said you had Audio pots and they were rolling off too quickly....I think Linears are what is used for volumes...Honestly check with jonesy or hillbilly,they will know for sure...
 

jonesy

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Well I did a quick read here and it sounds like when you turn your volume down that it turns down quickly and is almost off by6-7-ish? That actually sounds like how a Linear pot works. I use all audio taper CTS pots. You can use linear for Tone, but always Audio for Volume. Are you sure the CTS Pots you got are audio? They should be marked on case, or would have been listed as A audio B linear? If you followed that diagram in link, and they are audio taper, then they should roll off smoothly?
 

gmacdonnell

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I'm pretty sure Linear pots will make the problem worse, though from what you've said, it almost sounds like you have linear pots in there now.

Audio tapers are supposed to solve this problem but often times their taper is off as well.

Best suggestion: get some RS Guitar Works Super Pots
- RS Guitarworks Online Store

These are custom-taper pots designed just for guitar volume controls. Many high-end guitars and well-known players use them, and after trying them, me and mayn other players on this board won't use anything else.

They give you very precise control, from 10,9,8, etc, everything makes a predictable and smooth difference.

They're also the best built pots I've ever come across, and I don't think you can find a pot with the same features anywhere else.



If you're in a read hurry, you could give Dimarzio's custom tapered pots a shot. They're also very nicely made, and have a good taper, much better than the usual Audio.
But nothing is as good as an RS Super Pot for volume controls.

BTW, you still would want Audio taper pots for your Tone controls. RS has custom made Audio taper pots for this, and I love these pots also. A much better taper than my stock Gibson pots, and as nicely made as the Super Pots.


Good luck!
 

VILLANOVA

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i'm sure they were audio taper. i didn't have this problem the way my guitar was previously wired, it's quite puzzling.

i'll double-check both volume pots and post what it says on them here exactly.

it's just that I could've sworn they were audio
 

VILLANOVA

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I'm pretty sure Linear pots will make the problem worse, though from what you've said, it almost sounds like you have linear pots in there now.

Audio tapers are supposed to solve this problem but often times their taper is off as well.

Best suggestion: get some RS Guitar Works Super Pots
- RS Guitarworks Online Store

These are custom-taper pots designed just for guitar volume controls. Many high-end guitars and well-known players use them, and after trying them, me and mayn other players on this board won't use anything else.

They give you very precise control, from 10,9,8, etc, everything makes a predictable and smooth difference.

They're also the best built pots I've ever come across, and I don't think you can find a pot with the same features anywhere else.



If you're in a read hurry, you could give Dimarzio's custom tapered pots a shot. They're also very nicely made, and have a good taper, much better than the usual Audio.
But nothing is as good as an RS Super Pot for volume controls.

BTW, you still would want Audio taper pots for your Tone controls. RS has custom made Audio taper pots for this, and I love these pots also. A much better taper than my stock Gibson pots, and as nicely made as the Super Pots.


Good luck!
I've actually known about these (RS Super Pots) for quite a while. I was planning on ordering them soon, after the Vitamin Qs arrived.

I didn't know RS made custom pots for Tone controls also....unless it's simply 4 super pots. Did they make special tone control super pots?
 

slowhand0461

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I knew I'd probably be wrong...I knew one was good for vol and one for tone...it was only a matter of time before the Pro's got this handled...Thanks:applause:
 

hillbilly

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I've actually known about these (RS Super Pots) for quite a while. I was planning on ordering them soon, after the Vitamin Qs arrived.

I didn't know RS made custom pots for Tone controls also....unless it's simply 4 super pots. Did they make special tone control super pots?
The pots that we use as Tone pots are based on the old CentraLab curve (audio) that were used in the 50's Gibson's...they are not your typical, generic "audio" pot that you can buy at the "Online Guitar Parts" website or "BooTeek Guitar Shoppes".

Do not use RS SuperPots as Tone controls---they don't work as Tones.
 

gmacdonnell

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The pots that we use as Tone pots are based on the old CentraLab curve (audio) that were used in the 50's Gibson's...they are not your typical, generic "audio" pot that you can buy at the "Online Guitar Parts" website or "BooTeek Guitar Shoppes".

Do not use RS SuperPots as Tone controls---they don't work as Tones.

And both RS's pots work beautifully. Like I said, I swear by their Super Pots for volume, and have installed them on nearly all my friends guitars and basses.

But I think their tone pots make just as much of a difference.

For years, it was almost impossible to get a new, nicely tapered 500k pot for love or money. Hamer has nice custom pots, and PRS used to, (they probably still do,) but they were hard to find and real pricey. As an alternative, I hoarded every vintage Centralab I could find, and paid a lot for them.

When I found RS Guitar Works, (my spiritual and tonal awakening, if you will :D) I sold most of those Centralabs on Ebay or forums, and folks were competing like mad for them. I had one guy offer me well over $100 for 1 1962 pot:shock:!


I sold the pots off, but told everyone why I was selling them. Personally, I don't see the point in buying a vintage unit, (other than for collecting) if there's a modern piece that's equal, or superior in quality.

In RS's case, the quality is not just a little better, it's a whole lot better.
And the price is really good, too.
 

VILLANOVA

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what's still bothering me is that the volume pots were fine before the wiring

with the 50s wiring, it seems they apparently "turned" into linear pots.
they definitely weren't like this just the other day before i switched wiring...
anyone?
 

jonesy

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what's still bothering me is that the volume pots were fine before the wiring

with the 50s wiring, it seems they apparently "turned" into linear pots.
they definitely weren't like this just the other day before i switched wiring...
anyone?

You could Switch the cap leads from the center lugs on your volume pots the the outside lug that your pu's are wired into. This is Modern wiring, you could see what that does for your volume roll-off?

You could also try installing a volume bleed kit on one of your Volume controls. I have found that many times that will smooth out the taper in a 1 Meg audio pot when they act like yours are.

How is your overall Tone besides the fact that volume roll off abruptly?

Guitar wiring is not an exact science, or as simple as many people think it is and results may vary from guitar to guitar, person to person.

Post up some pics and let's see what you got going bro? :hmm:
 

VILLANOVA

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Pics will be up later

But a took a look inside the control cavity. My two tone controls and my Neck volume all say "500k A CTS." As for bridge volume, I can't quite make it out but I can see "500k 0731 CTS." There's no "A" present like the other three. However, the neck volume, which is definitely an audio taper pot still cuts most of the volume by 7......

:shock::shock::shock::shock::shock::shock::shock:
 

VILLANOVA

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So here are pictures of my control cavity. Please excuse my photography skills. Also, I apologize for it being so hard to make anything out. Basically, the orange cap is connected to the neck pots. The bumblebee is connected to the bridge pots.

I followed this schematic
http://www.dominocs.com/Gibson/Wirin.../wiring50s.jpg

IMG_2784.jpg



IMG_2786.jpg

Bridge Volume Pot


IMG_2788.jpg

Neck Volume Pot


IMG_2790.jpg

Best attempts at a clear cavity shot...

IMG_2784.jpg
 

jonesy

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Ok, as soon as I saw the epi red/blue wires from switch it makes me think it is a problem with the switch wire runs. It looks like you have controls wired properly but epiphone plug and switch wires are not run the same as Gibson so my "GUESS" is that that is what is making your volumes act strange because they are bleeding back to ground. Look at this wiring diagram I am posting and then look at the "Cluster" connected to white plug thingy??
I suggest switch and input jack upgrades on all epi's when I build a wiring harness for them...other than that I don't know what else it might be unless someone else can spot something wrong with the way your volume and tone are wired???
2h_2v_2t_3w.jpg
 

slowhand0461

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Just a though...then I'll shut up......

On the Bridge Vol pot....could some of the stray wires on the braid may be shorting to the lug?????
 

5F6-A

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this forum ( or should I say the people in it ) is great!

BTW, I love the RS "Centralab" pots as used in the Greg Martin kit for both vol and tone in my LP.
 

hillbilly

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No matter who you purchase upgrades from, for God's sake, get rid of the cheap, half-ass, bull-shit, plastic-banana push-on, Lego-Land™ wiring nonsense from that there guitar... :Ohno:
No offense, but damn...those Epi-connectors have got to go... :cheers:
 

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