Wiring Roadblock, Volume/Volume/Tone (Split/Split/Phase) (3-way)

MostEd

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I've spent close to about 7 hours today trying to rewire my 3 knob (Volume/Volume/Tone) guitar.

I'm following this SD wiring diagram:
Jwu2nVy.jpg


All but 2 combinations seem to work: (as a side effect, I'm not sure phase works when its in middle position)
3-way on the Neck with the phase pulled up produces no sound on the neck pickup( wether the neck is full or split)

Every other combination aside from the described, seem to work.

I have a weird side effect that my volume knobs do not want to go to 0 either...

Any advice, or suggestions are welcome, because this is driving me nuts already. (I want the bugger to work already)
 

BadPenguin

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First question: are you using Duncans? If not, then you need to use the proper wiring codes.
Second, why the black wire from neck coil tap to green on the phase? Black should go to ground, green doesn't go to ground. The ground comes from the switch.
As to no zero on the volume controls, make sure the first leg of the pot is grounded to the back of the pot. It's easy to think it's connected.
This diagram is closest to what you want. Pay attention to the phase switch. The coil tap switch, same, only you are using 2 of them. Then wire to the vol/tone pots.
2 Humbuckers/3-Way Toggle Switch/1 Volume/Coil Tap & Reverse Phase (guitarelectronics.com)
 

ErictheRed

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Please post pictures of what you actually have. What pickups, how are they currently wired, etc. It's really hard to help otherwise.

As BadPenguin mentioned, different pickup manufacturers use different color wires for the same node. I learned this years ago when I replaced the bridge Gibson humbucker in a Nighthawk with a Seymour Duncan. The wires are all the same colors, but they connect to different parts of the pickup! So we need to know what you have.
 

MostEd

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I feel very dumb for not posting the picture(s), I was very tired last night.

So the pickups are: Seymour Duncan Dimebucker on the bridge, and the neck is a stock Dean pickup, it's got the same colors but according to the only source the Dean pickup has these wires:

"Dean Humbucker Color Codes
Green = Start of adjustable coil
Red = Finish of adjustable coil
Black = Start of stud coil
White = Finish of stud coil
Adjustable coil = South magnetic polarity
Stud coil = North magnetic polarity"


This is slightly different from the SD pickups, and (as a result) the pickup is wired differently. Here's how (ignore the short green wire on the volume, It doesn't go anywhere and I'm gonna take it off):

image0.jpg

And the selector switch:
image1.jpg


EDIT:
That green wire will be useful, I need to solder the wire from the lug to thebottom of the pot. (something I've missed)

EDIT2:

Soldering the green from the slug to the base of the Neck Volume fixed the the volume not going to 0. I re did the same for the volume. Now the guitar can go to 0 volume on both pickups seperately.

Tone Pull setting still produces no neck sound when the pickup is selector is only on the neck pickup.

EDIT3:

I have a feeling my tone knob isn't doing tone
 
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jonesy

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Looks like your 3 way switch may be wired wrong. It appears to be a Switchcraft and the Seymour Duncan diagram shows an Import style toggle switch. The ground and hot out are on opposite side of those switches.

The two lugs you have the green wires soldered to is actually hot out to jack on your switch. The fat lug in the middle of the three is ground. Hope that helps.
 

jonesy

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This is the correct wiring for a Switchcraft 3 way toggle switch and jack.

1614352221398.png
 

ErictheRed

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I haven't looked carefully at your wiring yet, but I would redo a lot of it. It's not a good idea to solder wires directly to each other like that, you're asking for trouble later. If you have to attach a wire to a wire, you could use a solder style crimp and then put heat shrink over the junction for insulation. I would just rewire many of those leads, though.
 

MostEd

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So after some experimentation (before seeing jonesy's reply) I screwed it up so bad, it stopped working. I gutted the whole thing. Decided to simply the circuit by just using a regular tone (no phasing). But to keep the coiltaps.

I wired it according to this diagram:
1614359704161.png

then, just a little while ago I saw jonesy's response and I made the changes, in so far, I have this:

1614359913974.png


resulting in absolutely no sound coming from pickups. And hearing a lot of interference which can be turned off when volume is at 0.

1614360465518.png
 
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ErictheRed

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OK, here is what you need to do. It will only take about 10 minutes up front, but it will save you a bunch of time and headache in the future. I do this for every rewire I do, and I consider myself an expert (avionics technician in the Air Force and electrical engineer for almost 15 years now).

You need to draw out your own diagram that reflects your own components. TRUST ME! I wouldn't mind helping you with this, but I'm pretty swamped with work. You need to translate that Seymour Duncan diagram into something reflective of what you actually have (correct color codes, etc). Then you can refer back to it easily.

Here's an example of what I'm talking about, it's the wiring diagram I made for myself when I rewired my HH guitar last week (put Bare Knuckle Holydiver bridge and Emerald Neck in). It was made just for myself to refer to or I would have done a nicer job, but you get the idea. It has a single Volume and single Tone, 3-way selector switch, push/pull coil split, and 50's wiring.

Create your own wiring diagram that you think is correct, and upload it. We'll check it for correctness and then you can go about actually installing the wiring. It would be best if you put signal names on the wires as well as the colors.

IMG_20210226_094256.jpg
 
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MostEd

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I've taken a step back (this process was driving me nuts with the amount of mistakes I have been making).

I drew a diagram with accordance to my parts, and the SD circuit as the circuit:

1614365939286.png
 

ErictheRed

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Thanks for that. It would help if you actually labeled the signal names at each connection, so that I didn't have to look up the key for each different humbucker. Although it appears that the Seymour Duncan and Dean pickups use the same color codes, if I'm not mistaken.

I'll try to take a closer look at it later; as I said, I'm really swamped with work and childcare (juggling both from home these days). However, I expect to see the Neck South Finish and Bridge North Start at the selector switch (assuming that you want to coil tap the coils of each humbucker closest to the neck), and I'm not sure that I see that, unless I trace through the Volume pots.

In other words, I expect your RED neck signal (the South Finish) brought to the selector switch, and the BLK bridge signal (the North Start) brought to the selector switch. When you select between the Bridge or Neck, it's the RED neck signal or BLK bridge signal that's passed to the output. Make sure that's happening as you've drawn it.

Also, I believe that your WHT and RED wires need to be tied together (soldered to the same terminal on the potentiometer), and I'm not sure if that's happening. At least, in the picture that you posted of your wiring I don't see that.

I might try to draw up a simpler way of wiring this, or take a closer look later today or tomorrow. My wife and I are literally taking turns working from home while the other juggles a 16 month old though, so I'm not making any promises!
 
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MostEd

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Well it cleared up how I have some inconsistencies. My current wiring is non-functional and not correct and I managed to burn the tone pot, but I have another one I can use... >.<

So, take your time, life is a thing that happens. I would love to have some coherent help, although that means I'll have to borrow my friend's guitar for my lesson next week, which does not assume I know everything I'm working with..

But here's a bit of info, (you might already know the SD ones but)
1614371446362.png

and the dean:
1614371479402.png

so yes, the RED and BLK wires correspond to what you've stated.

Unlike you, I failed my electrical engineering course a few years ago, And this is gonna be quite hard for me to intuitively understand this.

I wouldn't mind waiting if you could draw up a simpler diagram. I'd be very thankful.
 

ErictheRed

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One more thing: can you do me a quick favor? I want to make sure that all of these manufacturers are using the same terminology. Do you have a multimeter to measure resistance? Make sure that the maximum amount of resistance is measured between your BLK and GRN wires on each pickup. The terminology is counter intuitive, but you can think of it as one coil starting at the N. Start (BLK wire), going through to the N. Finish (WHT wire), then tied to the S. Finish (RED wire), finally ending at the S. Start (GRN wire). So the full humbucker output is taken between your BLK and GRN wires.
 

MostEd

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Do you have a multimeter to measure resistance?
I would but sadly cannot. I don't have a multimeter, I was actually going to go out to buy one(upon a recommendation of a friend), but there were many protests on the streets yesterday, and I didn't want to get caught in any politically uncomfortable situation (Armenian politics are one hell of a mess), and the shop's closed till Monday. If I did have one I would absolutely do it.
 

ErictheRed

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I just realized that I can't give you a simpler wiring solution if 1) your selector switch is far away from the others (you need extra leads to go through the body to get there), and 2) you want to be able to switch phase.

I was going to suggest that you give me a quick phone call, but now I see that you're in Germany...

You've already spent a long time on this, so I would suggest gutting it and starting from scratch. Let's go step by step, and you can post pictures of your progress along the way. Your earlier pictures are messy and there is a lot of solder on the casing of your pots. I suspect that you're shorting something out there, or have the Tone Phase switching wired incorrectly.
Start by removing all of the wires and cleaning your terminals. Remove the excess solder from the potentiometer casing and terminals if you can, and start fresh. We can go through step by step. The first step after everything has been cleaned would be to connect the grounds on all of the pots and switch, and make sure that the potentiometers are working correctly (you can read the correct sweep on the terminals with a multimeter). Once we know that's all good, we'll start connecting up the pickups.
 

ErictheRed

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I would but sadly cannot. I don't have a multimeter, I was actually going to go out to buy one(upon a recommendation of a friend), but there were many protests on the streets yesterday, and I didn't want to get caught in any politically uncomfortable situation (Armenian politics are one hell of a mess), and the shop's closed till Monday. If I did have one I would absolutely do it.
Oh man, sorry to hear it. Unfortunately this is the kind of job that's impossible to do without a multimeter, unless you get extremely lucky and get everything right the first time with no issues.

Get some solder remover like this:


and start cleaning all of the solder off of everything so that you can start fresh. I know that's a lot of work, but considering that you've already spent 8+ hours on it, I don't think that there's an easier way. Get a multimeter when you can, and finish it up then.
 

jonesy

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Beware with all that copper foil in there if any of the pot lugs are touching it can short out and cause no sound.

And that bulky cloth covered wire is not helping things either, some 22 awg stranded pvc coated wire or vintage braided wire from the switch would be neater and easier to work with.

Chances are by now those cheaper pots are fried from all the soldering and unsoldering. You may want to start with some better quality pots next time around.

Live and learn, and a multimeter is a good idea as someone suggested. It can help you diagnose problems and takes the guess work out of a lot of wiring problems.
 

MostEd

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Surprisingly not yet(Or at least 1 is..) I couldn't let my guitar sit, so I sat down, rewired it according to my diagram. It works. Except one of my Volumes is not working as well as it should (doesn't go to 0 fully, and is gargle mess until about 9.5. I also have a lot of noise becasue I am getting interference from the fact I had to plop my output into my tone becasue the length wasn't long enough.

I hope the volume issue is due to some solder joints being whacky.


You may want to start with some better quality pots next time around.
Yes, I think I will, New wire, new pots and so forth. I made a mistake of accidentally buying stereo pots a well... so go figure, I was a bit of an inexperienced idiot.

And these pots are audio taper, not linear. I think that's wrong too.....

Beware with all that copper foil in there if any of the pot lugs are touching it can short out and cause no sound.
Could be, I kept forgetting to use the "inside' nut for the pots....
 

MostEd

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Small update:
I refuse to give up, as I want to have the utter satisfaction of having learn and done it myself. I'm about to place an order on a new set of pots. This time they're gonna be "mono" and not how I accidentally got these stereo ones. I also got the 22 AWG wire, total of 3 meters in 3 different colors. I think I'll keep the colored wires to the switch. While this makes it way to me in probably about a week and a half, I'll get myself a voltmeter, wick, and some heat shrinking thing for the real deal.
 


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