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Pot Switching: soldering question/tone capacitor question

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  • Pot Switching: soldering question/tone capacitor question

    I have a JB/Jazz combo and recently tried to bridge my 500k volume controls with resistors to simulate the sound of 250k pots. The way I saw it was if I messed it up I'd have to replace the pots anyway, so why not give it a try? I liked the end result, but now I'm getting weird stuff where my neck pickup is way quieter than my bridge pickup. This happens even when I use the middle pickup selection- the volume drops way way down, and it's slightly distorted. I clipped the resistors out and it's still happening, so that's not the issue.

    Could it be that I burned out a volume pot by heating it up too much? I'm a beginning solderer, and sometimes it took me a while to get that stuff to melt... I think that I 'tinned' the tip properly and the solder was nice and shiny when I got done, so I don't think it's the job itself, but I set the iron at the 15W setting so maybe I was holding it too long on the component and should have used the higher setting. I'm just not sure what else could be causing this, so if anyone has any recommendations please bring 'em on.

    Also, what's the deal with caps to the tone? I'm switching to 250k volumes to reduce the high end, but I'd like to retain as much of the remaining high-end as possible. What capacitor values should I use?

    Carvin SC90 (Jazz neck, CC bridge)
    Fender Aerodyne Telecaster (stock pups: tele bridge and p-90 neck)
    Ampeg Reverberocket combo
    (note: these songs were not recorded using the gear mentioned above...)

  • #2
    Re: Pot Switching: soldering question/tone capacitor question

    30-40 watts is a better power range for soldering guitar components.

    You might have a bad component or it could just be a bad solder joint. An ohm meter will be the quickest way to find out for sure. The tone pot cap value won't really impact your top end loss but it will determine how much top end you lose as you roll the tone pot down. I use .02 mf caps in all my guitars.

    Try shunting the 2 non-grounded volume pot terminals with a .001 mf cap to retain your top end.

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