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Thread: ISSUES WITH TONE POT WIRING

  1. #1
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    Default ISSUES WITH TONE POT WIRING

    Over 2 years ago I tried ,out of interest, wiring a tone pot in acordance with a suggested diagram on the Mod Garage..See 50's wiring below. For some reason tone control had no effect whatsoever. The usual checks revealed no obvious connection problems and as I was in a bit of a rush (it was somebody elses axe) I rewired in a the more standard fashion and there was no problem.

    Recently I tried the wiring again with exactly the same result. Am I missing something?

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  2. #2
    Tone Member shadowfire90's Avatar
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    Default Re: ISSUES WITH TONE POT WIRING

    Check for cold solder joints and make sure nothing is touching such as pot contacts as well as the pot over heated which is rare. That diagram suggested does work. I've seen Don Breja (brejatoneworks on youtube) to many others use it.

    I usually use an A500k volume, B500k tone. No need for treble bleeds

    this is an old diagram I modified and it does work for what you'd need. However I'm also linking Don's video as he's very insightful as he goes step by step.
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    this is an older video he did so i suggest bumping the quality up past my usual cheap skate 240p quality

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    Sock Market Trader GuitarStv's Avatar
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    Default Re: ISSUES WITH TONE POT WIRING

    I'm confused by the 60s wiring in the diagram. Isn't that pretty much the same as modern wiring?
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    Bacteriaolgoist GuitarDoc's Avatar
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    Default Re: ISSUES WITH TONE POT WIRING

    Quote Originally Posted by GuitarStv View Post
    I'm confused by the 60s wiring in the diagram. Isn't that pretty much the same as modern wiring?
    Well kinda. It's just that 60s connects to the #3 lug on the tone pot and pure modern connects to the #2 lug. Regardless of what he says in the video, I have never noticed any difference between the two. The main noticeable difference in the various wirings is how the vol pot is wired in one of 4 different combinations...

    Lug #1 connected to input wire and tone pot, lug #2 to output (modern tone, dependent volumes);
    Lug #2 input and tone, lug #1 output (modern tone, independent volumes);
    Lug #1 input, lug #2 tone and output (50s tone, dependent volumes);
    Lug #2 input, lug #1 tone and output (50s tone, independent volumes), my personal favorite.
    Originally Posted by IanBallard
    Rule of thumb... the more pot you have, the better your tone.

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    Bacteriaolgoist GuitarDoc's Avatar
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    Default Re: ISSUES WITH TONE POT WIRING

    Quote Originally Posted by Gstring View Post
    Over 2 years ago I tried ,out of interest, wiring a tone pot in acordance with a suggested diagram on the Mod Garage..See 50's wiring below. For some reason tone control had no effect whatsoever. The usual checks revealed no obvious connection problems and as I was in a bit of a rush (it was somebody elses axe) I rewired in a the more standard fashion and there was no problem.

    Recently I tried the wiring again with exactly the same result. Am I missing something?

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Yes.
    You connected the tone pot lugs incorrectly.

    Look at the diagram closely and keep in mind that you are looking at the backs of the pots and that the tone pot is rotated 180 degrees from the vol pot...this affects which lugs appear to be used. Also keep in mind that lug #1 of the tone pot (the top lug in those diagrams) is never connected to anything (not even ground...especially).
    Originally Posted by IanBallard
    Rule of thumb... the more pot you have, the better your tone.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: ISSUES WITH TONE POT WIRING

    Many thanks for your contribution Guitar Doc but the wiring is exactly as shown. Also pretty sure using the top lug would not cause an issue other than reverse the orientation of the pot. I use the "other " lug when rewiring Lefties without problems.

    Shadowfire, Thanks also for responding. Checked everything again but still mystified . Have reverted to "normal" 50s wiring and all is well. Guitar is a 2 pot using CTS 500k Push pulls which give Artie's coil swap mod and series/parallel on the bridge.

    Will have to experiment more with this tone pot wiring sometime to find out where I am going wrong..

  7. #7
    Mojo's Minions
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    Default Re: ISSUES WITH TONE POT WIRING

    Additionally, the wiring of the pot itself won't shift the way it works (loads the pickup).
    If you were simply to take the modern wiring and move the cap across 1 lug on the vol pot you'd get the effects of 50's.

  8. #8
    Bacteriaolgoist GuitarDoc's Avatar
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    Default Re: ISSUES WITH TONE POT WIRING

    Quote Originally Posted by Gstring View Post
    Many thanks for your contribution Guitar Doc but the wiring is exactly as shown.
    Well, here's the thing. If you indeed wired the pot correctly as you say, and if there is no solder/stray wires shorting out the lugs on the pot, then there can only be one reason for the tone pot not working...the pot is dead/defective/shorted internally/worn out.

    But if the pot is fine (which seems to be the case since it works correctly when you wire it standard/modern wiring), then there can only be one reason you're getting no function from it...your wiring is NOT "exactly as shown".

    But it is a simple thing to check. Take out that pot and put in a new one and wire it 50s as in the diagram. If you get the same results, then you know you are doing something wrong. It most likely is not the pot.

    I'd like to help you solve your problem, but you need to be objective about it.
    Last edited by GuitarDoc; 01-18-2020 at 07:24 AM.
    Originally Posted by IanBallard
    Rule of thumb... the more pot you have, the better your tone.

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