From tj–(at)– Mon Jun 27 22:18:18 CDT 1994
Article: 20146 of alt.guitar
From: tj–(at)– (tim stanley)
Newsgroups: alt.guitar
Subject: Re: Advice on Strat Pickup wiring needed
Date: 27 Jun 94 22:35:42
Organization: U of M
Lines: 118
References: <2unp0f$76--(at)>
In-reply-to: dizo–(at)–’s message of 27 Jun 1994 23:57:03 GMT

In article <2unp0f$76--(at)> dizo–(at)– (Bob Dizon) writes:

Hey there netters,

Howdyho good netter,

I just got a set of single coils from an American Standard and plan
to install them in my Mexican Strat. Anyway, as long as I have the
soldering iron out, why not rewire them differently?

been there…

I’m not looking to incorporate every combination of serial, parallel,
in phase, out of phase, with an array of switches on my pickguard.

Why not? 😉

I would guess that people have found certain configurations that
produce sounds different (and cooler) from what you normally get with
the 5-pos. switch, and are worth an extra switch.

Is there a FAQ where people have tabulated the sounds you get when
a particular configuration is used?

Thanks everyone.


The February ’93 Guitar Player reprints several old rewiring articles.
Pretty good start for your interests.

The Dan Armstrong mod is particularly interesting. You replace the
lever switch with 3 toggle switches. You then get the following
pickup combinations:


neck | middle (| = in parallel with)
neck | bridge

middle | bridge

neck | middle | bridge

neck + middle (+ = in series with)
neck + bridge

middle + bridge

neck + middle + bridge

(neck | middle) + bridge

I have done the Dan Armstrong mod twice – once using:
Neck: Bill Lawrence L250
Middle: Duncan Vintage Strat
Bridge: Dimarzio Super Distortion Humbucker

and then again using standard Squire pickups in neck and
middle and a Dimarzio Super Distortion Single in the bridge.

It is pretty excellent. I also used potentiometers with push-pull
DPDT switches to also add phasing capability. Very flexible and
interesting, indeed. I seem to recall that this mod has 12 positions
of its own, and with phasing, provides 24 different combinations. My
favorite is all three pickups in series, with the bridge pickup out of
phase – a very funky frequency response notch seems to be generated.

BTW – the switches you need are available from either Warmouth or
Stewart-MacDonalds (one of the switches is not not available at
Radio-Snark). And the push-pull pots are available at Stew-Mac, too.
And, if you want to get a new pickguard – check out WD Music Products
formerly of Deer Park, NY. Lots-o-colors, custom no-problem, be
prepared to do some final fitting of edges using your own tools.
Depending on color, custom, and size, $20 — $50.

I would say that the Dan Armstrong mod is trickier to get used to than
the simple/standard 5-position switch. To me, the extra sounds are
worth it; to a working axeman, he should think about it before he
switches ;-). But, it is not *that* hard to remember the 12 switch
positions – they *do* have a logical pattern.

To learn more about re-wiring – check out the Guitar Handbook – there
is a fine section on fundamentals. Check out a book that Warmouth and
Stew-Mac sells called “Build Your Own Electric Guitar” (can’t remember
the author, methinks it is Foley, but it is *not* the one by Melvin
Hiscock). There are quite a few rewiring schematics in there – nearly
all the traidional ones (Strat, Tele, Gibson Les Paul/SG, etc) plus
more. Also, in addition to 1/93 GP magazine article, check out these
old GP articles (sorry, I can’t remember the titles, all I have is
this list): There is also an interesting setup in a 1/89 issue of
guitar player that makes it look like your guitar is still stock, but
allows 13 different combinations.

GP 3/81
8/87 (Dan Armstrong Super-Strat that you sent)
1/89 (Ultimate Strat Switch)

These are available at some library, somewhere on this planet. Some
of them are darn basic. IMHO – the Dan Armstrong mod is the coolest
and most flexible (my personal goal – YourMilageMayVary). Also, IMHO,
if you are inside your guitar hacking about, shield the cavity and the
pickguard using something, I recommend the 3 coats of shielding paint
(also at Stew-Mac).




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