3 pickup wiring

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by clef360, Nov 25, 2003.

  1. Hi, I'm having trouble deciding how I should wire my 3 pickups, which all behave like jazz pickups, with 2 leads each. I was thinking that I could have a volume knob for each pickup, then run that all through a master volume and tone control, but I don't know how well that would work...any suggestions? I want to be able to adjust the volume without adjusting the balance of the pickups, so just 3 volumes is out. Thanks.
  2. FBB Custom

    FBB Custom TalkBass Pro Commercial User

    Jan 26, 2002
    Owner: FBB Bass Works
    I'd go with either individual kill switches and a master volume or 2 blends and a master volume.

    I've done this setup a couple times and I've used one of each. The blend one had a blend for the bridge & middle and then that signal was blended with the neck pickup. Both worked well.
  3. JMX

    JMX Vorsprung durch Technik

    Sep 4, 2000
    Cologne, Germany
    I like Le Fay's solution for a 3 pickup setup - 6-position rotary switch.
  4. uh...any tips on how either of those would be wired? I know the volume and tone basics, but I haven't familiarized myself with blending yet. Also how would you organize that 6 position switch? neck, neck/middle, middle, middle/bridge, bridge, all? or am I off track here? Thanks for being patient with a newbie like me.
  5. pc


    Apr 4, 2000
    Montreal QC
    This guy has a lot of tips on shieldind and guitar mods. you could use one of those strat schematics...

    Here you can find more stuff...

    Edit: I've never heard it actually, but is a common sense that phase inversion mods sound like crap on bass... Several guitar mods have phase inversion as one of the options, so be aware ;)
  6. Bass Kahuna

    Bass Kahuna

    Dec 3, 2002
    West Lafayette, Indiana
    Luthier, Custom Builder
    What about using a 5-way strat style switch and wiring it up just like a strat?

  7. RobbieK


    Jun 14, 2003
    Before you start drilling the front of the bass for pots and switches etc, I would run the three leads to an XLR or din conector hanging on the end of a short lead out the jack hole, then put three individual volumes in a (metal) test box and play the bass for a few days or even a few weeks. Take it to a few gigs and rehearsals like this. Try it in the studio. You'll find the settings that you like, then you can hard wire them into a rotary switch or choose a setup with blend pots or whatever. You can hard wire your favourite blends onto a rotary switch, too.
  8. SMG

    SMG Supporting Member

    Apr 17, 2000
    metro Detroit
    I built a frankenstein thing with 3 J pickups. I used one volume and one tone knob, along with a strat 5 way switch. Too all of this I put a lead wire from the neck pickup to a push/pull pot on the volume, so whenever I pulled up, that pickup was engaged no mater where the swtich was. This makes for the possibility of more combos then a normal strat switch.