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Coil Splitting

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by Megavega4, Feb 4, 2016.

  1. Megavega4


    Aug 3, 2005
    I'm taking on an ambitious project. I have a Fender Modern Player 5 string bass that I want to trick out. I'm installing a preamp which is pretty straight forward. However, the bass comes with 2 humbuckers ( which look like 2 Jazz Bass pickups joined together.) What I want to accomplish is to be able to get 3 sounds from each pickup (inner coil, outer coil and both coils full). Obviously I need 2 3 way switches (on, on, on) but I'm not sure of the exact wiring. I looked at a diagram of the Roscoe Beck Bass because it has similar pickups and 2 3 way switches, but the switching was outer coil, HB series and HB parallel. Can anyone advise me on how to wire it so I can achieve my goal?

    Thanks !!
  2. Hopkins

    Hopkins Supporting Member Commercial User

    Nov 17, 2010
    Houston Tx
    Owner/Builder @Hopkins Guitars
    You would gain alot more out of them by going series/parallel/split. Split them so the active coil from the bridge pickup is RWRP from the neck, I would go south coil active on the bridge and north on the neck.

    Whatever you choose should be covered by this
    SeayBass, rufus.K and PDX Rich like this.
  3. Will_White


    Jul 1, 2011
    Salem, OR
    You need two on/OFF/on for north/series/south, Here's the diagram,
    But I would do Series/split/parallel.
  4. walterw

    walterw Supportive Fender Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 20, 2009
    honestly, the difference between "inner coil" and "outer coil" from each pickup will be pretty minimal since they're so close together.

    series/parallel/single will create more distinctly different sounds; the trick is arranging the circuit so that when both pickups are split to single coil the result is hum-canceling when paired together.
    mech and Will_White like this.
  5. Hopkins

    Hopkins Supporting Member Commercial User

    Nov 17, 2010
    Houston Tx
    Owner/Builder @Hopkins Guitars
    This diagram confuses me, because I am pretty sure it is known to work. But I cannot figure out how the North coil gets connected to ground when the north coil is selected. Or how the South coil signal gets out when the south coil is selected.
  6. The north coil's negative phase lead is connected to the south coil's positive phase lead. So when you shunt that connection to ground, the north coil's negative phase lead goes to ground, and the south coil is defeated. Likewise, when you shunt the connection to the output, the south coil's positive phase lead goes to the output, and the north coil is defeated. In the center, there are no connections being made, so the pickups are simply in series.
    Will_White likes this.
  7. I've had my pickups out to analyze them on my Blacktop, and they're pretty similar to the MP.
    If you use the nut-most coil on the neck/mid pickup & the bridge-most coil on the bridge pickup, you would get what these gentlemen are referring to as reverse wound reverse polarity.

    Your other option would be the two inside coils, but I think the extra distance between the outer coils would be preferred.
  8. Hopkins

    Hopkins Supporting Member Commercial User

    Nov 17, 2010
    Houston Tx
    Owner/Builder @Hopkins Guitars
    Thanks, makes perfect sense now, I just wasn't seeing it before

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