How to add a tone knob.

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by StartingLineBass, Dec 21, 2002.

  1. StartingLineBass


    Jul 24, 2002

    I am an extreme newbie, not at bass playing but set up. The biggest thing I've done is change strings and adjust action.

    Well I want to add a tone knob to my Fender Mark Hoppus sig. Bass. It's an excellent bass and I love the sound but, I'm about a 97 % percent punk player and I'm am now getting into Jazz and this bass doesn't cut it quite well with Jazz.

    Is there is a website or something that will explain how I can add a tone knob??? Is it going to be exspense? I don't want to spend more the 50.00 if at all possible.

    Thank you for your time
  2. punkfunkfreak


    Dec 16, 2001 sure someone will take on your challenge, not sure if even the best guys here could come up with a solution thats in your pricerange though.

    good luck.
  3. StartingLineBass


    Jul 24, 2002
    If my memory serves, before I bought my bass I was searching the fourms on the MH bass and people were saying that adding a tone knob would not be a problem but they never said anything about how to out one on.
  4. notduane


    Nov 24, 2000
    The wiring itself shouldn't be a problem. You could go with that of a standard P ...


    My concern would be the space (or lack thereof) in the control
    cavity. You might wanna' consider "mini" pots.
    has some nice ones (CP251) for $3.50 a pop. You'd need two of
    those and a cap -- 0.050µf or 0.100µf (~$1.50 for 2).

    If you do it all yourself, the total should be less than $20.

  5. pkr2


    Apr 28, 2000
    coastal N.C.
    You can add a tone control pretty easily if you can solder, follow a simple wiring diagram and have the means to rout a cavity for the control.

    There is a kit available from Stew-Mac that has all the components that you should need. I believe the kit is less than twenty bucks.

    A repair shop probably will charge more than $50.00.

    If you know someone with a well equipped woodworking shop you may be able to just bore a 1" hole in the proper spot with a forstner bit. A forstner bit makes a flat bottom hole.

    The pick gaurd can be drilled with a regular hand drill and bit.

    Do a quick web search under "fender P bass wiring. That should quickly turn up wiring diagrams.

    Should be an interesting project. Keep us posted if you decide to do it.


    OOps, sorry ND. We were posting at the same time. :)
  6. Bazzist


    Dec 7, 2002
    Nova Scotia
    Buy a Dual Concentric Pot off and install and wire it so u have so volume on top and tone on bottom.
  7. notduane


    Nov 24, 2000
    no worries pkr2 :) . Good call on that Forstner bit :D

    I thought about suggesting a dual-concentric to save on routing, etc.
    But the ones I've seen are either 500K/500K or 250K/500K. Most P-
    type diagrams call for two 250K's. A 250K/500K should work for
    volume & tone, resp.
  8. Pheew thankgod you guys are here. hehee I've spent 3 days (without much sleep either) recording drums for my bands new cd and havent been online.

    Thanks for the diagrams and info guys. ;)

    Oh Pkr2.... you're meant to put "do a search".. you've done enough posts.. plus its in your contract. lol!


  9. pkr2


    Apr 28, 2000
    coastal N.C.
    Oh Pkr2.... you're meant to put "do a search".. you've done enough posts..

    I kind of had that one coming, didn't I? :) :)

  10. StartingLineBass


    Jul 24, 2002
    A working station is not a problem, but I am very nervous about taking my bass apart and wiring it and all that stuff.
  11. Nick man

    Nick man

    Apr 7, 2002
    Tampa Bay
    Its not a difficult project, especially if you get the stacked pot. That will eliminate the need to drill a hole in the pickgaurd, or cut into the body.

  12. Its like that when u try anything the first time. Especially with electronics. I still say Have a go. Because its the first time ripping the bass apart (wonderful choice of words here) be methodical. Draw up what you see in the cavity. Just on a scrap piece of paper. Mark all colours, positions etc.

    Its a good back up plan. ;)



    Oh and Pkr2..... YUP :p heehee

    Merry Christmas All.
  13. Is there really any point to adding a tone control to this bass? If you need to change tone while playing that would seem useful but, I presume you're not going to switch between punk and jazz in the middle of a tune are you?

    If "real-time" tone control isn't needed surely your amp will have much better tone control than just bleeding some of your signal to ground through a capacitor in the bass itself.

    I actually went the other direction and completely disconnected the tone control in my Yamaha bass! (Some day I might get around to adding a switchable bypass to the volume control too...)
  14. StartingLineBass


    Jul 24, 2002

    There really isn't much point, but if it's less then 20.00 then it's not much of a hassle. If you are familar with the Mark Hoppus bass you'll already know that its a one tone bass. As my Jazz interest grows I want a deeper sound and the treblely sound of my bass just does not sound right in jazz band so that is my point.
  15. tyson


    Feb 9, 2000
    Dallas, TX
    I agree with spaceman. Who needs the tone control anyway? But if you must have one I think the concentric knob idea sounds great. No routing necessary. If you're not too good at soldering then ask one of your techie friends to do it for you... I'm not sure what capacitor you're gonna need now how you can jam tht into the small cavity.

    As far at the Pot-bypass option check out the "CP 250NL" here:
    where at 10 the thing clicks and "takes the pot out of the circuit entirely." That's cool.