Need help with Bart wiring...please... Someone must be able to do this

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by SMG, Oct 24, 2006.

  1. SMG

    SMG Supporting Member

    Apr 17, 2000
    metro Detroit
    I have a question regarding the installation of a Bartolini HR-5.4 harness. I have an custom bass (purchased used) that has a fairly cool pickup set up, one P (in middle position) and two J’s (next to each other by the bridge), all Bartolini’s. The bass has what may have been the forerunner to the current HR-5.2, with an extra blend pot between the two J pickups (the main blend is between the P and the J’s) and two added three way mini-switches. There are also some 10 or 12 capacitors added in various places throughout the whole system. The system sounds OK, but not great…quite hollow, very bright, without any of the controls doing much.

    I want to replace this existing system with a new Bartolini HR-5.4 harness, but I want to make use of the last mini-switch that is already in the bass (or actually a new mini-switch in the same hole…in other words, I don’t want to leave the hole without use.) Can anyone help with one or more of the following:

    1. Can I use a mini-switch to control the passive/active switch? If so, how would I wire this?

    2. Can I use a second mini-switch to add further tone possibilities by adding a capacitor and running it off of one of the existing tone knobs? If so, how would one recommend wiring this?

    3. Can I use a second mini-switch to add further tone possibilities by adding a capacitor and running it off of the tone mini switch on the HR-5.4? If so, how would one recommend wiring this?

    Attached are pics of the front setup and the guts of the instrument as they are now. Please, someone, give me some help on this...
  2. luknfur


    Jan 14, 2004

    First who ever did that work knew what they were doing.

    Second - do you even know what all the controls actually do? Looks like it may have a push/pull pot which implies a possible active/passive circuit already. Both switches are wired so they're supposed to be doing something.

    Third - you go jacking with that bass and you're asking for a world of headaches. Too many reasons to list.
  3. dooft11


    Dec 30, 2003
    i will think those cap are for mid freq select, check out the orignial diagram from bart site first i will suggest. I think point one is confirmed, while point 2 and 3, i think a more common approach on preamp wiring will be one master tone which place right after all the pup being blended and then go into the active pre. lets call that post blending circuit, everything related how all your pup wired together or whatever grouping option shall be another section, by seperating them when you plan will be much more 2 cents
  4. SMG

    SMG Supporting Member

    Apr 17, 2000
    metro Detroit
    The controls are as follows... Master Vol, Blend between P and J's, Blend between J's, Bass, Mid, Treble, and the switches cut the bass gain by varying degress and treble gain by varying degrees. All in all, the thing doesn't sound very good, not at all what you would expect from Bart pickups and pre. I did speak to the luthier who build the bass and he wasn't very nice...demanding to know how I tracked him down (even though he has a bit of a reputation), stated that he wasn't building basses any more, and said that he was doing a lot of experimenting when wiring instruments during the period that the bass in question was built.

    I do not plan on using the existing preamp, but installing a new Bart HR-5.4, and I want to make use of the extra mini-switch.

    There must be some techies out there that can help with this...

    Steve aka SMG
  5. The Penguin

    The Penguin duplicate account violation Inactive

    Jun 21, 2006
    I'm not pelagic
    If I was looking for a use for an extra switch I'd consider doing a series/parallel between the 2 J's. This will over ride the JJ pan when activated but will give you a very fat bridge humbucker. There are tons of threads about doing this on a J bass so a search will give you some schematics.
  6. luknfur


    Jan 14, 2004
    Ok, all that flows. I thought you were wanting to modify the existing. Jerking the hole thing for a replacement is a different matter.

    If Bart doesn't have a by-pass switch on any of their diagrams you can probably figure it out by pulling a by-pass from any diagram, comparing them to the Bart diagrams, and plugging it in (what I call cut and paste).

    You still may be in for some headaches. Skimming through Dimento's Trouble-shooting Guide (and Bass Mod Guide link within it) may save you one or two. In fact, I plugged your link into the Mod Guide to illustrate a point.

    Also something interesting in terms of plugging a switch hole is the phase/blend control - FAQ Dimento. Actually an extension of what this dude was doing with the J's. Definitely an improvement over just blending them to me, although that's ok too.
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