Nordy Quad Coil MM 5.4 wiring, using a 4 way switch?

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by rojo412, Oct 4, 2016.

  1. rojo412

    rojo412 Sit down, Danny... Supporting Member

    Feb 26, 2000
    Cleveland, OH.
    10/5 EDIT: I'm trying to figure out how to wire this to a 4 way switch, so that position 1 (closest to bridge) is Both Parallel, 2 is south coils, 3 is north coils, 4 is series

    For a little while, I've been thinking about changing up the pickup in my SR5 and the Nordy MM 5.4 seems like the ideal candidate. One big gripe I have with the stock PU is the noise in single coil mode (it's an 89, so only a dual coil PU, not the tri-coil in later models). And a lot of people really seem to dig the way the pickup improves the bass, so that helps.

    Here's my questions:
    This is a Quad Coil pickup, laid out like a pair of split J style pickups, next to each other...
    Screen Shot 2016-10-04 at 1.29.06 AM.png

    Is there a way to run this pickup so that it could be switched to a "Series-P (or reversed P)-Parallel"?
    If so, what would I need to accomplish that and how would that be wired?

    And let's say I were using the stock 3 way blade selector...
    Could this pickup be wired in such a manner with that switch? If so, how might I do that?
    If not, how does this pickup wire to the stock switch?

    I tried to include some resource pics: Stock Nordy wiring diagram, stock SR5 (but with phantom coil) and a fascinating diagram made by stealth which I though may help, but I think I need help deciphering how it would correlate to the Nordy stock wiring.
    Screen Shot 2016-10-04 at 1.20.17 AM.png Screen Shot 2016-10-04 at 1.35.03 AM.png IMG_0915.PNG

    Any help, VERY much appreciated.

    PS: If I wanted to just swap out the 3 way for a 4 way switch and run options for that, what would I need to do?
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2016
  2. honeyiscool


    Jan 28, 2011
    San Diego, CA
    No because like you said, they're wired as two split coil J bass pickups. There are pickups that let you do this, like Bartolini quad coils.

    But there's no reason to despair. Even without the split, they're going to offer you great tone, and each half is still a split coil pickup, they just don't have the geometric split that a P has. In fact, I think forward vs. rear will probably give you clearer tonal differences anyway.

    You can think of it like a two-pickup bass at this point, with each half of the humbucker becoming its own pickup. So it looks like one side goes from Red to Green, the other side goes from Black to White in that order.

    So think of it like this. Black is the neck +. White is the neck -. Red is the bridge +. Green is the bridge -. And now use any of the useful diagrams for a Telecaster 4-way switch:

    Rothstein Guitars • Serious Tone for the Serious Player
    rojo412 likes this.
  3. rojo412

    rojo412 Sit down, Danny... Supporting Member

    Feb 26, 2000
    Cleveland, OH.
    Cool, thanks for the heads up on that. I appreciate it!

    I actually typed out the entire thing, then last second of it (and late last night), I remembered that a 4 way switch can be wired up like 2 pickups. And that wouldn't leave me with an empty slot.

    If I can figure out how to wire it (back to front): Parallel - Series - South coil - North coil... I'm golden!
  4. honeyiscool


    Jan 28, 2011
    San Diego, CA
    That's very doable, you just have to make translate the switch positions from the standard Series/Neck/Parallel/Bridge to your preferred way. With a little bit of sitting down with pen and paper, you'll have it.
  5. rojo412

    rojo412 Sit down, Danny... Supporting Member

    Feb 26, 2000
    Cleveland, OH.
    Okay, so I'm completely diving into this with pen and paper, but am not having any luck.
    (I swear I needed Ritalin as a kid, this stuff befuddles me so quickly...)

    According to the interwebs, the typical 4 way switch connects/works like this:
    Screen Shot 2016-10-05 at 1.50.20 AM.png
    In a perfect world, here's the settings I'd want on this bass:
    1) Both Parallel
    2) Both Series
    3) South coil
    4) North coil


    Do I connect B0 as the positive output and A0 as the negative?
    Does the green wire from the pickup actually get connected to the switch? It's always a ground.
    (It got really late again... crap!)
  6. rojo412

    rojo412 Sit down, Danny... Supporting Member

    Feb 26, 2000
    Cleveland, OH.
    So this diagram is about as close as I can get to what I want, with the exception of I want positions 1 and 2 reversed:
    Screen Shot 2016-10-05 at 11.44.30 AM.png
    3 and 4 are correct.

    So what would I need to change to make position 2 "Bridge (s) only" and position 1 "Both Parallel"?
    I know I'd have to move a jumper (or lead?) wire or 2, but not sure where.
  7. rojo412

    rojo412 Sit down, Danny... Supporting Member

    Feb 26, 2000
    Cleveland, OH.
    Okay, I give up... it's driving me nuts. And I'm sure the solution is going to be a head-smacker, but I just can't seem to wrap my mind around it.

    How would I wire a 4 way to this configuration for:
    Parallel - Bridge - Neck - Series?

    Any help is very much appreciated.
  8. brianmharrison


    Oct 11, 2007
    I'm wondering the same so interested to see if you figure it out. I'm building a p + mm and wanted the same configuration for the mm pickup. I'm using the Smb4d pickup
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