The Squier Mini Precision Bass Club

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by sabre79, Jan 22, 2020.


  1. BadMonk

    BadMonk Enjoy The Ride

    Feb 25, 2006
    Whitehall, PA
    Bought a set of used Fender '63 pickups with the intention of putting them into the Mini P. Wiring and soldering on a P is simple, straightforward. Or so I thought until I opened up the Mini. Now I'm wondering what I'm even looking at. What's with all the jumper connections and two wires coming out of one. Every leg on each pot is occupied one volume and one tone knob? I'm new to bass but this looks wrong. Add mini pots (I think) to the equation ... I put away the soldering iron. Dang it!
    20211107_110154.jpg
     
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  2. andare

    andare

    Oct 4, 2016
    Krakow
    My Bronco was the same (I guess my Mini too, never opened it up).
    They spliced the wires and made a mess of the ground connections.
    I would remove the stock pickups and electronics and put them in a bag in case you need them one day then replace everything.
    Buy two 16mm A250k Alpha pots, a 47/68/100nf (47 is modern, 100 is vintage, 68 in between) poly cap (greenie or orange drop) and a Switchcraft jack. Wire it up and play!
     
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  3. BadMonk

    BadMonk Enjoy The Ride

    Feb 25, 2006
    Whitehall, PA
    Thanks andare for your response, including the parts list. I think that's a great suggestion. I'm no luthier but I've rebuilt several basket case motorcycles and can solder well enough to make this solidly work. I'll look around online for those parts.
     
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  4. DavesnothereCA

    DavesnothereCA

    Aug 21, 2017
    Canada
    ~
    Ah, so this bridge may qualify as a catalyst/workaround for getting some of the marginally acceptable wrap lengths of certain short scale strings to fit a Mini-P a bit better.

    Good to know ! :thumbsup:
    ~
     
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2021
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  5. Trevor Driscoll

    Trevor Driscoll

    Oct 5, 2021
    I got rid of the existing wiring harness and made my own as well... wasn't bad at all following a schematic from Six String Supplies.
     
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  6. BadMonk

    BadMonk Enjoy The Ride

    Feb 25, 2006
    Whitehall, PA
    Thank you...good to know. I'll check them out.
     
  7. andare

    andare

    Oct 4, 2016
    Krakow
    Just wanted to add: do not buy a ready made wiring harness, IMO they are all $50 scams.

    Alpha pots are cheap but they are used in every effects pedal so no need to buy CTS or Bourns. However if you do those will be a bit more reliable. I don't think the Mini can fit the larger 24mm pots but I know Bourns makes 16mm or 19mm quality pots.

    Also don't get scammed into buying vintage capacitors like paper-in-oil. The only thing that matters is the value. 47nf is the modern standard, 100nf will cut mids and volume like a vintage Fender, 68nf is a nice middle ground if you like tubby tones.

    Get a good tech to install the electronics if you can't do it yourself. It's a 5 minute job.

    I'd do it for free if we lived close.

    Hope that helps!
     
  8. BadMonk

    BadMonk Enjoy The Ride

    Feb 25, 2006
    Whitehall, PA
    Yes, that does help...quite a bit too. It's funny you mention paper-in-oil caps because I just ran into one online. It's the first time I'd seen that so it was on my research list. It sounded iffy anyhow so I'm glad not to bother with it. Some outfits offer pre-wired harnesses with CTS or Bourns pots. Kind of expensive but it's cost of labor, I guess. I have a decent soldering iron with temp control so at least I'm good there.
     
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  9. DavesnothereCA

    DavesnothereCA

    Aug 21, 2017
    Canada
    ~
    Completely correct !

    Actually, the Sprague 'Orange Drop' capacitors, while a reliable choice, are one of many brands which are made in the same manner, where the active internals of the capacitor get dipped into a bath of synthetic coating, prob'ly some sort of epoxy, which seals out any moisture and dirt after it dries and sets.

    Early paper roll caps, which were common in all electronics of the era - including instrument amps, radios, and TVs - were dipped into wax for the same reasons, but the heat of the vacuum tube electronics would eventually melt the wax, and so would expose the insides of the caps somewhat, causing them to go off value, and/or to short out due to compromised voltage ratings, when moisture was introduced.

    And BTW, the dielectric layer of the modern dipped 'paper' caps is now Mylar or some other synthetic material, which, even if moisture was present and some got in, would not absorb it like paper would do.

    Ceramic disc caps are also equally as reliable as modern dipped 'paper' caps.

    Bottom line is that modern caps are more reliable and consistent, and vintage caps are only for enthusiasts' collections.

    Electrolytic capacitors however, are a different story, for another post.
    ~
     
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2021
  10. BadMonk

    BadMonk Enjoy The Ride

    Feb 25, 2006
    Whitehall, PA
    I did not know that...interesting. Modern cap it is.
     
  11. DavesnothereCA

    DavesnothereCA

    Aug 21, 2017
    Canada
    ~
    Bear in mind that the term 'modern' began a long time ago, for capacitors which are made from a rolled up series of layers of material.

    I have in my parts boxes some Sprague 'Orange Drop' [and their competitors'] capacitors, which were made [and acquired by me] during the 1960s, and at the time, those were a significant step forward in the development of caps.

    Ceramic disc caps also came into play at around that time.
    ~
     
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2021
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  12. Frank Vozak

    Frank Vozak Supporting Member

    Mar 27, 2020
    Oak Park, IL
    No commercial affiliation
    pcake---did i just see you on the Glarry site too
     
  13. Frank Vozak

    Frank Vozak Supporting Member

    Mar 27, 2020
    Oak Park, IL
    No commercial affiliation
    I agree I would like to get tape wounds for mini. For yrs was a happy guy on a Gibson EB-O with Guild nylon tape strings.
     
  14. Bassamatic

    Bassamatic keepin' the beat since the 60's

    The use SHIELDED cables! That is amazing for a budget bass. They have a center conductor and a shield, so 2 connections per wire.

    The ONLY wires you need to worry about are the 2 coming from the pickup. Leave all the others alone and you will be fine.

    PLEASE don't be concerned about the cap. In this application, the ALL SOUND THE SAME! Different types of caps can be more accurate or stable, but there is no sonic difference. the Orange drops were just a cheap cap available in the early days which is why they were used. No other special reason.
     
  15. pcake

    pcake Supporting Member

    Sep 20, 2011
    Los Angeleez
    you mean the glarry club thread? yes, you did. and i'm on the squier club, the mikro club, the mustang/brono club, too :)
     
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  16. DavesnothereCA

    DavesnothereCA

    Aug 21, 2017
    Canada
    ~
    Here's what respected author Craig Anderton has to say about capacitors, including the Sprague Orange Drop.

    His take shares some of what you and I each said about them, but not all of our respective points.

    It's a short read, and interesting.

    https://www.mouser.ca/applications/audio-gibson-orange-drops/

    The bottom line is that genuine Orange Drop capacitors are a more consistent part, for the value which is stamped onto them [some are as tight as within 5% tolerance of the value], and are less affected by temperature and moisture than some of the other modern era capacitors.

    Gibson, for example, still uses them in at least some of their instruments, when there are other less expensive choices available to them as a builder.

    StewMac says this [scroll down on the page] : Orange Drop Caps - StewMac

    Here is a link to where L&M offers them, and they go as far as to suggest that there also are fake Orange Drop caps being offered by by some other retailers - look-alikes - there is no comment on how to recognize one.

    WD Music - Sprague Orange Drop Tone Capacitor .047 uF

    More from Google : sprague orange drop capacitor - Google Search
    ~
     
    Last edited: Nov 10, 2021
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  17. Bassamatic

    Bassamatic keepin' the beat since the 60's

    Most of the little green mylar caps are just as stable. the worst are the cheap ceramic discs caps used in 99% of guitars - they can vary 20% or more easily, but can you even hear that? It takes an enormous change in value to move the rolloff point enough to hear, and it only changes the frequency, not the sound quality. Again - the cap type really makes no difference to your sound.

    When we were building broadcast and studio electronics we evaluated every type of cap for sound quality and found no difference. The caps we chose were for correct value and temperature stability.
     
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  18. DavesnothereCA

    DavesnothereCA

    Aug 21, 2017
    Canada
    ~
    Given that I hardly ever use a typical tone control of an instrument [run wide open - in fact my '74 Franken-Ric has not even HAD one since 1985 or prior], instead using pickup selection and playing style/position to get my tonal variations, I cannot say that I have done any A/B caps comparisons using my own basses.

    But instinctively, and from electronics experience which predates my playing era, I completely agree with you about choosing parts which have stability and close tolerance anyway, and since I would do this for other applications, from habit I'd also do it if I was choosing parts for a guitar.

    And given how little difference in manufacturing cost there is for mass production builders who buy their parts by the cargo container, if it was ME in the builders' shoes, I would opt for the better quality more precise parts [caps, pots, etc], as the decision would not influence very much the final cost of building the instruments.

    Much like taking a basic multivitamin, using better grade parts might help, and certainly cannot hurt.
    ~
     
    Last edited: Nov 10, 2021
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  19. Bassamatic

    Bassamatic keepin' the beat since the 60's

    We used 1% stacked polycarbonate film caps in sensitive filters where they had to be matched. They are also very temperature stable. In coupling and RF roll-off filters we could use low end mylars and even ceramics. For this application, you just can't hear a difference until one value is hugely different from another. I have a cap substitution box I used to find the "best" cap value and found that it had to be 50% difference to be easily heard. Not a concern for the ceramics and mylars that we use.
     
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  20. DavesnothereCA

    DavesnothereCA

    Aug 21, 2017
    Canada
    ~
    So you are saying that you get around ? :D

    I was unaware of some of those clubs.

    By Mustang/Bronco, you mean the club named after just the Mustang ?

    And there is a general club for owners of Squier basses ?

    BTW, I often spend time here, plus in the Mustang club, the Medium Scale bass club, and the Squier Jag SS club.

    Less frequently but regularly in the Hofner Not Just Beatle Bass club, and a few others.
    ~
     
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  21. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

     
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