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Wiring a Thunderbird

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by Matt Seebach, Dec 7, 2017.

  1. Matt Seebach

    Matt Seebach

    Oct 22, 2017
    Hey! I'm new here. Full disclosure, I REALLY suck at wiring... Ha

    I'm modding the crap out of an Epiphone Goth Thunderbird. I got a used pair of Gibson pickups out of a 2013 Thunderbird and there's no wiring diagram. I'm having a hard time finding a proper one online so I figured I'd ask here.

    They're the type with metal wrapping with black cloth underneath and I think a single lead? How would I go upon wiring these in? I'm thinking the metal wrap gets soldered to the Volume pot as the ground and from there I'm not sure which lug to solder to. I've seen various diagrams where the hot goes to any of the 3 and none specify if the pot is upside down or not.

    Can anyone give me a hand here? I wanna get better at this and don't want to pay someone to do it for me.
  2. Wire it the same as a Jazz bass:

    Nevermind the bit about Orange Drop, any 47 nF cap will work, as long as it's not one with polarity markers on it.
    Miles_ONeal and Axstar like this.
  3. Axstar

    Axstar SUSPENDED

    Jul 8, 2016
    East of Eden.
    To expand upon the above, the Thunderbird pickups have a shielded hookup wire. Treat the bare metal braid as the black wire in the Jazz Bass wiring scheme above, and the wire inside the black inner insulation as the white wire in the diagram above.

    This is how Gibson guitars are wired up! The hot wires from the pickups are shielded. See:


    The braided insulation for the pickups, and the wires running back to the switch in this Les Paul, are all soldered to the back of the volume pots. It makes reversing the phase on these pickups a bit tricky!
    Miles_ONeal and Killed_by_Death like this.
  4. Matt Seebach

    Matt Seebach

    Oct 22, 2017
    Awesome. Thanks guys!
    Axstar and Killed_by_Death like this.

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