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Wiring advice- 2 single coil pickups

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by mrufino1, Apr 11, 2010.

  1. mrufino1

    mrufino1 Supporting Member

    Aug 2, 2005
    Nutley, NJ
    I bought the Helms 33" scale 5 string on TB a few weeks ago, which was wired like a standard jazz bass. I hate dual volume controls, so I rewired it with the pickups in series, one volume, one tone, one knob that did nothing. However, the output jack was on its way out and yesterday was out- not a fun gig trying to not move the cable during a 4 hour wedding!
    So when I got home from my gig (nothing like soldering at 2:30am when you have a 7:30am church call....), I pulled out the disconnected pot and put a jack in that hole because I did not have a barrel jack here, just the kind that would go on a P-Bass pickguard. So it works fine, but the tone pot is kind of crackly anyway, so I think all new internals are on tap.

    So, I have read a million different things on here, just want to clarify based on my situation. I favor a motown-ish bass sound, I don't dig the modern roundwound type tone- the bass is strung with flats and I use a sansamp RBI into a gk400rb and a gk 115 cab. So, what I would like to do, I think, is volume, series/ parallel switch, and tone knob, with a .047 cap. Maybe I should go a little darker on the cap. However, I don't play with the knobs on my bass too much while playing. I was then thinking maybe instead of a tone knob getting a dpdt on/on/on switch and putting a bypass and 2 other caps, kind of a varitone-ish idea though not really a varitone.
    So quick summary-
    volume, series parallel switch, tone or
    volume, series parallel, tone switch with no cap and 2 other values or
    kill switch, series parallel switch, tone switch.

    I may want a volume swell sometimes, so I think a volume knob would be good.

    Now, after all that- the real question. I went on basspartsresource, and selected

    Item Options Quantity Remove Amount
    Item # EP 0081-003 $9.79
    Item # EP-0085-000 $9.38
    Item # EP 0151-000 $7.99
    Item # CAP-OD47 $1.99

    I don't know what cap is in there now, but it looks like a green chiclet. I have heard the orange drops are good, and I can deal with $2, so that's not an issue.
    If I do a tone knob, do I want 250k audio taper? I want a darker sound- the bass is mid heavy so if 250k keeps it darker that's cool, but do I want audio taper or linear for the tone? I think audio from the reading I did, but there's just as many opinions either way. Or maybe I should go for the "no load" tone pot.

    Sorry for the long post, I don't know any other way!
  2. GlennW


    Sep 6, 2006
    That switch doesn't work like that. Think of it as a LP 3-way pickup switch where the outside positions are different pickups and the middle position is both.

    If you want "no cap" as an option it'll have to be one of the outside positions, and that means the middle (both) position will be the same as the other outside position (with the cap).

    If you like a bassier (non-modern) tone I'd suggest one outside cap value be about .047, the other .08 (.047 + .033), and the middle (on the switch) would be .127. You might like .047 and .069 on the outsides. It's worth experimenting with.

    Mouser's a good place for caps. The 200v ones are fine. I like the 225P series (top right of the page on the link).

  3. mrufino1

    mrufino1 Supporting Member

    Aug 2, 2005
    Nutley, NJ
    Cool, thanks for that advice! I'm not totally set on what to do yet and those are some good thoughts.

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