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Wiring stupidy

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by Phe, Apr 13, 2015.


  1. Phe

    Phe

    May 30, 2005
    Oulu, Finland
    Hey all!

    I have a no-name jazz bass and years ago my dad changed a pot from it. I can't remember which one. Despite all the wiring schemes he couldn't get a sound out of it. Then an engineer tried to fix it. Now the volumes work, but the tone pot acts sort of master volume, except when it's totally off it doesn't cut the sound off completely. It doesn't bother me much, but I would like to know what is wrong. I tried comparing the wiring with pictures and can't see anything wrong. Mind you, I don't know anything about these things.

    Any ideas?
     
  2. Gilmourisgod

    Gilmourisgod

    Jun 23, 2014
    Cape Cod MA
    Post a clear photo of the wiring and one of the tech gurus may spot the problem.
     
  3. JustForSport

    JustForSport

    Nov 17, 2011
    Be sure the vol and tone pots are well grounded- use alligator clip jumpers to jack.
     
    bholder likes this.
  4. bholder

    bholder Affable Sociopath Supporting Member

    Sep 2, 2001
    Vestal, NY
    Received a gift from Sire* (see sig)
    It's really not all that hard - you could always disassemble it, solder joint by solder joint, and then reassmble the parts correctly re: diagrams (that is, ignoring how it's wired now) - may be easier than figuring out what's wrong.

    Does this have a series / parallel switch? Those are really very easy to mess up, and if so, the pots wouldn't work right.
     
  5. bholder

    bholder Affable Sociopath Supporting Member

    Sep 2, 2001
    Vestal, NY
    Received a gift from Sire* (see sig)
    start with the easy stuff first, of course! I went right to the "nuclear option". :roflmao::woot:
     
    iain westland likes this.
  6. JustForSport

    JustForSport

    Nov 17, 2011
    ^^- had something similar happen with a test rig once: a ground had fallen off.
     
  7. khutch

    khutch Praise Harp

    Aug 20, 2011
    suburban Chicago
    A picture would help.

    Until then, back when I was a lad my father had some work done on his car. I was driving it one night and suddenly the accelerator pedal stopped working. I looked down at it and there was a red glow from that area. I was a kid, I ignored the glow (in retrospect probably shouldn't have), jammed some wadded up paper in the throttle linkage to keep the engine at a very fast idle, and nursed the car home. It was a stick so I could keep the engine running pretty fast and still have full breaking control. Turned out the mechanic had failed to re-install the engine's ground strap so the engine was grounded through the throttle cable, which could not take the heat indefinitely! Strange things can happen when your ground is missing.
     
    JustForSport likes this.
  8. Growlmonkee

    Growlmonkee

    Jan 30, 2013
    Florida, U.S.
    If the bass is decent, and you are able to solder, one really easy way out is spend $20 or less, buy 3 CTS pots, and a .047uf cap, get a jazz bass wiring diagram, and re-do it. Of course that won't tell you what's wrong, but, it sure sounds like a wiring problem, and that would put an end to the problem, if it is a wiring problem. With a diagram, (Seymour Duncan has them on his site, a Jazz bass is quite easy to wire up. My idea is skirting around the issue, but, trouble shooting could possibly take longer than worth it, if you are unfamiliar with the setup. A standard Jazz bass normally has 3 pots, volume/volume/tone, if that's what you have, and 20 dollars doesn't bother you, it's a way out, that has a pretty good chance of working, from what you have described.
     
  9. Phe

    Phe

    May 30, 2005
    Oulu, Finland
    I finally got around to this and actually opened the control plate and compared what I was seeing to wiring diagram! The wire that runs from every leg was wired to the wrong leg of the tone pot. That's it. Now it works as it should and sounded great.
     
  10. iain westland

    iain westland first class idiot

    Gotta love dads, good intentions, can do attitude and a refusal to read instructions.....
     
    Will_White, ctmullins and Phe like this.
  11. Phe

    Phe

    May 30, 2005
    Oulu, Finland
    And engineers! I beginning to doubt my friends ability to do his job. I think I haven't seen him do one electrical thing that works, yet he builds robots for living (or something).
     
    iain westland likes this.

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