Goodwood pup wiring question

Discussion in 'Luthier's Guitar & Bass Technical Discussion' started by kikujiro0208, Jan 6, 2005.


  1. kikujiro0208

    kikujiro0208 Member

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    Dear all,

    I have installed a set of Goodwoods in my PRS CE.
    Since the positions 2 and 4 (I believe inner coils parallel and inner coils series) sound a little weak, I just want to crosscheck with you guys whether I did the correct installation.

    This is what I did:
    1) I flipped the magnet in the bridge pup (topside becomes bottom and bottom becomes top).
    2) GW green wire = PRS black wire
    3) GW black wire = PRS white wire
    4) GW red/white wire = PRS red wire
    5) GW bare wire = PRS bare wire

    Any idea whether I did something wrong?

    Thanks alot and best regards,
     
  2. Jim Collins

    Jim Collins Member

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    When you said you flipped the magnet, and "topside becomes bottom and bottom becomes top", can you explain that? When you flip a magnet, you flip it so that the edge of the magnet that was formerly underneath the adjustable polepieces is now underneath the slug pole pieces. Your description sounds as if you flipped it lengthwise, so that the end of the magnet that was formerly under the bass strings is now underneath the treble strings. If that is how you flipped the magnet, then you didn't really flip the magnet. Magnetic north will point towards one of the coils, not one end of the pickup. The object is to get magnetic north to point to the other coil.
     
  3. kikujiro0208

    kikujiro0208 Member

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    Thanks for you reply, Jim.

    I have flipped the magnet so that the edge of the magnet that was formerly underneath the adjustable polepieces is now underneath the slug pole pieces; the end of the magnet that was formerly under the bass strings is now still under the bass strings.

    What else could I do wrongly?

    Regards,
     
  4. Jim Collins

    Jim Collins Member

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    When you say the three middle positions sound weak, do you mean they sound thin and nasally, or simply less hot?

    Here is a test you can perform, and it should not require any soldering/unsoldering work. Unmount the pickups from the guitar. You can still leave the pickups in the mounting bezels, just unmount the bezels. Put the two pickups face to face, so that the adjustable pole pieces of the two pickups touch each other, and the slug pole pieces of each pickup touch each other. If you feel a magnet attraction, the magnet has been properly flipped. (Opposites attract, and the adjustable pole pieces of one pickup will be oriented to magnetic north, while the other pickup will have the adjustable pole pieces oriented south.) If you feel the pickups pushing apart, the pickups share the same polarity, and a magnet must be flipped. (Perhaps the pickups came to you with opposing magnetic polarity.)

    According to WCR documentation I have, you are using the colored wires correctly.
     
  5. kikujiro0208

    kikujiro0208 Member

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    Thanks Jim, I carried out the test as you said and the magnet has been installed correctly.

    The bridge pup (pos 1), neck pup (pos 5) and inside coils series (pos 3) sound ok and loud enough.
    I have only a problem with the outside coils parallel (pos 2) and inside coils parellel (pos 4), because they sound much thinner.

    Is this what they call 'out-of-phase' or do these positions have to sound thin?

    Regards,
     
  6. Jim Collins

    Jim Collins Member

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    The fact that the middle position -- inside coils in series -- sounds ok and loud enough is an indication that things have been connected properly. In positions 1, 3, and 5, you have two coils in series, which is what a normal humbucker is. Positions 2 and 4 are two coils in parallel, which is quite a bit weaker than two coils in series. It is also a thinner sound. If position 2 -- inside coils in parallel -- sounded nasally, position 3 would also sound nasally, since both positions use the same coils.

    It sounds like everything is correct. It is frequently the nature of the beast that a humbucker sounds great as a humbucker, but somewhat less inspiring when one of the coils is cut. PRS stock pickups in rotary guitars usually feature a bridge pickup that is hotter than the pickups you've just installed. This would account, at least partially, for a bolder sounding position 2 or 4.
     
  7. kikujiro0208

    kikujiro0208 Member

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    Thanks Jim, I appreciate very much your knowledge!!!
    Regards,
     
  8. Fretmaster

    Fretmaster Member

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    This is very interesting to me because I just received a set of Goodwoods to put in my PRS Custom 22 with rotary switch. What is the deal with flipping the magnets? Does this always have to be done or can they just be installed the way they came to me? Also do to the fact that I hate the hassle of the rotary for trying to find the correct position on the fly during live performance, I am considering getting rid of it in favor of a conventional 3 way toggle. Any suggestions are greatly appreciated.

    Steve
     
  9. Jim Collins

    Jim Collins Member

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    The rotary switch that is on the guitar assumes the neck and bridge pickups have opposing magnetic polarity. Because the pickups have opposing magnetic polarity, each of the five sounds the rotary switch provides is a hum cancelling sound.

    The PRS pickups that come in a rotary switch guitar each has three conductors plus an independent ground for the base. If the pickups you are putting in the guitar have three conductors plus an independent ground, you must flip the magnet in one of the pickups. If you don't, the middle three sounds will be out of phase.

    If the pickups you are installing have four conductors plus an independent ground for the metal base, you can install the pickups without flipping the magnet in one of them. If you do that, each pickup will be wired differently, and the three middle sounds will not be hum cancelling.

    If you happened to have the old style rotary, without the PCB attached, you could do all kinds of things. But, for quite some time, now, that switch has come with the PCB attached, so you don't have much choice.
     
  10. Fretmaster

    Fretmaster Member

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    Thank you very much Jim. Mine is a 96 or 97'. I haven't pulled the covers yet. Will have to wait until the weekend but I can't wait to hear these P/U's in this guitar. This baby has such a beautiful natural resonance to it unplugged. I know with the right pickups it's going to sound stellar.

    Thanks again Jim!

    Steve
     
  11. hendrix2430

    hendrix2430 Member

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    Hello, I'd like to re-up this thread because I'm having a bit of trouble understanding the wiring on one of my guitars.

    Apparently, the neck pickup's magnet was reversed. The neck and bridge positions sound loud, but the three inner positions don't sound as loud, especially position 4.

    Position 2 sounds louder and 3 even louder. That said, what I have trouble understanding is why when these positions are selected, I'm getting more and more volume as the corresponding volume pots are LOWERED!...bringing ultimately the output to around the same level as the humbuckers in series!

    I like position 4, as it sounds very funky, although very weak. I also like positions 2 and 3, as they are single coil like and satisfy my single coil jones. However, if I could understand how the volume pots worked, I'd be less in the dark.

    Having do lower the volume pots to get more output makes it impossible for me to get a loud enough output on say pos 2 and then switching to the bridge HB...since pos 2 and 1 share the same volume pot.

    Was I clear enough...I know it sounds complicated but the techs out there may get what's troubling me.

    Thanks a lot for the help guys!
     
  12. Jim Collins

    Jim Collins Member

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    What kind of guitar is this, and how is it wired? What are positions 2, 3, and 4? You mentioned "volume pots", as in plural. Do you have multiple volume controls?
     
  13. hendrix2430

    hendrix2430 Member

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    Hey there. It's a TCM Taurus Standard, with Darkbursts. I bought this used and the wiring change was done by the previous owner. There are 2 volume and 1 tone control.

    Apparently he flipped the magnet on the neck pickup.
     
  14. Jim Collins

    Jim Collins Member

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    If the previous owner flipped the magnet of the neck pickup, and did not change any wiring, then your two pickups are out of phase with each other. You will experience the out of phase quality in positions 3 and 4.

    According to Terry McInturff's website, postion 2 of the Taurus Standard features the neck pickup coil cut, alone -- no bridge pickup involved. This will certainly have less volume than position 1, which is the full neck humbucker.

    Position 3 is both, full humbuckers in parallel. Since the pickups are out of phase with each other, the volume setting of each pickup will make a rather significant difference. If you are using this position, and both volume controls are at the same level, the frequency cancellation will be at its maximum. By changing one of the volume settings, you will affect the frequency cancellation, frequently resulting in an increase in volume. The same thing would happen in position 4, which is one neck coil and one bridge coil, in parallel. This will also be an out of phase setting, so the two volumes will behave similarly.
     
  15. hendrix2430

    hendrix2430 Member

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    Jim, you nailed it big time!

    Exactly what I'm noticing. I would say the wiring as is, is useful, as I get my 2 HB tones and the neck split for cleaner stratty sounds

    But, I also get much quack at position 4, which is great for funk sound. Plus I have the option of lowering either volume pot for the same sound, only louder.

    Position 3 is the only position which I probably won't use much.
    Again, this was definitely helpful. :)
     

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