Languedoc or Equator Mini Switches

cardamonfrost

Member
Messages
2,244
Hi All,

Recently changing up my setup and going for a dead quiet background. When my practice amp (Gibson Skylark, rebuilt) is on and dialed up to where I use it, but not plugged into the guitar yet, its dead quiet. When I use it with my Yamaha AEX (2 HB Juniors), its dead quiet.

When I plug it into my Equator with SD 59s volume/tone/selector/series and tap, there is hum. When I touch anything metal on the guitar, hum goes away.

Ground right? Well, I got out the multi-meter, and everything is grounded to the jack except the two miniswitches.

Is this the norm?

Any ideas about what else could be the culprit? How much noise does other peoples Equators make, or Languedocs for that matter?

Thanks
C
 

cardamonfrost

Member
Messages
2,244
Some positions it hums louder than others. The wiring was done by Equator. Hasn't really been a issue until now as before it was always in my basement studio and the only time it got played was when people were over and jamming.

Long story short, I (finally) came to the conclusion that life is too short to play a 'practice' guitar (practice is in the living room, so constant fear of kids, Roomba, whatever, with any gear left up there) so I moved it upstairs, which is where I started to see the problem.

There has always been a couple weird things with the wiring, but with enough mini switch manipulation there was always great tone to be found. But now, I want it to be 100%.

When I touch the strings the hum is reduced by 85%, what I would call very quiet. But it is still there. I don't think it is all 60hz noise. Sometimes it is sporadic.

As well, with this guitar, I notice the amp doesn't really see a lot of signal until the volume knob is around 90%. The volume pot and tone pot have always been in the wrong position (which I don't mind because my arm seems to fall on the volume that way), which leads me to wonder if they are different value potentiometers and wired wrong. The thing is that the tone pot sounds like it is working correctly, so it may be nothing.

Also, the minis are 3 position switches, and there is no dead spot in the middle position, all 3 positions seem to do stuff, on both switches. Which I believe to be incorrect, but have never had a guitar with series parallel and coil taps before...

I want to try and figure it out because I don't want to remove all of this stuff more than once, its a real beast working through the f and pickup holes.

Thanks,
C
 

Dubious

Member
Messages
2,235
Well, I got out the multi-meter, and everything is grounded to the jack except the two miniswitches.

Is this the norm?

Also, the minis are 3 position switches, and there is no dead spot in the middle position, all 3 positions seem to do stuff, on both switches. Which I believe to be incorrect, but have never had a guitar with series parallel and coil taps before...

the mini toggles should have a ground soldered on there sides and running to the top of the volume pot.

most likely single coil (do you hear more hum in one position?), humbucker in series, humbucker in parallel
 

Musick

Member
Messages
81
How did you check the ground? I'm not going to name any names (it was me), but I have seen reversed wiring on the output jack cause this (gounded at the tip instead of the sleeve. easy to do when all the wires are the same color). Did you make sure the strings were grounded? How old is the house? Do the outlets have 2 or 3 prongs? Do you have more flourecent lights upstairs than downstairs?
 

cardamonfrost

Member
Messages
2,244
Thanks for the replies.

The house isn't that old (20 years). I don't have any fluorescent fixtures.

I only checked continuity through all pots, I did not actually check the jack polarity. Great idea!!

Hum is essentially the same in all positions. It is really effected by the tone knob though. rolled off, no hum, full, maximum hum.

C
 

dB

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
4,499
Do you have any dimmers nearby? Those things are hum inducing.

Oh, and from what I understand, the dude from Equator couldn't wire himself out of a paper bag, so there's always that...
 

Randolph

Member
Messages
384
I have a standard and do not have that issue unless I am directly facing the amp about 3-5 feet away from it. is that how you sit? Did you try moving the guitar left or right away from the amp just to see? If that's not it, I'd bet he didn't ground the Mini's. I wired my own so I can't speak to his wiring skills or lack there of.
 

Seriesnuns

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
164
Maybe check for continuity between hot and ground. You could plug in a cable and use the tip of the other end. Use the meter to check them mini switch, strings, etc...

My equator isn't noisy but I had it rewired and I had the knobs flipped so volume is up front. The guitar also sounded off until I had it rewired. Like not trebly at all.

Those switches are cheapest parts and could be the culprit.

It only gets noisy when I have the Tubescreamer cranked into my compressor....
 

cardamonfrost

Member
Messages
2,244
Well, I've got it pulled apart and there is a loose wire down there. Haven't figured out where it goes quite yet, but it is a ground.

I will say it is a bit of a mess in there.

Still a bit off on the minis, on,on,on configuration.. Figured I would update everyone while I pulled up a wiring diagram to double check that its all done right. I may post some pics if I can remember my photobucket pword. lol.

C
 

rollyfoster

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
18,448
Well, I've got it pulled apart and there is a loose wire down there. Haven't figured out where it goes quite yet, but it is a ground.

I will say it is a bit of a mess in there.

Still a bit off on the minis, on,on,on configuration.. Figured I would update everyone while I pulled up a wiring diagram to double check that its all done right. I may post some pics if I can remember my photobucket pword. lol.

C

Both minis are 3-way with 3 different sounds?
 

cardamonfrost

Member
Messages
2,244
Yes. That is correct. both minis are on, on, on. When used, every setting provided a new sound.

So, not only is a wire off, the tone pot is not wired as per schematics, the resistor is going to ground from the middle lug, not the 3rd lug. not sure If it matters, but I am just hopping on the net to sus that out. I am going step by step, so haven't looked further yet. I am pretty sure there are more issue. A few wrongs makes an almost right type of situation.

C
 

rollyfoster

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
18,448
Yes. That is correct. both minis are on, on, on. When used, every setting provided a new sound.

So, not only is a wire off, the tone pot is not wired as per schematics, the resistor is going to ground from the middle lug, not the 3rd lug. not sure If it matters, but I am just hopping on the net to sus that out. I am going step by step, so haven't looked further yet. I am pretty sure there are more issue. A few wrongs makes an almost right type of situation.

C

He didn't provide a description of their functions?
 

cardamonfrost

Member
Messages
2,244
Thanks Qmax, that does seem to be the way it was done.

Unfortunately , I don't understand which configuration keeps it in the humbucking modes. certainly explains why all 3 positions on both switches makes a change in tone.

Just can't quite wrap my head around it yet... both humbuckers set to parallel, fine, one set to P and one S, what is going on there.... I think that Trey's 2.0 guitars are separate switches for tap and P/S.. but not really sure.

From people who have done it, what has the most sensible tone options?

C
 

rollyfoster

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
18,448
Thanks Qmax, that does seem to be the way it was done.

Unfortunately , I don't understand which configuration keeps it in the humbucking modes. certainly explains why all 3 positions on both switches makes a change in tone.

Just can't quite wrap my head around it yet... both humbuckers set to parallel, fine, one set to P and one S, what is going on there.... I think that Trey's 2.0 guitars are separate switches for tap and P/S.. but not really sure.

From people who have done it, what has the most sensible tone options?

C

Yeah I think on his it used to be one switch would be Series/parallel and the other would drop out the inner coils. I think @tsbot has the instructions Paul included in his build but hasn't posted yet.

Now (post FTW) I think one switch drops the inner coils and the other drops the outer coils. No more Series/parallel. The newest Languedoc thread has a picture of the instructions.
 

Hemlock

Member
Messages
63
I recommend rewiring the whole thing: teflon silver wire, switchcraft jack +3 way, Dimarzio 500k custom taper pots. Orange drop .022 cap. 2 mini toggles on/off/on for series, north coil, south coil splits on each pickup OR 2 mini toggles on/on/on for series split parallel.
Ground the strings, sheild the inside if possible with aluminum tape, or at least where the mini switches are and ground the tape.
Its a PiTA but worth it.
Quiet, many good usable sounds.
 




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