Volume pot limiting

Discussion in 'Luthier's Guitar & Bass Technical Discussion' started by danosol, Jan 30, 2012.

  1. danosol

    danosol Member

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    I just got a Wolftone Marshallhead pickup fir the bridge of my Les Paul, which I love. However; the problem I am having is with squealing (potting is not an option). I play a high gain and when iI have the volume dimed on the guitar it squeals but when I back off to around 8 it doesn't.

    With the way that I play It's impossible for me to bring back the vol to 8 with any accuracy. Does anyone make a pot where it doesn't open up all the way or can be adjusted to about 80% of full on open?
     
  2. fumbler

    fumbler Member

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    Why not wax-pot it?

    Anyway, you could set the pot where you like it, measure the resistance, and then hard-wire a resistor of that value in series. But that kind of defeats the point of getting a hot pickup in the first place.
     
  3. walterw

    walterw Gold Supporting Member

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    Yeah, potting it is the correct solution. If its new, get it exchanged (the whole point of high-end pickups is not to have problems like this).

    Messing with the volume pot is like getting a raging new sports car, discovering that it shakes above 50 mph, and "fixing" it by putting a block under the gas pedal!
     
  4. walterw

    walterw Gold Supporting Member

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    The obvious interim step is to dime the guitar, then adjust the amp accordingly, by backing down the gain and/or the highs.
     
  5. danosol

    danosol Member

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    Thanks for the input. The pickup wasn't designed for high gain, as it is not potted. The pickup was designed to be like the old PAF's but a bit hotter. I love the sound at 8 on the volume pot with this pickup and lowering the gain is doing nothing to stop the squealing when the guitar volume pot is dimed.

    I don't want to ruin the tone i get from this pickup by potting it. I just thought there might be another way around it.
     
  6. Riscchip

    Riscchip Supporting Member

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    I use fixed resistors for this sort of thing on some of my strats. Not to prevent squealing, but to have a fixed reduced-volume in certain switch positions. A fixed resistor or even a trimpot adjusted by ear are probably your best solutions.

    That said, I would email Wolfe and ask what he things of potting that pickup. It might not ruin the tone like you're expecting. I've potted Duncan Seth Lovers and other vintage style PAFs before because I wanted to run them loud and they still sound great.
     
  7. Rockledge

    Rockledge Member

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    Try using less distortion. Sometimes you find that you can get the same feel and response at lower input gain levels.
     
  8. danosol

    danosol Member

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    Riscchip,

    Thanks for the response ill try some resistors values. I have talked to Wolfe and he gave me no guarantees. If I can find a way, such as the resistors, to make the max volume 8, on the volume knob, I would be happy as hell.
     
  9. walterw

    walterw Gold Supporting Member

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    the tone loss from the volume knob backed down is way more dramatic than any slight change from wax-potting.

    if it's covered, it may just need for the cover to be mounted more securely; here's a good video showing the right way, with no potting necessary.



    the key steps being the pre-bending of the sides and the clamping before soldering, both in order to have the top of the cover be pressed tightly against the bobbins so there's no room for vibration-induced squeal.

    i'll melt a little wax in the cover beforehand, not enough to pot the pickup, just enough to lock the cover in place with a quick hit from a heat gun before clamping.
     
  10. danosol

    danosol Member

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    Walter

    It is not covered an I have heard the difference in tone from 8 to 10 there is some difference. It however, isn't monumental enough for me to want to pot it. On other pickups I have tried there is a more significant difference but not on on the Wolftone Marshallhead pickup.

    Thanks for the info though. Should I ever decide to cover my pickup I will certainly have this for reference.
     
  11. Ronsonic

    Ronsonic Member

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    Where ever do people get the idea that potting hurts the sound. Y'know what hurts? Squeeling. That hurts your tone and ears.
     
  12. walterw

    walterw Gold Supporting Member

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    It's squealing with no cover? That's not very impressive for a boutique pickup.

    Maybe pop it out and tighten the little screws holding the bobbins to the plate?

    Or is it a midrange howl as opposed to a piercing squeal? In that case, it may be the whole pickup vibrating as a unit, as opposed to loose parts inside the pickup. Firmer mounting, like maybe with stiff foam surrounding it to hold it in place, might help.
     
  13. danosol

    danosol Member

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    Walter I did tighten the screws on the base plate and there is foam in the pickup cavity. The pickup has long legs, it's in an R8, and I can rock the pickup back and forth pretty easily. I may try surgical tubing and a little more foam in the pickup cavity and see if that helps.
     
  14. walterw

    walterw Gold Supporting Member

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    Don't do foam under it, that just lifts it up off the springs; the trick is to use stuff like bits of dense mousepad material or whatever on the sides, surrounding it, to wedge it in place in the cavity.
     
  15. walterw

    walterw Gold Supporting Member

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    Also, I bagged the pickup rings on my R8 for regular gibson rings for just this reason; being so tall, you don't get much compression on the springs.
     
  16. rockinlespaul

    rockinlespaul Member

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    I don't think it's the pickup.....need a little more info....
     

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