#1
Hi, have a Squier strat (SSS) and I'm about to buy a fully loaded HSH scratchplate, to refit it to be a Humbucking strat.

I don't know whether or not it's a "swimming pool" rectangular routing or just SSS so have no idea whether it will fit the two humbuckers (one at neck, one at bridge, single coil in middle position)

If I have to do it, would it be difficult to rout out the guitar bigger for the humbuckers, and what tools do I have to use?

If anyone happens to know whether it's swimming pool routing or HSH, it has no serial number and I got it from a guy who got it second hand himself but:

has the 60's style headstock

is red (not metallic red)

Has a rosewood neck

looks quite old to me

anyway, so please tell me if you know about either routing or whether my guitar is already routed that way. Thanks,
Gear:

Vintage VS6 (Wine Red)

Marshall VS100 Valvestate head with 4x12 angled cab

Squier Strat (Fiesta Red) 90's, Korean
#2
What's stopping you from unscrewing the pickguard and lifting it high enough to see the routing?
#3
Lack of a screwdriver, perhaps? Only semi-decent reason I could think of.
DIO FOREVER
#4
Quote by pete-c
What's stopping you from unscrewing the pickguard and lifting it high enough to see the routing?


Or tapping at the pickguard between your pickups to see if it sounds hollow?
#5
Alright, alright You're making me sound really stupid there

But if it isn't, what tool do you use to rout it out and is it a luthier's job or can I do it myself?
Gear:

Vintage VS6 (Wine Red)

Marshall VS100 Valvestate head with 4x12 angled cab

Squier Strat (Fiesta Red) 90's, Korean
#6
a router...

you can do it yourself, I've done it with a chisel even before I got a router, you can easily do it yourself.
R.I.P. Les Paul, 1915-2009
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#7
So does it have to be neat or will it be fine (ie not affect tone, etc) by just carving a rough hole big enough for the humbuckers?
Gear:

Vintage VS6 (Wine Red)

Marshall VS100 Valvestate head with 4x12 angled cab

Squier Strat (Fiesta Red) 90's, Korean
#8
the neatness doesnt really make a difference at all..
as long as you dont take out extremely huge chunks of wood or anything :/

but ..still check under the pg.. I think alot of squier strats are routed HSH or a swimming pool..
#9
assuming the strat your putting these electronics into is a relatively cheap one, it is probably made with three different pieces of wood at the body, one that takes up the top area, the middle area, and the bottom area. I've only seen people route out more exepensive(1-piece) strat bodies at a shop, and it seemed quite easy. seeing that your strat body is probably 3-piece, wont there be a problem if you take out too big of a piece, and crack the finish along the cut(like what would happen at the neck joint on a gibson if you bent the neck back extremely hard)? dont take my word for it tho, as i have little experience with routing.

btw, no humbucker will fit into an SSS cavity without any modification to the internals
#10
Quote by willwelsh816
btw, no humbucker will fit into an SSS cavity without any modification to the internals


you can get humbucker mini's and stacked humbuckers, which are the size of single coils.
#11
Ok so to take a look do I just loosen the strings alot, and then take the pickguard up with a screwdriver? Is that it? or do I have to take the strings off?
Gear:

Vintage VS6 (Wine Red)

Marshall VS100 Valvestate head with 4x12 angled cab

Squier Strat (Fiesta Red) 90's, Korean
#12
You dont have to take the strings off. Just loosen them so you have enough slack to pull up on your pickguard.

As far as neatness goes, just make sure your route stays inside your pickguard and you're fine.
R.I.P. Les Paul, 1915-2009
Quote by Shinozoku
You have a walnut stop sign banjo-tar signed by MAB

˙ןooɔ sı uosɐǝɹ ןɐǝɹ ou ɥʇıʍ ƃıs ɹnoʎ uı ʇxǝʇ uʍop ǝpısdn ƃuıʇʇnd
Quote by Scowmoo
You deserve an Awesome Award for Awesome People.
Seriously.

Stop Sign Guitar? HELL YES!
#13
Ok, I lifted up the plate, but even with the strings REALLY loose it was really difficult to see.

In the end, I think I'm figured it out. I believe it's routed Bridge: Humbucker Middle: Single coil Neck: single coil

so it looks like I need to route out the neck position so it can take the humbucker. So just a chisel? That all I need?
Gear:

Vintage VS6 (Wine Red)

Marshall VS100 Valvestate head with 4x12 angled cab

Squier Strat (Fiesta Red) 90's, Korean
#14
yes, you'll just need a chisel. The easiest way (what i did at least) is to just knock out the material between each pickup route, that way its swimming pool routed and you don't have to change it again if you ever want a different p/up combination.
R.I.P. Les Paul, 1915-2009
Quote by Shinozoku
You have a walnut stop sign banjo-tar signed by MAB

˙ןooɔ sı uosɐǝɹ ןɐǝɹ ou ɥʇıʍ ƃıs ɹnoʎ uı ʇxǝʇ uʍop ǝpısdn ƃuıʇʇnd
Quote by Scowmoo
You deserve an Awesome Award for Awesome People.
Seriously.

Stop Sign Guitar? HELL YES!
#15
That's a great idea, I will do I need to use a hammer to knock it out, or I am just kind of jiggling the chisel round until it breaks?
Gear:

Vintage VS6 (Wine Red)

Marshall VS100 Valvestate head with 4x12 angled cab

Squier Strat (Fiesta Red) 90's, Korean
#16
well i made one cut on the sides of each "wall" (i have a big chisel) then, i guess you can knock the piece out with a hammer, but i chiseled it until it was flush. It'll be much neater, but that really doesnt matter.
R.I.P. Les Paul, 1915-2009
Quote by Shinozoku
You have a walnut stop sign banjo-tar signed by MAB

˙ןooɔ sı uosɐǝɹ ןɐǝɹ ou ɥʇıʍ ƃıs ɹnoʎ uı ʇxǝʇ uʍop ǝpısdn ƃuıʇʇnd
Quote by Scowmoo
You deserve an Awesome Award for Awesome People.
Seriously.

Stop Sign Guitar? HELL YES!
#18
^if that is the case, I used a hammer.
R.I.P. Les Paul, 1915-2009
Quote by Shinozoku
You have a walnut stop sign banjo-tar signed by MAB

˙ןooɔ sı uosɐǝɹ ןɐǝɹ ou ɥʇıʍ ƃıs ɹnoʎ uı ʇxǝʇ uʍop ǝpısdn ƃuıʇʇnd
Quote by Scowmoo
You deserve an Awesome Award for Awesome People.
Seriously.

Stop Sign Guitar? HELL YES!
#21
Uh, Ok, so after I've carved it to swimming pool routing, will it just be a case of taking a pair of pliers and cutting the wire that connects the loaded scratchplate to the output jack?

Two more questions:

1) When I get the new one, will it just have a single wire that needs to be soldered to the output jack, and that's it or is there more to it?

2) Can I reuse the old (SSS) loaded scratchplate, maybe putting it into another Squier or something? Seems a shame to let it go to waste

Thanks for your help,
Gear:

Vintage VS6 (Wine Red)

Marshall VS100 Valvestate head with 4x12 angled cab

Squier Strat (Fiesta Red) 90's, Korean
#22
Quote by Eurozeppelin
1) When I get the new one, will it just have a single wire that needs to be soldered to the output jack, and that's it or is there more to it?
Three connections to be soldered. A hot to the output jack. A ground to the output jack (these two could possibly be inner conductor and braided shield of a single cable). A ground to the trem claw.

Quote by Eurozeppelin
2) Can I reuse the old (SSS) loaded scratchplate, maybe putting it into another Squier or something? Seems a shame to let it go to waste
you could, but what is that accomplishing, unless the other Squier has a defective pickup?

tbh, most Squier pickups are pretty wimpy. doubtful you'll find a use for them.
Meadows
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#23
Hmm, well that's a good point about reusing it, but I guess I'll hang onto it, not throw it away

As for the thing connecting it to the trem claw, what and where is the trem claw? and am I simply cutting the old wires with pliers?

Also, can I use any old soldering iron, or do I need a special one?
Gear:

Vintage VS6 (Wine Red)

Marshall VS100 Valvestate head with 4x12 angled cab

Squier Strat (Fiesta Red) 90's, Korean
#24
I think it's most likely routed HSH, not HSS. You shouldn't cut the old wires, you should desolder them. You should desolder the two wires connected to the output jack, and the wire connected to the trem claw.

If it is an older squier you may have not have a tremolo. Check if there is a plate at the back; if there is, you have a tremolo. If you have a tremolo, the trem claw is a piece of metal screwed into the guitar body onto which the tremolo springs are anchored. If you do not have a tremolo, then there should be a wire soldered to the bridge instead of the tremolo claw, you should desolder this instead.

Any soldering iron should do, provided you are careful.