So, this is more of a hypothetical situation than reality right now, but: how hard would it be to rewire my HSS Strat so it has two volumes and one tone? Right now, there's one master volume, a tone for the neck, and a tone for the middle pickup. As my project over the summer, I'm thinking I'd like to switch those knobs around to fit how I use it, by changing it to a volume for the neck, a volume for the bridge and middle, and then a master tone. Given that I don't know how to solder (but my dad owns soldering gear) and have yet to so much as take off my pickguard, is that something that could be feasibly done? And if so, other than buying a volume pot and moving some wires around, is there anything else that would need to be done?
a volume pot and a tone pot are the same thing, the only difference is a tone pot has a capacitor wired to it.
no sir away a papaya war is on
Quote by the_perdestrian
a volume pot and a tone pot are the same thing, the only difference is a tone pot has a capacitor wired to it.

Not necessarily. Most volume pots are audio (exponential) and most tone pots have a linear bevel. The tone pot does run with a capacitor so it only cuts out certain frequencies though. If you want to have the volume feel pretty even as you roll up the level on the pot you switch from tone, you'd probably have to replace it with an exponential bevel. Linear bevel as volume control will seem to go from soft to loud near instantaneously even though the volume is increasing at a linear path (we just happen to hear volume increases in a strange way, go figure.)
Just As I Am

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I'd like it to be:
Existing volume -> neck
New volume (currently tone) -> middle & bridge
Current tone -> master tone
I'd like it to be:
Existing volume -> neck
New volume (currently tone) -> middle & bridge
Current tone -> master tone

the hot from the neck pickup will need to go into the neck volume pot
the hots from the middle and bridge will BOTH need to go to the "NEW" volume pot

Then, the hots coming FROM each volume pot will need to go to the 5 way switch

then, the hot output from the 5 way switch will need to go to the "Master Tone" pot

Then, out from the master tone to the jack

I'm going to post a diagram which will help you visualize what I'm talking about. It's for a guitar with two humbuckers, but all the controls and wiring is the same except for the switch. Just ignore the 3 way switch in the diagram and wire your 5 way switch as normal. Pretend the "Neck humbucker" in the diagram is your neck pickup in your strat, and pretend the "bridge humbucker" in the diagram are your middle and bridge pickups

I support this mod because it is unique, but it raises some questions. Putting middle and bridge together on one volume means you will have those two tied together all the time, unless you add some switches to bypass the new volume when you want middle or bridge separate, which is a bit complicated. You can get used to it but some people will not want to play your guitar. That might not be a bad thing. So do you want to add extra switches or leave those two tied together all the time?
OOPS I didn't think of that! Good thing you posted so quick!

How about a duel deck potentiometer? (not a blend pot, the ones that are two pots in one and have two knobs stacked on one another, like a Metal Zone's knobs)


Would a blend pot work the same way, I wonder? But it's single shaft control the volume of both pickups? And The pickups wouldn't be tied together, since each is on it's own tier of lugs, correct?
Last edited by argentotenebre at Apr 29, 2011,
argentotenebre: thanks a lot, that's exactly what I was looking for in terms of explanation. However, will I still be able to use the 5-way positions after this mod as before (neck, neck + middle, middle, neck + one coil of humbucker, numbucker)?

Rebuildlt: I'd definitely leave them tied. It's an HSS, so what I end up doing is either using the middle single coil or the bridge humbucker for my lead sounds. When I'm not just messing around, I stick to one or the other, in conjunction with the neck single coil. I recently got an HH guitar, and love the ways I can use the two volumes, which is why I want to add that feature to the Strat.
Last edited by horser4dish at Apr 29, 2011,