#1
Warning: Long Post; the unhelpfully critical and the lazy should disregard, there will be no tl;dr.

I might be taking a risk actually taking the time to write this out here on UG, I've seen how a lot of it's members respond on articles/threads, and very few seem to be helpful at all, but those few are the ones I would like to elicit the experience/expertise of, if they lurk the forum at all, and if they are/have luthier experience.

I have 2 guitars that I'm in the process of switching out the pick-ups between, an Epiphone Futura Prophecy FX(explorer body), and my Jackson RR3. Now the Futura came with 81/85 EMGs, and the RR3 with Seymour duncans that I'd like to totally swap to working order on both, but my personal priority is to install the EMGs on the Jackson. I have a few questions pertaining to wiring/soldering. Both guitars have a nearly identical set up of two pickup/tone knobs, one main volume knob, and a 3-way pickup selector, save for the Futura of course, with the active pickups and associated battery connections.

Now, the battery can fit, and be rigged under the pickguard on the RR3 but I need to know if the exact point of where these wires are soldered to the pots is important, and if so, what kind of configuration is necessary? The RR3 came with everything soldered together of course, so I had to unsolder the pickups myself, and the wire from each one was split to connect to their respective tone knob as well as the main volume, on top of a grounding wire from each pickup cavity, that soldered onto a tiny metal plate that screwed into the body, including the grounding wire from the tremolo "spring plate" on the back, while the EMGs from the Futura had a simple connector mechanism, and each had two wires coming from it, one to the battery, and the other to it's respective tone knob, yet, these wires did not split on the Futura. Will this make a difference in functionality if connected the same way (unsplit, only connected to tone knob) on the RR3? Did they really need to be split, even though both tone knobs have wires that do nothing other than connect the tone knobs to the volume anyways? If they need to split, what's a good way to do that? (these EMGs' wires are weaved tightly under the sleeve) Also, I have checked EMGs' sites '10 most popular wiring diagrams', but nothing looks familiar, and the diagrams look even less like anything I've seen in a guitar. Sometimes diagrams just don't compare to knowledge from someone who knows how to describe it anyways, which is the specific reason i'm asking, not to be linked to these again, just fyi. EMGs diagrams also site with their pickups, that "string grounding is unnecessary and could cause reverse polarity shock", does this mean i should remove the grounding wires from the pickup cavity/ground? And if so, ONLY the pickup grounding wires?

Can the battery line from both pickups and the battery line itself all be soldered in/to the same place? if so which pot should it connect to? The bottom (bridge) pickup tone pot has a capacitor attached to it on both the guitars. The battery also connects to the input jack, but being as the RR3's wiring is on the complete opposite side of the guitar as the input jack, I need to extend the wire that connects to the battery, which looks silverish and really bright, I'm not sure if it's aluminum, (does anyone know?) but in order to guarantee it's functionality, does it need to be the same kind of wire/metal?


I apologize for all the questions, but I'm a highly particular person, I do my best to minimize my margin of error and hate to repeat things, part of it is realizing the slightest error, inconsistency or misplacement of certain things can cause irreversible damage, especially if it's something you're not very knowledgeable about, as has happened to me in the past, and I'm not trying to take chances with one of my favorite possessions. Yes, let me address that "but you would have taken it to a professional then..." point. No. not really. not unless I wanted to be overcharged for extra work I didn't ask for, as per the norm. I'm too broke for that crap anyways. I'm also very skilled with my hands and tools, so really my only problem is a lack of technical knowledge, or nuance with things like this. If I get informed advice, it shouldn't be hard to succeed at all, it's just a little soldering, I'll return to address any unforeseen consequences if and only when they arise.


I also don't need to hear irrelevant opinions on my choices. Help if you're kind/knowledgeable enough to do so, refrain from childish antics if not.

Thank you for any help otherwise
#2
Why don't you just swap the whole set of electronics in each guitar since the controls are the same? You're going to have to switch the pots anyways because active pickups use smaller(?) pot values than passives. Likewise, they also tend to use a stereo output jack rather than a mono one. If you need to unsolder and resolder something just take pictures for reference.
I pride myself on my humility.
Last edited by mtshark at May 5, 2014,
#3
Quote by mtshark
Why don't you just swap the whole set of electronics in each guitar since the controls are the same? You're going to have to switch the pots anyways because active pickups use smaller(?) pot values than passives. Likewise, they also tend to use a stereo output jack rather than a mono one. If you need to unsolder and resolder something just take pictures for reference.



I also considered that, but wasn't sure if it'd be necessary. I also took the jack from the epiphone when i saw it was different and the battery connected to it, that was the correct thing to do then? I think I'll do that though (switch out all the electronics)
#4
Quote by Althazaire
I also considered that, but wasn't sure if it'd be necessary. I also took the jack from the epiphone when i saw it was different and the battery connected to it, that was the correct thing to do then? I think I'll do that though (switch out all the electronics)

Yeah, you're supposed to connect the battery to the jack. I actually don't know much about EMG's, sorry I can't be more help.
I pride myself on my humility.
#5
Quote by mtshark
Yeah, you're supposed to connect the battery to the jack. I actually don't know much about EMG's, sorry I can't be more help.



Yea I think this answer might be good enough though, but do you know if the type of wire the battery connects to the jack with is critical? I need it to be about a foot longer, but i don't have any wire that looks like this one
#7
Realistically, you need to do a full swap. EMG's need the 25k pots, stereo jack and battery connector from your Epiphone to work. The SD's need the 500k pots and mono jack from your RR3. Active and passive humbuckers will usually have different tone capacitors too (0.1µF vs. 0.047µF).

The EMG 81 and 85 cannot be coil split, so you don't have to worry about that. You also need a way to install a bridge grounding wire into the Epiphone, because the passive SD's DO need it. On the flipside, the EMG's definitely don't in the RR3.

I've probably missed something, but my eyes hurt.
#8
Quote by -MintSauce-
Realistically, you need to do a full swap. EMG's need the 25k pots, stereo jack and battery connector from your Epiphone to work. The SD's need the 500k pots and mono jack from your RR3. Active and passive humbuckers will usually have different tone capacitors too (0.1µF vs. 0.047µF).

The EMG 81 and 85 cannot be coil split, so you don't have to worry about that. You also need a way to install a bridge grounding wire into the Epiphone, because the passive SD's DO need it. On the flipside, the EMG's definitely don't in the RR3.

I've probably missed something, but my eyes hurt.



No, that's great help as well, thanks. So, do you say, the rr3 doesn't need any of the grounding wires anymore (aside from the one attached to the trem?)