#1
I'm looking to replace the stock pickups (Duncan designed) in my Mockingbird ST. I'm having trouble finding a wiring diagram, with all the switches and knobs and whatnot. Love the feel of the guitar, but not totally in love with the tone, so I'm putting a Dimarzio Gravity Storm in the bridge and an Air Classic in the neck. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
#2
oh i love this models schematics. Only thing it's missing is an active gain preamp like the EMG afterburner.

regardless of any complexity in schematics remember you've got 5 wires in a pickup. Focus on those and you'll do great. Before dropping that kind of money on new pickups though consult a tone chart and check out some other brands too, not saying dimarzio is bad but you know .. just see whats out there. I wanted to try the gravity storm when it was first introduced though the way steve described it was hilarious

this is the first bit of help


If it's a basic coil split out of each pickup where you get one extra sound for the single coil sounds this is a walk in the park. Only tricky part may be the out of phase portion. The fact this model has the varitone on ti too like gibsons and all is a really nice touch. Just follow the wires and you'll do fine. I can draw out this diagram but seriously it's a piece of cake. I love the finish on the red one and the varitone was a nice touch to it to give 5 sounds per pickup.

of course any questions send me a private message or reply to this post and I can tell you more about the schematic.
#3
Thanks, Tallwood13. I'll be sending you a PM soon. In re: the original post, I've used a Gravity Storm in another guitar and LOVED it. Never tried the Air Classic, but it seems to be what I want for the neck. Generally speaking, when I replace the pickups in a guitar, I replace everything...pots, switches, etc. Kinda concerned on this one, though. It has Alpha mini-500K pots in it, which I haven't even tried to source yet (I always use DiMarzio pots). I rewired one of my other ones, but it only had single conductor pickups (Alnico II Slash), and I did the 50s wiring. Anyhow...that aside, I may need to pick your brains via PM, as, while I have my soldering down pat, my confidence in alternative wiring rigs is a bit lacking LOL. Thanks for the response.
#4
that is good to hear I'll have to check it out if I get the chance for that pickup. I'm probably taking this no name neck pickup apart in my warlock and either doing a magnet swap in it or something.

I've been doing wiring for 5-ish years and we've all got to learn somewhere right?

CTS make great pots , as do Bournes. As for the mini toggles I know there is one kind they are about 10$ each roughly american stewmac sells. They will last much longer than the asian kinds I put in cheap guitars for the 7 way mod every strat I wire up gets to get to use all 3 pickups or the outer 3.

measure the shaft width or email dimarzio customer support and ask them. I mean worst case scenario a round file is your best friend because you can widen the holes. The washer and knob are there in case you don't get it perfect. But you shouldn't have to resort to that.

you can avoid 1950s wiring two ways to maintain your tone as you roll the volume down
#1 the kinman treble bleed
#2 using linear pots (B500k lets say) , 10 is still 10 , 0 is still 0 , just a smoother decrease in volume

paper in oil capacitors are always my go to. Kind of expensive but a must. Copper shielding too, some even go as nuts as using all nickle braided wires too for more clarity. But this is getting a bit overkill right? With a varitone it's entirely up to you which values you want. 0.1uf , 0.068 , 0.047 , 0.033 .. the sky is the limit. The further the numbers get from the decimal the smaller they are. Usually when guys think of the tone filter the varitone is they think of the BB King Lucille guitar.

anyways..
if I was you I'd expand the wiring a bit.
on/on/on mini toggles - series / split / parallel (3 sounds per pickup)
phase reversal it's nice to just have there - (keep this one on/on)
you can go one volume or two volumes
as for tone, depends on what you want, classic tone , mid scoop to make the guitar breathe better through the amp I found it very useful , bass cut to get rid of any harsh highs from really aggressive settings.

I've yet to play that BC Rich model.and I'm a fan of their guitars as I like to stand out. But if the on/on mini toggles are american made I'd keep them. The only ones I'd order are the on/on/on ones to expand the versatility. You'll really appreciate the "SSP" toggle wiring on high output pickups as it's a bigger difference. Like 16k , 8k , 4k roughly is a massive contrast. Instead of 8k, 4k , 2.5-3k.

but yeah , keep the dimarzio color code and compensate the wires this diagram has below and you'll do fine. It's not the hardest diagram you'll ever do, it's very important. Here's a start , this is a series (Full power) , split (buzzing coiltap) and parallel option. Parallel is a hum cancelling variant. With this diagram do say your bridge pickup like this. It's entirely up to you which order you want them in. But for 3 sounds you need on/on/on , not on/off/on.

For the neck pickup (lets say) skip the phase reversal option it's not necessary , only one pickup needs to have phase reversal.


hot output to the selector
the funny looking one that looks sort of like a pyramid ground anywhere


tips?
keep the capacitor leads as you're cutting them down to size and they can help you big time with certain parts of the wiring. Say for example on coilsplits the push pull says for us to ground them , either we've got to cut a very small wire... or ... use a metal lead from a capacitor we're tossing anyways, it's very reliable as long as you don't get the metal lead to touch any copper shielding. You can also use them for the close by contacts of the mini toggles. With mini toggles I usually break out the needle nose pliers and sort of tie or wrap them around the two close by contacts that you have to solder and just tin them. sounds silly but makes your job way easier.

torres engineering mid scoop is the one I recommend, it's easy to google
fender greasebucket for the bass cut, Great for metal players or clearing up muddy pickups
the fender TBX
- it's a treble and bass cut , 5 is "no load" , so it shapes the tone in 2 ways. It's cheap and easy to assemble. Strange to keep a tone knob at 5 though. 10 cuts say the bass and 0 cuts the treble or something like that.. fender has had a lot of cool mods coming from a guy who avoids fender.

when working with paper in oil capacitors remember to use heat sinks so the capacitor doesn't break. Arguably they are better but youtube a capacitor comparison and see if it's worth it because that's a lot of capacitors you're going to need to do the mid scoop mod and bass cut. Try them out with some cheap capacitors from thailand and see if you like it the only tedious one in the mid scoop is the 42TL021 (1.5h audio transformer) but besides that any capacitor or resistor is 1$ american each with free shipping. Tayada2009 I've bought a ton of stuff off of the last 3 years and never had an issue with their company.

I can draw this out and post it here if you need, going to take a look and see if i can find something similar before though.
Last edited by Tallwood13 at Apr 30, 2015,