Category Archives: Black Strat

Build day!

So I finally received the pickguard. Humbuckers fitted nicely, not so the CTS pot… so I had to enlarge the pot hole, and also drill a new one for the blower switch. I’ve to admit that I hesitated to drill the hole, and contemplated to use a push/pull volume, but my reasons to use a DPDT on-on were still very valid, so I ended up going on the original path and drilled the hole.

I mounted the components and it was  soldering time!… as I had pre-soldered (if that is even a word) everything, all I had to do was to solder the pickups and that was it… or so I thought…

When I went to mount the pickguard, I noticed the super switch was making contact with the side of the cavity. In fact it did not fit. so I had to flip the switch around, and re-do poles 0 by inverting the cabling so the switch would still work on the right position and right order.

I also swapped the DPDT switch for a different one which was easier to operate. Hopefully it will last the time.

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The completed pickguard.

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And this is what it looked like on the guitar. Notice the bridge saddles were also changed. I replaced the standard Fender vintage saddles with a set of Goth S21C steel saddles. I found these to be more comfortable for playing, specially as I do a lot of palm muting. The blower switch is behind the tremolo bar.

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The guitar with strings and intonation and action adjusted. Also note the volume know was replaced with a chrome one, as I think it looks much better.

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So that’s done!.. it was certainly a lot of fun…

and yes, it sounds amazing. I’ll upload some soundbytes soon.

Ah… and now I need a case and a beautiful strap

 

Because a little goes a long way…

… in terms of progress.

I know I have writen “Be patient” on the lessons page, but that does not mean to be iddle. While I wait for the remaining parts to arrive (Neck pickup, pickguard and copper tape), I decided to solder and prepare as many components as possible.  Also decided not to wire the components between them until I have the pickguard to mount them, in order to reduce the cable lenghts where it makes sense so the resulting guitar wiring does not look like an spaguetti bowl.

First the Fender 4P5T super switch was wired. Only outstanding connection into the switch are the neck and bridge pickups. The red and black cables on the left go to the volume pot and to ground on the back of the volume pot respectively. Not by best job but far from the worst

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The volume potentiometer CTS 500K Linear. Too easy

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Next was the blower switch. Red cable on the left of the picture goes to the tip in the output jack. The bridge pickup hot (black) is to be connected to the free connector.

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Also decided to redo the jack connection because I want the guitar to be as quiet as posible (noise wise), so the jack connection is now a twisted pair. this is the only part that won’t be inside the main cavity which will be shielded with copper tape.

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All the connections that I need to do next are:

  • Neck and bridge pickup to the super switch and blower switch (Bridge).
  • Neck “hot” from the switch to the switch,
  • Connect the ground to the output jack
  • Switch “hot” to and out of the volume to the blower switch.
  • Connect the hot from the blower switch to the output jack

 

An update on the Locking tuners

After being unable to receive any communications from the Seller, they have agreed to a refund, and according to reverb policies they should also cover return costs. As soon as I get my money back I will be ordering from my usual eBay sellers… never had any issues with them in more than 15 years.

Reverb support was most helpful and was a different experience to chat with an actual person 🙂

Locking tuners – not so locking

I got home from work to find out my locking tuners had arrived.

Had dinner, bathed the kids, put them to bed… right! time to install the tuners.

These I got from Reverb and sold as genuine Schaller made in Germany for Fender for $79.50 AUD + shipping, on what I thought was a good deal.  Fender part 099-0818-100 6 inline staggered chrome locking tunners.

So finally got to install the tuners. They looked exactly like the ones on my American Stratocaster Plus, which has Schaller locking tuners. So I removed the old fender original ones I installed a few weeks earlier (refer to this post), and commenced to install the new ones… 1 in, 2 in, 3 in with some effort, 4 in…5 in without issues… not… well it got in nicely, but the screw in bushing did not screw in completely which causes the washers to be loose. F%$^%… 6 in… same problem! again the bushings did not screw in properly!

You can see in the following pictures exacly what I mean

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On  this picture you can clearly see there is a gap between the bushings and the washer, specially the bottom one which is close to 1 mm

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I then moved the tuners to different positions to see if I had them in the wrong position (like that is a possiblity) and then I noticed they were not staggered either!!!  all six tuners were short!

So, and against all instinct and knowing these would not work… I decided to give them a try and replaced strings… thinking maybe the loose washer would not be a issue… WRONG! the rattle was very noticeable and unbearable… not to mention the short tuners would fail to keep the guitar in tune when using the tremolo, as the 3 low strings would have too much friction at the nut…

Complete unusable.

So I’ve contacted the seller requesting a full refund or replacement… I’m not fussed either way, all I want are brand new, and fully functional locking tuners.