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Pre wired loom's for Les Paul's.

EpiLP1985

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Aug 11, 2017
Messages
113
Thank you for this helpful advice , I will print your diagram .

I think I over heated my PEC pots .

My goal in drafting my diagram was to get as many connections as I could off the pots. Also, by removing the ground wire from Tone to Tone, you make the harness essentially two pieces prior to install. Combined with not soldering the braids of the switch and pickups directly to the back of the pots by their shields, you also limit the heat and physical connections.
 

Sol

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Oct 26, 2001
Messages
775
I've always used the same 25 watt soldering iron, yours is 40 Watts. Am I underpowered ?
 

EpiLP1985

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Aug 11, 2017
Messages
113
I've always used the same 25 watt soldering iron, yours is 40 Watts. Am I underpowered ?

In my experience, if you want to get in and out fast, and get good solid joints, especially on pot casings, you need a 40 watter.

I use a smaller iron for pedal stuff and PCBs.
 

Wise Guy

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Apr 3, 2021
Messages
61
I've always liked Ebay's 'Tone Man' set ups. Never had any issues with the Bourns pots he uses.
 

Sol

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Oct 26, 2001
Messages
775
In my experience, if you want to get in and out fast, and get good solid joints, especially on pot casings, you need a 40 watter.

I use a smaller iron for pedal stuff and PCBs.
It's only braid to pot casing that causes me headache. I need a 40 watter, thanks.
 

Sol

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Oct 26, 2001
Messages
775
I'll check out Tone Man. Bourns pots are good.
BTW doesn't anyone use the Alpha pots that all the Pedal makers use ?
 

EpiLP1985

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Aug 11, 2017
Messages
113
It's only braid to pot casing that causes me headache. I need a 40 watter, thanks.
Honestly, I don’t solder the braids directly to the pot case anymore. I wrap a length of wire around pickup and switch leads, solder it to the braids, then make a very small connection from the wire lead to the pot casing.
 

EpiLP1985

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Aug 11, 2017
Messages
113
I'll check out Tone Man. Bourns pots are good.
BTW doesn't anyone use the Alpha pots that all the Pedal makers use ?

The thing I look for in pots is specified value, tolerance, and taper.
 

Drayve85

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Jan 30, 2019
Messages
177
Well, you can obviously solder so I would recommend sourcing parts for harness and putting one together yourself, but, you want prewired, which presents a dilemma.

With a prewired harness, you still have to make a number of connections so why not make a few more?

I personally like the VIPots from Vintage Inspired Pickups. They do kOhm matching and sell quads for $43.99. My last set were all 545 kOhm +/- 2%. They are excellent. Add a set of your favorite caps and you’re good to go.
I have to second the VIPots. They took my stock TH58 from awesome to awseomerest! Never played any guitar with centralabs, but the VIPots taper is very useable at almost all settings. Mine give sound at just below 1, the stock cts were at around 1.5. Like take a wet blanket off the speaker!
 

GotTheSilver

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Apr 14, 2007
Messages
2,433
Anyone have experience with the "pre-wired vintage upgrade kits" from RS Guitarworks? They have CTS pots and PIO caps.
 

EpiLP1985

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Aug 11, 2017
Messages
113
Anyone have experience with the "pre-wired vintage upgrade kits" from RS Guitarworks? They have CTS pots and PIO caps.

Very reasonably priced but I feel there are better pots out there and cheaper, but tonally equivalent, capacitors as well.
 

gmann

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May 26, 2003
Messages
5,973
I second this. I'm not so experienced that I don't occasionally get overzealous when soldering. I recently burned up a set of matched VIPots chasing a buzz and it turns out it needed shielding.



I think the VIPots are the best taper I have ever played. There are not as ruggedly constructed as CTS and others though so care needs to be taken when soldering.



I get this. I'm not slagging harness makers. Obviously they don't turn a huge profit on this stuff. I just wanted to point out that the actual act of putting together a pre-wired harness is the easiest part of installing a new harness as a whole.



This is really the hard work, to be honest. I have a few tips that I use to make this part, and wiring the whole harness yourself actually, much easier. Let's look at the diagram I use:

View attachment 14312

Here is a short list of things I do to make wiring in the harness easier:

1.) Don't solder the braided shields directly to the back of the pots. I wrap a length of either cloth covered wire or bare buss wire around the switch and pickup leads for each pickup, solder it there, and run that wire to a SMALL solder blob on the back of the volume pot.

2.) Don't solder the bridge ground to the volume pot. Extend the lead and run it to the output jack. Or you can solder it directly to the output braid from the switch and then heat shrink it and route it around the side of the bridge controls.

3.) Remove the ground wire connecting the 2 tone pots. It's not necessary and actually allows toy to solder those controls to the switch and pickup leads independently of one another, thus making the hard part of wiring the harness into the control cavity easier.

4.) Turn the pots to zero when soldering to the cases.

If you look at my diagram, you can see that there are not many connections. I prefer less solder on the pot casings if I can help it.

Here is my last harness I wired up:

3b944957-ca12-48a0-b373-3a6ade75736c-jpeg.542383
What’s the advantage to turning the pots to zero when soldering to the case?
 

Drayve85

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Jan 30, 2019
Messages
177
What’s the advantage to turning the pots to zero when soldering to the case?
My understanding, which could be wrong, is that if the pot is set at zero, the lil piece in there that turns and touches the trace is already at a spot that gives no sound. When it’s set at a higher setting, if too much heat for too long a time is applied, the heat goes thru the metal and burns the trace where it’s set at, and you don’t get any sound, or it makes it sound like a dirty pot.

Idk, that’s how I understand it. Apologies for my long-winded answer. Just got up, and haven’t got a full cup of coffee in me yet.😀
 

gmann

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May 26, 2003
Messages
5,973
My understanding, which could be wrong, is that if the pot is set at zero, the lil piece in there that turns and touches the trace is already at a spot that gives no sound. When it’s set at a higher setting, if too much heat for too long a time is applied, the heat goes thru the metal and burns the trace where it’s set at, and you don’t get any sound, or it makes it sound like a dirty pot.

Idk, that’s how I understand it. Apologies for my long-winded answer. Just got up, and haven’t got a full cup of coffee in me yet.😀
Thanks!
 
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