Push Pull pots, electronics install.

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Push Pull pots, electronics install.

Post by The Chad on Thu Mar 17, 2011 3:48 pm

So I'm keeping the Spectrum FX now, the seller agreed to a partial refund. It'll be some work, but it will be my project. It's currently wired like a strat, with a 5 way switch and three regular pots. I want to replace those with the push/pulls. Never did this before, so I need help. Should I use a 250k or a 500k for the middle? I know I'll need two 500k's for the humbuckers. What brand to go with? Dimarzio, Bourns, Allparts? I like a semi tight feel to my knobs, and I want quality.

I'll pull the wiring diagram from the Westone site, and need to get my pots, soldering iron, solder, wire, ect. I'd also like to rewire the 3 way toggle that's been disconnected, so I'll need advice on that, too. I'm watching the planetz Youtube vids and checking out his site, great stuff.

Finally, I'll be filling in the slot that was cut for the 5 way switch and painting it. This is the part that I really don't know anything about. Ideas are welcome! A good project clears the mind, they say. We'll just see about that.

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Re: Push Pull pots, electronics install.

Post by bowenjaybee on Fri Mar 18, 2011 6:57 am

I like CTS pots but they may not fit your FX without enlarging the holes..you could try Alpha pots, I've never tried them but they are popular and they do push /pull pots which look pretty much the the same as original Westone pots.

if you've never soldered before get plenty of practice before you do the real thing..I'd recommend buying a load of crappy pots and wire and practice with them. Use a piece of cardboard to mount the pots on.

According to Westone Info the wiring for the Dynasty is exactly the same as on the Spectrum FX so you have a 3D wiring diagram in front of you for reference Smile

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Re: Push Pull pots, electronics install.

Post by colt933 on Fri Mar 18, 2011 10:24 am

I used to work as an audio engineer and electronics technician, so I have lots of experience with soldering.

My first word of advice to you is to purchase at least a 40-watt soldering iron of the pencil type. Do not purchase a gun type and do not purchase a 25-watt iron. The reason is this - the higher the wattage, the hotter the iron. This may seem counter intuitive, but with a hotter iron, you are actually less likely to burn up your work. Higher temp = less time = less likelihood of burning it up. With a 25 watt iron, you will likely burn everything up as it takes way too long to get the solder hot.

Always tin your connections. Apply solder to the points on the pot where you are going to connect before attempting to put a wire on it. Apply solder to the wires before attempting to connect to the pot. When both pieces are tinned, heat the point on the pot to get it liquid, then insert the tinned wire into the liquid solder on the pot. Remove heat. Hold the wire steady, maybe blow on it a little to speed cooling.

Buy good solder. I like resin core. It flows better.

Take your time.

Make sure you have plenty of light.

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Re: Push Pull pots, electronics install.

Post by The Chad on Fri Mar 18, 2011 10:52 am

Great advice on soldering, I'll buy a 40 watt and practice for sure. I'll practice on my current pots and cardboard.

As for posts, I'd rather not get into drilling the hole any larger, but for a good quality pot I will. A friend of mine is a custom cabinet maker so I'm sure he can help with that if need be. For you guys that do your own guitar work, what pots do you like?

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Re: Push Pull pots, electronics install.

Post by colt933 on Fri Mar 18, 2011 11:27 am

CTS for me.

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Re: Push Pull pots, electronics install.

Post by corsair on Fri Mar 18, 2011 11:50 am

Switchmaster are still making pots, aren't they??

Good info from Colt; 40W iron for the win; a soldering station is real handy as well, and a solder remover!!

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Re: Push Pull pots, electronics install.

Post by Steve777 on Fri Mar 18, 2011 12:40 pm

From experience, measure the length of the shaft in your current pot before ordering blindly, other wise you might find as I did, that the push pull pot you have ordered has a shaft too long and knobs sits too high off the guitar body.

One of my push pulls on my Dim 4 gave up the ghost so I ordered a new one, soldered it in, only to find it was too long in comparison to the others. I cut off a couple of mm to allow the switchmaster knob sit at the same height as the originals. A bit of a pain but avoidable.

Rooting around in my spares box, I have an original push pull pot as used by Mat on a Westone. From the brown insulating plate with the 3 wiring tags, the shaft in the closed position measures 20mm. Open 25mm. The threaded section measures about 11m. The splined area to hold the knob 7mm.

The value is 500K and don't for get the caps.

Hope this helps.


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Re: Push Pull pots, electronics install.

Post by The Chad on Mon Mar 21, 2011 9:21 am

Thanks for the detialed info everyone, I'll be buying my pots, soldering station, and everything else soon. Going to be a fun project, that's for sure. I'll let ya know when I'm doing the work.

Can't be any harder than tearing my car's engine apart and putting it back together. Very Happy

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