Post by amarucci89 on May 11, 2012 18:51:54 GMT -5
Was hoping that someone could help me figure out, as I am no expert. How can I wire a humbucker to select between coils (north coil, humbucker in series, south coil) using a SPDT ON/OFF/ON 3-lug switch? Will I need a different switch?
As long as you're willing to accept a shorted coil hanging from hot in one position it's easy. You need to short the "series link" either to "hot" or to "ground" (or not). Connecting one thing to one of two other things (or not) is pretty much exactly what that switch is made to do.
As long as you're willing to accept a shorted coil hanging from hot in one position
Not too long ago, we had some discussion of this issue. I thought the consensus was that shorting a coil to itself on the "hot" side was not really a true "hanging from hot" situation and shouldn't really be a noise generator. Am I misremembering that?
Newey, I think we agreed to disagree. I'm still in the camp that says shunting the coil hanging from hot doesn't really help.
But you do what you can with the equipment you have to work with. In this case, you accept that splitting to use the screw coil will be slightly more prone to hum and noise. I wouldn't lose any sleep over it.
Hanging hot means that a pup's "hot" lead is connected to the output, and the remaining lead is connected to the Ozone®. By connecting both ends to the same point, the coil is no longer hanging, again by definition. However, something is hanging, if you will, and that much is accepted as fact. The debate was (and for intents and purposes, still is) about whether or not that shorted coil is capable of generating or adding any noise component to the final output signal.
This was all aside from ChrisK's argument that any shorted coil, connected or not, was a drain on the string's energy, and thus altered the tone of any pickups that were connected to the output. For the record, I never accepted Chris' offer of proof - I don't buy it. Neither do I buy the assertion that a shorted pup still contributes noise to the signal - it's shorted, for Gawd's sake, what else can I say?
I'm willing to accept it! Don't believe it makes enough difference either way to argue about it, though I suppose one of these days we should actually work out a test of the issue. For now I think the consensus is to avoid it when you can "just in case", but not to stress too much.
I mentioned it in the interest of full disclosure. The issue would have likely been raised eventually.
I think the on-off-on switch diagram posted above is fine in practice for selecting the coils. Go with that if you have such a switch. I dont think there is anything better that can be done without a couple more switch poles.
But I think the hanging from hot (whether shorted or not) is a very small but not entirely negligible issue. Here's my view:
In a covered humbucker, no problem at all. In an uncovered HB, a conductive object (eg a coil) connected to hot picks up some static/noise/buzz, whether one or two wires are connected. Its not really about whether or not currents circulate within the coil, its whether the whole item, overall with a single connection to hot, induces a noise in the same way that attaching one end of a bit of un-screened wire to an amp input does.
Some of my designs put a string of pickups in a series chain, and then short part of that chain out to select different series combos. Those where the hot-side pickup are shorted are a slight tad noisier than when the ground-side coils are shorted.