Old 07-14-2019, 08:33 AM   #1
Jason Brian Merrill
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Default Guitar Super switch - how to?

TLDR; how does a super switch work and how would one wire it up? I found the articles I googled to be not very descriptive

I recently bought this:



its amazing - and I wired it like this so far:

it has, by default:

3 pickups, the neck is a humbucker - I swapped it out for a blues pickup from guitar fetish - it has a switch for making it single coil. It was out of phase and fucked up but I fixed that.

I added a push pull pot to enable the neck pickup at all times so I can get the traditional neck/bridge pickup combo.

So I have the following sounds:

- bridge
- bridge middle
- middle
- middle neck
- neck

- single coil bridge
- single coil bridge/middle

- bridge/neck
- bridge/middle/neck

- single coil bridge/neck
- single coil bridge/middle/neck

I was thinking of making the volume pot a push pull and making the humbucker AND neck out of phase so I could add the following sounds:

- bridge and middle out phase
- middle and neck out of phase

- single coil bridge and middle out of phase

- single coil bridge and neck out of phase w/middle
- bridge and neck out of phase w/middle


But then I saw a super switch, and I wondered if I could accomplish this easier with that and maybe add an option to make other combinations like getting the neck and bridge out of phase
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Old 07-14-2019, 09:17 AM   #2
toleolu
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If you can't find the answer you're looking for here, try this site:

https://www.reranch.com/reranch/

I used to refinish old strats I'd buy off Craigslist, there's a lot of really talented guitar builders and restorers on this site.
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Old 07-14-2019, 09:32 AM   #3
serr
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Well, the super switch gives you 5 positions. It has something like 5 poles and enough connections to wire up just about any combination. There are of course many more than 5 possible wiring configurations! With the super switch, you would pick the 5 wiring schemes you like and commit to those.

If that sounds more ideal... there you go.

It sounds like guitar pickup wiring is no mystery to you and further that you're having fun wiring your new pickups up. The route you're going will give you more combinations. It will also be at least somewhat intuitive on the controls. Whereas with the super switch, you would just have to remember which pickup wiring each switch position was wired for. Some of the extra combinations may not be useful and thus a moot point of course. That might be an argument for the super switch.
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Old 07-14-2019, 12:37 PM   #4
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Did you see the Stewmac page that shows which poles are active when? After that its getting creative on how to get all the ones you want
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Old 07-14-2019, 01:56 PM   #5
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Without going into specifics about possible wirings the first thing to understand is that a 'super switch' is essentially two 5-way switches braced together in parallel that operate in tandem (from one slider knob) and are internally separate from each other electrically. Well, the one I have is.
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Old 07-14-2019, 03:39 PM   #6
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Sounds to me like you'd prefer the jaguar style switches
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Old 07-14-2019, 04:14 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason Brian Merrill View Post
I added a push pull pot to enable the neck pickup at all times so I can get the traditional neck/bridge pickup combo.
I did this same thing to my Strat but I used a mini toggle. I'm actually going to take it a step further. I'm going to add a stacked pot in the #2 tone slot. The bottom will act as a tone control for the bridge pickup and the top will act as a volume control for the neck pickup when the toggle switch is engaged to turn on the neck pickup. This way I can control how much of the neck pickup I want.
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Old 07-15-2019, 09:57 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Goldreap View Post
Without going into specifics about possible wirings the first thing to understand is that a 'super switch' is essentially two 5-way switches braced together in parallel that operate in tandem (from one slider knob) and are internally separate from each other electrically. Well, the one I have is.
IDK what you have, but this is not true of the actual SuperSwitch.


A standard strat 5-way is actually a DP3T switch almost identical to the the one found in a standard (two pickup) telecaster. The very first strats actually used exactly the same switches as the teles, and therefore could only activate one pickup at a time. But those are make-before-break switches, which means that in between positions there is a spot where both neighboring contacts are conducting to the pole at the same time. Somebody figured out you could wedge that old 3-way switch into the middle positions and get completely new tones. Then somebody else figured out a way to add detents to those positions and then about everybody started doing it and then Leo decided to start doing it just right at the factory.


The SuperSwitch is a true 4P5T switch where each position has it's very own lug, which isn't quite as convenient if you want standard strat sounds (it takes two poles just to switch the pickups and then you still need one for tone controls), but allows you to do a lot of things that a strat switch just plain can't.


Like most people said, though, you still only get 5 positions. You just get a bit more choice over what those positions are. A lot of people will use them in conjunction with one or more separate sort of "mode" switches which can give you more than one set of five tones.


Go over by GuitarNutz. There are scads of wiring ideas there, and a great group of really smart guys to help you figure out what you want, how to get it, and what went wrong when you tried to wire it up. I moderate a couple of the boards over there, though I kind of fell off a while back.

Last edited by ashcat_lt; 07-15-2019 at 10:02 PM.
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Old 07-16-2019, 01:58 AM   #9
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ashcat, good info ^^^^.
By 5-way I just meant 5-position (or 5 throw) and not specifically 'standard strat 5-way' but I can see that this needed clarification.
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