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Just upgraded the Tone Caps in my SG - WOW!

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As the title says, I just switched out the tone capacitors in my G400 SG for some .047 Sprague Orange drops, and it's defnitely made a noticeable difference. Makes the tone controls much more useable, I can roll them just about right off and it doesn't sound awful and muddy, it gets that kind of Clapton-esque 'woman tone'. This is especially good on the bridge pickup, which I'm never fond of on any guitar. I can roll the tone off so it's not shrill, but being the hotter wound pickup it still wails nicely. And if I roll the tone off while using the neck pickup, it gets a nice fuzzy tone. Great simple little mod that took me all of about ten minutes and yielded not drastic, but definitely noticeable results. Cheap too!

 

Just bought a Celestion Vintage 30 speaker for my Classic 30 too, so it should sound extra great once I get that fitted and up and running!

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Good Show...on both counts! I have a Vintage 30, in both my Blues Jr. and HR Deluxe, and they're awesome speakers.

 

And...being able to roll off the tone, on one's guitar, without it dropping to mud, is great, huh? I've found, that I can get almost a 335 tone,

from the bridge pickup, on my SG and Les Paul, by just rolling off the bridge tone control, to about 6-7....just enough,

to warm it up and round it off...the way a 335 does, naturally because of the semi-hollow body. The SG still has a bit

more "mid-range" sound, but it's still WAY usable!

 

CB

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I did that to one of my epi's a while back, and could not belive the difference it made. That is a great upgrade to make - cheap, easy and effective.

I'll bet that new speaker is going to make that peavey sound sweet!

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Guest icantbuyafender

Niiiiice

 

Ive been campaining .047uf orange drops for a while now. Some say that it makes the tone toooooo muddy, but i like it.

 

I use them on the neck and .022uf on the bridge so that even when its rolled off, its still got some bite.

 

glad you like it! They really do help just enough without being too much.

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Yeah, sure is great. The G400 pickups are probably the least muddy Epiphone pickups there are, if you have the one controls above halfway. But below that is not so good. But now, as I said, I can pretty much go right down without excessive mud, just plenty of warm fuzz and that kind of Woman tone. Really good stuff.

 

Probably going to do my Firebird too, and drop some .022 caps in my new Strat. The Firebird will be a tad more difficult, there are 4 capacitors there and the cavity is much smaller, so the wiring is all very close together and a bit tricky to navigate! I'm getting more into doing these little upgrades and things now, and am not so aprehensive about it. I don't really think the pots need upgrading on any of my Epiphones, nor the strat, that has high quality ones already being a Deluxe Strat. The switch and jack in the SG appear to be switchcraft ones already, and I don't believe it's been modified either, so that's a bonus! I haven't checked out the Firebird, but I have no problems with it either.

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Put .05s in mine and it made quite a difference. As you said, it makes the tone knobs much more usable.

I don't believe they're putting Switchcraft switches in any Epis as far as I know.

My switch worked great for about 1 year, and then started crapping out on me slowly until I had to put a switchcraft in.

My G400 is a 2006.

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My G400 doesn't have the sealed switch like most Epiphones have, it has the Gibson type one with the 3 blades or contact points. it may have been upgraded, I don't know. When I got the G400 the jack nut was loose, so perhaps someone did do a bit of fiddling. Sure doesn't look like it though

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Anyone got a wiring diagram for a 3 min humbucker Firebird? I wired the new capacitors in just as the old ones were but then nothing seemed to work. So I wired them as I wired the SG ones and now everything is working, but it's really muddy. Did I do something wrong, or are .047s the wrong kind of capacitor for mini humbuckers? Seymour Duncan doesn't seem to think so. Perhaps I should put in some .022s? I'd guess the latter. Everything seems to be working as it should so I guess the .047s just don't agree with these mini humbuckers. No biggie, easy fix, I'll swap em out again tomorrow.

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Did I do something wrong' date=' or are .047s the wrong kind of capacitor for mini humbuckers? Seymour Duncan doesn't seem to think so. Perhpas I should put in some .022s? I'd guess the latter. Everything seems to be working as it should so I guess the .047s just don't agree with these mini humbuckers.

[/quote']

 

Generally 0.047 caps are used for single coils (to tame the treble) and 0.022 for Humbuckers. 0.047s for a HB will (again generally) sound overly dark, YMMV.

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I guess I'll change them to .022s then. Seymour Duncan recommends .047s for humbuckers, but I guess they're not so good for mini humbuckers, possibly because they're more of a vintage output. Like I said, not a big deal, it's an easy fix.

 

Perhaps I'll stick with a .047 for the strat then, I don't really want to increase the treble.

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Are you ok with the sound you're getting from the PUs themselves. Meaning volume and tone on 10?

If so, you just don't like the rolloff you're getting with the current cap/tonepot right? So try 0.01 or lower (lower values will decrease the treble rolloff). Other than that I'd say check the schematic again or maybe change the pots to a higher resistance value.

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Even on 10 it's muddy as hell, wasn't at all like that with the old ceramic capacitors. I don't have a schematic. I can't find one for 3 mini humbuckers with 3 volumes, one tone and a 3 way switch. The pots are 500K Alphas.

 

If anyone can provide a wiring diagram for this configuration, that'd be great.

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By the way, the Firebird has 4 capacitors, one on each pot. Is this normal? I thought capactiors were just fot tone pots? That's how it was before I changed the caps, so I just wired it the same. Some diagrams I've seen of a 3 pickup Les Paul with 3 volums and 1 tone just have the capacitor on the tone pot.

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By the way' date=' the Firebird has 4 capacitors, one on each pot. Is this normal?

[/quote']

 

Hmm.. a cap on the volumepot indicates (in all likelyhood) a *treblebleed and is very unusual for a standard configuration. It's more a aftermarket mod. I'm very curious as to how it was originally wired.

 

*With a treblebleed you add a cap(anywhere between 560pF-1nF) between the "hot" and "wiper" of the volumepot, retaining the trebles when you roll down the volume.

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Guest icantbuyafender

just put one orange drop on the tone. if you put orange drops on the volumes that could be the source of your mud, bud.

 

try a single .047uf (since you like that value) on the one tone pot.

 

don't worry about that treble bleed stuff. what it does is retain presence and highs when you roll back the volume. I personally ride my volume to go from cleanish to gritty. the treble bleed doesn't let me get the same feel I'm used to when I dial down the volume, so I just go bare back on the volumes and leave the caps for the tone pot.

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That sounds like a good idea, and I wondered whether that might work. I shall give that a go today, and hopefully all will be well again!

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Bah, can't get the bloody thing to work now! The bridge pickup doesn't seem to be working at all. It onl works with the switch in the neck/middle, or middle/bridge positions, and in the middle/bridge position the volume control is working backwards. I have no clue what I've done, tried everything. It would certainly help if I had a diagram to work from.

 

I might just get some new pots and wire the whole thing like a 3 pickup Les Paul. Funtionally it'll be work the same as always, but the wiring will be much simpler, tidier, and easier to work on if I need or want to in future.

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'Fraid not mate. The Firebird wiring diagram seems to be a little bit elusive. I guess it's not super common to have 3 humbuckers, a 3 way switch, 3 volumes, and 1 tone pot. I suppose I could contact Gibson and see if they can help.

 

I think I will just wire it as a 3 pickup Les Paul is wired, none of this complicated treble bleed stuff.

 

A question on grounding before I tackle this though. I attach all the ground wires from the pickups to a common earth, such as the back of one of the pots, and then attach a wire from that to the bridge, or to a screw in lug, or both to ground everything, correct? And the pots contacting the conductive shielding paint or tape in the cavity ground themselves, true?

 

Then the rest is a matter of following the diagram and putting the wires and capacitor in the correct places.

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