Standard Stratocaster schematic

Components pictured:
  • 3 single coil pickups
  • 3 pots 250k Ohms (these need not be push-pull as they are not required)
  • 0.05uF cap (the orange thingie in the middle)
  • standard 5-way switch
  • Output jack

About the schematic
This is a standard configuration with one volume knob and a tone knob each for the neck and middle pickups.

Depending on the manufacturer, different 5-way switches have different configurations of contacts.  This diagram doesn't specify which way is "up" or which direction is forward (i.e., position #1 vs. position #5, not that anyone is ever consistent in using these designations anyway).  When you prepare to assemble your own circuit, use a multi-meter to test the continuity between the common of each pole and the other lugs so you can determine which position selects the neck pickup, etc.

In this diagram, the gray wires go to ground.  Other colors were chosen arbitrarily.  Different pickups will have different color codes for the wires.  If you wish to add a 4-conductor humbucker, consult the manufacturer's website for which wires feed from which coils.

Wherever you see a ground symbol next to a potentiometer, the wire should be grounded to the metal on the back of the pot.  After that, all of the grounds should all go to one point to avoid ground loops.

For the sake of simplicity, the string ground is not pictured in this diagram (but you absolutely need to connect it!).  See the "All About Grounding" page to learn more.

Note: The image above is larger than displayed.  If you wish to print it, save it and resize as desired to take advantage of the actual resolution.



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