Unmastered Tone Control
Let's say your guitar has
a master tone control, but you only want it to affect the neck pickup and
leave the bridge pickup be. This is the mod you're looking for.
Sure, a master tone control offers
the convenience or fewer knobs, but at the same time, that "one size fits
all" approach doesn't always work for every pickup combination. Strats,
most Les Pauls, SGs, and the majority of Gibson two-pickup hollowbodies
tend to provide individual tone controls for each pickup. In fact,
Strats in particular acknowledge what I'm about to get to: Most folks don't
want a tone control on their bridge pickup. They like it bright and
clangy. I'm no different.
I came up with this mod when I bought my
Ibanez RG350. It's your standard '90s metal guitar (admittedly, I
didn't get around to buying one until 2009), so I tend to play it much
like I do my Les Pauls: Neck pickup for lead and bridge pickup for chords.
I like the tone all the way down for the leads (most of the time) and all
the way up for the crunchy palm-muted power chords. The problem with
the master tone control is there's no way to switch between the two without
adjusting the tone control each time I switch, something that requires
and extra step when I'm already trying to squeeze every last 32nd note
|How it's done
This mod disassociates the tone
control from the bridge pickup so that it primarily or exclusively affects
the neck pickup.
This works great on Telecasters in particular,
where you want the stinging twang of the bridge pickup and then switch
to a warm, smooth neck pickup (especially if you have a humbucker in that
position with the standard single coil in the bridge.
Instead of the tone knob being connected
to the master volume knob, you're going to move it to the lugs on the pickup
selector switch where the neck pickup is connected. In the schematic
below, I disconnect the green wire (the bad connection portion crossed
out) and connect it as fuschia one is. I drew two colors, but all
I'm saying is to move one end of the same wire from one place to the other.