General tech questions

Can I rewire a Gretsch without having to take out the pickups/remov…

1

I'm planning to put in new pots and a new selector on my Electromatic. I replaced the pickups about a year ago and I'm not too keen on having to take them out again. I'm afraid I might strip the holes.

Would it be possible to do the rewiring through the f-holes, or will the wires be too short to do this?

3

Hi! I have a 5120 from January 2012.

4

Limuz,

Please know been down this avenue many, many times. Do yourself a favor by removing the strings, pickguard, & pickups to accomplish the task at hand. By doing so, it's way easier to access & position the parts to solder. Yes, the volume & tone controls may be pulled through the lower bout sound hole. However, to replace the pu selector switch, the easiest access is through the neck pu cavity. Therefore, the strings will need to be removed anyway.

Good luck!

5

It's possible, but it ain't gonna be easy.... Even if you use the vinyl tubing trick. Most of the time, even using tubing works best through one of the pickup routs.

6

Use the pup hole for rewiring. Just put a thin match, preferably with the head removed in the hole and you're good to go.

7

Alright thanks for the replies all! If the pickups have to be removed, I'll wait a little longer before doing this. I put on a fresh set of strings a few weeks ago, would be a waste to take 'em off again.

8

I just cut a hole in the back. Easy!

9

I just cut a hole in the back. Easy!

– crowbone

Gretsch called it an 'access panel"

10

I just cut a hole in the back. Easy!

– crowbone

This or simply listen to Joe C.

11

If it's a guitar you care about enough to upgrade, do it right, like Joe C says, by pulling the harness through one of the pickup cavities.

Working on and pulling the parts through the f-holes risks the possibility of scratching the finish, dropping solder on the body, and damaging the electronics as you try to slide them through. Not that I know from experience... ;)

12

Be careful with the Bigsby when you have the strings off. First the spring comes out, and any shims. Then it’s going to bang around swinging from the hinge every time you turn the guitar over - which is going to happen more than you think. Find a way to pad or immobilize it.

(I take it off to make a better opportunity to polish out all the surface scratches and hazing the guitar has accumulated while all the other hardware is off - but then watch out for the ground wire getting pulled into the guitar.)

13

Yeah, whenever I restring the guitar I tape all parts down with painters tape. Appreciate the heads up

14

I wish I could make strings last for weeks!

15

Limuz,

Please know been down this avenue many, many times. Do yourself a favor by removing the strings, pickguard, & pickups to accomplish the task at hand. By doing so, it's way easier to access & position the parts to solder. Yes, the volume & tone controls may be pulled through the lower bout sound hole. However, to replace the pu selector switch, the easiest access is through the neck pu cavity. Therefore, the strings will need to be removed anyway.

Good luck!

– Joe Carducci/Gretsch Guitars

Thanks everyone for the advice. I did the job today with the help of a friend. We took the bridge PU out and did the work through there. The tube-kit that TV Jones offers really helps. Glad I did it this way.

16

I love a story with a happy ending, wiring archtops can be a right pain.


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