Grateful Dead Music Forum

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 #132168  by ccw3432
 Tue Sep 10, 2013 10:03 am
I always enjoy reading about builds and guitar modification here, so I thought I'd share this project. I recently acquired an Aria Pro II YS500. It's a well built Japanese guitar from the Matsumoto factory. It's a 24 fret maple neck through, with ash wings. The scale length is 25.5". The electronics and pickups are not original to the guitar and are pretty junky. I purchased it planning to replace all the innards anyway. I'll be putting a Super 2 in the middle and a UGB to get those Jerry sounds. I'll be putting in a few personal preferences as well...

I'm just getting started but here are the before pictures.


 #132169  by Jon S.
 Tue Sep 10, 2013 10:49 am
Looks like a worthy project! Curious, about how much does it weigh?
 #132183  by ccw3432
 Tue Sep 10, 2013 5:16 pm
Jon S. wrote:Looks like a worthy project! Curious, about how much does it weigh?
I pulled the electronics out but according to my scale designed to weigh human beings it is roughly 6.5 pounds without the electronics.
 #132211  by Jon S.
 Wed Sep 11, 2013 12:44 pm
Less than I'd thought! :smile:
 #132483  by ccw3432
 Fri Sep 20, 2013 12:18 am
Well I thought I'd have this project done by now. Between work and more importantly playing music I haven't had enough time to finish it. Hopefully tomorrow I'll finish the wiring if all goes well. I have the pickups in and about half way done with the wiring. Here's what the plan is:

Super 2 in the Middle
SD Pearly Gates in the Bridge and Neck
Each pickup has it's own switch for Humbucker/Single
Waldo UGB
Master Volume
Tone for Middle
Shared tone for neck and bridge

One thing I'm excited about is the Freeway 6 position switch. It feels just like a Gibson SG/LP switch but more options. It's basically two Gibson style three way switches in line with each other. when it's on the left side I wired to work like a standard Gibson - neck, neck and bridge, bridge. When on the right it selects neck and middle, middle, and middle and bridge. It allows for every position except all three and it's in a configuration that I think will be easy to adjust to from a Gibson switch. The switch goes up and down or left and right and seems to be well built. Here's the wiring diagram.
 #132486  by broesau
 Fri Sep 20, 2013 7:38 am
I've got a Freeway 6-way switch in a project guitar I made. It is a dual humbucker w/ master vol & tone. What I like about it is I don't have to drill any additional holes for toggles to coil tap. Looks like a fun build, you've got a lot of wires to solder,don't burn your fingertips!
 #132506  by ccw3432
 Sat Sep 21, 2013 6:22 pm
I finished it up yesterday! I'm REAL happy with the sound. I need to spend more time with the pickup combinations, but I'm really liking it so far. The super 2 produces the goodness that I'd expect in the middle position and I'm really liking the Pearly Gates in the neck too. I'll be playing it with my band for the first time on Monday, and I think it's going to go well.



 #132516  by ccw3432
 Sun Sep 22, 2013 9:08 am
Jon, I forgot to mention it is now weighing in at 8 pounds with the electronics on board.
 #132517  by James-T
 Sun Sep 22, 2013 10:19 am
Hey CW,

Nice work!

What year is that model?

Any sound clips?


 #132526  by ccw3432
 Sun Sep 22, 2013 10:14 pm
Thanks James. I believe it is a 1980 model but I'm not certain. I'll try to get some sound clips posted soon. I'm still playing around a little bit with pickup heights. I'm absolutely loving the sound I'm getting.

I've noticed that both of the linear 500k tone posts don't give me much adjustment. From 1 to 3 the treble is rolled way off and then from 4 to 10 it sounds like it is on 10. Are others finding this from linear tone pots? I may switch these out at some point to an audio taper.