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Author Topic: JJ Custom Works Free-Way Switch in Parker Fly Artist  (Read 3387 times)

Offline MFenkner

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JJ Custom Works Free-Way Switch in Parker Fly Artist
« on: September 16, 2015, 10:37:40 PM »
I recently installed a very cool six-way switch in my Parker Fly Artist (refined) I thought I'd tell you guys about. First some background...

I previously wired my dual-humbucker Fly Artist with two three-way switches to allow me to do coil splitting while selecting the inner or outer coils (see old thread for details: http://forums.parkerguitars.com/index.php?topic=11985.0). Since the pickups' magnetic polarity are N/S & N/S, when I'd select the inside or outside coils, it would be hum-canceling and have a sound like a strat or tele. I loved those settings more than the regular humbuckers, and used them most. But in order to wire the guitar like that, I had to remove the switch for the piezo pickups, so in time I looked for an alternative solution that would allow with to add back the piezo pickup wiring.

I first came across the standard Free-Way switch, which is a six-way switch with thousands of possibilities, but none of them allowed me to wire the guitar the way I wanted. Then I discovered JJ Custom Works had a special version that did exactly what I wanted, allowing me to choose the inner or outer coils in parallel (and also the inner coils in series), along with the standard three-way humbucker settings. Here's a diagram of the settings:



I wired up the switch today and the results are amazing. The switch is so easy to use, and easily unlocks three new sounds. I've attached a couple of pictures below showing the wiring of the guitar, first without the pickups wired, and then with the pickups wired.  Sorry I forgot to snap a picture from the front, but basically the guitar looks stock.

Check out JJ's website if you're interested in more details about the switch: http://www.jjcustomworks.com/

A couple caveats I'll warn you about though:

- For optimal results, on some guitars you might need to reverse the magnet in one of your pickups (or flip the pickup), depending on their magnetic polarity. With the Gen 2 Dimarzio pickups, it's not necessary; I can't comment on other Fly pickups (though I have a set of Gen 1's lying around I could check the polarity on).

- Figuring our the wiring for your specific pickups might take some time since you'll need to take into account the magnetic polarity of your pickups and the wire color scheme used by the pickup manufacturer. I spent about an hour thinking in through and verifying my plan before I actually wired the guitar. If you're using Dimarzio's, I can share the wiring - otherwise, it'll take some work on your behalf, and if you don't have a fair amount of experience wiring guitars, I'd recommend getting a professional to do it.

I give the above caveats for in case you're looking to use the switch on a different guitar than I am, but if you have a refined Fly with Dimarzio pickups, it's actually quite easy to install (assuming you have some experience with guitar wiring).

P.S. I have no affiliation with JJ Cutom Works or Free-Way switches; I just love the product.



 

Re: JJ Custom Works Free-Way Switch in Parker Fly Artist

Offline Nefarius

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Re: JJ Custom Works Free-Way Switch in Parker Fly Artist
« Reply #1 on: September 17, 2015, 04:36:56 AM »
That looks pretty much like the perfect all-purpose setup for dual humbucker guitars, very nice.
Any chance of getting some sound clips? I'd love to hear what your Artist sounds like wired like that.
And I'm sure I'm not the only one.

Greetings...
Nef

Re: JJ Custom Works Free-Way Switch in Parker Fly Artist

Offline Bagatell

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Re: JJ Custom Works Free-Way Switch in Parker Fly Artist
« Reply #2 on: September 17, 2015, 08:24:21 AM »
Any chance of getting some sound clips?
Nef

+1

Re: JJ Custom Works Free-Way Switch in Parker Fly Artist

Offline sybersitizen

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'01 Fly Deluxe|'69 SG Standard|'69 EB-3|Pignose Strat|Savannah SGO-16CE|Glen Burton GE47|Dean Vendetta 7-String|Loog 3-String|Fishman Aura Spectrum|Roland Amplifiers

Re: JJ Custom Works Free-Way Switch in Parker Fly Artist

Offline HEADKNOCKER

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Re: JJ Custom Works Free-Way Switch in Parker Fly Artist
« Reply #4 on: September 17, 2015, 01:25:38 PM »
Pretty Cool switch there..
Here's another Link
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kcwSKqSZ0f8
"JUST LIKE A DRAGONFLY"

Re: JJ Custom Works Free-Way Switch in Parker Fly Artist

Offline jb63

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Re: JJ Custom Works Free-Way Switch in Parker Fly Artist
« Reply #5 on: September 17, 2015, 01:48:31 PM »
By far the coolest post of the year.

Re: JJ Custom Works Free-Way Switch in Parker Fly Artist

Offline Mephistopheles

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Re: JJ Custom Works Free-Way Switch in Parker Fly Artist
« Reply #6 on: September 17, 2015, 02:40:27 PM »
 :o  :o :o :o  Where did you get this?  I've just sent a request to see if I can order one of these and I've scoured the internets and I can't find it. JJ Custom Works doesn't have a shopping cart for U.S. Customers.  I want it! SHUT UP AND TAKE MY MONEY JJ CUSTOM!  I've got a 96 Fly Deluxe that's still my axe of choice.  Everything else seems like I might as well be playing a shovel.  This is will bring new life into my ole' faithful green machine. :D



Re: JJ Custom Works Free-Way Switch in Parker Fly Artist

Offline sybersitizen

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'01 Fly Deluxe|'69 SG Standard|'69 EB-3|Pignose Strat|Savannah SGO-16CE|Glen Burton GE47|Dean Vendetta 7-String|Loog 3-String|Fishman Aura Spectrum|Roland Amplifiers

Re: JJ Custom Works Free-Way Switch in Parker Fly Artist

Offline HEADKNOCKER

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Re: JJ Custom Works Free-Way Switch in Parker Fly Artist
« Reply #8 on: September 17, 2015, 04:31:35 PM »
That's super neat..
The Ultra Switch has 28 terminals for almost endless switching options..
The wiring diagrams for both switches are on Stew-Macs pages in PDF format..

I really like the 9 tones I get from my factory Les Paul M-III & this Free-Way switch should be in any humbucking guitar with four wire pickups..

"JUST LIKE A DRAGONFLY"

Re: JJ Custom Works Free-Way Switch in Parker Fly Artist

Offline Mephistopheles

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Re: JJ Custom Works Free-Way Switch in Parker Fly Artist
« Reply #9 on: September 18, 2015, 08:42:36 AM »
Thanks for the link.  I'm ordering one now!

Re: JJ Custom Works Free-Way Switch in Parker Fly Artist

Offline MFenkner

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Re: JJ Custom Works Free-Way Switch in Parker Fly Artist
« Reply #10 on: September 18, 2015, 03:15:53 PM »
Thanks for the link.  I'm ordering one now!

Wait!  I think the one on StewMac is different.  There are three models, two which StewMac sells and one which JJCustomWorks and BareKnucklePickups sells.  I sent an email to JJCustomWorks and he sent me a PayPal invoice for 35 pounds.

Check this URL for info about the three versions: http://www.freewayswitch.com/products/products.html.  On the website, you can find more information on the 3X3-03 and 3X3-05 versions under "Download PDFs", but you can only find more details on the one you want 3X3-04 on JJCustomWorks website.

The other models allow you to do some cool pickup combinations, but not the inner & outer coils in parallel, for which you need the JJCustomWorks switch - but who knows, maybe you'd prefer other pickup combinations.

Any chance of getting some sound clips?

Hopefully the youtube videos other people linked to help.  It's a bit of a project for me to get everything wired up to mic & record my amp since I haven't been doing any recording for a while.
« Last Edit: September 18, 2015, 03:38:54 PM by MFenkner »
 

Re: JJ Custom Works Free-Way Switch in Parker Fly Artist

Offline Big Swifty

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Re: JJ Custom Works Free-Way Switch in Parker Fly Artist
« Reply #11 on: September 18, 2015, 08:38:12 PM »
Hey, nice find MFenkner! I tried one of the original freeway switches many years ago, but decided against it in the end.

However, looks like it's time to blow the dust off the ol' soldering iron...again!

Look out little Fly, here i come..

MWAHAHAhahahahaaa....

What's the build quality like? The original Freeway switch is quite flimsy, looks like these switches are a complete mechanical re-design

Big Swifty
94 Fly Deluxe
2010 DF 524
The system can't get you in your dreams.

Re: JJ Custom Works Free-Way Switch in Parker Fly Artist

Offline MFenkner

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Re: JJ Custom Works Free-Way Switch in Parker Fly Artist
« Reply #12 on: September 19, 2015, 02:02:25 PM »
The switch feels quite sturdy and well made.  On thing Jeff @ JJ wrote in an email about the durability was "the switch was tested with over a million movements and the result was no wear on the internal construction and terminals so be assured, it will stand the test of time."

Mark
 

Re: JJ Custom Works Free-Way Switch in Parker Fly Artist

Offline Big Swifty

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Re: JJ Custom Works Free-Way Switch in Parker Fly Artist
« Reply #13 on: September 19, 2015, 05:56:59 PM »
Thanks!

"... a million movements.." so that'b like your average one off pub gig right?

 8)

Big Swifty
94 Fly Deluxe
2010 DF 524
The system can't get you in your dreams.

Re: JJ Custom Works Free-Way Switch in Parker Fly Artist

Offline Nefarius

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Re: JJ Custom Works Free-Way Switch in Parker Fly Artist
« Reply #14 on: September 21, 2015, 08:23:38 AM »
I should have been more specific:
Sound clips with a Parker. ;D

A big recording session isn't necessary, just something quick and dirty that's enough to get a feel for the different settings.

Greetings...
Nef