Friday, April 1, 2011

RG Strat – How to Wire a Stratocaster in Ibanez Style

In this article, I would like to show you an quite simple method of wiring a Stratocaster or a Fat Strat guitar, to reach some functions of the Ibanez RG construction. It's a great proposition for all fans of Fender Strat shape and feel, who would like to get some modern, more Ibanez-like tone and functions.



The wiring is based on the HSH pickup set – there are humbuckers on the neck and the bridge position. In this project, the Fat Strat guitars are a little bit better than the common Stratocasters, because of the full size humb. Of course, there are very good single-coil-size humbucking pickups on the market, so the mod can be done in both Fender models.

The Stratocaster is a 22-fret guitar, so the neck pickup is in a different place than in the 24-fret RG. It's got some impact on a tone. The pickup size is also influential, especially on the neck position.

I used the Seymour Duncan humbucker wire-color-code: black=hot, green=ground


There are only two potentiometers, like in the RG. The number of pots has got a matter. More pots usually means less treble – even if all knobs are on „10”.

In a common Stratocaster guitars, all pots are in action only on the 4th selector positions. It's got 250K per pot. The Ibanez always works with two 500K. This pot value is much better for humbuckers. A humbucker with three or even two 250K pots sounds a little bit flat, with lack of treble.

Pickup selector

The guitar pickup selector is a very important thing here. I used the schematic of the common Fender 5-way SW. You need to wire it in the right way, to get all Ibanez RG configurations:

1 – the bridge humbucker
2 – the north coil from the bridge humbucker and the middle SC pickup
3 – the middle SC
4 – The middle SC and and the north coil from the neck humbucker
5 – the neck humbucker

The humbuckers are split, when the red wires are connected to the ground.