Crap pots in Squier Standard Tele?

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robgilmorobgilmo Frets: 1097
I have noticed is the tone pot sweep seems to be a very very gentle curve from bright for a good 3/4 of the sweep then when there is about a quarter turn left it curves steeply to the dark side, I think this is making it hard to dial in the guitars tone properly. Is this normal for a Squier? Is it common to swap the pots? The volume isn't as bad but its not a constant curve either. They are the small post in this, tiny little 250k things, about the size of a penny, would fender pots be a good alternative?

Also, the tone has a red wire going to a tag on the pot but the Black , what must be the ground is soldered directly onto the pot body then through a cap to the middle tag, is this normal?
I shall try and get some pics up tomorrow evening.
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  • FunkfingersFunkfingers Frets: 3123
    edited February 14
    The wire with black insulation, soldered to the tone pot chassis is part of the overall grounding circuit.

    The wire with red insulation carries the signal between the volume pot input and the tone pot input. 

    The "steep" curve of the Squier tone controls is a combination of the resistance track of the pots and the value of the capacitor. Linear and logarithmic (AKA audio) tapers respond differently. The larger the value of the capacitor, the lower the cut-off frequency at which the tone control acts.

    Low budget pots tend to be less responsive, regardless of their supposed resistance taper type.

    Changing to USA-made pots could prove tricky. The holes through the metal control plate will be too small for most pot shafts. Of course, this could be all the excuse that you need to opt for USA-made push-pull pots. These should pass through the existing holes. The switches concealed beneath the rotary controls would permit numerous interesting circuit options.
    "It's no wonder the Pacific Ocean is blue."
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  • impmannimpmann Frets: 7274
    Standard pots are pretty rubbish in my experience.
    A capacitor is a capacitor and normally it’s the right value in a Fender/Squier. 
    Drilling the plate the accept bigger US pots isn’t that hard but you do need some special tools to do it - a good bench vice (wrap the plate in masking tape to prevent marks) and a stepped hole cutting drill bit. Or buy a replacement plate with the right sized holes - beware that some Squiers have plates of a different size though. AxesRUs has quite a good guide on their website.

    In my experience, a Squier Tele can be massively improved by proper pots and switch.
    Never Ever Bloody Anything Ever.

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  • ICBMICBM Frets: 31574
    It may be a linear pot, but even if it’s supposedly a Log, many cheap Log pots are actually made using two sections of linear track - either will do what you’re finding. The volume is probably the same but it’s not as noticeable.

    You need decent quality Log pots, but as Funkfingers said, USA-made pots won’t fit without drilling the control plate out. There are good full-size pots with the far-east 8mm bushing size - Alpha for example.

    (Some people do prefer a linear pot for the volume, but even then it’s worth improving the quality.)
    "Take these three items, some WD-40, a vise grip, and a roll of duct tape. Any man worth his salt can fix almost any problem with this stuff alone."
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  • Flanging_FredFlanging_Fred Frets: 1606
    edited February 14
    I had the same issue with my Vintage tele.

    I normally use CTS pots when upgrading but because of the smaller shaft size and the modest value of the instrument, I decided to use Alpha pots instead.

    I've got to say that I was perfectly happy with the result, it was much improved over the rather nasty original ones and the tone pot became far more useful. I'd certainly be happy to use them again on lower cost 'import/metric' guitars.
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  • robgilmorobgilmo Frets: 1097
    Are fender pots 10 mil then guys?
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  • munckeemunckee Frets: 1246
    My squier standard had 500k pots in, which i thought came with it originally.  I rewired with 250.
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  • ICBMICBM Frets: 31574
    robgilmo said:
    Are fender pots 10 mil then guys?
    3/8", which is 9.525mm.

    munckee said:
    My squier standard had 500k pots in, which i thought came with it originally.
    A lot of them did, I'm not sure why.
    "Take these three items, some WD-40, a vise grip, and a roll of duct tape. Any man worth his salt can fix almost any problem with this stuff alone."
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  • impmannimpmann Frets: 7274
    ICBM said:
    .

    munckee said:
    My squier standard had 500k pots in, which i thought came with it originally.
    A lot of them did, I'm not sure why.
    Probably an attempt at clarity from the dreadful pickups. It didn't work.


    Never Ever Bloody Anything Ever.

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  • ICBMICBM Frets: 31574
    impmann said:

    Probably an attempt at clarity from the dreadful pickups. It didn't work.
    No, it just makes them muddy *and* harsh... a difficult trick, but they did manage it!
    "Take these three items, some WD-40, a vise grip, and a roll of duct tape. Any man worth his salt can fix almost any problem with this stuff alone."
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  • robgilmorobgilmo Frets: 1097
    Arnt 500k for humbuckers? I have had a word at work and our machine shop can drill the plate, can you guys please give me a heads up on what pots I need, the Fender parts shop lists quite a few different ones.
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  • impmannimpmann Frets: 7274
    250k CTS log is the original fitment.

    Fender actually do wiring kits with a US switch, the right value cap and pots if you aren’t sure.
    Never Ever Bloody Anything Ever.

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  • robgilmorobgilmo Frets: 1097
    I have had a look but cant find any wiring kits from Fender, cant see them on their site either.
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