P-Model Megaswitch Instructions

For 2 humbuckers


This 5-way lever-action switch duplicates the combinations of Paul Reed Smith’s rotary control.

Before installing the Megaswitch

For the P-model Megaswitch to work properly, the pickups must be correctly installed. The outside coils of the pickups must have opposite magnetic polarity. To check this, place one pickup over the other. If the pickups repel each other, the coils have the same polarity. The pickups will attract each other if their polarities are opposite.

Most humbuckers come with color coded leads specific to the manufacturer which indicate the starts and finishes of each coil. To identify the wires leading to each coil of a humbucker if you don't know the color codes, connect the wires to an analog multimeter (set to 200mV) and slightly touch the polepieces of each coil with an iron-bearing object (a screwdriver or allen wrench). If you get a swing on the multimeter, you have identified that coil’s leads.

When you have finished analyzing and soldering the pickups, certain sounds may be “thin,” or out of phase. In this case, exchange the hot wire of the affected humbucker with its ground connection; the shield wire remains grounded. If the correct coils are connected but the sound is still too thin, change the 4-conductor wiring of the affected humbucker as follows: Solder the hot and ground wires together as a new coil-tap. Use the former coil-tap wires as the new hot and ground. Recheck the assignment of the wires to the coils, and connect them according to the wiring schematics in the following pages.

Most guitars with lever-action switches have a layer of conductive foil between the pots and the pickguard or in the control cavity in order to achieve proper grounding of the electronic components. If your guitar does not have this you will want to apply one of the following techniques to make sure the pots are connected to ground:

  1. Apply conductive shielding foil around the area of the pots and switch before installing components.
  2. Apply shielding paint before installing components.
  3. Run a ground wire connecting the pots and switch to ground.

Tone control wiring tips

When installing the P-model Megaswitch, you often must rewire the tone circuit. If the instrument will have a single or master tone control, wire the volume and tone pots as shown.

Master tone circuit

Install the switch from the underside of the pickguard with the circuit board toward the center of the guitar.

Always mount the Megaswitch with the printed circuit board closest to the pickups and control pots. Insert the wires from the non-printed side of the plate, and solder from the printed side.

Solder ground leads and shielding wires to the back of the volume pot.

Upside down switch

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