I'd like to assemble something like this for myself:


What components do I need to buy? Also, will this be suitable for a American elite strat? I want to drop in a set of fat 50s pickups while keep the original pickguard intact.

  • 1
    I'm not sure if I understand the question. If it's not clear that you need three pots, two caps, a five-way switch, and three pickups, then you might not have the prerequisite knowledge to DIY this. On the other hand, if you understand what each component does and you want to know what specific pots and switches to buy, then that question is off topic. One good way to understand how guitars are put together is to buy an extremely cheap one and take it apart. Jun 16, 2017 at 14:59
  • Used to play an elite - the only Strat I ever liked! The main problem you have is the pup switching, which isn't the usual 5-way slicer, as your elite should have 3 locking push buttons instead.
    – Tim
    Jun 16, 2017 at 15:07
  • @Tim I am not going to switch anything. I'll just take out the whole pickguard and pop in a new one, with new pickups loaded.
    – qed
    Jun 16, 2017 at 17:08
  • @ToddWilcox There are so many varieties of these things on the web I am not sure which ones would be appropriate for my situation. I am sure I can figure out the DIY part once I got all the necessary elements in hand.
    – qed
    Jun 16, 2017 at 17:11
  • What I mean is the switch which switches the different pups, not swapping anything! On the older elites, there was no 5 way switch, but 3 push buttons, one for each pup, on/off. A far better arrangement than the blade switch on 99% of other Strats. If you have this, and swap the scratchplate for an ordinary Strat 'plate, that's where you have problems. However, the 'elite' name has been resurrected, and the new ones have the same old 5-way switch, so maybe none of this is making sense here...
    – Tim
    Jun 16, 2017 at 21:40

1 Answer 1


In the case that you only want to keep the pickguard you need:

  • The pickups I would recommend would be 50 or 69 (I have the latter and I recommend them):



  • 1 switch 5 way

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  • 3 pots (or potentiometer) of 250k(resistance measurement) type logarithmics (usually come with their nuts to fix to the pickguard). enter image description here

  • 3 knob (plastic) with volume(x1) and tone inscription(x2)

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  • The wire should preferably be of a single spinning (the bottom in the image) and of fineness standard, you can acquire it in many stores.

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If it is possible it is also recommended that the wire is shielded but it is not strictly necessary. Usually the thin single wire do not come with this cover but you can take it out of other wire that you can get.

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This shielded is connected to ground.

  • You'll need a soldering and tin. enter image description here enter image description here

You can shielded the pickguard before you start. enter image description here

With regard to the wiring connections first treat the schemes that are reflected in the small manuals that accompany the pickups pack although they are often simply incorrectly indicated, so before closing your guitar with the screws you can test if they sound the pickups by putting the fretboard of another guitar over the pickups. Any doubt leave me in comments and luck with the fender of 50s.

  • You forgot to include a capacitor! I would recommend something with a value of 47 nF (or 0.047 uF as guitarists insist on using microfarads) , any make or type to be considered. I would also wire up a Strat with black and white waxed cloth-insulated wiring, purely for a traditional look. Also consider differentiating between log and linear taper pots for volume and tone controls. I disagree that 'single spinning' (sic) wire is necessary. I use multi-strand wire in all my instruments. Wire with a shielded braid is more commonly seen in Gibson instruments but will possibly reduce interference.
    – ABragg
    Aug 7, 2017 at 12:58
  • I certainly forgot to make any comments about it about capacitor. Anyway this depends a lot on the tastes, in fact if you do not have an established preference and you have a lot of extra equipment it may be better not to add capacitor at first. Some interesting links: youtube.com/watch?v=drpL0pacXBw youtube.com/watch?v=wmhNgW5BgGA Aug 7, 2017 at 16:13
  • In my opinion is preferable the single spinning and wire with a shielded braid (certainly it is more common in gibson les paul) but since this does not affect the characteristics of the sound but only affects the possible noise I would recommend it always. Anyway, I accept your opinion. Aug 7, 2017 at 16:17

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