About a year back, I found myself in the enviable position of being able to build my dream guitar. While looking for the proper pickups I ran across some pretty amazing and seemingly underwhelming parts that would eventually make it into that rig. Before I committed to using the new (unproven to me) technology for…
The three most-used modes for the P-Rails pickup are series humbucker, P-90 mode and rail mode. If these are the only three modes we want to use, the wiring is quite simple.
The P-Rails is one of Seymour Duncan’s most versatile pickups. It’s a humbucker, a P-90 and a single-coil rail pickup in one. However, to access all these sounds it’s necessary to do some more complicated wiring then you might do if you’re just putting a normal humbucker in your guitar – even if you’ve already wired a coil split before. The fact that some players go for a fourth sound – both coils wired in parallel – only adds to the potential for wiring confusion.
A brief summary: P-Rails are a special pickup design that incorporates two different pickup types: a P-90 and a rail single coil. The Triple Shot Mounting Ring incorporates two 2-position switches per ring, that allows either the P-90 alone, the single coil alone, both coils in parallel and both pickups in series, like a traditional humbucker. Combined with a 3-way pickup switch, that is a lot of sounds!
P-Rails are capable of some very diverse sounds, and Triple Shot Mounting Rings allow dozens of potential sounds available – even more if each pickup is wired to its own volume and tone controls. My particular guitar has a master volume and master tone as well as a 3-way switch.
Ever since I started playing guitar, I was always drawn towards the Les Paul – the three-pickup version in particular. The two-pickup guitar always lacked something in the looks department. I still can’t figure out what, but it feels a bit unnatural to me. When I finally got a three-pickup Les Paul Custom in black, I was totally taken by the looks. It was to define all other guitars I would buy (or sell) from that moment on! The only thing that absolutely didn’t work for me was the wiring.
Seymour Duncan Artists and Their Pickups Mike Aiken “These P-Rails really sing- For my Country/ Roots style of playing I’ve needed the ability to switch from a Tele/Strat like twang with plenty of clean punch to driving Humbuckers for gritty slide and to be able to do it in the same tune. The P-Rails and…