Monday, February 27, 2017


The black beauty (that's what the "BLK" stands for) featured in this post came in for a string change, general setup and electronics check. Kindly note that the electronics configuration is non-stock. The passive neck humbucker, 3-way toggle switch, and bridge ground have been disconnected, leaving exposed wires dangling dangerously. Talk about a sure-fire recipe for a short.

The only functioning components are the bridge EMG humbucker (active), master volume, and master tone 25K pots. There's no separate battery compartment, so the single 9V battery has simply been wedged in between the pots and control cavity wall. One positive aspect is that the whole control cavity has been coated with shielding paint, and metal foil glued to the back of the control cavity cover.

Thus said, all that was left for me to do here was trim excess/disconnected wire, insulate the ends with heat-shrink tubing, and resolder the bridge ground. Here are some specs for this particular EX260, based on my observations and information sourced from Stringsite and Ultimate Guitar.

Construction / Scale: Set Neck / 24.75” 
Body: Agathis
Neck / Fingerboard: 3-Piece Maple / Rosewood
Nut Type / Width: Standard / 42mm
Neck Shape: Thin U
Fret Markers: Dots
Inlay: 12th Fret "Name Inlay"
Frets: 22 Extra Jumbo
Hardware: Black Nickel
Tuners: ESP-LTD
Bridge: Tune-o-matic with Stop Tailpiece

Schecter Stiletto Studio 6 LH Bass


Model Name: Stiletto Studio 6 LH
Color: Honey Satin (HSN)
Dexterity: Left Handed (LH)
Country of Origin: South Korea
Construction: Neck-Thru with Ultra Access
Body: Mahogany
Top: Bubinga
Neck: Maple/Walnut Multi-ply with Carbon Fiber Reinforcement Rods
Fretboard: Rosewood
Inlays: Abalone Offset Dots
Scale: 35”
Frets: 24 Extra Jumbo
Fretboard Radius: 16”
Neck Shape: Thin ‘C’
Nut: Graph Tech XL Black Tusq
Truss Rod: Dual Truss Rods (2-Way Adjustable)
Pickups: EMG 45HZ (Neck/Bridge)
Power Source: 18V (9V Battery x 2)
Preamp: EMG B64rC (Bass/Mid/Treble, Boost/Cut)
Controls: Master Volume (500K), Blend (250K), 3-Band Active EQ
Hardware: Satin Gold
Bridge: Diamond Custom Bass
Tuners: Schecter
Knobs: Metal Knurled with Set Screw

Source: Schecter Website

Now that we're done with specs, let's talk about work done on this particular bass. Besides action/intonation work, the owner wanted the electronics checked out thoroughly, as there'd been unwanted hum and noise of late. First of all, I checked out the shielding paint job and found it to be spotty in places, especially around the output jack. There was also minimal contact between the control cavity shielding and the metal foil on the back of the control cavity cover. I don't equate a blotch of shielding paint with adequate contact (see pic #9). To remedy the situation, I repainted the entire control cavity in a couple layers of shielding paint. Also added was a copper foil strip that would make firm contact with the foil on the back of the control cavity cover when closed. Behold, a Faraday Cage of sorts! 

I worked on the electronics next. Both the 500K master volume and 250K pickup blend pots were going kaput, and scratchy as hell despite loads of contact cleaner. The 250K mini pot was the worse of the two. Besides suffering from a corroded exterior and intermittent contact, it was near impossible to latch on to the center detent. Time to go, said I. On the other hand, the EMG B64rC preamp and its associated bass/mid/treble pots were working fine, much to my relief.

The owner eventually decided to go with a Jazz bass-style layout, ie individual Alpha 500K volume pots for both the neck and bridge pickups; which would feed into the preamp.

The final part of the job was rewiring the output jack. The original soldering job was so corroded that the ground wire simply snapped off while I was repositioning components. Glad I caught that in time. That's about it for my report, so let's look at some pics now.