Fender Mustang Mods

I little while ago I got myself a Fender Mustang, and it didn’t cost me a cent!

Well… sort of… I swapped it for my Maton Mastersound MS503, which some people thought was crazy. Even though the Mastersound was a beautiful guitar, I just wasn’t using it, and the two humbuckers wasn’t the sound for me, I’m more of a single-coil kinda guy 😉

So, I made the swap. Here she is:

Time to get to work…

The first thing I did was to check out how the electronics work with the two 3-way switches, and take a look at how the vibrato works. I don’t use vibrato or whammy bars and much prefer fixed or locked down bridges, so I attempted to get this thing as tight as I could. I took the vibrato apart and moved the springs down a notch so that they would pull tighter.

I’ve read that you can remove the springs completely and get a couple of bolts to just bolt the stop bar down. I found this photo online somewhere (can’t remember where) of a guy who had mounted some bolts in wood in the old spring cavity.

I like this idea and might try it one day.


Next, I tried a couple of things with the electronics. To start with I re-wired it so that the first switch became a typical style pickup selector, like this:

  1. Neck Pickup
  2. Both Pickups
  3. Bridge Pickup

I used the second switch to disable the other controls on the guitar, like this:

  1. Bypass Volume and Tone (pickup wired directly to output jack)
  2. Bypass Tone (pickup wired to the volume and then to the output jack)
  3. Standard (pickup wired to volume, tone and then output jack)

Here’s how to do it:



It looks like this:


This was fun for a while, but it was not all that useful… so, I decided to try something else – a new pickup. I have owned a DiMarzio Fast Track 2 since about 1998. It’s been in and out of various guitars, and stored in the cupboard over the years, and never really found a home. Time to see how it goes in the Mustang.


With the new pickup installed, I re-wired the switches like this:

Switch 1 –

  1. Neck pickup in phase
  2. Neck pickup off
  3. Neck pickup out of phase

Switch 2 –

  1. Bridge pickup coil split (single coil in phase)
  2. Bridge pickup off
  3. Bridge pickup as humbucker

This is a much more useful configuration.

Here’s how you do it:

Mustang Single Coil and Humbucker with coil tap


This configuration is perfect! 🙂

Mustangs are awesome little guitars!

One thought on “Fender Mustang Mods

  1. Excellent job. Thanks for the wiring diagram. I have a mustang with an humbucker at bridge position but the switch (bridge) is wired so that it just turns on or off the pickup… (humbucker/off/humbucker). That is pretty useless. I’ll be doing the coil tap mod … thanks for the post.


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