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Repairs - Semi Hollow Body


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OK, I'm not a guitar player, but I do play guitar. The jack on my Epi Dot stopped working. I take off the nut to pull out the jack try to figure out wha's wrong. The jack slips inside the guitar and after 30 minutes I give up trying to get at it. I can't get it back thru the jack hole, I can't get it over to the S-hole, and I don't wnat to pull the pick-ups off.


I'm sure I'll eventually figure this out - but I find myself thinking - how the hell do people work on these things (geting the wiring to the jack the knobs, etc.)


It's only a $400 axe, so I don't wnat to spent $200 in a shop just to fish out and replace the jack.


If anyone has insight to share I'd appeciate it - if not I guess I'll try to take this think apart and hope I get it back together.


That's why I play drums - nothing more complcated than a couple of wing nuts!!!

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You've discovered the reason semi-hollows can be notorious if they need electrical repairs.


I was considering changing pickups once on my Hamer EchoTone, (an ES-335 style semi-hollow like yours), and my favorite guitar tech said: "we'll only be willing to replace the whole wiring harness"... it's too hard to try to deal with cutting and connecting the pickup connections... and of course as you noted, it wasn't going to be cheap!


I'm sure SOME people would be willing to do this for a price... but it won't be easy.


Perhaps your idea to fish around with a clothes hanger bent with a "hook" on the end could help. Fish it through the jack and pull it toward you until you can grab it with a needle nose or your fingers...


Or pay someone else to do it... :cry:


Sorry to hear about your problem...


Good Luck!



I'm still "guitplayer"!

Check out my music if you like...



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I'm sure I won't spell this correctly, but you need hemostatds. They are medical tools, but electronics places sell em to use as heat syncs. Kinda like really long clamping tweezers.


You can jiggle until the jack gets close to an F-hole, pull it out and solder on a new one, then shove the new one back in and fish it out the hole with the hemos.

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There's a hole under the bridge pickup just wide enough for all the pots and wiring etc to fit through. Can you get the jack up through one of the f-holes? This will allow you find out what's wrong without having to remove the whole shebang - which in itself is a hazardous operation because you run the risk of causing more damage if you're not careful and it is tricky getting it all back again.I have in the past passed thread through the holes to pull the parts back in place......nimble fingers are definately a plus. :freak:
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Thanks for the replys guys!


I haven't worked up the right attitude to try to tackle this - thankfully I have other guitars (solid bodies) to use until I figure this out.


I've always wanted to teach myself how to tech a guitar (I've got some books - just never found the time) - Looks like I'll learn by trial and error - better on a $400 axe than a $2,000 axe.


If you hear a loud crash this weekend - that would be the DOT going out the window.


How do you define perfect pitch? Throwing a DOT in a dumpster without hitting the sides!

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Man, I just about decided to jump off the roof trying to install new pots and a switch in my Epi Sheraton. Yeah, there's supposed to be a cutout in the bridge pickup, pot side of the middle block to allow access. First, thought, that means you essentially have to remove the pickups to get at the pots, switch, jack. And,as Dan Erlewine actually mentioned in his repair book, they "often" install this block upside down so the cutout is on the wrong side. Just like in my Sheraton. That's very useful.


That leaves the f-holes as the only access. A greater PITA may never have existed. I finally broke down and took it to a shop. :cry:


I actually bought a prewired harness from Dan Torres at Torres Engineering, their famous Blues Breaker harnes for LPs and other dual humbucker guitars. They sent me the harness for an Epi Sheraton . . . they obviously have never installed this harness in a Sheraton because the push/pull pots could not in a million years fit in the f-hole to be installed, and having seen the cutout in the block I cannot believe it would have fit through that either (had it not been installed upside down). :mad:


I think I would actually pay extra to have an access cover over the pots in a semihollow, despite what it might do to tone.


For semihollow and hollowbodies, I think the guitar shop is the only answer.


"Fame is like death: We will never know what it looks like until we've reached the other side. Then it will be impossible to describe and no one will believe you if you try."

- Sloane Crosley, Village Voice

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I had a few dilema's like this and what saved me was a telescoping magnet, about the size of a pencil eraser on a thing that looked like a boom box antenna. Available at most good hardware stores.


Another time I had dropped something into a 1/4 jack on my mixer,and had to fish it out somehow. I ended up using something like a clothes hanger with some gum on it, and it worked perfectly.

Living' in the shadow,

of someone else's dream....

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A quick little trick a buddy taught me was to wrap thread around the pot stems before taking off the nuts. If you have to take the harness or the pick ups out, this saves a lot of self-hating. The suggestion about the telescoping magnet sounds like a goodone. Also, I have been thankful for little "mirrors on a stick" (excuse my lingo)like the dentist uses.
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