Modding my ML1 Modern Pro

#1
I've grown disillusioned with the state of my ML1. The guitar itself is absolutely stunning, but the electronics are extremely lacking to my ears (Mainly, the highs are tinny and the lows lack clarity) So, I'm looking to upgrade the electronics: new pups, pots, output jack, and switch. But I have some questions about the mods I want to make and if it'll all work.

A little about my guitar:
It's just your run-of-the-mill 6 stringed Chapman ML1 Modern Pro in Sun. It absolutely rips (in a good way).

Here's what I'm fixing to do:
I've realized that, coming from a Strat, I'm partial to cleaner sounds. I play rock mostly, but I've a growing interest in blues and jazz. The pickups I have in mind are Lace Finger Burners, but please recommend other pups if you think they'll be a better fit. Additionally, I'd replace the pots (preferably with 250K, for the usability), swap the current jack with a dual contact jack, and change the 5 way switch to a 3 way, since I'm not really into the split sounds.

Now, onto the questions:
I'm unsure of the pot size. I remember reading somewhere that Chapman uses mini-pots. Is that true, or can I buy standard CTS pots?
I also remember learning that Chapmans have a larger string spread and I'm concerned my pups won't reach from E to e. Can anyone who's modded their Chapman confirm/deny?
What do y'all think? Doable?

Also if anyone's got a wiring diagram for the ML1, I'd be grateful
 

everfreetree

I... I like trees.
#2
I've grown disillusioned with the state of my ML1. The guitar itself is absolutely stunning, but the electronics are extremely lacking to my ears (Mainly, the highs are tinny and the lows lack clarity) So, I'm looking to upgrade the electronics: new pups, pots, output jack, and switch. But I have some questions about the mods I want to make and if it'll all work.

A little about my guitar:
It's just your run-of-the-mill 6 stringed Chapman ML1 Modern Pro in Sun. It absolutely rips (in a good way).

Here's what I'm fixing to do:
I've realized that, coming from a Strat, I'm partial to cleaner sounds. I play rock mostly, but I've a growing interest in blues and jazz. The pickups I have in mind are Lace Finger Burners, but please recommend other pups if you think they'll be a better fit. Additionally, I'd replace the pots (preferably with 250K, for the usability), swap the current jack with a dual contact jack, and change the 5 way switch to a 3 way, since I'm not really into the split sounds.

Now, onto the questions:
I'm unsure of the pot size. I remember reading somewhere that Chapman uses mini-pots. Is that true, or can I buy standard CTS pots?
I also remember learning that Chapmans have a larger string spread and I'm concerned my pups won't reach from E to e. Can anyone who's modded their Chapman confirm/deny?
What do y'all think? Doable?

Also if anyone's got a wiring diagram for the ML1, I'd be grateful
For pickups, get Trembucker spaced pickups, not vintage Humbucker spacing, that will help with the poles lining up from E to e thing (Source: I have a vintage humbucker spaced Seymour Duncan in my ML-3 Modern, it does not line up and needs to be wider, like the Trembucker spaced one would've been)
I don't know what pickups to recommend, since I have no idea what the Lace Finger Burners are like, at all, so I'm no help there, really.
And my legacy ML-3 Modern looks like it has space for standard CTS pots, but I don't know about the new Pro models, as I've never opened one up.

Hopefully there are others who can help more.
 

dso

Well-Known Member
#3
Not sure about the new models, but the previous series (2015?) uses Alpha pots and I believe you'd need to ream the holes bigger for the CTS to fit (atleast that's what I found out after my research).
I'm in a similar situation as you but with the old model. Now that I built a partscaster and I'm more familiar with electronics I want to upgrade it but I'll probably keep it with the Alpha pots, I don't think it's worth the risk of fucking up the finish. Alpha pots aren't that bad either so...
 

George71

Active Member
#4
Last year I modded an ML1 STD traditional (2017), I replaced the pick ups, Pots and capacitors, it was the best decision, I play the guitar all the time and I love it.
I used CTS pots with no problem. I wouldn't recommend 250K pots because it will make the guitar too bright.
 

Brad_A

Active Member
#5
I swapped my ML1-Pro modern pups for some Duncans and ended up going back to the Chapmans. But I can confirm the trembucker spacing was needed for the bridge pickup. If you measure from E to E over the pickup it will be around 53 mm which is wide spacing ( or trembucker)
 
#6
Has anyone changed the switch out? I'm looking to change to a 3 way because I'm not really into the in-between sounds

Thanks to everyone for your replies!!
 

Brad_A

Active Member
#7
Would be pretty simple. Get a 3-way blade selector to fit that same space, and when you wore the pickups, follow a simple 2 Humbucker with 3-way switch and 1 vol 1 tone diagram like you can find on the Seymour Duncan website. You’ll likely
Solder together the North finish and South finish wired to make a series link. (Assuming full Humbucker mode based on your description)
 
#8
Would be pretty simple. Get a 3-way blade selector to fit that same space, and when you wore the pickups, follow a simple 2 Humbucker with 3-way switch and 1 vol 1 tone diagram like you can find on the Seymour Duncan website. You’ll likely
Solder together the North finish and South finish wired to make a series link. (Assuming full Humbucker mode based on your description)
Sorry, my question wasn't clear. I'm asking if anyone's modded their Chapman with a new switch and if so, I'd like to know which one they used because I can't find the dimensions of the switch that's currently in. Soldering everything together is easy. I've done it enough times lol
 
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