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Installing a Killswitch

Killswitches are easy to install additions to your guitar that add a lot of sonic possibilities.
In this video I talk through the different kinds of switches that can be used and show how to install a high quality, illuminated killswitch available from Iron Age Guitar Accessories.

To install one of these Iron Age switches we first need to drill an appropriate sized hole in our chosen guitar. If you have purchased the installation kit then use the Forstner bit included, this will cut a clean, accurately sized hole.

Wiring the switch is easy. The Iron Age switch is a normally open type switch, meaning that only when the button is pushed will it let signal through. To make this work as a kill switch we need to connect the green wire to the hot output of the jack socket and the white wire to ground.

What this will do is allow the guitar to function as normal while the switch remains unused, but when the switch is pressed it reroutes the signal to ground, preventing it from leaving the guitar.

You can use this full wiring diagram to assist you. If you want to wire up the switch without the LED then simply ignore the red and black wires from the switch.

If you want the switch to light up then connect the red switch wire to the red wire on the battery clip, with the two supplied resistors between them. These resistors are extremely important as they will prevent the full 9 volts from the battery rupturing the LED. The black switch wire can be connected to ground.

At this point you have a choice. If like me you have a stereo socket installed in the guitar then simply wire the black wire from the battery clip to the 'ring' lug on the socket. When a jack plug is connected it will connect the battery to ground, completing the circuit, and illuminating the LED.

If however you don't have a stereo socket, or would prefer to switch the LED on and off at will, then you can connect the small toggle switch supplied with the kit between the black battery wire and ground.

Have fun installing your killswitch.