Nitefly Piezo Wiring

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Droptune
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Nitefly Piezo Wiring

Post by Droptune »

Hello Everyone,

I recently acquired a 96 Version 1 Nitefly and the previous owner let me know he couldn't get the Piezo working. I have taken a better look at the Piezo and noticed that each of the strings has an individual wire that comes from the underside and then is grounded. One has become ungrounded which is an easy fix however the high E string has been disconnected from the hole at the Piezo. I'm not sure how to reconnect that black wire into the Piezo. Any advice would be great!

Thanks
mmmguitar
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Re: Nitefly Piezo Wiring

Post by mmmguitar »

If what you’re describing is that the wire has broken off at the saddle, then I’m afraid replacing the saddle is liable to be your only option. Embedded-element saddles aren’t really made to be serviced, and Graphtech is the only company producing Parker saddles anymore. You can post a Classifieds here or in the Facebook groups to see if anyone has a spare Fishman-era saddle they’d be willing to sell.

For what it’s worth, carefully drilling out the underside of the saddle until you can get at the wire break to resolder the connection, then resealing/encasing with something hard-setting is the only method of repair to come to mind, and isn’t likely to work.
Droptune
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Re: Nitefly Piezo Wiring

Post by Droptune »

Yes that's exactly what I am referring to, I did a bit of digging and wasn't pleased to see how the wire was attached to the saddle. It appears to be a clean break right at the saddle which is the worst spot. I’m curious to see if I can solder them connection back though. If not I did find these: https://graphtech.com/products/ghost-pa ... le-10-lead. Any advice on if these would fit my Version 1 with the dog-bones?
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Re: Nitefly Piezo Wiring

Post by mmmguitar »

Droptune wrote: Mon Sep 27, 2021 2:52 pm Any advice on if these would fit my Version 1 with the dog-bones?
Dimensionally, they’re drop-in replacements - but have two wires intended to be summed to one of Graphtech’s active boards via coupling plugs. So if you end up replacing your saddle set and staying passive, you’ll need to clip the plugs of each saddle and sum the hot wires together similar to how the Fishman elements were soldered to a spot on the underside of the bridge, along with the additional step of summing the ground wires. Emailing Graphtech about the matter will best inform whatever you decide on.

If it was me, I’d go fully-active and find room for a 9 volt battery. But it’s your money.

Hey @jb63, any word on what Richard is currently charging for a set of RMC Fly saddles?
Summary of the Parker Guitars speculator market, 2020-2022: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greater_fool_theory
Droptune
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Re: Nitefly Piezo Wiring

Post by Droptune »

mmmguitar wrote: Tue Sep 28, 2021 12:42 am Dimensionally, they’re drop-in replacements - but have two wires intended to be summed to one of Graphtech’s active boards via coupling plugs. So if you end up replacing your saddle set and staying passive, you’ll need to clip the plugs of each saddle and sum the hot wires together similar to how the Fishman elements were soldered to a spot on the underside of the bridge, along with the additional step of summing the ground wires. Emailing Graphtech about the matter will best inform whatever you decide on.

If it was me, I’d go fully-active and find room for a 9 volt battery. But it’s your money.

Hey @jb63, any word on what Richard is currently charging for a set of RMC Fly saddles?
I see, good to know. So in your opinion if I were to add a battery and make it active what other major changes would I need to make? I don't want to go swapping too much out but I would be okay to add a battery.

You also mentioned RMC saddles, are those also a drop in replacement for the dog-bones? I have a rough idea what they are but not how they work fundamentally.

Thanks
mmmguitar
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Re: Nitefly Piezo Wiring

Post by mmmguitar »

Droptune wrote: Mon Sep 27, 2021 2:52 pm if I were to add a battery and make it active what other major changes would I need to make?
Well, the situation is this:

Graphtech is the only company currently making Fly saddles in a retail capacity, and they’re intended to be plugged in to the active Graphtech boards. This means that, with things as they are, everyone with a Parker guitar built between 1993 and 2013 or so is eventually going to be in the same predicament you’re in: If even one of the Fishman saddles goes bust, the owner is either

1. at the mercy of someone selling used saddles (an increasingly rare opportunity, anymore),
2. replacing their saddles with a Graphtech set and soldering them in the way the Fishmans were previously installed (for active guitars, this means running the Graphtech elements into the Fishman Powerchip and dealing with compatibility issues I have no firsthand experience with), or
3. replacing all the Fishman components with Graphtech. For the passive NiteFlys produced in the 90s with the intent of running them into outboard gear, this means fitting a Graphtech Acoustiphonic board and 9 volt battery to make the guitar active.

Richard McClish of RMC makes/made Parker saddles and a preamp as well, but I’m very much out of the loop as to what’s going on with that since 2013 or so.
Summary of the Parker Guitars speculator market, 2020-2022: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greater_fool_theory
Droptune
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Re: Nitefly Piezo Wiring

Post by Droptune »

mmmguitar wrote: Wed Sep 29, 2021 10:13 am
Droptune wrote: Mon Sep 27, 2021 2:52 pm if I were to add a battery and make it active what other major changes would I need to make?
Well, the situation is this:

Graphtech is the only company currently making Fly saddles in a retail capacity, and they’re intended to be plugged in to the active Graphtech boards. This means that, with things as they are, everyone with a Parker guitar built between 1993 and 2013 or so is eventually going to be in the same predicament you’re in: If even one of the Fishman saddles goes bust, the owner is either

1. at the mercy of someone selling used saddles (an increasingly rare opportunity, anymore),
2. replacing their saddles with a Graphtech set and soldering them in the way the Fishmans were previously installed (for active guitars, this means running the Graphtech elements into the Fishman Powerchip and dealing with compatibility issues I have no firsthand experience with), or
3. replacing all the Fishman components with Graphtech. For the passive NiteFlys produced in the 90s with the intent of running them into outboard gear, this means fitting a Graphtech Acoustiphonic board and 9 volt battery to make the guitar active.

Richard McClish of RMC makes/made Parker saddles and a preamp as well, but I’m very much out of the loop as to what’s going on with that since 2013 or so.
I appreciate all the insight! I'll definitely have to explore my options however adding the battery and board is becoming increasingly more likely. I suppose my only concern is does making the guitar active reduce it's value? While I don't own the guitar for its monetary value it would still be nice to know before I go about modifying it.
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Re: Nitefly Piezo Wiring

Post by mmmguitar »

Droptune wrote: Wed Sep 29, 2021 11:22 am I suppose my only concern is does making the guitar active reduce it's value?
For the last two years or so, that’s been a simple question with a complicated answer: The short version is “it does not reduce its value” - So long as scarcity is continuing to drive the asking prices for Parker-branded guitars up, the guitar owners in this community and the Facebook groups are doing what they can to superficially control the estimated value of their gear by listing them for more than they paid (whether they bought the guitar yesterday or twenty years ago).

What your NiteFly can be expected to sell for - regardless of spec - comes down to how many competing NiteFly listings other people are seeing on Reverb and Guitar Center that day or week. But that’s just my two cents - Others here are likely to have differing sentiments.
Summary of the Parker Guitars speculator market, 2020-2022: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greater_fool_theory
mmmguitar
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Re: Nitefly Piezo Wiring

Post by mmmguitar »

@Droptune, I feel the price is outrageous, but here’s a saddle listing:

https://reverb.com/item/45235204-parker ... s-original

I’m going to post a thread about determining a fair market value for Fishman Fly saddles.
Summary of the Parker Guitars speculator market, 2020-2022: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greater_fool_theory
Droptune
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Re: Nitefly Piezo Wiring

Post by Droptune »

That is absurd! I understand supply and demand and I'd need to pay a steep premium however I didn't expect well above $100/saddle. It sure is making the Greph-Tech upgrade even more desirable now! On that note, would I just require this kit: https://graphtech.com/collections/ghost ... c-preamp-1 plus the saddles of course? If that's the case I will likely do that and then just sell off my remaining 5 dog bone saddles at a more reasonable price. Also, going active logically means I could switch between acoustic and Mag whereas that is a more complicated staying passive as we previously discussed.
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Re: Nitefly Piezo Wiring

Post by mmmguitar »

Droptune wrote: Fri Oct 15, 2021 8:34 am On that note, would I just require this kit: https://graphtech.com/collections/ghost ... c-preamp-1 plus the saddles of course?
You could get that kit working, but the “advanced kit”, here https://graphtech.com/products/ghost-ac ... preamp-kit is the easier installation (Graphtech’s boards have a plug/pin system - If you want to transplant your NFV1’s volume pot and selector switch over to the Graphtech board, you would likely end up soldering either the original pot and switch wires to the Graphtech pins, or to new plugs).
Summary of the Parker Guitars speculator market, 2020-2022: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greater_fool_theory
Droptune
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Re: Nitefly Piezo Wiring

Post by Droptune »

@mmmguitar

Understood thanks. So would that allow for the guitar to be switched from Mag to Piezo whilst just plugged into an amp like a regular active model? Or do you believe I’d still need to switch sources in order to achieve that? I appreciate all the help
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Fly Rod
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Re: Nitefly Piezo Wiring

Post by Fly Rod »

JFYI all of the graph tec stuff is available on eBay for less money than on that website..
Gotta be Thrifty https://www.ebay.com/str/sporthitech?_t ... 7675.l2563 SportHiTech
Yeah with one OE saddles going for $100ea the Graph-Tec is the way to go, Or even go Midi with the plug-board & saddles & switches
FLY ROD Formerly FLY Wheel
Droptune
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Re: Nitefly Piezo Wiring

Post by Droptune »

Fly Rod wrote: Sat Oct 16, 2021 7:10 am JFYI all of the graph tec stuff is available on eBay for less money than on that website..
Gotta be Thrifty https://www.ebay.com/str/sporthitech?_t ... 7675.l2563 SportHiTech
Yeah with one OE saddles going for $100ea the Graph-Tec is the way to go, Or even go Midi with the plug-board & saddles & switches
I was going to do some digging around looking for better prices, so I appreciate you finding that. Definitely a good way to save some money provided shipping costs aren’t insane out of the US. :lol: Thanks for the heads up
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Fly Rod
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Re: Nitefly Piezo Wiring

Post by Fly Rod »

No Problem & It says FREE Shipping on the eBay site = SWEET!!

NOTE: Difference in price on the saddle kit $137.45 vs $106.21

https://graphtech.com/products/ghost-pa ... le-10-lead vs https://www.ebay.com/itm/301426155057?e ... xyg7xSYsZJ
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mmmguitar
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Re: Nitefly Piezo Wiring

Post by mmmguitar »

Apologies for the late reply, @Droptune. Yes; the Graphtech stuff will convert everything to active and automatically switch from mono to stereo depending on whether you insert a TS or TRS plug; as the battery powered Parkers produced from approx. 2003-2015 were/are.
Summary of the Parker Guitars speculator market, 2020-2022: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greater_fool_theory
Droptune
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Re: Nitefly Piezo Wiring

Post by Droptune »

@mmmguitar It's no problem, this is a long term project it's looking anyways :lol: I was wondering though out of curiosity is there a thread here listing all the Nitemix pedal alternatives for the people with passive Fly's? If not I'd love to start one however the only alternative I know is the Fishman Powerblend Pedal which isn't easy to get ahold of nowadays either! Any other suggestions come to mind?

While I still plan top go active it would be nice to get ahold of one of these pedals in the meantime that can act as the Nitemix/Pre-amp.
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vjmanzo
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Re: Nitefly Piezo Wiring

Post by vjmanzo »

Droptune wrote: Mon Oct 18, 2021 10:49 am …is there a thread here listing all the Nitemix pedal alternatives for the people with passive Fly's? If not I'd love to start one…
I’m pretty sure that there is not, so—wow, it would be very valuable if you started looking into that for all of us! 😮 🙏
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Re: Nitefly Piezo Wiring

Post by vjmanzo »

I found this, which seems like a good (albeit pricey) replacement/upgrade for the NiteMix:

https://kksound.com/products/quantumblender.php
kk_quantum_blender_front.jpg
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