shielded cable

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Working with vintage-style wire that has an exposed, braided-metal shield takes skill and patience. But you can do it—we’ll show you how.

Today we'll explore the type of wire you can find in almost all vintage Gibson guitars. Gibson used it for all wire runs to and from the pickup selector switch and pickups. On models without a selector switch, Gibson used this wire to connect the electronics to the output jack. It's the mother of all shielded cables, and you can visually identify it by its exposed braided-metal shield.

Inside the braided shield is a 22 AWG cloth-covered hook-up wire consisting of seven individually tinned and twisted copper strands. These are enclosed in a woven Celanese overwrap, which is then sheathed in a black braided waxed-cotton jacket (Photo 1).

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