June 16th, 2003, 09:14 AM
Just to show you how little I know. As mentioned in my other post I am looking at the Suhr V60, which is pictured in a Strat configuration on their site. So I sent them an email to ask if it is strat only, or if they had a tele version too.
Then it struck me that I don't really know the difference. The physical dimensions are clearly different between a tele and strat. On my '79 Strat all pickups seems the same size, the bridge one being slanted therefore gets a shorter horisontal span beween the poles and have the E and e strings passing on their outer edges.
But then there is the pole types and magnets and winding and sound characteristics. So I decided display my ignorance and ask here... :wink:
Apart from physical dimensions, what are the key differences between strat and tele bridge pickups? I realise that there are differences between different Tele PUs also, but is seems strat and teles are both made using the same selection of magnets, (Alnico 3 and 5) for instance. Is the Tele PU bigger to accommodate more windings or is it just cosmetic?
Ignorant me wonders... :?
June 18th, 2003, 02:55 AM
The early B'casters had slightly larger (and flat) pole pieces; I'm not sure about the size of the pole pieces on 1955 and later teles in relation to strat poles, but they were staggered then.
I'm sure that there are other differences, but one of the biggest differences in construction is the metal baseplate on the tele that supposedly focuses the magnetic field towards the strings. The actual bridge makes a difference, too, as, being ferrous, it affects the magnetic field, but you specifically asked about pups.
AFA the neck pup, it was wound with smaller gauge wire, and the cover, which serves as a shield, also affects the sound.
Number of windings may differ, as well. I'm not sure about the accuracy of the information, but there is a site that lists some "average" specs for tele and strat pups, as follows:
Strats: 42 gauge wire, 8350 turns
Tele, lead: 42 gauge wire, 8000 turns
Tele, rhythm: 43 gauge wire, 8000 turns
BTW, you're right about your strat pups all being the same. Until the early 80's all strat pups were ostensibly alike (at least within the same guitar); at that time a new bridge pickup was created called, I think, the X-1, which was supposed to be a bit hotter. That pickup made it's way to the American standard, which also got a RW/RP middle pup. Most standard strats have the RW/RP middle now; I'm not sure about the bridge pup, though I know it's different in the Vintage Noiseless sets. Generally, you want the hottest pup in the bridge and the least hot in the neck positions; the middle, by default, is the middling pup -- this is because the strings are more resonant (read: louder) towards the center of the speaking length.
Don't know if this was helpful; I'm sure that someone will correct my omissions and misstatements...
June 18th, 2003, 04:58 AM
I guess I was trying to find out if making a Strat PU sort of made a Tele version merely a question of dimensions. And that the difference in sound was attributed to the bridgeplate itself. But obviously, with different windings, different size, and the baseplate to add, they are not really that much similar at all.
June 18th, 2003, 06:10 PM
Kevin has most of it.
The wider pole spacing makes a longer coil so it will have a slightly different inductance than a strat. The baseplate really does reflect the field up into the coil and makes a subtle difference but in my opinion they are really very similar to strat coils.
The turn counts youll read in the books and on the net are dead wrong, 8000 turns is way to many for the magority of these pickups and I can say that having rewound many old strat and tele pickups, dont believe me? call Lindy or Seymore.
Why is the bobbin bigger? My thoughts on that and I am not an expert on this, is that the pickup may have been designed for lap steel first (this could be verified), you can also see there are some slight differences in the Fender Champion pickup from the tele bridge. Some of the lap steels were wound very hot and would need a larger bobbin than a strat, later on they reduced the turn count so not all of those lap steel tele looking pickups are so hot like many people think.
Fender probably just decided to keep using the same oversize bobbin, that would be typical but is just me speculating. Perhaps they kept the same bobbin top because the wrapped the pickup with string, you need some extra space for that.
Put a baseplate on a strat pickup in a strat and it still wont sound like a tele, the bridge has alot to do with it.
Put a baseplate on a strat pickup and retrofit it into a Tele and it will sound like a Tele (talking bridge pickups only here and "later" models with the same diameter poles as the strats).
June 18th, 2003, 07:24 PM
I have found the Rio Grande (no ties to Rio) STELLY
is one wicked sounding pickup, Tele Geir, since you seem to have a lot of Gold ($) why not email Rio and buy 1 and see if I ain't Jivin...
I use 2 Neck & Bridge on 3 Hard Tails, and no longer need a Plank Tele bodyu to get THAT TONE...+The neck pup kills the regular lil Tele newck pup and is good for Jazz, SRV/Jimi Albert King, whatever One can throw down!
I have bailed on HBers/P90/P94s
I do use a Van Zandt True Vintage in the middle on 2 axes for the Jimi Von/Anson 57/58 Strat Tones.
BluesMan ~Kenny Blue Ray
June 20th, 2003, 10:11 AM
Oh and no, I don't have a lot of Gold, I just spend it wisely... :wink:
...IMHO, my wife would probably disagree. :roll: