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Old January 24th, 2010, 08:01 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Springs vs Rubber Spacers

Can metal springs be subed for the rubber spacers? '51 Norcaster pups.

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Old January 24th, 2010, 08:20 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Short answer-yes. The tonal differences could be debated ad infinitum I'm sure. I've had guitars with both and couldn't notice any difference, but maybe that's just me.
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Old January 24th, 2010, 08:24 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I heard that it contributes to the hum. But if you have had experience with both and didn't notice any negative effects, I'll give it a try. Thanks
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Old January 24th, 2010, 11:22 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I use silicone fuel tubing (used in the r/c hobby). You can buy three feet of it for a couple of bucks ant any hobby shop.

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Old January 25th, 2010, 12:16 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Thanks rd... rb
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Old January 25th, 2010, 08:12 AM   #6 (permalink)
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I heard that it contributes to the hum.
I understand that this is something you heard but logically speaking, how do you think springs would add to the hum?
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Old January 25th, 2010, 10:10 AM   #7 (permalink)
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I only use springs made of depleted uranium. The added density really gives me great low end on my pickups.
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Old January 25th, 2010, 10:19 AM   #8 (permalink)
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despite the sound discussion i'd like to bring up another aspect of rubber (silicone,...) it is an electrical insulator and therefore it does not hurt the delicate wires of the coil. If you compress a tube by tightening the pup srews it may touch the wires but it even woul not damage the laquer on the copper wires. Springs are different...
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Old January 25th, 2010, 10:36 AM   #9 (permalink)
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I like to use springs b/c the tubing is a pain. Every guitar I have had that used the tubing I had issues with the pickups getting loose or not staying in the correct position. After a change to springs I have had no issues.
I do not knwo that it makes any sonic difference but to me the ease of use is better.
Just my opinion.
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Old January 25th, 2010, 07:35 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I just installed a set of keystones in my partscaster and as I have been tightening the screws on the neck pickup to raise it, the neck side has risen much more than the body side, so it's tilted a bit now. Don't know if it matters much, but it looks a bit funny. Is this what you mean by "not staying in the correct position"?
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Old January 25th, 2010, 07:53 PM   #11 (permalink)
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I use springs.
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Old January 26th, 2010, 02:35 PM   #12 (permalink)
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i use both. tubing is a little easier to compress and install. springs, when compressed have, on occasion, flown around the room on me.

cant say that i have noticed any diff in sound. i do think the the tubing weakens over time, where springs have better rigidity.

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Old January 26th, 2010, 02:44 PM   #13 (permalink)
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I only use springs made of depleted uranium. The added density really gives me great low end on my pickups.
Uhmm...do those springs come in different colors? I heard red ones sound better.
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Old January 27th, 2010, 02:40 PM   #14 (permalink)
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tubing seems to isolate vibrations to the pickup, springs seem to let more vibration get to the pickup. so springs (to my ears) give the guitar a more rattly or "live" sound. when i throw my switch into the bridge pup position i hear an audible clank. i like it, and i like slighlty microphonic pups.

i can't say whether i hear an actual tonal difference in the guitar between tubing and springs. but the springs do transfer more vibration and mechanical noise to the bridge pup and definitely make it more clanky.

i happen to like that clanky microphonic "live" sound, but some folks don't.
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Old January 27th, 2010, 03:20 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Uhmm...do those springs come in different colors? I heard red ones sound better.
Red is standard. If you really want to chase that tone, the blue ones have a bit of cobalt added!
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Old January 28th, 2010, 10:43 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Yes. And if springs give the guitar more of a "rattly or live sound", isn't this why we all play Telecasters in the first place?

Personally, I use what I have at the time.
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Old January 28th, 2010, 10:52 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Excuse me...........are we REALLY talking tonal/buzz differences between springs and rubber grommets?
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Old January 28th, 2010, 10:55 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Old January 29th, 2010, 02:37 AM   #19 (permalink)
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springs vs. tubage is no dumber a discussion than 42 vs. 43 gauge wire wrapping a pickup... or cloth pushback insulation vs. rubber... or 1/4" saddles vs. 5/16"... or handwound vs. machine wound... or callaham vs. glendale, lollar vs. lawrence... or quarter sawn vs. flat sawn... or orange drop vs. paper in oil... or mexico vs. indonesia... or alnico X vs. alnico Y... or domed vs. flat... or alder vs. ash... or 3/64" vs. 4/64" between the pickup and strings... or blackguard vs. whiteguard... or 8 holes vs. 5 holes... or why i NEED a new guitar vs. why the woman who let me marry her says the kids need shoes... or brown vs. the topeka board of education... or the colts vs. the saints... or... or... or...
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Old January 29th, 2010, 07:21 AM   #20 (permalink)
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On my partscaster, springs just wouldn't fit ! So I cut some pieces of foam rubber and put those under the neck pickup.
Soft, firm hold and tone for days !!!
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