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Aftermarket Nickel Silver Tele neck pup covers are scarce?

Discussion in 'Just Pickups' started by DugT, Jan 10, 2019.

  1. DugT

    DugT Tele-Holic

    565
    Sep 22, 2017
    northern CA
    I've been reading about tele neck pups and the effect of the brass covers. My tele neck pickups are my least favorite and that is because I don't play anything that benefits from the relatively dull tone. So I searched for nickel silver tele neck covers and I didn't find any good popular options. Is this an unpopular mod? I thought it would be very popular and if it isn't common is that because it doesn't make much difference? Can you recommend a good source of nickle silver covers?

    There seem to be more sources of open tele neck covers. Should I get one of them instead?
     
  2. hopdybob

    hopdybob Tele-Holic

    718
    May 28, 2008
    netherlands
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2019
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  3. eclecticsynergy

    eclecticsynergy Tele-Holic

    954
    Nov 16, 2014
    Albany NY
    Yah, a lot of the cheap Chinese covers are made of brass or have brass underplating. Either one will interfere with your high end clarity.

    Allparts makes one in nickel silver, part PC_0954-010.

    Coupla years ago I had a link for a chrome plated plastic one; it was from Germany I think. Can't find the link now.
     
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  4. rigatele

    rigatele Tele-Afflicted

    Apr 20, 2014
    Canada
    An open cover does not "work". The material completes an electrical circuit that passes nearly the same amount of treble-sucking eddy currents as a fully covered pickup. I proved it with a series of experiments:
    http://kenwillmott.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/Pickup_Cover_Geometry.pdf
     
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  5. DugT

    DugT Tele-Holic

    565
    Sep 22, 2017
    northern CA
    Thanks for all the helpful info!

    Would a Chrome plated cover have enough chrome to affect performance noticably? Chrome would look best in my application but maybe I should get nickel.
     
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2019
  6. rigatele

    rigatele Tele-Afflicted

    Apr 20, 2014
    Canada
    Typically the plating has some influence, but almost undetectable because of the extreme thin-ness of it. It's the underlying material that really makes a difference. Neither nickel nor chromium has a very high conductivity, so that also comes into play. Gold plating is the only production plating that might be noticed, as gold is high up on the conductivity list. Things get more complicated than that because copper is usually used as a base for electroplating of chrome - copper is highly conductive. I'm not sure if the copper base is used when putting nickel over nickel-silver.
     
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2019
  7. bender66

    bender66 Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

    Jan 18, 2010
    on my bike
    Am I the only one that likes an uncovered tele neck pickup?
     
  8. Antigua Tele

    Antigua Tele Friend of Leo's

    Jun 2, 2014
    west coast
    A lot of Tele neck pickups look rather unattractive underneath, with flush pole pieces, and usually require a bunch of cleanup to be presentable:

    [​IMG]

    which is why I think partly explains the open top cover, but one Tele neck pickup I came across was a the Donis Tele neck pickup, they used the same extreme bevel pole pieces they use on their Strat pickups, https://www.aliexpress.com/store/pr...ml?spm=2114.12010612.8148356.9.748e3363VzibwV and this one comes with a nickel silver cover, so it will sound clear with or without the cover. You can see with the one I received that, for whatever reason, there was just a trace amount of wax remaining on the top of the bobbin.

    [​IMG]


    This one is only $28, good deal for a nickel silver Tele neck pickup. They're so cheap I buy them just to perform experiments on them.
     
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  9. rigatele

    rigatele Tele-Afflicted

    Apr 20, 2014
    Canada
    Not sure but I always thought the cover had a cool, classic appearance. There's no protection for the coil if it's open, unlike the Strat which provides a plastic shield.
     
  10. DugT

    DugT Tele-Holic

    565
    Sep 22, 2017
    northern CA
    That
    Those Donlis pups don't cost much more than just the covers. The Seymore Duncan pup that I am trying to improve has AL2 magnets but it looks like Donlis only has tele neck pups with AL5 magnets. Coincidentally the DCR of the Donlis is the same as my Duncan's. If I lower the Donlis to equal the volume of my bridge pup, because of the stronger AL5 magnets, it will be lower than my AL2 pups, will the net affect of the AL5 pups with the nickle silver covers have better treble? This question is based on my belief that AL2 pups have better treble than AL5 pups.
     
  11. ScottJPatrick

    ScottJPatrick Tele-Afflicted

    May 12, 2011
    Stirling, Scotland.
    I have been using a SD Alnico II neck pickup for years both uncovered and with a nickel silver 'open' top, both options sound great, really brings the pickup alive. Got my open nickel silver cover on ebay from the US, anything chrome seems to have copper in the mix somewhere, not sure if that affects things as much as brass.

    IMG_4656.JPG
     
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  12. archetype

    archetype Fiend of Leo's Silver Supporter

    Jun 4, 2005
    Williamsville NY
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  13. Antigua Tele

    Antigua Tele Friend of Leo's

    Jun 2, 2014
    west coast

    One thing about the Donlis having protruding pole pieces is that the coil itself is farther from the strings, supposing the pole pieces are kept at the same distance, so I don't think it's probably ideal if you know you're going to set the pickup really low, as it's a less efficient magnetic circuit from pole piece -> string -> coil. OTOH, it's so cheap that if it were me, I'd buy them and try it out, and if I didn't like it, I'd pull the nickel silver cover off and use it on another pickup I liked otherwise.

    The fact that Donlis didn't get the coil as close as possible to the guitar strings, by using flush pole pieces like Fender does, is sort of a minor design flaw, since the pole pieces aren't meant to be seen anyway, but it's a flaw which makes them look cool when uncovered.

    Seymour Duncan has said they use brass in order to be vintage correct to Fender's 50's Tele pickups, but Fender has since moved to nickel silver, and they even use brass covers on their modern design Tele pickups, and it has been a characteristic of cheap pickups for a long time, so I wish they would change course on that and use nickel silver also. The think about a brass cover is that it's primary effect is reducing the resonance, and you can get that same effect with the tone knob, when you roll it back to about 8.
     
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2019
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  14. bender66

    bender66 Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

    Jan 18, 2010
    on my bike
    I don't think they're unattractive at all. Quite the opposite.

    For all the modding we do when has clean up ever been something that's held us back. :)

    It does have a classic appearance, but It's not a priority to me. I have a few sets of Keystones specifically for that uncovered look.
     
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  15. DugT

    DugT Tele-Holic

    565
    Sep 22, 2017
    northern CA
    That SD pickup looks real nice with the open top vest.
     
  16. bender66

    bender66 Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

    Jan 18, 2010
    on my bike
    I think so too.

    Isn't that what rigatele mentioned as far as no benefit since it's still encased in the brass cover?
     
  17. DugT

    DugT Tele-Holic

    565
    Sep 22, 2017
    northern CA
    I'm not sure which Rigatele post you are refering to. He said that open top brass covers are almost as bad as full brass covers. I'm sure he thinks open top nickel silver covers are fine. ScottJPatrick's open top cover is nickel silver. He said he got his on Ebay but I haven't found open tops there, just closed tops.
     
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  18. bender66

    bender66 Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

    Jan 18, 2010
    on my bike
    I overlooked that it was a SD pickup. My bad.
     
  19. ScottJPatrick

    ScottJPatrick Tele-Afflicted

    May 12, 2011
    Stirling, Scotland.
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