Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups
Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups
Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups

Flat pole vs. Staggered pole pickups

Discussion in 'Just Pickups' started by Eric Daw, Sep 24, 2010.

  1. A.B.Negative

    A.B.Negative Friend of Leo's

    Aug 26, 2008
    I don't like staggered polepieces, I catch my pick on them.
  2. TeleRichie

    TeleRichie Tele-Meister

    Feb 18, 2011
    Pasadena CA
    Flat poles, pickups set down low. That way you can hammer those strings and if one sounds lower than the others just hit it harder, that's all. Not something to worry about IMHO.
    amorica and chiefline like this.
  3. Telemach_1

    Telemach_1 Tele-Afflicted

    Jun 2, 2009
    Somewhere in the woods of
    That's too easy man. We need to talk about problems here. It's our therapy ;)
    amorica likes this.
  4. nosuch

    nosuch Friend of Leo's

    Apr 4, 2008
    I find myself adjusting to these things quickly - as if I don't have the right spare string and have to put on something wrong like a b-string for the high e – doesn't matter for much more than a few seconds and you adjust your playing to it. Had flat and staggered pickups without problems ...
  5. otstratman

    otstratman TDPRI Member

    Oct 10, 2014
    I just purchased a Fender American Special Telecaster "brand new". It has the Staggered Pole Pieces. I owned (3) earlier Fender American Special Telecasters, that all had Flat Pole Pieces. This new one with Staggered Pole Pieces doesn't sound the same as the others I had owned. I thought the Staggered Pole Pieces were the way to go but these don't sound as loud and dirty as the Flat Poles. Is there really a difference? P2032278.JPG
    Doug 54 likes this.
  6. ndcaster

    ndcaster Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

    Nov 14, 2013
    hm, I always thought my G string popped out in the mix of strings because of the string itself, not because of pole piece height

    flat poles are easier to make, maybe that's the reason

    otherwise, you'd make pickups to match different fretboard radiuses -- ouf, what a manufacturing headache
  7. 5stringsdown

    5stringsdown Tele-Meister

    Jan 15, 2017
    Nothing wrong with a difference of opinion...........

    I did want to make a couple comments that have come from just my own personal experiences........
    They all relate to my stratocasters and they are really just observations........

    1) I use BK '63s in my main strat and they are vintage stagger..........the pickups I had in that guitar previously were Chubtone '69s with flat pole pieces (Absolutely some of the best strat pickups I have ever had....just wanted to try something new).

    My 2nd strat had Lollar Blondes (flat pole pieces).

    I didn't realize when I ordered the BK's they were vintage stagger (they also offer a modern stagger as they call it which is much less staggered).............

    I have been super happy with all three sets, I unfortunately had to sell the Lollars in a time of need but they were so good I plan on buying another strat to put a set in as well as the Chubtones......(Like I need an excuse to buy more

    When I first got the BK's it definitely took some getting used to and I did notice a big difference for me personally I felt like I was always struggling to get what I wanted out of the b and high e.
    It was more of a "feel" thing....It felt like they weren't as loud and lacked sustain compared to the other strings......when I listen to recordings however, it is impossible to tell that the pickup poles are staggered.

    (All sets of pups used the same amp, same (pure nickel rotosound '10s) strings, same pick, same classic 60's strat etc.)

    A couple months after I got the BK's my guitar needed a setup, new frets etc and my guitar tech suggested a real bone nut as opposed to the "fake" bone nut it came with and he replaced the saddles which were seriously worn out with Callahams).

    When I got the guitar back, HUGE DIFFERENCE the awkward feel of the high strings was gone.

    The strings now feel (and sound) great........balanced tonally and from a feel standpoint.

    I do remember my guitar tech noting the 7.5 neck radius and pickup stagger when I brought it in.

    The takeaway I got from this (and you are a pickup winder so feel free to correct me) that when the guitar is set up correctly, technically correct and vintage correct, the staggered pole pieces work just fine/correctly.

    All of this is really just an observation on my part and it is not intended to be a judgement one way or the other and I hope I didn't take your thread off topic:twisted:
  8. ebb soul

    ebb soul Poster Extraordinaire

    Jun 7, 2016
    Smyrna georgia
    Bevel mags vrs square make more difference to me than staggered/ flat.
    Thing is, you find the beveled on the staggered pickups.
  9. chiefline

    chiefline Tele-Holic

    Mar 18, 2014
    new jersey
    Exactly. Love to hammer those strings and my flat pole piece bridge on my esquire loves it
  10. amorica

    amorica TDPRI Member

    Jan 24, 2009
    lmao lol
  11. Strato50

    Strato50 Tele-Holic

    Mar 30, 2017
    Port Arthur TX
    On a Tele I like a flat pole....just sounds better....if the G and D are raised they tend to over power the other on a Strat they seem to work good....JMO....but I will my my flat pole MIJ and Robert Cray strat bridge pups do sound damn good and balanced. A lot has to do with the radius of the neck and how the saddles heights are set.
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