I've posted this to the Tele forum, but the mods will likely move this to the pickup forum. I hope not. Bill Lawrence and Becky hosted an open house yesterday at the new location for Wilde Pickups in Orange, California. I arrived at his shop at 11:00 to find a small group already there, waiting for the door to open. My expectations were to find an elaborate operation, set up with several types of machining tools and oscilloscopes generating sine waves. Instead, I found a very modest set up with a handful of assembly and manufacturing posts, along with Bill's workbench in his amp/guitar room. He had three V.O.M.s, a couple of scientific calculators, a soldering iron, and books. Lots of books. Old books detailing historic equations of electrical theory, one of which showed a rudimentary magnetic-cancelling winding (humbucker) invented in 1825. He likes that one. The first picture is Bill at one of his machining stations looking through some tools he manufactured by hand for his production line. After Bill had shown us the general layout, he started teaching. Teaching might be the wrong word to use, as what immediately started coming out of his mouth was information impossible for the layman to understand. However, you could feel the excitement in the man when he spoke of inductance, resistance, magnetic eddies, and how modern applications and research are just now discovering that much of the information used in modern pickup construction has been error-ridden. He has the uncommon ability to sense what you do and don't grasp, then taylor his lecture accordingly to maximize your understanding. A fine teacher. The question everyone posed, and agreed upon, was that his pickups don't generate interest at the level of others due to relatively low prices. That one poked a stick in the hornet's nest. Bill's adrenaline rush fueled his disgust with endorsements, advertising, and inefficient manufacturing processes, and how all of this added up allegedly justifies the prices asked by others for their products. The next picture is a small, hand-built "station" that enables one of his workers to assemble a pickup in one-fourth the time needed by his competitors. That translates into a "lot of money", he said. You can see the stack of magnets in the foreground, some of which have been already inserted in the black housing underneath his fingers. After their insertion, Bill placed the coil on top, which is held in place by the magnets. After the placement, it's impossible to pull the finished coil off of the station unless you spin it 90 degress on that axis pin. At that point, the like-poles of the magnet below repel the pickup, allowing its easy removal. Simple and ingenious. Bill then took us into his amp/guitar room and sat us all down to listen to a couple of his guitars. Due to his recent health issues, up until today he hadn't played in a year, and we could tell that bothered him a lot, but his playing and dexterity belied that year. He showed his the following red Strat he uses for a test bed. The bottom has been hollowed-out, and the body is equipped with a set of quick-release tabs allowing the entire pickguard assembly to be removed and replaced in less than 15 seconds, without re-stringing. This guitar violates or destroys every tone myth I can think of, and again is ingenious in its simplicity. Note the skinny cable, which is one of his own making. During his playing, he asked me to unplug from the '60s era Super Reverb, and plug into the Deluxe Reverb. I attempted to grasp the small plug end which caused him to yank the one out of the guitar by tugging sharply on the cable itself. He said, "If you can't do that without breaking it, it isn't worth a damn." I'll be ordering some of these this week. About two hours in, most people had to leave so I had Bill alone for just over 30 minutes, as I had to leave around 1:30 to visit my father in the hospital. During that 30+ minutes, I was saturated with more electrical theory, him playing, reminiscing about his past, and subjected to his quick wit and keen sense of humor, all laced with his thick Teutonic accent. I wished that I didn't have to leave. Bill is a gentleman and professional to the nth degree. While critiquing the products of his competitors, he refused to name any by name including specifically one popular small manufacturer that violated one of his patents for over ten years. The knowledge possessed by this man could fill several books, and he certainly can back what he believes. Toward the end of my visit, he said this: "One comedian called me to say that my pickups were sterile sounding. I laughed and told him that it's probably his playing that's sterile." Nothing I heard on his guitar, using his production twin-blades, sounded sterile. All was played straight into the amps. In closing, here's a video I took of Bill playing. Many here have seen this Strat before, but it's now equipped with his new MicroCoil pups. If the quality of the audio is lacking, I apologize as this was done with a Sony pocket camera. I've never heard a more harmonically rich, quiet sound from single coils. I wish more people had been there to visit with this wonderful man.