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Discussion in 'Telecaster Discussion Forum' started by AxeVictimAZ, Aug 8, 2020.
Has anyone here modded their Tele Blacktop and then reverted it back to stock?
I modded mine, but didn't go back. Don't see a reason why you would want to go back to those original humbuckers to be honest. Dull and lifeless.
What sort of mods are we talking, here? It's pretty general term.
Obviously, if your "mod" is to add a monkey grip ala' Steve Vai, then returning the guitar to stock might be a bit of trouble. If you're just talking pickups, people swap those around all the time.
If you're talking about modding a Blacktop back to being a normal Tele with a single coil mounted in the bridge, stop right there. Once a Tele is routed for a humbucker, there's no going back. Humbucker routes are wider than standard Tele bridge plates. I learned that lesson the hard way many years (and Teles) ago.
Yeah, those pups are awefull imo.
I've modded 2 Strat blacktops. You can pick them up second hand real cheap n they have the best necks.
Heres mine and what all ive done to it:
SD 59s(bridge is F Spaced)
Graph tech String Saver saddles
Kinman style treble bleed
Bridge coil tap
Orange Drop .022 tone cap
MIM modded with 83 Fullerton Strat neck and OV 52 pickups.
And back again. Kept the pickups though.
Yeah, nothing crazy like the monkey grip you refer to. A long time back I swapped the pickups out for TV Jones Classic in the neck and Classic+ in the bridge. Was recently noticing it was kind of spiky Or ice picky if you prefer. I DID roll off the tone but it was still not what I was wanting. I thought about trying some other types of humbuckers but ended up finding a spec for th e recommended height. I checked mine and they were very high. I moved them down to the 6mm for neck and 5mm for bridge. What a difference that made. I also know but this reminded me that I need to work on my technique. I play too hard. Always have. If I lighten up my attack, that too plays a big part on the tone.
SD Phat Cats and standard dome knobs.
Absolutely no need to revert it to its bland humbuckers or amp knobs (I'll keep the knobs as spares for my Princeton )
2017-10-28 17.42.41 by teleaddicted posted Dec 7, 2017 at 4:57 PM
I actually have a stock one that I can’t wait until I get the time to change out the pickups
How do you like those Graph tech saddles?
I personally love the Graph Tech saddles.....on the right guitar. They do rob some treble; they impart a warmer sound. I wouldn't put them on a traditional tele bridgeplate; brass is better for that. Compared to the stock bent metal Fender strat saddles it came with, they definitely add a touch of sustain. I have them on my G&L Legacy too. They hold up; they've been been on that one for 20 years. Obviously, they completely eliminate string breakage at the saddle. I like them.
I don't have a Blacktop, but I do have a double-humbucker "Tele"; mine is a goldtop Schecter PT body with a maple MIM neck. It's a tribute to Pete Townsend's "Live Aid" guitar and a replacement for the real-deal all-black PT I owned in the '80s.
I'll second bigben55's choice of the Duncan 59 set in a Tele, they're great. My setup is similar to his: 4-wire 59B with a coil-split pull-pot and a 59N in the neck, but I don't bother to split it. I love the fat, woofy 59N sound. I have a phase-reverse switch on the neck volume pot. Yes, it's two volume controls and no tone. I never use tone pots, but I love the ability to blend the two pickups in middle position. I find this setup gives me a lot of the options, but with just two pots and a switch.
I think it is one of the best modding platforms out there. I have had two and just modded the heck out of both. Have done SD Phat cats, Phat cat/SC, two HB's. Added a bigsby.
Here is a pic of one, Seafoam Pearl (amazing color). Phat cat bridge, Fralin blues strat SC neck, bigsby (Vibramate mount):
Current configuration is twin Phat Cats, since I have HB and SC guitars.
I had the 59n lying around, a 2 wire, so I used it. I ordered the 59 bridge. Ive never really liked split humbuckers, especially neck humbuckers so I didn't worry about it. The bridge I split so I could get some semblance of twang when needed. A light boost helps, and it does twang some split but not majorly. The 59n sounds great fill vol, but i prefer the Jazz neck as soon as you start rolling off gtr vol. If i had to buy a tele neck humbucker, it'd be a Jazz, and I probably still wouldn't split it.
I replaced the stock saddles with something else a long time ago but don’t remember what they are. I’ve got some cranky noise going on with my first string (not nut or fret) but maybe that kind of saddle would calm that down.
Is that a Blacktop? I love that color but that was not a stock color for them. Did you paint it? It looks great.
Yeah, the 59B split is not the greatest single-coil sound in the world, but it's passable. On the rare occasions I gig, I take the goldtop for humbucker sounds, and my regular Tele for Tele sounds. In the event of a broken string (or more serious catastrophe) or sometimes just to reduce guitar-swapping within a set, I'll split the 59B to make it a "close-enough" substitute for the "real" Tele.
Modded ... still.
I bought it used with some 'metal' SD pickup and standard control plate orientation.
I yanked the SD out and put my own in, reversed the plate, added a 4-way switch to control both bobbins individually plus parallel and series humbucker.
Awesome chunky neck.
Axe - the guitar was a stock Fender FSR HH tele. I don't recall if it was called a blacktop, per se.
The color, Seafoam Pearl, is a Fender color and finish. Stunning. It may be an FSR color, I don't know. A friend HAD to have it so....sold it to him.
My current HH tele is a custom made, pine body one. But, I would not hesitate at all to jump on a Fender HH tele. As I wrote above, the perfect mod platform. You can put any pup or combination of pups in (P90's, if you chose HB sized ones).
I am not sure, however, Fender may produce blacktop models AND HH models. Basically the same thing, but blacktop models must get their blacktop pickups...which are nothing special...generic BHK pickups.
One note: BHK pickups can sound MUCH better, with the covers off.
And...new models *may* have HB's with alnico V magnets (rather than the cheap ceramic one's of earlier models)
Hope this helps