Cavity space very narrow for P90 - Problems?

Discussion in 'Tele-Technical' started by Deadman1, Jul 31, 2021.

  1. Deadman1

    Deadman1 TDPRI Member

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    Hello...
    As I am installing a P90 in the neck of my '72 Aria Tele-Style Guitar.... i'm facing a "problem"(?).
    The cavitiy's width (not height) at the neck is... just the exact same size as the P90 PU... Not even a piece of paper will fit between wood and PU...
    Can this be problematic?
    [​IMG]
    Thanks :)
     
  2. ChicknPickn

    ChicknPickn Tele-Afflicted

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    I have a Tele set up as you show in the diagram. My P90 is snug, but I did have room for shielding tape. No problems at all. In fact, it sounds beautiful. (Kent Armstrong design from StewMac)
     
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  3. Deadman1

    Deadman1 TDPRI Member

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    OK cool thanks @ChicknPickn
    The cavity is already filled with shielding tape... The snug fit is so snug, that I might have to use a tad of force to get it in there.. :rolleyes::rolleyes:
     
  4. Freeman Keller

    Freeman Keller Poster Extraordinaire

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    I just routed a tele body for a pair of P90's. I used the StewMac template and they are StewMac pickups with their covers. They were very tight, I went back and re-installed the template but shifted a few thousands to each side and made a very fine clean up cut. They fit much better now.

    edit to add, the corners on the template were a slightly different radius that the pickup covers, I cleaned that up too.

    I also mounted the pickups on foam instead of the springs that come with them. With the additional clearance there is no problem adjusting the height - I'm afraid that if you have to force yours it will be hard to do. They are working fine and I think you will like the P90 in the neck.
     
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2021
  5. old wrench

    old wrench Friend of Leo's

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    A P-90 sounds very good as a Tele neck pickup - I've used them myself :).

    But - to get a balanced volume when you are using a regular Tele single-coil at the bridge, you generally need to lower the neck P-90 down quite a bit, which not only helps to balance the volume between the neck and bridge, but also I think, actually has a good effect on the tone of the P-90.

    So - you really need to have enough clearance between the pickup and the pickup cavity so you can adjust it up and down and dial in the height to where it sounds right.



    Most of the plastic P-90 covers are 1-3/8" X 3-3/8", but I've used a nickel-silver P-90 cover that I got from Philadelphia Luthiers Supply that is just a hair smaller ;).



    The obvious solution, of course, is to enlarge the pickup cavity.


    Another option - if you are resistant to enlarging the pickup cavity - is to sand down the thickness of the pickup cover's sides.

    You can sand the plastic cover with progressively finer grit sandpaper and end by polishing with some plastic polishing compound and wind up with a smaller cover that still looks good ;).


    .
     
  6. ChicknPickn

    ChicknPickn Tele-Afflicted

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    "But - to get a balanced volume when you are using a regular Tele single-coil at the bridge, you generally need to lower the neck P-90 down quite a bit, which not only helps to balance the volume between the neck and bridge, but also I think, actually has a good effect on the tone of the P-90."

    Spot on.
     
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