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Now I've done it, and the domino effect

Discussion in 'Just Pickups' started by Wallaby, Oct 31, 2020.

  1. Wallaby

    Wallaby Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

    Age:
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    I am staring at my first-ever hand-wound pickup that I wound myself.

    It's a P90 from the Stewmac "Vintage" P90 kit, using 42AWG with plain enamel insulation. With my technique ( hah! ) 9000 turns on the bobbin and all assembled measures 7.19 kohm. I intend it to be a neck pickup.

    I either have to put it in an existing guitar or postpone hearing it while I build a test platform. I hadn't planned on building a partscaster, but I should have seen this moment coming.

    I'm kind of deflated-feeling, there's a bit less mystery for me about pickups now. :/
     
    Wildeman and El Tele Lobo like this.
  2. Wallaby

    Wallaby Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

    Age:
    56
    Posts:
    1,519
    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2018
    Location:
    Midwest
    I went ahead and wound up the bridge pickup too, to 10,000 turns of plain enamel 42AWG.

    Installed them both and... deep breath...

    They both work and don't sound terrible ( to me at least ) and sound good together in the middle position too! The neck pickup is audibly clearer and more "stringy", which was my goal when I jumped in without a plan, I'm pretty happy about that.

    I measured the Gibson P90s I removed - they're both around 8.1k, which is right about what my new bridge pickup measures.

    I don't have the means yet to measure capacitance or induction, but I'm learning about that and hope to soon.

    Only one thing to do now - wind up another set!
     
    pi and SRHmusic like this.
  3. Wallaby

    Wallaby Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

    Age:
    56
    Posts:
    1,519
    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2018
    Location:
    Midwest
    The project last weekend was, drumroll please, another new set of P90's for my LP Special :)

    This time I changed it up by changing from plain enamel to heavy formvar wire, 42awg. I went with 8,750 turns for the neck pickup, and 9,700 for the bridge, with the hope of producing another set with similar resistance to my first set, which were 7.1/8.1.

    I kind of consider these resistances my "Goldilocks" zone, there is something I like there, each pickup sounds good alone and the middle position does too, with my amps and settings and guitars. They clean up yet retain treble when I drop the volume slightly from "10", and also firm up when I turn the tone control slightly from "10". Modern wiring. I wonder if this pattern will continue with PAF's, or with Tele single coils?

    I got really close in both cases, at 7.2 for the neck and 8.2 for the bridge. I'm using fully charged A5 magnets, and consciously light tension. I can hear the sound of my winder change with different tension; I'm just using my fingers so I feel it too. I was a little too light at first and ended up with a do-over.

    There is an audible difference with this pair too. I don't want to say they're "Strat-like", but there is something reminiscent in their sound. They sound great! My SO, Fawn, notices the change in the tone and has commented with each swap so far.

    I'm learning, each pickup gets easier to build and assemble, and I've identified another dial to turn, so to speak. It's also really, really cool to have pickup swaps so easy to do.

    [EDIT]

    It's not exactly "easy" to wind and assemble a new set of pickups. But the price point and time-and-effort point is a lot more in my reach than ordering new pickups every weekend.
     
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2020
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