1. Win a Broadcaster or one of 3 Teles! The annual Supporting Member Giveaway is on. To enter Click Here. To see all the prizes and full details Click Here. To view the thread about the giveaway Click Here.

Pickup issue

Discussion in 'Just Pickups' started by Urshurak776, Mar 1, 2021.

  1. Urshurak776

    Urshurak776 Tele-Afflicted

    Posts:
    1,052
    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2004
    Location:
    Charlotte
    FAB3F572-EF6E-4324-AC70-95CAD38B1911.jpeg Hi all,

    Picked up a cheap Strat kit and bought some inexpensive Alnico 5 pickups on eBay. Went to OHM them out and one reads “OL” on meter. Sure enough, found a broken wire. See picture. These wires are smaller and more delicate than a human hair. I have a soldering iron but not sure that would even work.

    Also, I bought them in December so seller may not stand behind it. I did send them a message.

    Any advice how to repair?
     
  2. Boreas

    Boreas Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

    Age:
    65
    Posts:
    3,140
    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2019
    Location:
    Adirondack Coast, NY
    Obviously, don't even try a repair until you have ruled out a free replacement! I believe the repair involves removing a wind from the bobbin and re-soldering. But if the broken wire is coming from the deep part of the bobbin, you won't be able to remove a wind. But just removing the coil tape in itself can tear windings. If it is a cheap pup, it wouldn't be worth paying a pro to repair it.

    My suggestion is to try to get a free replacement. If it can be shown the pup has never been installed, it may help your case. Otherwise, I would see if you can purchase one pup from the seller for a good price.
     
    Wally and Urshurak776 like this.
  3. schmee

    schmee Doctor of Teleocity

    Posts:
    14,705
    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2003
    Location:
    northwest
    Yeah, happens a lot when they lay around or are shipped without covers. I have a Custom Shop one I left laying around that broken. Unfortunately the broken wire is not the outer layer. I repaired one once by unwrapping one turn and resoldering to the solder glob. You need to carefully strip the wire where you solder as it has a coating.
    You could try resoldering that with one tiny strand off a piece of wire from something else.
     
    Urshurak776 and Boreas like this.
  4. Boreas

    Boreas Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

    Age:
    65
    Posts:
    3,140
    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2019
    Location:
    Adirondack Coast, NY
    I would splice/resolder the wire only as a LAST resort - mostly to see if it CAN be done. It may have been soldered too short and that is why it broke. If you do manage to splice it - possibly with a parallel length of wire - I wouldn't give the repair much longevity, especially if you will be gigging with it. But no harm in trying.
     
    Wally and Urshurak776 like this.
  5. Urshurak776

    Urshurak776 Tele-Afflicted

    Posts:
    1,052
    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2004
    Location:
    Charlotte
    Thanks everyone. I will wait to hear what the seller says. Stinks, but they were only $18. Not a huge deal.

    If they let me keep the pickup, I'll try a repair and see how it goes. Man those wires are TINY.
     
    Boreas likes this.
  6. Boreas

    Boreas Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

    Age:
    65
    Posts:
    3,140
    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2019
    Location:
    Adirondack Coast, NY
    Not only are they tiny, they are insulated with lacquer or something making soldering even more precarious. So trying to splice them is dicey at best. But if you are lucky and it is a top wind, it is certainly worth a try, rather than trashing it.

    You could even use it as an opportunity to learn how to roll your own!

    Makers/sellers of cheap pickups are used to failures (because of limited QC), and don't want to step on their own feet by ANY negative customer relations. Why urinate-off a customer by turning down a replacement that cost them $4? They will likely spend more in shipping than the unit cost them. But that is the cost of doing business. Only the lowliest scumbag seller would refuse a replacement. Most are very "review conscious".

    Keep us posted!
     
    Urshurak776 likes this.
  7. schmee

    schmee Doctor of Teleocity

    Posts:
    14,705
    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2003
    Location:
    northwest
    Remove the tape and see if it's the outside wire or the buried one. If the outside wire, unwrap one wrap, bare the ends and twist together if you can. You better have nimble fingers!
    I found it easier to place the unwrapped wire over the solder glob already there and just superquick melt it.

    The thing is, you don't really know if the seller sold you a bad one or it got broke laying around. As I said, if it's been uncovered or laying around it could have gotten broke very easy.
     
    Urshurak776 and Boreas like this.
  8. Boreas

    Boreas Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

    Age:
    65
    Posts:
    3,140
    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2019
    Location:
    Adirondack Coast, NY
    I would also resolder at the blob for strength.
     
    Urshurak776 likes this.
  9. Urshurak776

    Urshurak776 Tele-Afflicted

    Posts:
    1,052
    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2004
    Location:
    Charlotte
    Absolutely! Thank you. I'll wait until I hear from them before I do anything, but hopefully it will work out.
     
    Boreas likes this.
  10. Boreas

    Boreas Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

    Age:
    65
    Posts:
    3,140
    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2019
    Location:
    Adirondack Coast, NY
    I am sure it will. Keep us posted!
     
    Urshurak776 likes this.
  11. Urshurak776

    Urshurak776 Tele-Afflicted

    Posts:
    1,052
    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2004
    Location:
    Charlotte
    Hi all, heard back from the seller this morning:

    "Hi dear customer,
    Thanks for your contact but sorry to hear that.
    Return will cost more time and money,it's worthless to return.
    In that case, how about refund $5 and you try to fix it at first?
    Hope you can understand and looking forward to your reply."

    So, I guess I'll try and unwrap and solder. Give it a whirl anyway. I'll report back.
     
    Zepfan and Boreas like this.
  12. Wally

    Wally Telefied Ad Free Member

    Posts:
    38,843
    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2003
    Location:
    Lubbock, TX
    You may want to try to take the lacquer insulation off with a solvent before soldering. It is delicate work.
     
    Urshurak776 likes this.
  13. guitarmojo

    guitarmojo TDPRI Member

    Posts:
    43
    Joined:
    May 31, 2012
    Location:
    United States
    Looks like the inner end, judging from the black lead. Harder to fix but not impossible. I've done it before. If it was the white side (outer), just unwrap a wind or 2 and resolder to the eyelet. No way to lengthen the inner lead other than a splice. Getting your fingers in there is the hardest part.
     
    Urshurak776 and Wally like this.
  14. Boreas

    Boreas Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

    Age:
    65
    Posts:
    3,140
    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2019
    Location:
    Adirondack Coast, NY
    Sounds like this place gets sets of 3 pickups only from China (I assume), so they may not have extras to send you. I would say a $10 refund would be more like it. After all, you are spending your time and effort to fix it. Does the seller have any kind of posted return or satisfaction guidelines?

    If the wire is a top wrap, you should be able to fix it properly. Use a solder-sucker or solder wick to get rid of most of the solder blob and the old wire. Carefully unwrap one turn and run it to the terminal. You can even make a few wraps through the eyelet hole to keep it in place. You could try acetone to remove the lacquer coating on the strand where it will be soldered. Solder carefully with good electrical solder. I would avoid lead-free because it usually requires higher temps. When you are done, check for continuity and resistance. Don't forget to re-wrap the coil with adhesive copper tape or other tape to protect it. The original tape (vinyl?) may be sticky enough.

    If it is a bottom wind and you have to splice it, you most likely will NOT be able to free up any more coil wire. It would probably be best to use a 3rd piece of coil wire along side of the two broken ends, and try to solder the entire length - say 1/4-1/2" and trim any excess. Another thing you could try is get a short piece of uninsulated, tinned 26 ga. wire (or a single strand), solder it to the output, and run it along the coil wire up to where the wire comes off the coil. Use the acetone to remove the lacquer at the tag end of the coil wire, then try to wrap it around your strand of copper wire and solder. This way may be a little more solid and less likely to break down the road.

    Good luck. Perhaps post a pictorial of your labors. That way we all learn!
     
    Urshurak776 and Wally like this.
  15. Urshurak776

    Urshurak776 Tele-Afflicted

    Posts:
    1,052
    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2004
    Location:
    Charlotte
    Thanks everyone, yeah, it was the inner wire. It looked like it started to unwrap and about half-way around it broke, and I was being super gentle.

    Not a huge deal I guess. The other two are okay. This one is the middle pickup. They are labeled Tj-48. TJ-50 and TJ-52. TJ-52 is the hottest, so I assume bridge. I think they are referring to pole spacing.

    Now. I have one of those blade type humbucker pickups (they fit in the single coil slot.) IF I use this as a bridge pickup, won't my pole spacing be weird to have a TJ-52 in middle and a TJ-48 in neck? Obviously it doesn't matter for the blade type.

    It will be weird looking, but just an office beater guitar to play around with.

    I'll send a picture to show what this would look like.

    I REALLY appreciate you guys helping me out. You rock!
     
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2021
    Boreas likes this.
  16. Urshurak776

    Urshurak776 Tele-Afflicted

    Posts:
    1,052
    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2004
    Location:
    Charlotte
    3137372A-F692-411D-BE9A-18401F23D1FE.jpeg
     
  17. guitarmojo

    guitarmojo TDPRI Member

    Posts:
    43
    Joined:
    May 31, 2012
    Location:
    United States
    The poles don't have to line up with strings, you're good.
     
    DougM and Urshurak776 like this.
  18. Boreas

    Boreas Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

    Age:
    65
    Posts:
    3,140
    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2019
    Location:
    Adirondack Coast, NY
    Whoops...
     
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2021
  19. Boreas

    Boreas Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

    Age:
    65
    Posts:
    3,140
    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2019
    Location:
    Adirondack Coast, NY
    Yes, I think those are pole spacings in mm.

    My suggestion would be to buy another set of properly matched Strat pickups and save these for another project. You may end up with an overly-intense middle pup and the HB will likely be too intense as well.
     
    Urshurak776 likes this.
  20. Urshurak776

    Urshurak776 Tele-Afflicted

    Posts:
    1,052
    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2004
    Location:
    Charlotte
    Good call. I don't know a lot about strats, so venturing into uncharted water. I may just keep the kit pickups for now......
     
    Boreas likes this.
IMPORTANT: Treat everyone here with respect, no matter how difficult!
No sex, drug, political, religion or hate discussion permitted here.