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tex mex help.....

Discussion in 'Stratocaster Discussion Forum' started by TheOutlaw, Jan 14, 2021.

  1. TheOutlaw

    TheOutlaw Tele-Meister

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    I bought a used MIM Strat a few months ago because the price was right and I had enough spare parts that I thought i could make it what I wanted. First step was ditching hotrails and I already had a tex mex set i took in trade forever ago so it was a no brainer... or atleast I thought.

    I installed them reusing the harness that came with guitar since they looked like 250k cts and ised a tone cap that was from a Squier sss i had laying around. I have loved strats for years but I never got the whole ice pick thing people complained about until putting these pickups in. It was horrible so I took the pickups out and push the pool pieces back in to flatten the ark a little bit. Put it back together and it was a little better but still nasty to play to the point where I would cringe when picking single high notes. I played with pick up Heights but that isn't doing enough.

    I think changing tone caps is pretty much my last and best option. I have both 0.22 and 0.47 orange Drop caps as well as another set of pots and why her in case I screw up. Currently the turn knob controls bridge but sounds not so good to me when rolled back.

    I have done a lot of setup work but not really much Electronics work on guitars but from what I understand switching to the 0.22 orange drop cap should tame the highs a little bit correct?

    Is there anything else I might try to help actually like this pick up?

    I haven't really had time to even try to dial in the neck or middle pickup height I kind of like those it is just the bridge pickup that I absolutely hate and usually that is the pick up I go for on most strats
     
  2. viking

    viking Friend of Leo's

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    Tex Mex for Tele , is a cheap-ish set of Fender pu´s , some have a different opinion than me , and thats ok !

    I like them , have a few sets , and just install both pickups at 2 mm clearance treble side 2.2 mm bass side , strings pressed down at last fret.

    Works for me !
     
  3. Racer5

    Racer5 Tele-Afflicted

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    I'm sitting here right now with a JV strat with tex mexes

    couple things I noticed that help to smooth them out

    - LOW pickup height. definitely lower than I'd normally think to set a strat
    on this note, the bridge pickup sounds better when it's set flat across, no rise on the treble side

    - the JV comes stock with the tone control set to the bridge pickup--this is a fantastic mod for any strat and really makes the tex mex bridge pickup more useful. even taking it down to 8 or 9 gets it round enough to be more useful
     
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  4. DougM

    DougM Poster Extraordinaire

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    I'm pretty sure you have it backwards- A higher value cap will tame the highs more than a lower value one. I've been playing Strats my whole life, and so I like their bright sound, and I haven't played any with Tex Mex's in a while, but, from what I can recall, they were one of the brightest Strat pickups I've ever heard (too bright for my taste, even though I like glassy vintage type pickups more than hot, overwound ones). That being said, @Racer5 is correct, lowering the pickups will warm them up, and higher will make them brighter. And, as to his comment about having the treble side of a pickup higher than the bass side, I don't know why Fender does that at the factory on their Strats. I've never liked it, and I always set the pickups on my Strats to have both sides the same height.
     
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  5. Tarkus60

    Tarkus60 Tele-Meister

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    I installed a set in my 92 mim, my friend has a set in a strat. They are fine in the strat I hated mine in the tele. replaced with vintage 52's ah much better.
     
  6. DougM

    DougM Poster Extraordinaire

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    I've just been watching a YouTube channel called Direct Recording Guitar, where he samples different tones on several multi-effects pedals, and on the ones that he sets up for a bluesy John Mayer/SRV type Strat sound, he's using his Strat with Tex Mex pickups, and they sound really good on the Boss GT1, and the Zoom G1 Four. I'm seriously considering trying some Tex Mex pickups in one of my Strats now, 'cause at $100, they're less expensive than just about any other good Fender set for Strats.
     
  7. richiek65

    richiek65 Friend of Leo's

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    Mine are in a MIM classic player and are way warmer than the CS69s that came from the factory. I am super happy with them, i do have the tone control wired to the bridge but even if i don't use it, the bridge pick up is not what I would call ice picky. Those CS69s were parting peoples hair at 20 paces
     
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  8. viking

    viking Friend of Leo's

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    Once again , I managed to mix up Tele and Strat , sorry.
     
  9. 3-Chord-Genius

    3-Chord-Genius Poster Extraordinaire

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    Not sure about the strat Tex-Mex set, but I have the telecaster set and they're my favorite of all telecaster pickups I've tried.
     
  10. Racer5

    Racer5 Tele-Afflicted

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    Right? It's one of those ancient rules that may be true for some pickups. I just got this tex mex strat and have been dialing in the pickups, and right now they are set pretty much flat and are sounding more balanced. What's the point of all that factory polepiece staggering if you're just going to muck it up with the pickup angle?
     
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  11. FortyEight

    FortyEight Tele-Afflicted

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    Can you push the pole pieces to flatten them? I've seen guys do this. I THINK they are kind of waxed in there and can move once budged. At least that's what I've seen but I'm not sure if that's with the tex mex pups or not. I'm assuming the tex mex pups don't have a bar magnet on the bottom, right? The pole pieces are the magnets?
     
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  12. Collin D Plonker

    Collin D Plonker Tele-Afflicted

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    Just jump a wire as shown below. This will give you tone control to the bridge pickup and take the ice pick. I do this on all my strats.


    161609-b005ee3d909ff20923c9bd3b6b7c42af.jpg
     
  13. TheOutlaw

    TheOutlaw Tele-Meister

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    Like I said in the first post turn control is already connected to the bridge pickup and I already pushed the pole pieces down a little so they are just between being flat across and matching the radius of the fretboard. I haven't gotten around to messing with the wiring again yet.
     
  14. schmee

    schmee Doctor of Teleocity

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    I have and prefer Tex Mex in all my Strats and dont have that issue. Not sure what to say. you need tone control on the bridge pickup? On the other two I'm usually wide open on tone though.
    Are you sure your wiring is correct?
     
  15. Peegoo

    Peegoo Poster Extraordinaire

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    You didn't mention the amp you're playing through. Have you tried tweaking the tone controls on the amp?

    The sound of an electric guitar is dependent on the guitar and the amp.
     
  16. TheOutlaw

    TheOutlaw Tele-Meister

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    With the tone wide open it is almost painful to listen to but as I roll off the tone knob it kills some of the highs but it also makes it sound like crap. This carries over no matter which amp I use so far I've had it plugged into a 60-watt Fender supersonic 5 watt Blackstar, a 15 watt bassbreaker, and a fender musicmaster bass amp. The wiring seems to be correct all of the knobs function and I'm happy with the neck and middle pickup. I'm still hoping it is just the Cheapo generic tone cap I pulled out of an old Squier pickguard. It was a tiny green chicklet looking thing. I have brand new orange drops I just haven't felt like taking it all back apart for the 50th time in 2 weeks LOL. I'm really hoping to get back to it soon because I'm actually starting to bond with the feel of the guitar but I'm also knee deep in about 300 other projects at the moment.

    Besides the 70 Hour Work Week I've been busy trying to gather supplies to start a tele build and I have been chomping at the bit trying to finish a workbench that I started a few years ago.

    20210112_203814.jpg
     
  17. Fenderdad1950

    Fenderdad1950 Tele-Afflicted

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    Ah Tex Mex, years with them, served me well. Sidestepped over to Texas Specials. Muy Caliente ......oh yeah :cool:
     
  18. TheOutlaw

    TheOutlaw Tele-Meister

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    Is one not just a more economical version of the other? I was under the impression it was kind of like mim Strat vs. USA Strat?
     
  19. Racer5

    Racer5 Tele-Afflicted

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    I came here to update this thread because I just did this -- used a fat feeler gauge and some thumb pressure and completely flattened all those peaky polepieces.

    The result is noticeable, combined with the low height I'm finally getting these to sound just how I want. Happy to avoid another $150+ replacement set.

    They are completely fine to push back because the bobbins are plastic. Requires very minimal pressure.

    This is where I have them sitting now--

    [​IMG]
     
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  20. hamerfan

    hamerfan Tele-Meister

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    With all the pole pieces flattened and a 7.25 to 10 inch fret board radius I feel the D string is suffering. I prefer a modern stagger with the those lower radii.
     
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