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.

tex mex help.....

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

  1. mkdaws32

    mkdaws32 Friend of Leo's Gold Supporter

    Age:
    51
    Posts:
    2,213
    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2019
    Location:
    Moncton, NB Canada
    I had to do this with my Tex Mex pickups. On a 9.5" radius I could not get a good string-to-string balance with the default stagger. With the pickups straight across, the high E suffered badly reduced output compared to the other strings. When raised up on the high E side enough to compensate, the G was ridiculously loud. I use EB Hybrid strings - 9-46. I probably could have played around with a custom stagger pattern, but I just flattened all the poles and raised the high E side slightly. I really like these pickups now, but they were harder to dial in than my other Strat sets.

    I have three other Strats with SD Alnico II Pros (with a custom wound Vineham bridge pickup), a custom A2/A5 Bootstrap set, and a Bootstrap Oatmeal Stout set. Unlike with the Tex Mex set, I can't get these other sets to sound bad at any reasonable height.

    There is some wax in there on the Tex Mex set for sure, but they will start to move with a little effort. With the plastic bobbins, it's totally safe to push the poles up and down.
     
  2. tap4154

    tap4154 Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

    Posts:
    10,694
    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2009
    Location:
    Southern California
    Several years ago I flattened out the pole pieces on my Jimmie Vaughan, keep the pickups fairly low, wired the upper tone control to the middle and neck pickups, and put a .1 tone cap in. All of those together made a huge difference. And the .1 tone cap takes away the ice pick, even when it's wide open. I really love it now, even though I still usually play it with the tone rolled off quite a bit, I can always crank it up if I want to.
    20210207_084733.jpg
     
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2021
  3. TheOutlaw

    TheOutlaw Tele-Meister

    Posts:
    390
    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2012
    Location:
    United States
    I'm loving the neck and middle after lowering them and flattening the poles a bit but the bridges is going to need more experimentation.

    I got them in a lopsided trade so I got my moneys worth but I still much prefer the factory pups on my American standard.
     
  4. DougM

    DougM Poster Extraordinaire

    Posts:
    6,898
    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2017
    Location:
    Honolulu, HI
    Using 250k pots and .047uf tone cap should tame the highs. But, according to Fender's tone charts that they publish, the Texas Specials are brighter than Tex Mex sets. I'm not sure I agree, but the last time I played Tex Mex pickups was in the 90s, so it's been a long time. POM_Texas_Special_Strat_Set_0992111000.jpg Tex Mex Strat.jpg
     
  5. marcaltus

    marcaltus TDPRI Member

    Posts:
    5
    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2011
    Location:
    Texas
    I bought a Fender Road Worn 50's Stratocaster used. It has Road Worn Fender Tex Mex pickups but with a twist...the former owner wired them to where the middle pickup was installed in the bridge position and vice versa. No other changes...all stock stringed with D'Addario XL10s.

    This means that the hottest pickup is in the middle position making position 4 sounding hotter but not hum canceling. Position 2 is the only hum canceling setting and sounds normal for the position. The bridge is warmer and not ice picky at all. It sounds nice even without being wired to a tone pot...but it is brighter than the rest but not overly bright. The neck is where it belongs and sounds great while the middle position with the hottest pickup sounds great and highly useable on it's own as Clapton's favorite position.

    He did not tell me about the wiring. I found out after buying it and checking out all the positions.

    Initially when I played it, it sounded horrible... unplayable IMO. So, first I raised the action to enable playing blues and generally playing hard and not get fret buzz. I then started lowering the pickups to find the sweet spots. The neck pickup is flush with the pickguard on the bass side and slightly higher on the treble side. The middle pickup bass side is about as high as the neck pickup's treble side and the neck pickup's treble side is slightly higher. So both the neck and middle pickups look the same except the neck pickup is lower than the middle pickup. The bridge pickup is slightly higher than the middle pickup...so way down low.

    Now my guitar sounds great with the Marshall Code on the Silver Jubilee Reverb setting played clean. It of course also sounds amazing with the Fender Pro Junior or any tube amp and pedals. It also growls and is heavy with high distortion but not to the extent of a humbucker of course. Great for hard rock but not metal. Tex Mex are great pickups, you just have to dial them in.

    See if this works for you. I am not changing a thing although I was tempted to put the pickups in their correct positions and gaining hum canceling in position 4. I think this solves the dilemma of these pickups being too hot and the bridge being too ice picky. I like the original pot wiring myself. I like having the bridge wide open with a warmer pickup.
     
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2021
  6. marcaltus

    marcaltus TDPRI Member

    Posts:
    5
    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2011
    Location:
    Texas
    Please delete.
     
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2021
  7. marcaltus

    marcaltus TDPRI Member

    Posts:
    5
    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2011
    Location:
    Texas
    Please delete.
     
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2021
  8. Zepfan

    Zepfan Doctor of Teleocity Gold Supporter

    Posts:
    10,765
    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2013
    Location:
    Horn Lake, MS
    Lower the pickup to get ride of the ice pick.
    Keep the .047 cap.
    Move the middle pickup's tone pot over to the bridge pickup.
    Consider a series/parallel toggle switch for the middle combos.

    This is what I always did to get rid of all that bridge treble. The best fix I found was to replace the bridge pickup with a Cavalier Fat Lion Tele bridge pickup.:twisted:
     
  9. Racer5

    Racer5 Tele-Afflicted

    Posts:
    1,503
    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2010
    Location:
    San Antonio, TX
    Another little tip/trick that I just confirmed -- last night I switched from regular old Slinkys to some Fender pure nickel strings-- the mellowness of the pure nickel really plays well with the tex-mexes. I think I'll be keeping pure nickels on here.
     
    Zepfan likes this.
  10. macoshark

    macoshark TDPRI Member

    Age:
    72
    Posts:
    12
    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2019
    Location:
    Az
    This has been recommended in every Strat forum for Tex Mex PUs. I plan on going.047 orange on my MIM Diamond Anniversary. Also decking the neck PU.
     
IMPORTANT: Treat everyone here with respect, no matter how difficult!
No sex, drug, political, religion or hate discussion permitted here.