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Unread 04-17-2010, 06:06 PM   #1 (permalink)
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OK to remove pickup cover?

I just replaced the pickups on my MIJ LP copy. I actually liked the tone of the old neck pickup and I want to put it in my Yamaha.

I prefer the look of uncovered pickups and want to remove the cover before I install it. A friend told me not to and that I could damage it.

Is this true? I am still learning about all of this and don't have a clue.
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Unread 04-17-2010, 09:07 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Re: OK to remove pickup cover?

It's quite possible to damage a pickup by removing the cover.
And quite difficult if the pickup was potted in wax with the cover on. Getting it off could be a MAJOR PITA.

easiest way I have found to remove a cover...

Small razor blade placed ont he solder joints, nearest the material of the cover (to leave less of a solder-burr)
Couple light taps with a small hammer will cut through the joint. Bend out slightly, and slide cover off.

if the pickup is potted with the cover on, heating it a bit with a hair drier works to liquify the wax. Will help cover come off easier (but carefull.. it gets HOT)

If you want to watch how the cover removal is done, let me know. I have a camera in the shop that streams, and I can demo it for you live.
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Unread 04-18-2010, 02:23 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Re: OK to remove pickup cover?

Quote:
Originally Posted by WolfeMacleod View Post
It's quite possible to damage a pickup by removing the cover.
And quite difficult if the pickup was potted in wax with the cover on. Getting it off could be a MAJOR PITA.

easiest way I have found to remove a cover...

Small razor blade placed ont he solder joints, nearest the material of the cover (to leave less of a solder-burr)
Couple light taps with a small hammer will cut through the joint. Bend out slightly, and slide cover off.

if the pickup is potted with the cover on, heating it a bit with a hair drier works to liquify the wax. Will help cover come off easier (but carefull.. it gets HOT)

If you want to watch how the cover removal is done, let me know. I have a camera in the shop that streams, and I can demo it for you live.
Thanks for the tip of using a hairdryer, I've just wrestled them off in the past. Will definately use that next time I have to take off a pickup cover.
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Unread 04-18-2010, 02:30 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Re: OK to remove pickup cover?

ive removed them with a kitchen steak knife before lol, no heat lol. it was actually a pretty clean job as well!
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Unread 04-18-2010, 09:36 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Re: OK to remove pickup cover?

The last time I did it I used a flat head screwdriver, my head was filled with the constant image of it slicing down the side of my thumb!
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Unread 04-18-2010, 09:59 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Re: OK to remove pickup cover?

Well....seeing as I know little about all of this, it sounds like I could wreck a good pickup for the sake of looks, I think that I will leave the cover on....
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Unread 04-18-2010, 10:28 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Re: OK to remove pickup cover?

I had no problem removing mine. 30w iron and desoldering braid. There was wax, quite a bit less than I expected, and it melts off as you do it.

Mine had black/cream bobbins underneath... is nice!
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Unread 04-18-2010, 10:36 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Re: OK to remove pickup cover?

Some say removing the pickup's cover affects its voice. While highly skeptical of that being to any appreciable degree, if I were moving a pickup because I liked its voice so much, I wouldn't mess with the cover unless it made the pickup look ridiculous on the new guitar.

I've got a spare pair of Gibson Humbuckers with gold covers. It'll be interesting to see where they end up, and if I wind up with the same questions at some point.
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