1990 Studio with sqealing 498t

Discussion in 'Gibson Les Pauls' started by boola1, Jan 11, 2017.

  1. boola1

    boola1 Member

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    Hi, first post. I recently bought a 1990 Studio. It's a fantastic sounding guitar but I found the bridge pickup (498t) waaaaay too hot and this is in comparison to my beloved Flying V!

    With high gain amps, I was getting some squealing. I have moved the pickups down so that they are almost flush with the pickup surround which has helped but the pickups are still noticeably microphonic and always close to feedback if I'm too close to the amp.

    This is my first experience with these pickups or any humbuckers other than the 490/500T in my V, which have no issues.

    Is this just how these pickups are? Do I just have to be careful with the gain and getting too close to the amp?

    These pickups are potted and from what I've read, should not be microphonic. Does it sound like they need to be re-potted?

    I measured a resistance of 13.3k so I'm pretty certain it is the stock 498t.

    Thanks!

    Finally, the obligatory pics!

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  2. ARandall

    ARandall Senior Member

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    Any pickup with covers is prone to squeal - and old pickups that got potted originally can lose the benefits after a while. You might find a light potting of the cover/bobbins gap is all that it needs.
    Odd you think the 498T is hot.....the 500T is more output and ceramic mag.
     
  3. Oranjeaap

    Oranjeaap Senior Member

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    It certainly is a hot pickup.

    I guess you might play too close to the amp at a too high volume? I can't imagine both pickups going microphonic because of potting failure. Now if one were to squeel and the other not, I'd say pickup defect. Both squeel? Too much gain, too much volume, too close to amp? No? Maybe it is the pickups. I guess the pups in your V are not covered?
     
  4. boola1

    boola1 Member

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    Having played around some more, I think part of the reason I find it as hot as the 500T is the microhpony, there's a lot of acoustic noise. You can hear that high pitched 'tink' of the plectrum hitting the string. With high gain, it's always on the edge and not too pleasant.

    To re-pot the covers, I guess I just need to dunk the whole thing in wax with maybe some tape over the top and sides where I don't want the wax to stick?

    Well, the DR103 is extremely loud :naughty: but my V has no problems. Actually it's my Marshall that tends to induce the feeback more.

    It's just the bridge pickup that seems to have this issue. No the V isn't covered.

    I should say that when I say "high gain" amp, I'm talking about stuff like a 1971 Marshall, not an Engl Powerball. God knows what would happen with something like that.

    Do you have a 498t? I get the feeling that something isn't right but would like confirmation before I start pulling things apart :)

    Thanks
     
  5. Ginger Beer

    Ginger Beer Senior Member

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    I had a 498t pickup installed for a while. It's a hot pickup for sure but I never found it excessively feedback prone. It's certainly not hotter than a 500T (my friend has a Classic with that pickup i it...very hot). I played it through a 2203 which has a very healthy amount of gain.

    Loose cover? Needs a little wax?
    If I was going through the trouble of re-wax potting the pickup, I would probably just get a different one altogether. I grew to dislike the 498t but I know some people love them.
     
  6. Zarg

    Zarg Senior Member

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    you dont need to rewax it, just take the cover off and put some silicone on the pickup before you put the cover back on, theres plenty of guides on youtube how to properly install a pickup cover
     
  7. LP Traditional

    LP Traditional Senior Member

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    First I don't think that lowering the pickups would help against feedback. I would raise them closer to the strings to get a stronger signal.

    Secondly I think I know why you don't find the 500T in your V especially hot. In my V the stock pots where 300k and that balanced the hotness of the 500T really well. Perhaps the pots in your les paul are higher value and therefore lets more high frequencies thru? And because of the maple cap adding brightness to.
     
  8. bigtone

    bigtone Senior Member

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    Use that reusable, non drying sticky putty that staples sells to stick photos on boards under the pickup covers. Works all the time for my is is much easier to remove than silicone. Dipping the pickup also works, but is really not necessary if it is only the cover squealing.
     
  9. Bobby Mahogany

    Bobby Mahogany Senior Member

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    Welcome to the Forum!

    I own a 1992 Standard that had the 490R / 498T combination.

    Around 1998 the 498T became microphonic. I could talk near it and would hear myself through the amp.
    I replaced it with a Seymour Duncan '59 as I wanted a more "Vintage" tone.
    Didn't bother to try and fix the 498T. Kept it in a drawer somewhere though, just "because"! :D

    A few simple solutions have been posted so you have a few things to try if you like that tone.
     
  10. peterjc

    peterjc Senior Member

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    When your playing again and it begins to squeal just touch the top of the pickup and press down to see if that stops it! If it does either repot it or take the cover off and put a dab of neutral cure silicone underneath and reinstall cover.
     
  11. Mr. Pickles

    Mr. Pickles Mr. Pickles loves you. MWAH! ♥ Premium Member

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    Try turning down.
     
  12. LPSPP

    LPSPP Senior Member

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    If the feed back is microphonic (random high pitch squealing) the pickup needs to be
    re-potted

    Left my LP in a hot car once and the wax melted
    Squeal city until the re potting
    Didn't cost much either
     
  13. boola1

    boola1 Member

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    Thanks for the welcomes and the helpful advice. As soon as my 7month old allows me 5mins, I will get into the man cave and start testing.

    FWIW, I do like the tone of the 498t, that combined with that awesome chunk of wood is giving me the tone I have in my head for a Les Paul. I have tried many a Paul over the years that while being a great guitar, didn't sound like a Les Paul should IMHO!

    I have owned this guitar for a couple of weeks now but have only been able to play it for about an hour in total, it's torture!

    Sorry? Can't hear you! :jam:
     
  14. ARandall

    ARandall Senior Member

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    First step is to remove the cover and play with it like that......if the squeal is gone or still there then you have immediately got an answer about the cover being the culprit.
     
  15. fiveightandten

    fiveightandten Senior Member

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    I haave a 498t in all 3 of my LPs (92 Standards, 95 Studio, 13 Custom Lite). I love the pickup, and I normally play with precious little gain. I can stand directly in front of my Hiwatt DR504 with the volume and gain on 10 and not have any problems with the pickup feeding back.

    You need to re-pot the pickup. It's easy. I use a mixture of 75% canning wax and 25% beeswax. Heat it in a double boiler to 115ºF using a candy thermometer. Submerge the pickup completely and tap it until you stop seeing bubbles come out of it. You shouldn't submerge it longer than 10 or 15 seconds. Then just remove it, wipe it off, and reinstall it back in the guitar. It'll be good to go for another 27 years.
     
  16. boola1

    boola1 Member

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    Thanks for the suggestions, I got a chance to mess around today. As suggested, I tried pressing down on the cover which stopped the squealing.

    So..... It seems like it's time for my pickup to take a nice warm wax bath!

    Thanks again for the help!

    Here's a quick vid I made today of it in action. Some shoddy playing + crap camera but hopefully you can hear the qualities of this lovely guitar!

    Cheers

    https://youtu.be/-UM4zxuoTcQ
    [​IMG]
     

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