Gibson PIckup Identification? Covers not soldered will this cause problems?

TimeTraveler

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I just picked up an edwards and put new strings on it. I looked at the pickups- to my surprise it has Gibson pickups- and am curious if anyone could give me an idea what they were just by looking at them, I didnt want to take them out and measure the ohms at this point in time.

THe other thing I noticed is the covers dont appear to be soldered. My guess is someone got some coverless gibson pickups and threw the old covers on but who knows. I didnt take them apart to see if they were zebra's or anything. I thought i would get some opinions first and i was excited to play this thing with new strings.

Reccommendations please. DO the covers need soldered? Isnt that a grounding issue? I realize its a long shot but ANy help with identification would be great because i really like the sound of them. I can dig deeper and measure ohms and take covers off. THe other reason i didnt go tearing things apart was i really like the sound and don't want to change it.
pickupweb.jpg
 

Michael Matyas

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In order to provide shielding from electrical noise, covers must be grounded. The usual way is to solder them to the base plates. You don't need to unsolder the pickups to measure their D.C. resistance if you make a simple device to plug into your output jack. Take a standard quarter-inch mono plug and solder a short, insulated wire to each of its contacts. Strip a short piece of insulation from each wire, then plug the device into your guitar. Set your multi-meter for D.C. Resistance, then set the toggle switch in the rhythm position. Touch the probes to the stripped end of the wires, and you will get an approximate D.C. Resistance reading. It will not be exact, but close, because the pickup is wired into a circuit. When you do this, be sure your tone and volume controls are all set on full. Placing the toggle switch in the treble position will give you the resistance of the bridge pickup. Soldering the covers on should not affect these readings, but it will make your guitar less susceptible to background hum.
 

kakerlak

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They may or may not be okay. Soldering them on is foolproof insurance that they stay grounded, but if they're making good metal-to-metal contact, they may be effectively grounded anyway (remember that a guitar cable isn't hard soldered to the guitar or amp). But things like tape, wax potting, and irregular surfaces may cause them to only make intermittent contact or vibrate in-and-out of contact under play.

You need a soldering iron with enough wattage to quickly heat the baseplate and cover hot enough to flow solder w/o starting to melt things like spacers, bobbins and wax potting, though. Both cover and baseplate are huge heatsinks and a typical soldering iron that would be appropriate for wiring pots and components in amps won't get them hot enough to flow solder w/o heating everything up.
 

TimeTraveler

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They may or may not be okay. Soldering them on is foolproof insurance that they stay grounded, but if they're making good metal-to-metal contact, they may be effectively grounded anyway (remember that a guitar cable isn't hard soldered to the guitar or amp). But things like tape, wax potting, and irregular surfaces may cause them to only make intermittent contact or vibrate in-and-out of contact under play.

You need a soldering iron with enough wattage to quickly heat the baseplate and cover hot enough to flow solder w/o starting to melt things like spacers, bobbins and wax potting, though. Both cover and baseplate are huge heatsinks and a typical soldering iron that would be appropriate for wiring pots and components in amps won't get them hot enough to flow solder w/o heating everything up.
They may or may not be okay. Soldering them on is foolproof insurance that they stay grounded, but if they're making good metal-to-metal contact, they may be effectively grounded anyway (remember that a guitar cable isn't hard soldered to the guitar or amp). But things like tape, wax potting, and irregular surfaces may cause them to only make intermittent contact or vibrate in-and-out of contact under play.

You need a soldering iron with enough wattage to quickly heat the baseplate and cover hot enough to flow solder w/o starting to melt things like spacers, bobbins and wax potting, though. Both cover and baseplate are huge heatsinks and a typical soldering iron that would be appropriate for wiring pots and components in amps won't get them hot enough to flow solder w/o heating everything up.
I have a Tec power tp 13 soldering iron, it says it reaches temps of up to 540C and it is 40 watts, Do you know if that hot enough? I've soldered covers with it once before but they were some cheapos i didnt care about.

Also i recorded the guitar with the covers on and off to compare them you can check out the video here. covered vs uncoverd The covered recording sounds noisy to me. Maybe i should solder them on and compare to see if it makes a difference. But i would think the covers would be less noisy,
 

TimeTraveler

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In order to provide shielding from electrical noise, covers must be grounded. The usual way is to solder them to the base plates. You don't need to unsolder the pickups to measure their D.C. resistance if you make a simple device to plug into your output jack. Take a standard quarter-inch mono plug and solder a short, insulated wire to each of its contacts. Strip a short piece of insulation from each wire, then plug the device into your guitar. Set your multi-meter for D.C. Resistance, then set the toggle switch in the rhythm position. Touch the probes to the stripped end of the wires, and you will get an approximate D.C. Resistance reading. It will not be exact, but close, because the pickup is wired into a circuit. When you do this, be sure your tone and volume controls are all set on full. Placing the toggle switch in the treble position will give you the resistance of the bridge pickup. Soldering the covers on should not affect these readings, but it will make your guitar less susceptible to background hum.
I recorded the pickups coverd and uncoverd you can listen hear on you tube covered vs uncoverd the covered recording sounds noisy to me compared to the uncoverd, thinking maybe its acting like an antenae and not getting a good ground
 

TimeTraveler

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Update:


Took out the pickups and was cleaning the black tape off the back of the neck pickup and i noticed there is a T stamped in the back of it under the tape. I measured the ohms and it reads 8.54K THis leads me to believe the pickup is a 490T that was in the neck position.

THe Bridge pickup measures 15.22 and looks like a 500T

I know i said I love the sound of the guitar and didnt want to change anything BUT i may try a different pickup in the neck position to see if it sound Better if not i can always go back.

Ordered a Nickel cover to replace the one as it had mismatched covers one chrome and one nickel

Any Suggestions? keep as is? I could leave the 500T bridge but want something balanced to go with it if i keep it,

I like the seth lovers SEymore duncans sound the most i would say atm.
 

Michael Matyas

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I have a spot in my heart for the DiMarzio Tone Zone in the neck position. It's louder than what you've got in there now, but I like the way it balances with a hot lead pickup. It has a lot of bass and midrange, not a whole lot of treble, so there is a nice contrast when used on its own. In the middle position it blends nicely with something like a Super Distortion. The only drawback I notice is that it still sounds hot and compressed with the volume lowered--i.e., it doesn't clean up too well. Just a suggestion...
 

TimeTraveler

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I have a spot in my heart for the DiMarzio Tone Zone in the neck position. It's louder than what you've got in there now, but I like the way it balances with a hot lead pickup. I
I just realized the 500T is F- Spaced... I ordered some dimarzio 36 anniversary pafs
 

Michael Matyas

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Great choice! Although I haven't tried the PAF36s, I have two pairs of early-mid '80s, unpotted PAFs. One pair is in the first guitar I ever built from scratch, which took me eight months to complete because the only power tool I had was an electric drill. The other pair is still waiting to be installed in a very special project. Those pickups have decent power, great clarity and note separation, and they don't get muddy when turned down. I bet the PAF36s are a lot like my 35+ year-old originals.
 

TimeTraveler

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Now that i think about it i wonder if the pickups being non PAF style pickups has something to do with why I like them. Now that its disassembled i went back to playing a guitar with PAF's and i cant seem to find the happy medium of distortion breakup. I feel like either im playing too hard or too soft. I been Reading about these PAF style PU's and learned they are very sensitive to how hard or soft you play.

Or it might just be that I dont like the sound of Custom BUckers but i suspect I may need to learn how to play with their dynamics. Is there a learning curve to PAF's because they react a lot differently than the regular Humbuckers I learn to play on.

either way i can compare the custom buckers when i get the dimarzios, and if need be i will try something else, maybe the Dimarzio NOrton.
 

TimeTraveler

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UPDATE 2

The bridge pickup turns out is a F-spaced pickup I only found out because i happend to try and put the cover for the neck PU on it and it didnt fit. So I ordered some Dimarzio 36 anniversary neck and bridge PAF

The Pots all measure around 250K so I ordered an Emerson set of 500k pots with bumble bee caps

the frets have some wear and could probably use a leveling

I should probably start a different thread this is getting off the original topic
 

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