NGD/NPD - Tokai LS-320/K&T Weeps

currypowder

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OK, so not really a new guitar since I bought it last year. And I even had it listed for sale for a few months, but I pulled it a few days ago. Still, it feels like a new guitar now.

This is my second Tokai LS-320 from the early 2000s. My first has been my #1 since I bought it 15 years ago. I never felt the need to swap the Duncan Seth Lovers out of it as I felt they were a good match, so it has remained stock. I bought the 2nd as I loved the top, it was a decent deal and I know how good this model is from experience. After I got it and A/B'd the 2, it was clear to me that they were both stock and virtually identical in quality, playability and tone.

My thought was to use this second as a platform to compare pickups to the Seth Lovers. But I never got around to it and a variety of factors kept me from doing that. So I decided to list it for sale as a gear reduction measure, no need having 2 of the same thing. Fortunately, for me, no one picked it up.

Today, I installed a pair of K&T Weeps that I bought from Wulfman about 2 years ago. They had gold covers, so I took those off and kept them uncovered.

I can't even begin to describe the improvement in tone, and I always liked the Seth Lovers. I am terrible at describing sound and tone. But when comparing the 2 guitars and pickups, the Weeps are snappier and more articulate. They just sound so much better. I've often heard people describing great vintage LP tones as "tele on steroids" and that was the first thought I had when I plugged it in. And when I cranked my amp (Deluxe Reverb BF Clone), none of that snappiness and articulation went away.

I've never experienced such a profound change from a pickup swap. What I thought sounded pretty good now sounds just OK compared to the Weeps. My next comparison will be the Weeps against a Vaschenko with a pair of Tom Holmes PUs.

I'll never sell my first LS-320. But I'm not sure I can keep the Seth Lovers in it now. Maybe I'll see what a pair of OX4s are like.

Here are a couple of picks with the new pickups. The room is bright and the color of the top and flame is washed out. I added a pic with the original pickups just so you can see how it really looks.

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y4mftY_OECAsdWf0fPAspZWqzzN7_ciEf4TRu29fAV59PYfgThGVA9Pw4yh2VSRSJiYgC6EwC06vhRPy8okadv4ep8KrVb_7dbKy38W-9bSfq4ne0jyeZTciHV0--b3HREtwp-6BBgb4L9lv-8MO83QKsK-gRzTf3PUbue5-YH-xC62xo02rpEpl1uM4YmFibRz6ywZ7Z7PrCEdmhg6OLG3aw

y4mmXami5aTGDRvTPyfdvKzjL7xuwK_UUo0rgP-wFS1NejZ41PCNfZxof2IzM5sSsNlf5S-MaloVWgBUOoX-Jl3ltrjDnldqdR4tN-uPhEyfIn2flgWQacTHIfyhb0cwGv9VdCyi8UHAC500qz2lD0EKOt1PgbAle_kacJeAiK87nFW1Op63yHuokXT24S9X8Am0HH4-W5HDzHMIAeMgpm8bg
 

currypowder

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Personally, I prefer either covered or uncovered double creams in both positions. But I got what I thought was a fair deal on the Weeps, which don't come up for sale used very often.

That being said, given how good they are, I couldn't care less what they look like. Hell, they have gold screws, too. Nothing about them is what I would look for in pickups.
 

Roxy13

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If you want to change the screws StewMac sells the metric pole screws.
 

Homeras

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Personally, I prefer either covered or uncovered double creams in both positions. But I got what I thought was a fair deal on the Weeps, which don't come up for sale used very often.

That being said, given how good they are, I couldn't care less what they look like. Hell, they have gold screws, too. Nothing about them is what I would look for in pickups.
2 x double cream rules!
 

Nick-O

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This is the best way to do it @currypowder ... the alternative, searching for a guitar sold once upon a time, getting it back and all that....I am glad you got it sorted and it didn't sell.
 

Ohjay

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Which version of the Weeps are they?
If I'm not mistaken there are at least 4 different Weeps: Standard, NFS, NOS and Gold Tone.
 

$nakepit

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Congrats on your discovery, and what a lovely guitar!

I think I can relate to what you're saying. The Beano pickups in my recently acquired Momose sounded great after I changed the wiring to 50s.
In the meantime I had ordered some OX4s, and began to wonder if I should even replace the pickups.
But the difference was staggering. Can wholeheartedly recommend the OX4s. They have amazing clarity. You'll want to explore every shade of gain with them. ;)
 

currypowder

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If you want to change the screws StewMac sells the metric pole screws.

Thanks Roxy! I may give that a try. I also have some nice nickel covers that fit perfectly, but they looked weird with the gold screws. So I may do a complete makeover.
 

Roxy13

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Thanks Roxy! I may give that a try. I also have some nice nickel covers that fit perfectly, but they looked weird with the gold screws. So I may do a complete makeover.

I do it all the time. Sometimes old pickups too are still working great but the screws are really rusty and then I still change them. I've had good luck putting a drop of vinegar on top of the the pole slugs and then using a small flat head screwdriver to gently rub it into crevices to work rust out. Wipe off and repeat as necessary. But, everytime I've tried to put the screws into vinegar it doesn't seem to do much to get it off. I think the rust just eats through the plating on the screws and they are ruined.
 

Roxy13

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Looks like Phillly Luthier now carries metric pole screws too yay! They didn't used to, just imperial sizes.
 

currypowder

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I took Roxy's suggestion and bought a set of metric nickel polepiece screws. Problem is, the diameter was too small. Turns out, these K&T pickups use imperial sized polepiece screws.
 

Roxy13

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That means the baseplate is also Imperial and most likely the height adjustment screws as well will be the Imperial 3-48.
 

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