how important is it to have the poles spaced properly (f-spaced)? NOW w/ pic...

Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by B_of_H, May 22, 2008.

  1. B_of_H

    B_of_H Member

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    I just put a humbucker in the bridge of my tele and the poles don't line up with the strings. The 1st and 6th are just barely off the edge and the 5th and 2nd are slightly off center. How important is it? Should I order the F-spaced pickup to replace it?


    edit: look how far off they are. There is a slight volume decrease on the 1 and 6. Not noticable as far as I can tell on the others. Should I demand they fix this?

    [​IMG]
     
  2. DC1

    DC1 Member

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    It's never been an issue for me. I tend to center a too-narrow PU on the high E and let the low E be off center and that works out really well.

    Do you hear any level mismatches?

    DC
     
  3. B_of_H

    B_of_H Member

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    not yet. I just got it back from the shop last night and I only had time to play around with it for 10 minutes or so.

    I'll pay more attention to the level of each string tonight.

    thanks.
     
  4. rob2001

    rob2001 Member

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    I've never noticed a problem with it. I'm sure on some technical level it's not right but i've had plenty of mismatched pickups and they sounded great. Personally I think the F-spaced thing came about as a marketing tool.
     
  5. B_of_H

    B_of_H Member

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    good to know.


    another problem i'm having is that when i'm (nashville tele) in between the bridge and middle on the pickup selector it's really quiet (much more quiet than the single coils themselves). What could cause that? it seems way more quiet than just having the coil tap and the middle pickup in parallel.
     
  6. rob2001

    rob2001 Member

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    It's probably wired so that the middle position is hum canceling.


    Edit... I re-read your post. If it's a humbucker it's canceling hum even if it's paired with the middle pickup. When you use the coil tap, it's not hum canceling unless the split coil of the hum and the middle pickup are reverse polarized.
     
  7. B_of_H

    B_of_H Member

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    it's a 5 way switch. I have neck, middle, and bridge pickups.

    the middle is a reverse wound fralin blues strat pickup.
     
  8. B_of_H

    B_of_H Member

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  9. ReddRanger

    ReddRanger Member

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    Never bothered EVH that much.....

    [​IMG]
     
  10. deoreo

    deoreo Member

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    Fix what?
    It looks like you have paired up a vintage style humbucker with a tele bridge.

    Remember, the humbucker is an original Gibson design that was designed around a bridge with a string spread of 52mm (Gibson ABR bridge.)
    The Telecaster was originally designed with singlecoil bridge pickup and a bridge string spread of 55-56mm.

    Sometime during the late 70's and early 80's it became very popular to replace the bridge single coil of a Stratocaster with a humbucker. Later the aftermarket pickup makers made avaliable humbuckers with the wider Fender (F spaced) pickup width.

    As to why the middle position is quieter, anytime you have two pickups on at the same time, there will be a drop in output, because of slight phase cancellation between the two pickups reading two different areas of the strings at the same time. This is also why the 2 and 4 position of a Strat "quack" because of the odd phase cancellation sounds.
     
  11. B_of_H

    B_of_H Member

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    a couple of things:

    1) I thought they would put a f-spaced pickup in the bridge. The work was done by an authorized Fralin dealer who does great work usually and I drive 40 minutes to go to rather than local places.

    2) it's WAY more quiet than the inbetween position with the two single coils.
     
  12. Al Nico

    Al Nico Member

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    For the pole piece spacing, probably won't make a big difference in string volume, but if you notice it it will continue to bug you. If your tech is willing to address the phase problem (if that is the porblem), then have him swap in an F-spaced HB. It's your damn guitar, get it the way you like it and don't worry about other's opinions.

    EDIT -
    Need to tell us if the coil tap/middle mode is hum-cancelling. If it is, and the full HB is indeed out of phase with the middle, then you'll need to get a reverse polarity HB (either a new one, or just flip the magnet of the existing one), then reverse the main HB leads, and tap the opposite coil to keep it hum-cancelling and in-phase with the middle.
     
  13. B_of_H

    B_of_H Member

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    the middle pickup is a reverse wound strat pickup. That is all I know.

    I think i'm going to ask that both positions towards the bridge be full humbucker. I don't need the middle/ humbucker combo.
     
  14. Al Nico

    Al Nico Member

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    It should not be rocket science for a decent tech to give you exactly what you want. At a minimum, if you're going to have the tech open the guitar up again, just try reversing the leads of HB to see if it was out of phase.
     
  15. B_of_H

    B_of_H Member

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    thanks.
     
  16. Eagle1

    Eagle1 Member

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    Yes it did, that is why the bucker is on an angle ,there where no F spaced humbuckers at the time. On Ed's guitar (not this reissue) the E strings line up correctly with the inside and outside coils respectively and this was the best possible solution .
     

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