P-90 Dilemma

Brave Ulysses

Member
Messages
270
FYI, most of the time I remove and re-install base plates by melting the wax.
The wax is there from 'wax potting' of the pup. A process to rid the pup of squeal.

Just lay a solder iron for a short bit of time against the base.

Screwing into a thin body of an SG may cause you grief my friend...screws out the backside. doh Sorry those stacked 90's may sound like 90's under blanket.
Always try to do a search on forums and HC reviews b4 purchases.

Swapping parts around at times is the height of tinkering don't ya know? That's just how we roll. Seriously, mods almost never are plug and play.

As far as I can tell, I haven't seen any wax yet. I might just return the stacks; believe me I've thought about the screws going out the backside and therefore have some major hesitance about this. The funny thing is that I did do a bunch of research and price comparisons before making the purchase. It just never occurred to me that the dog ear plates would come into play. I had never looked at the inside of this guitar, so I didn't know there were brass dog ear plates in there. I bought the SD's used for $105 with tax, whereas they'd be $190+ brand new, so I did get a deal, but in the end, I admit I erred in not looking at the existing system in place in the guitar.
 

Arf

Member
Messages
1,151
Option A: Return your SOAPBAR pickups for some DOGEAR pickups.

Option B: Install the SOAPBAR pickups differently than stock. Meaning, drill them directly into the body.

It's okay to do tacky stuff to our own guitars, but we probably shouldn't recomend stuff like that to the less experienced. That would be a very ghetto thing to do to a lovely guitar.
Advice to remember: Gibson p-90's are really unbeatable. Everything else is pretty much out there just to satisfy curiosity in those of us who just can't leave stuff alone. If You HAVE TO do something, modify the pickups that you buy and leave the guitar alone. My Les Paul Special has brass inserts in the bottom of the pickup cavity that the regular screws go into properly. However your guitar works, stay with stuff that goes RIGHT In. You won't regret your actions later like I do.
 

kennethkofler

Member
Messages
78
IMHO, stacked p-90's are trouble unless your rockin out. If you desire an authentic p-90 tone, get some real ones. But, the brass plate is just glued, and not very well, so if you're set on it, just persistently wiggle it for a while and it'll come loose(a hair dryer on high heat for 2 or 3 minutes helps). As long as you do it right, it's always reversible, so experiment and see if you find what you need.
 

Arf

Member
Messages
1,151
IMHO, stacked p-90's are trouble unless your rockin out. If you desire an authentic p-90 tone, get some real ones. But, the brass plate is just glued, and not very well, so if you're set on it, just persistently wiggle it for a while and it'll come loose(a hair dryer on high heat for 2 or 3 minutes helps). As long as you do it right, it's always reversible, so experiment and see if you find what you need.
Yep, I agree - If you really want to try those Duncans, see if you can put that Gibson plate on them so they go in the same. Changing the SG just won't be worth it. I'm guessing your SG won't have enough wood in the bottom to drill holes like my Les Paul has anyway. You might go through out the back! Ow!!
 
Messages
20,495
I'm pretty torn over this! The stock P-90's have that great, smooth tone. I just don't like the hum and noise that comes with it. I don't have the greatest amp in the world (Fender Hot Rod Deluxe 1x12), but it is still a great amp when dialed in right. I bought the SD Stacked 90's mainly because of the hum-canceling. Maybe putting an SD in the bridge and keeping a Gibson in the neck would be the way to go. Man, I never knew what indecision was until I encountered this predicament!

I think if you enjoy that P-90 tone- the P-100s are going to smother that. It took me a long time to come to terms with the idea of dealing with hum and noise for that sound. And to tell the truth, no one but you really notices that extraneous noise.

Yeah, the pickups are just the beginning, as far as customizing this thing. It seems like the G and B are the two strings that slip out of tune the most. I do like the looks of anything chrome on this guitar; chrome Grovers, Klusons, or Gotohs would be fine by me. Thanks for the insights; much appreciated!

I'd try pencil graphite in the nut slots for the strings that go out of tune before you go replacing the tuners. More tuning problems are about strings catching in the nut than they are about tuners "slipping." I know about wanting to replace tuners to "upgrade..." but really your tuners are probably perfectly fine, your nut is probably improperly cut and binding the strings...
 

coldfingaz

Member
Messages
11,200
I'd suggest you really give those stock P90's a serious go before you try the SD's.

I'm not saying don't try the SD's either, just let those Gibsons rip for a while so you can later decide if what you lose with the Duncans (snarl) is worth what you gain (less noise).

I'll take the extra noise any day, but everyone's different.
 

dspellman

Member
Messages
8,306
You'll want to take a gander at the Kinman noiseless P90's then. http://www.kinman.com There's a six-page FAQ regarding P90's and another covering installation. They have the bracket you're looking for as well.
 

zombiwoof

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
5,900
I suggest you change the volume pots to 500k and see how you like the stock Gibson P90's. The 300k linear volume pots really don't let them shine. My Classic doesn't have the pc-board thing in there, so I don't know what the problems will be with getting the right pots and installing them.

Al
 

Arf

Member
Messages
1,151
The wires in the sg classic arent soldered.There are plastic connectors with the pickup wire shoved in them.they are then connected to a board with the pots and caps.First time I ever saw this in a guitar.interesting way of banging out a lot of guitars real fast.cheap too probably.That might be one reason the classics are so cheap.the wood is nice and now mine sings.but I had to do some work to get it there.I think it was well worth it and no problem if you know what you are doing.By the way I dont think you need to replace the tunners unless you absolutly hate the way they look.If you are having tunning issues then make sure the nut is filed down correctly the strings should touch the first fret when pushed down on a higher fret.some tunning issues can stem from a poorly crafted nut rather than the tunners.have fun.
Yes, yes, yes! Thank you! You 're so right. There have been so many perfectly good machine heads pulled and vintage tremolos replaced because the ever so innocent looking nut was causing tuning havoc. The nut is responsible for 90% of the tuning problems I've cured in my guitars as well as friends and customers. And don't get sucked into the whole graphite nut idea. Those are tone thieves, and if a good job isn't done, no material choice will help. Bone also can't be beat for tone. A friend came to me after replacing Klusons, Grovers (my favorite), and Ghotos on his SG, thinking that the poorly cut nut couldn' possibly be the problem because it's graphite. I doctored it up as best I could, and there was much improvement. So, no, don't automatically grab the reamer and the drill every time your Kluson equiped guitar doesn't tune perfectly. Thanks for bringing that up.
 

bluesjuke

Disrespected Elder
Messages
24,175
Yes arf, that's the message that needs to be known to all.
Changing tuners for cosmetic preference is usually the only reason to ever do it.
 

zombiwoof

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
5,900
By the way, my SG Classic is a 2005 model, and it doesn't have the circuit board in the control cavity, it has regular body-mounted pots and wiring. So, somewhere along the line they added the circuit board, but I don't know what year they did that. Probably in the last couple of years. Some people take those boards out and wire the controls the traditional way.

Al
 

Udonitron

Member
Messages
36
Yes, it's an SG Classic re-issue for Guitar Center sale only. I guess there's no real problem, only a tough decision, as in if I should just go ahead and screw the SD's straight through to the guitar body, or try to remove the mount plates from the stock Gibson P-90's somehow and place them on the SD's. And thank you for the hardware suggestions! I might do that as well as replace the white button tuning heads with Grovers or Klusons.

My Burny 56 Gold Top has no stand offs in the pup cavity and the P90's are screwed directly into the body. I used a block of wood and screwed small screws into the pup cavity and then screwed the P90's into that to raise them. You could do something similar via using some double sided sticky tape and stick a small block of wood in the pup cavity and then screw the P90's into the block of wood. That way you keep the cavity stock and hole-less while still being able to use the new P90's :D You might need to buy shorter screws as to not poke through the wood strip within the cavity but otherwise it should work perfectly I would suspect!
 

Arf

Member
Messages
1,151
Yes arf, that's the message that needs to be known to all.
Changing tuners for cosmetic preference is usually the only reason to ever do it.
Often, you bet. My opinion: the most common mistake is the prejudice against Klusons. Use 'em 'till they don't work, like any other part. Mine are getting alot of play and stickiness so they may have to step aside for some Grover Roto-matics soon. But always check for slack storage first-almost always a nut issue.
 

Arf

Member
Messages
1,151
I think you made the right decision keeping the stock pickups in place. Stacked P90s don't sound like real P90s. Gibson's version of that stacked pickup, the P100, is almost universally pulled and replaced with real P90s by most players.

Tell you what, keep the stock pickups and switch over to '50s wiring with some nice caps and you'll have a better sounding guitar anyway!

Right-my P-100's (2K Les Paul Special) are destined for replacement. Probably Gibson 90's, don't know yet. But it's clear, these won't stay for long. Gave 'em a year and a half, didn't grow on me.
 

Arf

Member
Messages
1,151
My Burny 56 Gold Top has no stand offs in the pup cavity and the P90's are screwed directly into the body. I used a block of wood and screwed small screws into the pup cavity and then screwed the P90's into that to raise them. You could do something similar via using some double sided sticky tape and stick a small block of wood in the pup cavity and then screw the P90's into the block of wood. That way you keep the cavity stock and hole-less while still being able to use the new P90's :D You might need to buy shorter screws as to not poke through the wood strip within the cavity but otherwise it should work perfectly I would suspect!

Cool- Might try that myself with some DiMarzio Virtual P-90's..Thanks
 

Arf

Member
Messages
1,151
I think if you enjoy that P-90 tone- the P-100s are going to smother that. It took me a long time to come to terms with the idea of dealing with hum and noise for that sound. And to tell the truth, no one but you really notices that extraneous noise.



I'd try pencil graphite in the nut slots for the strings that go out of tune before you go replacing the tuners. More tuning problems are about strings catching in the nut than they are about tuners "slipping." I know about wanting to replace tuners to "upgrade..." but really your tuners are probably perfectly fine, your nut is probably improperly cut and binding the strings...
Yep, so true and so common. Try 600 then 1500 sand paper folded into the grooves that give you the problem, then use that new "Nut Sauce" stuff. Can't remember the brand name but it's way better than the teflon oil I'd used for 15 years prior. A little trick of mine: after the 1500 sand paper, fold up an old string envelope and run in through there too. It leaves a buffed shine in there. Don't know how much it helps, but it's cool.
 




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