Putting active pups in a non active guitar?

Discussion in 'Luthier's Guitar & Bass Technical Discussion' started by Disco Fever, Sep 21, 2006.

  1. Disco Fever

    Disco Fever Member

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    Have an Epi 61 Elitist SG that I have been trying to sell and it isn't moving. There are several things I don't like about it. One of which is it has a muddy sound. I'm more of a strat guy but would like some big time distortion sounds on very very rare occasions. Since the Epi is just sitting there and I don't play heavy distortion that much to warrant the purchase of a guitar I thought I might just replace the pickups with EMG 85/81. I have never done anything like this though. I replaced the 3-way switch in my strat with a 5-way a couple of weeks ago and that was fairly painless so now I'm thinking about replacing the pickups on the Epi.

    Can I use my pots or do I have to gut the whole thing? I had active pickups years ago in my bass but it came with them. This is kind of unchartered territory for me. Any input at all ( and I mean any ) is welcome. Want to see how feasable this is and ID any obstacles I need to get over before I waste my money on a purchase.
     
  2. GuitarGuy510

    GuitarGuy510 Member

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    You're going to have to replace pretty much all the electronics if you want to move over to active EMG pickups. They use (off the top of my head) 1-Meg pots and a different output jack (soldered to the battery connection as well) so you're better off buying one of the EMG sets that has all the electronics you need. They cost under $200 usually brand new, might be able to find a set cheaper on eBay with all the components too! :AOK Good luck in your search!
     
  3. Bussman

    Bussman Member

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    EMGs come with new tone/volume and switching jack (to disconnect battery when not playing). It's not terribly difficult to put them in. Very good instructions are included. I had one in my LP 10 years ago.
     
  4. Disco Fever

    Disco Fever Member

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    Ahhhhh. Thanks for the link. Just before coming here I to see if I had a reply I found a site that has the kit you refer to. The pots already wired together to the connector that slides onto the pickup. Didn't know I needed to place the jack as well. Hmmmm... doesn't look too terriblely hard. Have to do a little more research but I think I'll end up going for it. Guess the only pain will be no easy access to the battery and I'll have to take the whole back cover off whenever it needs replaced.
     
  5. Disco Fever

    Disco Fever Member

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    Not sure if I need short pole or long pole pots. Going in an SG I would assume short pole but of course that is just an assumption. Anybody know?
     
  6. EADGBE

    EADGBE Member

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    25K pots.
     
  7. EADGBE

    EADGBE Member

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    Email EMG. They probably know.
     
  8. Bussman

    Bussman Member

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    Did you mean long shafts? Long shaft pots are for Les Pauls. You don't need them in an SG.
     
  9. GuitarGuy510

    GuitarGuy510 Member

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    Yeah that's right, I couldn't remember if they were 1 meg or 25k. Just checked their website.... hehe as I said, off the top of my head! :rolleyes:
     
  10. Disco Fever

    Disco Fever Member

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    Yes I'm talking about the shafts in the pots. I figured an SG is so thin I needed short but just wanted somebody else's input that might know. Thanks :).
     

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