Putting covers on my pickups...

Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by jrm, Sep 2, 2008.

  1. jrm

    jrm Member

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    Hello all:

    I've got Seymour Duncan 59/JB pickups in my guitar. Right now they are open coiled and I want to put covers on them. So... I have a few questions as this is something I've never done before.

    1. Will Gibson humbucker covers fit these or do I need to find SD ones somewhere?
    2. Are the 59/JB potted pickups? Is there a way I would be able to tell?
    3. Are there any special tricks to installing the covers that help fight any feedback that might result in their application?
    4. Is there a resource I shoudl be looking at as a step-by-step?

    Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. vds5000

    vds5000 Member

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    1. The holes for the pole pieces may not line up - will look like crap if this is the case.
    2. I think they are.
    3. I believe you will definately need to solder them to the metal base of the pickup itself.
    4.) Not sure.

    Quite frankly, you may be better off trying to find used Duncans with covers already on them - they do turn up on occasion.
     
  3. TheLemon

    TheLemon Senior Member

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    1. Quick answer would be no. I think you would need SD ones. I tried to put Gibson Covers on my SD Alnico IIs but they did not fit properly.
    2.No. EDIT: Yes.
    3. Nope. I put my Gibson covers back on my open coil 490R and 498Ts without any tricks and theyve worked fine.
    4. Nope
     
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2008
  4. Jim Collins

    Jim Collins Member

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    Soldering the cover to the base of the pickup is required for grounding purposes, but this is, for the most part, independent of microphonic behavior. To eliminate microphonic behavior, you will have to pot the pickup in the cover. That can be quite messy, and not without an element of danger, since paraffin is quite flammable.
     
  5. Bill Brasky

    Bill Brasky Senior Member

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    Pot it with silicone rubber. You don't need to use wax to pot the cover.
     
  6. Screaming Stone

    Screaming Stone Member

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    JB and 59's ARE wax potted. The covered models are actually double wax potted (once before and once after cover is put on).

    You need to wax pot after you put the cover on - otherwise you will get microphonic feedback. Any pickup builder can do this for you - including Duncan. Or just find a local pickup builder to do it for you. Ask if they do vacuum wax potting - that sucks out the little air bubbles in the wax (otherwise the little air bubbles can cause microphonic feedback)
     
  7. jrm

    jrm Member

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    Well, I live about 150 miles from the nearest "city" so finding a local pickup builder is preetty much not-gonna-happen! So... to wax pot after the cover is installed do I basically just dip it in parrafin? How does that work if the edges of the pickup are soldered and the screws are through the top? How would wax get in to the pickup?
    Maybe this isn't something that I should be attempting?
     
  8. Bill Brasky

    Bill Brasky Senior Member

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    I think manufacturers have a way of getting the wax in under high pressure. The need to pot with wax is greatly overstated. Are you in Motorhead? Are you playing at 145 decibels in front of a full Marshall stack? If not, then the chance you're going to encounter microphonic feedback from your cover are slim to none. Having to set up a double boiler arrangement and deal with that mess and potential for a kitchen fire to wax pot one pickup is unnecessary. Squirt a gob of silicone rubber into the cover before soldering it on and you'll be fine.
     
  9. Sean French

    Sean French Supporting Member

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    Potting a pickup is not needed when installing a cover.
    A proper fitting cover will not make a pickup microphonic.A loose cover will however.
    I use clamps to ensure a tight even fit before soldering the cover to the base plate.
    Some use a small drop or two of silicone or double stick tape between the cover and bobbin but,it's not a requirement.
    I use unpotted pickups with covers and have no issues at all with microphonics.
     
  10. Digitalman

    Digitalman Member

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    You don't have to get it wax potted to prevent microphonic feedback.

    I just swapped covers on a set of 490s and had no problems at all. I put a couple of pieces of electrical tape on the dummy coil (the one without polepieces) to pad between the cover and coil.
    You can also use a thin bead of silicone. Some guys drip candle wax inside the cover and then heat it up with a soldering iron from the face of the cover to re-melt it once it's on.

    The trick is - clamp the cover to the base to get it tight before you solder it. As long as it's tight and there's something to fill the space (tape or silicone) you shouldn't get any microphonic feedback.

    It's easy, I've done at least 5 or 6 sets of pickups and never had a problem.
     
  11. jrm

    jrm Member

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    Good info fellas... thanks!

    So basically what I am seeing is:

    1. My SD pickups are already potted, so....
    2. Take small bead of silicon and put it on the half of the pickup witout the polepieces, clamp the cover on and solder. (Do I solder around the entire pickup? Or is it acceptible to solder only a few points).

    Does the silicon squish out onto the exposed polepieces? Does this cause any problems?

    Geez, if it is this uncomplicated I might give my Faded SG pickups a shot as well.... hmmmm.

    -jon
     
  12. Sean French

    Sean French Supporting Member

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    Just a little solder on either side of the baseplate is all that's needed.
     
  13. Steve Gambrell

    Steve Gambrell Member

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    And use a pretty hot iron. You want to get on and off that base FAST, so you don't melt any insulation. I use a forty watt iron. Just a dab o'solder on each side will do it. And leave it clamped till the solder cools! Piece of cake!
     

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