Question about Early Dean guitar electronics

Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by puke, Mar 13, 2015.

  1. puke

    puke Member

    Feb 5, 2015
    Early 80s Dean baby V guitar. I've only owned it for around 20 or 25 years. So I'm not the original owner. It appears to have a dimarzio super II in the treble position. and a super distortion in the neck. Back at that time, I do not recall ever seeing a super II that was not zebra, and I do not ever recall seeing a dean guitar that did NOT come with zebra pickeups originally. I do not ever recall seeing a super distortion that was a zebra.

    Late 70s , the big deans sold for about 30 percent more than a les paul, so even though we all went to the guitar store to play them, none of us had the money to buy one (Dean had not yet come out with the less expensive models without binding).

    I love all my super II pickups, they come in a close second to the dimarzio paf. But after playing this, I am thinking the wiring is incorrect on that zebra
    pickup. Inside the back cover you can see that the wiring has been redone with mogami. But it's been at least 20 years since I messed with the wiring on a guitar, so I don't know what is "correct' and what is not. All the guitars we used live (back in the day) we had everything bypassed but the toggle, one volume, and the bridge pickup. I am not even close to in love with the sound of a super distortion, and if there is even a chance that a zebra pickup from that era is a super distortion rather than a super II, I'd rather find a replacement now before I try to remember how to bypass all the other electronics. Don't want to take it apart twice.

    Any way, if anybody out there has any input, please let me know. So far, I cannot find any definite reliable info. out there on what the zebras were (which makes me think they were what they looked like....a stock super II). But there are so many people out there that think the original deans did not have zebras in them. I don't understand that one,...all they have to do is ask someone over 50 who was in the business and they'll all tell you they were all zebra...But they will also have no idea if a zebra is a super II or not.

    Since my zebra is a bit wrongish sounding, I am leaning towards thinking that whoever put in the mogami didn't get it correct..or maybe left out one coil???or maybe put in new pots that have capacitance..or both.
  2. MKB

    MKB Silver Supporting Member

    Mar 11, 2009
    IIRC the pickups in the Deans I had access to were all custom to Dean, made by DiMarzio. They had hex screw polepieces, the same in each coil, and I can't recall if they had ceramic or alnico magnets (might have had ceramics).

    Back in the 80s I bought a set from a music store that were from an original Dean, they were OK pickups.

    EADGBE Member

    Sep 23, 2005
    As far as I know they had super distortions in the bridge that were zebras. If you had a multimeter you could unsolder the leads and set the meter to ohms and check the resistance.
  4. serial

    serial Member

    Nov 5, 2003
    Central Pennsyltucky
    The old Super II IS a Super Distortion w/4 conductors.
  5. cardinal

    cardinal Member

    Feb 26, 2008
    ^ no that's the Dual Sound. Super II is a different pickup.

    OP: not sure what you're asking? If you want to check whether it's a Super or Super 2, measure the DC reistance. Super Distortion is around 14k, I think, while the Super II is around 9k? You could unsolder everything and check (that's the most accurate way), but since these are so different you probably can just measure at the output jack and figure out if it's closer to 9 or 14.

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