Underwinding Texas Specials(the solution?)

Discussion in 'Luthier's Guitar & Bass Technical Discussion' started by alderbody, Oct 22, 2004.

  1. alderbody

    alderbody Member

    Messages:
    682
    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2004
    Location:
    overseas
    A cut coilwire of the bridge pickup gave me the idea to try it.

    The pickup should be dead anyway, so i had nothing to lose...

    The problem with the TS is that Fender uses 43 gauge wire instead of the typical 42.
    This wire is thinner, therefore much more sensitive and easily breakable.

    They say that for 42 gauge wire, 1000 turns equals 1kOhm of impedance. For the finer (thus more resistive) 43 wire about 800 turns cut about 1kOhm.

    So i had to remove (by hand) 800 turns of wire which is not a very easy thing to do.

    I held the pickup on one hand and gently wrapped the wire on the other counting each turn.

    I made small intervals at about 100 turns and kept notes.

    This task requires PATIENCE!

    After finishing, i tied the wire around the little ring where it touches the hookup wire and on to the next pickup!

    But i wanted to demagnetize the polepieces, too...

    According to theory about alnico mags, they might lose some of their magnetic ability if they come close to a stronger opposing field. So i taped them on the huge magnet of a 12" speaker from the side that repelled them from it. Left them for some time and then i wax-potted them and applied a copper tape coil shielding.

    The result? A much smoother behaviour. Their tone is still Texas Special, but much softer and smoother. Like the way they are supposed to sound some years later...
    The tight bass is there, although slightly rounder.
    The mids don't dominate everything but are still present.
    The piercing highs are out (coil shielding must have helped a bit) and the attack is kinda softer (weaker mag. field).
    I believe the harshness is gone!

    If you got sick of them and wanna dump them, give it a second thought and try this or have it done by someone more experienced.

    I think it's worth the effort. :cool:
     
  2. spaceboy

    spaceboy Member

    Messages:
    256
    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2004
    Location:
    Dundee, Scotland
    sweeeet ^_^

    so is this only something you'd recommend for texas specials? if so, why not other pups?
     
  3. alderbody

    alderbody Member

    Messages:
    682
    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2004
    Location:
    overseas
    if you want to spend your time creatively and you have a set of TS's you would normally throw at a barking dog, i think my option sounds good...

    what do you think?...
     
  4. spaceboy

    spaceboy Member

    Messages:
    256
    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2004
    Location:
    Dundee, Scotland
    I think i don't have the patience, knowledge or skill...

    but does this ONLY work for texas specials? is it not something that might improve lots of pickups?
     
  5. Jim Collins

    Jim Collins Member

    Messages:
    1,940
    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2002
    Location:
    Pleasanton, CA
    It is only something you'd want to try if the pickup is overwound, in the first place. If it isn't overwound, removing a couple hundred winds would just end up giving you a weaker pickup. I wouldn't go out an buy a Texas Special, just to do this, but if I already had a pickup that was 1) too hot; 2) something I'd never otherwise use; and 3) something I would not mind ruining, if the experiment failed.
     
  6. alderbody

    alderbody Member

    Messages:
    682
    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2004
    Location:
    overseas
    that's EXACTLY my point!... :)
     
  7. spaceboy

    spaceboy Member

    Messages:
    256
    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2004
    Location:
    Dundee, Scotland
    aha, and it all makes sense!
     

Share This Page