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Single Coil Install From Scratch


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I'm not replacing pickups...rather, I'm putting some in a new body. These (Fender Texas Specials) came with short rubber tubes instead of springs for adjustment. Also, the provided adjustment screws are too large (shaft diameter) for the pre-existing holes in the actual pick-ups (not the covers). I've seen cracked pickup bases that are then difficult to adjust, so I want to avoid that. The simple answer seems to get narrower screws for adjustment, but given the expertise here, I thought I'd check.

Also, are the rubber adjustment spacers an okay way to go, or are springs better?

Oh, and while on the subject, is it good to shield the pick-up cavities as well as the pot/switch cavity? If so, also shield the pickguard? I've already done this, but again, I'm relying on your knowledge.

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Rubber tubes should work fine. I like springs, but the tubes work.

I don't understand how they could have given you adjustment screws that were the wrong size. Weird. Where did you source these? You shouldn't be forced to buy/source narrower screws. :D

The base should be made of plastic, no? If it's soft enough, the screws will simply make new grooves into them. As long as the hole is the same diameter as the actual shaft of the screw (ie. not including the threads), you should still be safe. That's the part that gets tricky to pass through. The threads will always be a touch larger than the holes.

I dunno. If it were me, I'd be tempted just to drill the holes a bit larger if they truly need it, but that's an expensive set of pickups to screw up if you blow the mission. :D I'm not giving it as advice, just saying that's what I'd do because I'm a bit of a caveman when it comes to such things. The simplest solution for 'too-small holes' seems to be 'make em bigger!' I'd check again very carefully to see that it's not just a 'snug but still acceptable' size.


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Yeah, I got a set of DeArmond bass pickups off of eBay (which, incidentally I think where from the time period that Fender was making them) and I had the same problem - the screws seem to be too fat for the holes, but upon closer inspection, the holes where not threaded at all. They were just the right size that once you get the screw started it cuts threads into the (surprisingly soft) plastic. If you went for a smaller screw, you'd need some nuts or something , to hold the pickup onto the screws, wouldn't you?

Most of the cracked plastic covered bass pickups I've seen have been on basses where the pickup screws down into the body, rather than up onto a pickguard, and someone has screwed it down too tight against the body.

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