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Changing Pickups For The First Time


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I'm replacing the stock pickups on my standard Strat for some Jeff Beck hot noiseless pickups. I just bought a 35-watt Weller soldering iron. I did a little bit of soldering in a circuits class I took last semester, but I don't have a lot of soldering skills, so I have a few questions:

1. Should I practice on some junk PCBs before I go to work on my strat? Is the soldering involved in this job tricky or sensitive in any way?

2. I have some left over 60/40 resin-core solder from that class. Will that work OK or is there a specific type of solder that should be used for this job?

3. Are there any other materials I need to buy? What is a "shield kit" (I've seen this advertised alongside pickups on a lot of websites)? Do I need to use a heatsink anywhere on this job?

4. Should I put in a new output jack at the same time I switch the pickups or is the stock output jack on a standard strat good quality?

I would be really grateful to anyone willing to take the time to answer all these questions. Thanks,


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1. I don't think practicing on PCBs will help a lot in a guitar... It's all pretty much point to point wireing, and even I can do it... (I'm not good by any standard.)

2. No idea really

3. A shielding kid is basically a way to reduce noise by making a Faraday cage... Most guitars are alredy shielded, but you could browse the web, there are MANY tutorials on how to shield a guitar...

4. I'd think a jack on a regular strat would be good... I say change it if it makes noise when you move your guitar cord.

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No prob. You've got a good soldering iron and the proper solder, too. Just be tidy and tin everything properly and you should be fine. That's a good set of pickups and you shouldn't need to worry about a shielding kit, either.

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