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Strange Pickup Covers


bjanne
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My first post at this forum, and I have a question concerning wooden pickup covers.

The thing is this. I was wondering if it is possible to get a humbucker pickup sounding if it was to be incapsulated in a wooden box. The box would cover the whole pickup making it look like an oversized EMG pup and not as a regular humbucker cover letting the coils show.

Would it be able to get some sound? I don't care if I loose some output as long as the guitar will make a sound.

I was thinking about making the lid of this box really thin.

Cheers / Björn

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My first post at this forum, and I have a question concerning wooden pickup covers.

The thing is this. I was wondering if it is possible to get a humbucker pickup sounding if it was to be incapsulated in a wooden box. The box would cover the whole pickup making it look like an oversized EMG pup and not as a regular humbucker cover letting the coils show.

Would it be able to get some sound? I don't care if I loose some output as long as the guitar will make a sound.

I was thinking about making the lid of this box really thin.

Cheers / Björn

Yeah it would work as long as you made it thin enough. But the further the pole pieces and coils are away from the strings the less sound they will produce. There is also a "Sweet spot" for the distance between the PU and the strings(Dependant on the PU). I believe Dan Erlewine talks about it in his book of guitar setup and repair. As long as you have the correct distance, I don't think that the wood will interfere with the magnetic field.

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Can't see why it would make a difference. Wood doesn't really interfere with magnetic fields (AFAIK) so the only difference would be the physical distance of the string > wood cover > pickup. You will get a sound. Really. I've heard of builds (someone else back me up on this as I have no reference) where the pickups have been mounted from the rear of the body with no sign on them on the top. I think distance is the key - making the top thin is the best bet I reckon.

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I've heard of builds (someone else back me up on this as I have no reference) where the pickups have been mounted from the rear of the body with no sign on them on the top. I think distance is the key - making the top thin is the best bet I reckon.

here is your backup

bluemoon4.png

that guitar has a hidden pickup with a stronger than normal magnet hidden in the middle of the body. It needs a stronger magnet because the strings ae so far away from the pickup. i am willing to bet that guitar sounded fairly unimpressive though - afterall, its a novelty item

Wooden covers work fine as long as you do keep the top as thin as possible so you can still get it close enough. Wood does nothing to stop the magnetic field, as it has already been said the only issue is getting the pickup close enough

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Interesting that this pops up - I've seen wooden covers on soapbar type pickups (like Garehan's "tank top" guitars) or the stuff on Setchell's siteand been enamored with it. I've been thinking of doing something similar recently - My idea was to make a cover somewhat similar to what Setchell describes, but one who's outer perimeter is sized about the same as the outer perimeter of traditional humbucker rings. The original idea was something similar to the Gibson EB bass neck pickup when the cover screwed on top of the body - but now I'm thinking something similar closer to what these folks have done for soapbars - a cavity inside a complete block - since it's larger, it would also a have a smaller area, recessed slightly, for the pickup "ears" - these would screw directly into the back of the pickup cover, and the pickup cover itself would be about the size of a humbucker ring, I could drill long wholes through the corners in about the same positions, and those would screw into the body, similar to how a soap bar P-90 mounts, except with four screws along the edge rather than two through the middle. Might drill some slightly larger holes partway through from the back, to make more room for the springs.

So yeah - I hadn't seen anything like this - but it sounds like we both had the same idea? Or were you going for something like the traditional chrome covers on humbuckers, but wood? I just wanted the clean look that pickguard-mounted pickups or soapbar P90's have - pickup rings are nice, but I just like that look of a lozenge shape sitting directly in the body.

I'm hoping to mock something like this up sometime this week. Don't have a guitar to put it in, (as it would obviously require a different sized cavity) but I'd like to try my hand at it as it's something I want to do on my next build. But I'm curious as to what sort of direction you were going with. I'd like to get it all out of a solid piece of wood, but I might laminate the top out an extra headplate I have kicking around from my last LMI order, instead. (Seems like it might be easier to do an open-top box on the scrollsaw and glue the top than try and route out that cavity leaving such a thin top.)

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I have been curious about this very thing since I started on making my own pickups for my current build. I made the bobbins out of Mahogany, and I am making Cocobola covers for them. They look pretty wicked with just the pole screws in against the wood. So I started thinking about all of the different options one might have using this idea.

I am anxious to see how these would turn out. I like your "lozenge" reference, that is what I think of as well. I have also been considering using a wooden cover and carving a design into the top or a combination of wood and another material like leather perhaps.

Let us know how you are getting on with this idea!

STV.

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I’m just guessing here Björn, but I think that you might be in Sweden, right? Then check out GMF. They have wooden covers and pickup rings.

http://shop.gmf.se/product.htm?product_id=...mp;search_page=

(Hope you can follow the link) Covers in Walnut, ebony, rosewood, maple and bubinga

But if you want to make them yourself, please go ahead.

And the thing with wood interfering with the pickups: forget it. You can also think about the Uli Jon Roth’s 36 fret guitar with a pickup hidden under the fret board. No problem at all with that one.

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Yeah, thats right I'm a "Swede" :D just as you swedishluthier

I actually have GMF added to my favourites on my web browser.

As for the progress on the covers, they are almost finished. I was thinking about making some kind of reversed mounting solution, that is have the pickups fastened in the back of the guitar. Haven't solved this yet... but I will...

/ Björn

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