Replacement Pickup Suggestions

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Replacement Pickup Suggestions

Post by Barry on Sun Mar 03, 2013 11:14 pm

I have been fortunate enough to collect a number of beautiful Mats guitars; to date, 8 Westones, 5 Vantages, and 1 Aria Pro II.
I was also lucky enough to get them with their original pickups. Unhappily, 4 of the Spectrums came with the "famous" UBC pickups which, while OEM, are less than stellar performers.

Regulars here know that I've replaced them with a variety of manufacturers' offerings. And that got me thinking that a thread on replacement pups for our beloved Westies might be of interest, particularly for new members. And it doesn't have to be a dislike of UBC's to prompt a change. Perhaps you have a damaged pickup and want to match it as closely as possible.

Here's a quick summary of what I've used:

  • Spectrum S and SX: GFS Crunchy PAT's 10.5 kΩ / 14.6 [i]k
    -
    Isotropic ferrite ceramic magnets
    -classic PAF style with molded Delrin bobbins
    -fat, round bottom; tons of output
    -potted, using real paraffin wax
  • Spectrum DX: Wilkinson WHHB's 7.5 kΩ / 13.9
    -ceramic magnet; nickel silver backing plate
    -
    high output; fat and warm with top-end bite;
    -harmonically rich with tight lower frequency response
  • Spectrum ST: MMK45's 11.48 kΩ / 11.98 kΩ
    -I got lucky!
What have you replaced, and what sort of success have you had?

_________________
"A little song. A little dance. A little seltzer down your pants." -Chuckles the Clown


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Re: Replacement Pickup Suggestions

Post by grogg on Mon Mar 04, 2013 4:08 pm

Thunder 1 bass - because I screwed up the original's windings with a file slip.
Replaced with Di Marzio DP122BK Model P-Bass black. I think these have a cleaner more defined sound but then the magnets arent 30 years old. An improvement but wouldnt do unless circumstances force it.

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Re: Replacement Pickup Suggestions

Post by Sgt. Vimes on Mon Mar 04, 2013 5:21 pm

spectrum st: DiMarzio K10's - neck 8.6 and bridge 8.9Khz
(70's super distortion without adjustable poles)I love these pups I kept from an old hondo, neck is warm with strong low mids, the bridge isnt too bright, has a good honky blues quack. ya beauty!

on a side note: The Concord IIt bridge pup is too spikey metallic and shouty for me, suggestions for a warmer replacement anyone?

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Re: Replacement Pickup Suggestions

Post by Iceman on Mon Mar 04, 2013 9:51 pm

I've not had a need to replace a pup yet. When I do I already have 3 pairs of MMK45's in reserve, as well as a MMK53, a MMK61 (if Hans ends up not needing it), an older Maxon from an Electra, and an assortment of around 10 other SC's and HB's to work with.

I do not suppose I will be needing to buy anything modern anytime soon... Rolling Eyes

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Re: Replacement Pickup Suggestions

Post by Barry on Mon Mar 04, 2013 9:55 pm

Swine Steve

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"A little song. A little dance. A little seltzer down your pants." -Chuckles the Clown


GUITARS : http://legend.barryeames.com/guitars.html
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Barry
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Re: Replacement Pickup Suggestions

Post by Iceman on Mon Mar 04, 2013 10:03 pm

Barry wrote:Swine Steve

Awwwww ... you're looking at it all wrong, Barry.

If ever you need a '45 in the future you won't have far to go now... Idea






















.... you crusty old curmudgeon, you...










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Re: Replacement Pickup Suggestions

Post by corsair on Tue Mar 05, 2013 12:33 am

Whilst I haven't felt inclined to change out any pickups in my Westones at all, my Vantage Invader II came with a Seymour Duncan 59er at the bridge and its OK, actually... though I would have preferred the 45 that was there originally!!

Quite the collection, Steve; what are you going to do with them all??

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FWIW, an after market esoteric nut is a solution to a problem that doesn't exist, and a great way to convert your money into someone else’s.

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Re: Replacement Pickup Suggestions

Post by Barry on Tue Mar 05, 2013 8:37 am

Iceman wrote:...Awwwww ... you're looking at it all wrong, Barry.
If ever you need a '45 in the future you won't have far to go now...
Now you tell me? Suspect

.... you crusty old curmudgeon, you...
Not crusty. Creaky. OA you know.

_________________
"A little song. A little dance. A little seltzer down your pants." -Chuckles the Clown


GUITARS : http://legend.barryeames.com/guitars.html
MUSIC/PIX/VIDEOS: http://getback.barryeames.com (including Spectrum ST)

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Re: Replacement Pickup Suggestions

Post by IanO on Tue Mar 05, 2013 1:48 pm

Hi all,
It kinda surprises me that y'all love the 45s so much. I've always found the one in the bridge of my Thunder to be great at the top and mids but a bit "floppy" and "muffled" in the bottom frequencies. Is this a normal representation that I am the exception in not liking? I do LOVE the mids/highs...just get frustrated at the lows.
Must confess that I did think of putting the old Super Distortion from my I****z in there but then would need to find something for that...those GFS PAF types maybe...might compensate for the Basswood body

Sorry if this is sacrilege

Me.





Last edited by IanO on Tue Mar 05, 2013 1:52 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : missed out something "VITAL")

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Re: Replacement Pickup Suggestions

Post by grogg on Tue Mar 05, 2013 2:39 pm

Im with you there IanO, the output from these pups is huge but they dont have a clean bottom.

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Re: Replacement Pickup Suggestions

Post by Sgt. Vimes on Tue Mar 05, 2013 2:50 pm

Make that 3, I've had 2 sets of 45s and didn't like either set, I found the thunder pair just too loud with no particular character and the others were very very brittle in the high mids. One man's meat is another man's poison i guess.

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Re: Replacement Pickup Suggestions

Post by Barry on Tue Mar 05, 2013 8:55 pm

I find that the GFS Crunchy PAT has a very clean output across the spectrum including the bottom end. It can roar too when pushed. More output than even the 45's.

I haven't tried the PAF's but I think they may offer a more controlled sound (tamer).

_________________
"A little song. A little dance. A little seltzer down your pants." -Chuckles the Clown


GUITARS : http://legend.barryeames.com/guitars.html
MUSIC/PIX/VIDEOS: http://getback.barryeames.com (including Spectrum ST)

Barry
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Re: Replacement Pickup Suggestions

Post by Iceman on Tue Mar 05, 2013 10:03 pm

corsair wrote:Whilst I haven't felt inclined to change out any pickups in my Westones at all, my Vantage Invader II came with a Seymour Duncan 59er at the bridge and its OK, actually... though I would have preferred the 45 that was there originally!!

Quite the collection, Steve; what are you going to do with them all??

The bulk of them I picked up from Joe over at the Electra forum and others were stumbled on here or there.

I suppose if you really want to get that Invader back to form though... Idea

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Re: Replacement Pickup Suggestions

Post by corsair on Wed Mar 06, 2013 12:42 am

Iceman wrote:I suppose if you really want to get that Invader back to form though...

Why, thank you, kind sir; should I desire to actually get off my arse and do such a thing, I'll keep you in mind!!

Slight thread hijack... sorry, Barry!!

I'm currently working on a Vantage project that Don fired my way; it's going to be a custom finish in honour of my father, and those of his generation, who went away and fought a war. It's going to be a blueburst with an RNZAF F4U-1D across the front of the body, with a facsimile of Dad's wings and ribbons on the headstock, with his name and rank on the TRC.





The headstock will be waterslide decals but the aircraft will be airbrushed on...

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FWIW, an after market esoteric nut is a solution to a problem that doesn't exist, and a great way to convert your money into someone else’s.

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Re: Replacement Pickup Suggestions

Post by Catalyst on Wed Mar 06, 2013 4:34 pm

Can we bring a Westbury into this thread or is it a Westone only item?

If so I have a Westbury Standard that I fancy turning into a blues machine, the original pups were removed some time ago so I'm open to any suggestions as to how I can create a great blues tone with some replacement pickups.

Thanks in advance Smile

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Re: Replacement Pickup Suggestions

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