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Tele neck pup mod

PostPosted: Sat Aug 07, 2010 5:27 pm
by michaelm
I've got a 2004 MIM Tele that I felt might need a little more tonal variation. Back in the 1970s, I had a '60s Tele and a previous owner had put a mini-humbucker in the neck position. I thought that might be nice mod for my current Tele. While looking around for a suitable pickup, I found Seth Lover Fender Humbucker inspired pups from GFS. They've sure 'Got the Look', so I decided to give one a try. So far, I'm liking the sound a lot and I think that it came out looking pretty good. Here's a photo:


And a close-up:



Re: Tele neck pup mod

PostPosted: Tue Aug 10, 2010 8:52 pm
by rossfloss
Looks awesome! I've actually been looking at Fender MIM tele's with a neck-bucker myself. At the same time, however, I could not imagine playing a tele without that neck single coil that I've grown to love. Apparently the Gibson Firebird mini-humbuckers are the best sounding humbuckers when coil split (I was informed about this on my previous "mini-humbucker" thread). So I might try and rig one of those in for the best of both worlds. Anyhow, once again that guitar looks damn good for a MIM!

Re: Tele neck pup mod

PostPosted: Fri Aug 13, 2010 3:30 am
by michaelm
Thanks for the kind comments. Actually, this is a four-wire (plus case ground) humbucker with all sorts of coil split possibilities. I just thought that I'd give this a try as-is first. After I get used to it, I may experiment a bit with a switch for single or double coil.

I've got a lap steel with a rail style stacked-bucker with a switch between single coil and humbucker operation. I don't really hear much difference at low volume, but when it's cranked, the single coil has got a good bite. That pup is in the bridge position, though, where a single coil can really shine.

Good luck with your project. Give a us another post when you've got something rigged up.

Re: Tele neck pup mod

PostPosted: Fri Aug 13, 2010 3:31 pm
by rustyslide
Looks fantastic!

Re: Tele neck pup mod

PostPosted: Fri Aug 13, 2010 4:31 pm
by titaniumslide

Looks like a great job on the pickup install. Besides making a new hole for the pickup, did you have to route out the body for that pickup?

Re: Tele neck pup mod

PostPosted: Sun Aug 15, 2010 9:30 pm
by michaelm
Thanks there, slide bros.

t-slide, I didn't cut out the pick guard, I just bought a new one, also from GFS, pre-cut for humbuckers. I did need to substantially rout out the body though. The new pickup is more than twice as fat as the original one and the mounting bolts are moved a bit as well. I've got a Dremel-type mini-grinder with a small router base and bits which is what I used to rout out that cavity. That may not be the best tool for the job, but I think that using a full-size router would have required totally disassembling the guitar, which I didn't want to do. I've seen (and done) neater work before, but it's all hidden now Image
Next time that I need to open things up there, I'll try and remember to take a photo of the hole and post it here.