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? Blues/Slide Pick-ups for an SG?

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(@phangeaux)
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Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 144
Topic starter  

I have a '98 or '99 Epiphone G-400, SG copy. I think they called it a 62 Gibson SG Reissue. It has two chrome covered humbuckers. I love the body and neck, it feels just like my first electric guitar, a new and real 62-64 Gibson SG. This guitar brings back some precious memories for me. I wish I still had the original one though.

I want to upgrade all of the hardware and electronics. I want to use this guitar for heavy BLUES and alot of BOTTLENECK SLIDE work.

I am trying to get a start on figuring out what the best pick-up combination would be for this guitar and specifically this style of music. I don't know enough about modern pickups to make the best choices so I'd appreciate any qualified opinions.

Originally I thought of using some high quality Gibson pickups for an upgrade but that seems too easy, (Gibson copy = Gibson pickups) and further I don't know the characteristics of the pickups that are available nowdays. My intent is not to make it sound like an original SG, but instead to make it especially good for blues and slide work.

The humbuckers on it now are not that great and a bit too bright for my liking.

I am playing through a Vox valvetronix AD50VT modelling amp which I think is a cool and versatile amp, adequate for my use. I can't even turn it up because I live in an apartment building but when I get to a place where I can crank up the power I want to have some good pickups on this guitar (or even at low volume/power).

Any opinions or leads as to where I can get some ideas?

Thanks

Phangeaux
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(@gnease)
Illustrious Member
Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 5038
 

Replace one of the 'buckers with a P90 -- probably the bridge for slide use, unless you already always use the neck pup for slide. In that case, I would replace the neck pup. The humbucker sized versions of the P90 are avialable as drop-in replacements. Check guitarfetish.com for reasonably priced versions. You will get a nice, midrange-thick and dirty tone with more high-end definition than a 'bucker -- growling, but not dull. One warning: P90s are single coils -- they hummmmmm.

Me ... I would consider replacing both pups with P90s.

-=tension & release=-


   
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(@phangeaux)
Estimable Member
Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 144
Topic starter  

Replace one of the 'buckers with a P90 -- probably the bridge for slide use, unless you already always use the neck pup for slide. In that case, I would replace the neck pup. The humbucker sized versions of the P90 are avialable as drop-in replacements. Check guitarfetish.com for reasonably priced versions. You will get a nice, midrange-thick and dirty tone with more high-end definition than a 'bucker -- growling, but not dull. One warning: P90s are single coils -- they hummmmmm.

Me ... I would consider replacing both pups with P90s.

Thanks alot gnease. Like you I certainly will consider replacing both. As I get a few more good pickups stockpiled I can start mixing and matching to see what I like best but I am just trying to get a start right now. It can't hurt to have an extra P-90 on the table for swaps. I have two Demarzio Air Norton (DP193) humbuckers in a semi hollowbody which have seemed OK for that guitar. I don't know how those are rated as far as being good pickups but those are now on the mix and match list too. Looks like this is going to be FUN! I'll start buying pickups instead of guitars- they take up alot less space. What a great idea :-D

Phangeaux
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(@ricochet)
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Joined: 21 years ago
Posts: 7833
 

I LOVE P-90s for slide!

"A cheerful heart is good medicine."


   
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(@phangeaux)
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Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 144
Topic starter  

HEY, thanks again for the P-90 advice!!

Reading up on them I see that Leslie West of Mountain used them. I just put on their recording of Mississippi Queen one of my favorites of that era and I LOVE that sound! If I were to pick a sound I would like to get that would sure be one of them!!

The Air Nortons I mentioned are are actually very good and I have no complaints about them. I am wondering how one of these would work in the bridge position with the P-90 at the neck. I may try that on each guitar and see how it turns out so 2 P-90 single coils are definately on my shopping list. Can you recommend a 'best' of brands?

Gotta get back and listen to Mississippi Queen. I had a girlfriend back then who lived in the backwaters along the Mississippi.

I remember listening to that song at high volume when I was up in the mountains of Colorado outside of Boulder (up by Ward) Listening to Mountain on top of a Mountain playing Mississippi Queen for my Mississippi Queen. I am gonna out do Leslie West on that song. I got alot more bite, YEOW! , this is gonna be FUN!!

Phangeaux
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(@phangeaux)
Estimable Member
Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 144
Topic starter  

I still have alot of research to do and don't know yet what the best current brands would be for single coil P-90s, some would be better than others (better materials and design).

Even though I am on very low income ( medical disability) I don't mind saving and investing in a few top class pick-ups for a couple my favorite guitars but for the most part I may opt out for winding or rewinding my own pickups for other guitars. I'll experiment and I might get lucky :-)

Phangeaux
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(@ricochet)
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Joined: 21 years ago
Posts: 7833
 

I'll experiment and I might get lucky :-)
That's the spirit! :D

"A cheerful heart is good medicine."


   
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(@gnease)
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Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 5038
 

I'll experiment and I might get lucky :-)
That's the spirit! :D

Definitely. My post wasn't meant to discourage DIY. With even simple components, there is a lot of room for exploring and getting to different results -- which is undoubtedly how guys such as Duncan, Lawrence and Bardeen started their crafts. It's traditionally a very emphirical process. Once you create a magic tone pup, the toughest thing may be producing several of the same -- but that too is part of the journey.

-=tension & release=-


   
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(@phangeaux)
Estimable Member
Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 144
Topic starter  

I'll experiment and I might get lucky :-)
That's the spirit! :D

Definitely. My post wasn't meant to discourage DIY. With even simple components, there is a lot of room for exploring and getting to different results -- which is undoubtedly how guys such as Duncan, Lawrence and Bardeen started their crafts. It's traditionally a very emphirical process. Once you create a magic tone pup, the toughest thing may be producing several of the same -- but that too is part of the journey.
Hey Thanks you guys!

To be honest the only things stopping me from making my own pickups are (this symbol '<' means 'due to') I don't have any work space<too much junk all over the place<too much time on the computer<having become an internet addict.

I am struggling with this internet addiction problem.

Anyhow, I just looked through all of my saved music related URLS and came up with these relevent urls:

Look how easy it was for this guy to make his own single coil pick-up for about $10.
This has me thinking with a small investment I can make quite a few pickups and experiment quite a bit.

All I'll need is a test firing range to blast these things off! :lol: (add a sorcerers hat on that smiley face) Some guys do model rocketry and I'm gonna do pickups. I might use the same firing range out in the Nevada Desert. Yeowee-zowee it really is Rocket Science (for guitar players) :twisted:

From: Jim Radmer <[email protected]>
To: rec.music.makers.guitar@usenet, [email protected], [email protected]
Subject: Pickups: Make them yourself at 10 $
http://www.harmony-central.com/Guitar/electric-construction.txt

This is a very good short article:
How do Guitar Pickups Work?
(C) 2004 Hank Wallace
http://www.aqdi.com/pickups.htm

The Guitar Effects Oriented web page:
http://www.geofex.com/

Guitar Electronics Wiring Resources:
http://music-electronics-forum.com/forumdisplay.php?f=11

Music Electronics Forum:
http://music-electronics-forum.com/forumdisplay.php?f=11

Check out the tutorial section at Project Guitar:
http://www.projectguitar.com/

I'm not sure if I am going to read these tonight or finish my string changing projects, probably neither because it's 3:30 am.

Reading the information and getting a start on this is very important though so I'll get to it in the daytime.

Rocket Science, yeah! >============>

Phangeaux
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(@ricochet)
Illustrious Member
Joined: 21 years ago
Posts: 7833
 

That GeoFex page is an awesome resource for guitar electronics!

"A cheerful heart is good medicine."


   
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