Dummycoils for a dummy.

Discuss guitars of any brand

Moderators: Guitarzan, Grandor, ned

Post Reply
Nicklotsaguitars
Mark III
Posts: 283
Joined: Tue Dec 22, 2015 12:15 pm

Dummycoils for a dummy.

Post by Nicklotsaguitars » Wed Jan 27, 2016 2:00 pm

I've a lovely strat that is wired very 50's. Same polarity/wind middle pickup. (yes I'm one of the people that prefers that sound in positions 2&4) and the bridge pickup with no tone control.
I've been thinking of adding a small dummycoil. An electric mandolin pickup. Instead of wiring it from the volume to the switch output. I was thinking of putting it on the ground side of the circuit. Do you think it's worthwhile?
That guitar is specifically for very delicate, clean sounds. It's a very pretty sounding thing. I don't want to mess with that too much, hence the idea of wiring to the ground side.
Worthwhile venture? Suhr do something similar apparently. Though I see very little online about their tricks.
some guitars and some amps

RR
Single Recto
Posts: 1708
Joined: Thu Jul 21, 2005 2:56 pm
Location: Pacific Coast

Re: Dummycoils for a dummy.

Post by RR » Sat Jan 30, 2016 3:52 pm

Interesting concept.

Now what is your question? Is it feasible? Do you need more info on this dummy coil.

Now you said you play clean, is the hum really that bad even if you play clean?

I say this because I have an old '74 Strat. I replace its stock pickups with aftermarket pickups. Then I decided to go back to the stock pickups. Well, I guess leaving in drawers too long, all the pickups weren't working. Likely all the coils had a break.

So I sent to a boutique pickup rewinder. All I asked was restore them and the middle pickup to be RW/RP. When I got them back, they were fairly quite for single coils. He claimed his "scatter winding" has something to do with reducing hum.

Now there's a misnomer many claim having the middle pickup RW/RP the 2 and 4 position, the tone is too midrangey compared to non RP/RW. This boutique PU rewinder claimed that if you take care wounding and balancing the pickup set, you could make it sound just bright tone in 2 and 4 position like stock pickups where the middle pickup is non-RW/RP.

He demonstrated at his studio because one guitarist claimed his ears are well trained. Well this guitarist failed the RW/RP -vs- non-RW/RP. He could not tell the difference.

Nicklotsaguitars
Mark III
Posts: 283
Joined: Tue Dec 22, 2015 12:15 pm

Re: Dummycoils for a dummy.

Post by Nicklotsaguitars » Sun Jan 31, 2016 9:52 am

I don't think I could tell the difference blindfold. To the point of saying "yep that one is definitely all same polarity and wind".
I have no doubt I'd hear the difference. 2&4 become essentially humbucker settings with a RWRP middle. The response is different. The sound is slightly different.
My reason for doing that was that I wanted a Strat wired as they were originally. I've enough tricked out guitars.

My question essentially is, will putting the dummy coil on the ground side of the circuit, rather than the hot side. Affect that tone to the same degree whilst still reducing hum.

And yes I know adding a dummy coil makes the pickups into humbuckers.
some guitars and some amps

woodbutcher65
Mark II
Posts: 144
Joined: Fri May 04, 2018 10:36 pm

Re: Dummycoils for a dummy.

Post by woodbutcher65 » Thu Jan 31, 2019 6:26 pm

If it weren't for positions 2 and 4 I'd have absolutely no use for a strat at all. In fact I just acquired one, an '87 Japanese Squier Strat, making it the first time I've owned a Strat in at least twelve years. The price was right and for a 30 year old guitar it's in fantastic shape so I figured, why not? I'll get some use out of it on the rare occasions I play clean. I truly have never been able to get an overdrive sound with single coil pickups that I ever liked. For overdrive, I'm a humbucker guy and that's that.

As for dummy coils, the ideal dummy coil would be a pickup matching the ones in the guitar but with no magnets or slugs in it. Match to the middle pickup.

The better the matching the better the hum cancelling will be. I've even heard of some people going to such lengths as to install a hidden trim pot inside the cavity with the dummy coil and tuning it for best hum cancellation. Once it's set, lock down the adjustment (using a pot that allows for this) and reassemble the guitar.

Post Reply