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LP Studio (90's) Pickup Wiring

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LP Studio (90's) Pickup Wiring

Postby PBD777 » Tue Sep 08, 2020 10:57 pm

Hi all,

I picked up a soldering iron for some unrelated projects over lockdown and have decided to replace the Gibson 498T bridge pickup in my '99 LP Studio.... with another 498T, purely cosmetic. I popped the caps off my pickups and one was zebra, one was not, so here I am.

Both original pickups in the guitar have the braided shield 'single' wire. My new bridge pickup has the 4-wire. I think it is fine/safe to mix these two types, but wanted confirmation from you guys. So my neck pickup will remain (braided) and my new one will have the 4-wire connection.

From what I'm reading, I can tape together and ignore the green & white wires of the new pickup. Red is hot and goes to the pot, right where I'll be removing the old pickup connection. Bare is ground and I can solder this to the back of the pot, mirroring what the braided shield of the existing pickup is currently doing. There is also a black wire, and I have no idea what to do with this. Is it also a ground?

I really want to give this a shot but also don't want to underestimate it or make a mess of it. I know this information is available already but image search mostly brings up things slightly different looking, or youtube videos are too low res to really see what the people are doing. I'd like some advice from someone who can actually see the inside of my guitar.

Image of inside of my guitar, no work done yet:
Image

My capacitors are a little weird, not sure how standard these ones are...

Any tips appreciated. Thanks very much!
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Re: LP Studio (90's) Pickup Wiring

Postby Sam Spoons » Tue Sep 08, 2020 11:07 pm

[url][/url]If you have that right the black is the 'cold' side of the pickup and would be connected to ground along with the shield. The green and white are the other ends of the individual coils (easy to test with a multimeter) and should be joined (as they would be in a 'classic' humbucker) to put the coils in series. It's pretty hard to do damage though so I'd go for it and see what happens, it should sound the same as it did with the single wire pickup in place (record something before rewiring to check against afterwards).

This should help though (and suggests you are right :- https://www.americanmusical.com/ItemFiles/Manual/gibceramics_wiring.pdf
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Re: LP Studio (90's) Pickup Wiring

Postby zenguitar » Wed Sep 09, 2020 12:35 am

Yes, black is the coil ground and should be attached to the back of the pot as well as the bare screen wire.

It's definitely OK and safe to mix the 4-wire pick-up with the braided screen pick-up.

The capacitors are ceramic discs that are typical of the period. Pre-dates the recent fad for vintage style caps that may or may not contain Mystic Voodoo Sh!t. Nothing wrong with them, but feel free to experiment with different types or values.

Worth reading more about the pros & cons of different caps, here's a link to help you start exploring. But keep in mind that there's nothing wrong with those ceramic discs, they are in millions of perfectly good guitars...

https://www.premierguitar.com/articles/ ... -part-ii-2

Andy :beamup:
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Re: LP Studio (90's) Pickup Wiring

Postby PBD777 » Wed Sep 09, 2020 9:13 am

Thanks guys, that helps with the confidence a bit!
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Re: LP Studio (90's) Pickup Wiring

Postby PBD777 » Sun Sep 13, 2020 11:58 am

Hi guys,

I'm finaly going to do this today but have just noticed the new pickup mounting rings I bought are slightly deeper than my stock ones. At the bridge, I can easily compensate for this, but at the neck, it's looking like the new one will sit right at the same height as the fingerboard.

Stock ring: On it's thin/bridge side, is 2mm
New ring: On thin/bridge side, is 4 - 4.5mm

Is this going to give me problems? I think it's doable but not sure if I should even bother trying with them. It's been very hard to find new parts that are actually made to fit a LP studio!
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Re: LP Studio (90's) Pickup Wiring

Postby zenguitar » Sun Sep 13, 2020 12:06 pm

You could re-use the original pick-up mounting ring. Sand the new ring down to the same height as the originals. Or you could just use the new ring and adjust the pick-up lower.

Whatever works best for you.

Andy :beamup:
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Re: LP Studio (90's) Pickup Wiring

Postby PBD777 » Sun Sep 13, 2020 12:08 pm

zenguitar wrote:You could re-use the original pick-up mounting ring. Sand the new ring down to the same height as the originals. Or you could just use the new ring and adjust the pick-up lower.

Whatever works best for you.

Andy :beamup:

I'll just give it a shot and if it doesn't work out, will 'undo' and then sand the new ones down. I'm switching all black plastic bits for cream so would like to be able to go ahead with the new ones. If nothing else this is a learning experience so I'll just see what happens...Thanks!
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Re: LP Studio (90's) Pickup Wiring

Postby PBD777 » Sun Sep 13, 2020 7:21 pm

All done, thanks for the tips everyone. My soldering isn't too pretty but it worked.
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Re: LP Studio (90's) Pickup Wiring

Postby zenguitar » Sun Sep 13, 2020 9:03 pm

:clap:

Well done, glad you got it all sorted :)

Andy :beamup:
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