Wax Potting Pickups - A Primer With Photos!

ColorfulMusic

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To the thread starter...I read much of this thread but not every response. Parafin wax is used in Physical Therapy. You melt the Parafin than dip a limb in it... ie. hand, foot...than put limb in a plastic type bag and keep on for 10minutes. It helps holds warmth and moisture to ease pain. Good for arthritis too.
My wife, who is a therapist bought me one couple years ago because I have had many injuries to joints from racing.
If I ever need to dip pickups, I guess I have just the tool! :)
 

jensvonbustenskjol

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Lane,
You are brilliant, and kind to everyone who asks. Thank you :)

How is waxing affecting the sound of a pickup? The impedance has to be changed when this is moved from air insulated to wax.

I would like to do this, but I'm afraid it will affect the sound too much. :)
 

Lane Sparber

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Lane,
You are brilliant, and kind to everyone who asks. Thank you :)

How is waxing affecting the sound of a pickup? The impedance has to be changed when this is moved from air insulated to wax.

I would like to do this, but I'm afraid it will affect the sound too much. :)


There's still air around the coil and magnets after potting; all the wax does is "fix" the coil so the wires cannot vibrate.

The sound may change SLIGHTLY, but I've never noticed a difference, and, for the record, neither have any of my clients! :naughty:

If you're worried, try it on a spare pickup and see if you can spot the difference. At the very least, I'd wager that the lack of high-pitched squealing whenever you turn up is MORE than worth any slight tonal variations that potting might cause. After all, there's a reason that almost every major pickup manufacturer pots almost all of their pickups (some exceptions being certain Gibson reissue models that are left unpotted to be "just like the originals").

-Lane
 

jensvonbustenskjol

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After all, there's a reason that almost every major pickup manufacturer pots almost all of their pickups (some exceptions being certain Gibson reissue models that are left unpotted to be "just like the originals").

-Lane

Touchè!
Thank you for a good answer.
Best of all :)
 

dreyn77

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Please DON'T do this to pickups!
This is like still telling people how to install a formula1 race car engine onto a bicycle.
There was only a problem with squealing pickups cause the pickup user was pushing the pickup into zones it was not made for.
Today, the wise guitarist would just buy the new pickups and forget the techniques of the people of the 1980s cause they were fully gear uneducated and were therefore, essentially mad!
You're actually trying to cover up the big elephant in the room. The sales staff sold you the item you don't need or want. (The great trick of the 1980s!)
Don't turn a hammer into a screw driver with your forge! Just research on the forum before you buy!
 

dreyn77

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Just put surfboard wax on the pole piece threads, cause it always stays soft. My les Paul pickups had come loose from the base, and somebody had wax potted the things without tightening the base plate screws.
So there's no need to re-dip these things if you takeout the screws, just use the surfboard wax to prevent any movement in the threads. The wax never falls off or goes hard. Jobs done, no more worry about it. No heat applied either. So, there's no chance of cooking the things.
 

Lane Sparber

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^^^yeah that won't work either. The wax needs to penetrate the coils. What you had going on seems to have been some sort of mechanical issue.

-Lane
 

mickeydg5

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Lane, I hope the moderators see this for what it is.

Some may actually need excommunication.

I would rather see Lane post here more often.





I want to say I knew you were watching and would comment. Glad you did.
Arch angle watching (with bat wings, ha ha).
 
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JCarno

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Ok, just re-read this entire thread.
No mention of p90s. I googled it and it's pretty much split 50/50 do, don't.
Anyone with experience doing p90s? Covers on/off?
Results?
Thanks!! :)
 

pedecamp

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Ok, just re-read this entire thread.
No mention of p90s. I googled it and it's pretty much split 50/50 do, don't.
Anyone with experience doing p90s? Covers on/off?
Results?
Thanks!! :)
I have a P90 guitar that squealed like a mofo, wax potting it fixed that. You gotta wax pot with the covers on otherwise you don't get all the air out.
 
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pedecamp

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you used the same method as above pedecamp?
I've never read this thread its too long, I just read what JCarno was asking. What I did was read a couple articles online and watch a couple youtube videos on how to do it and just did it, it was so easy. Basically did a mix of bees and paraffin wax (maybe 2/3 paraffin) in a glass jar in a pot of water on the stove at 150 degrees. When the wax is fluid put the pickups in for 20 minutes and keep an eye on the thermometer to keep the temp at 150. Sat them on a paper towel til they were cool enough to handle and wiped them down to get any excess wax off, and wipe off the meat thermometer LOL.
 

pedecamp

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I might try it on mine. thing is, that P-90 squeal can often bring a smile lol.
Squeal yuk! and all the cycle hum! I'd actually like to get rid of my P90 guitar, it actually has a nice thick humbucker tone to it as long as I don't go too high on the gain then all hell breaks loose with the cycle hum. In the end I think I'd rather just own humbucker guitars.
 
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ricksconnected

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you ever notice when joan jett stops playing to sing, she flips a switch on her guitar?
that's a kill switch for that squealing to stop. lol then she flips it again to start playing again.
 

El Gringo

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I just got a digital multi meter and wanted to measure the output of some old Gibson Patent # T-Tops pickups and I could not get a reading on the meter and I am the first to admit that I am not a tech/repair person .Please help me and tell me what to do .There is a black wire with a probe and their is a red one .I plugged everything in correctly ,I just could not get a reading .Also I hope to get Gold covers and then have these T-Tops wax potted eventually and if I get a good reading I will put them back into my Gibson Les Paul Custom which they came out of for it's current pickups which have been in there since 1996 which are Gibson 57 Classic in the neck and the Gibson 57 Classic + in the bridge which are nice but I have always been curious about the guitars original pickups (in between I had Duncan's in there 59 PAF and the Duncan Distortion ) Seems the Patent # T-Tops have a lot of fans .
 

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