A custom build I had forgotten about…

Discussion in 'Non-Fender S-Type Guitar Forum' started by Scott Baxendale, Jul 27, 2021.

  1. Scott Baxendale

    Scott Baxendale Senior Stratmaster Gold Supporting Member

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    About 8 years ago I built this and had pretty much forgotten about it until I was transferring a bunch of photos from an old device. I used Cadillac Green metallic paint with a darker shade on the back and sides. The Zexcoil pickups were a new thing and i think the customer really liked them. They were a little too much like Lace sensors for me which aren’t my thing. The two point Wilkinson bridge is set up to float and does a good job staying in tune with out being too clunky.

    6D6CAF24-2BAE-43F2-BC5C-9E4CDEBEBE18.jpeg 6233E123-166A-48E8-9559-F2F8AE68208A.jpeg B0C22319-2779-4A9E-AF52-F48FD704AFC7.jpeg 00E4EC42-2B1C-43F9-8651-F894AEA30514.jpeg
     

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  2. ukoldgit

    ukoldgit Most Honored Senior Member

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    Nice, but I'm with you on the Lace PU's.
     
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  3. Phrankenstrat

    Phrankenstrat Strat-Talk Member Silver Member

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    5-Way Switch?
     
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  4. Scott Baxendale

    Scott Baxendale Senior Stratmaster Gold Supporting Member

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    Yes, I think? It might have been a mega switch, but I think it was just a standard 5 way.
     
  5. Phrankenstrat

    Phrankenstrat Strat-Talk Member Silver Member

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    Yes, I always forget the Super Switch which is what most of my builds actually have! lol
     
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  6. Miotch

    Miotch Senior Stratmaster

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    Beautiful guitar !!
    I like a Zexcoil Juicy Bucker in the bridge position because it sounds like a PAF when I need it (to me anyway--I like a hotter bridge pickup). Never tried a Zex in neck or middle position.
     
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  7. CalicoSkies

    CalicoSkies Most Honored Senior Member Gold Supporting Member

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    I like Zexcoils. But what do you mean by "too much like Lace sensors"? I've tried both and they have a bit of a different sound. Though I guess they look somewhat similar (except those style of Zexcoils have the slits in the covers). I like pickups that look a bit different though..
     
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  8. guitarface

    guitarface Most Honored Senior Member

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    What pickup is in the bridge?
     
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  9. Deafsoundguy

    Deafsoundguy CERTIFIED HACK Silver Member

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    Very nice color sir! Nice job :thumb:
     
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  10. Scott Baxendale

    Scott Baxendale Senior Stratmaster Gold Supporting Member

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    What I mean is that they sound anemic to me. The Lace sensors always seemed like a good choice for someone who uses a heavily processed front end on their rig because they are so clean sounding. So for someone playing through a multi effect pedal into a clean sounding amp and using the digital pedal effects to get the different sounds. This kind of rig is best suited for Lace Sensors and The Zexcoils seem like another type of pickup that is well suited in this type of setup.

    I do the opposite I use very little on the front end and rely on the sound of vintage tube amps for my tone. So I’m my case I prefer a Alnico 2, Texas special, or vintage style pickups to get the type of sound I’m after.
     
  11. Scott Baxendale

    Scott Baxendale Senior Stratmaster Gold Supporting Member

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    I think it’s a hot rails? But it might be a Cool Rails,I can’t remember?
     
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  12. CalicoSkies

    CalicoSkies Most Honored Senior Member Gold Supporting Member

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    I thought pickups like Lace Sensors and Zexcoils are meant to have a vintage-style sound, but with less or no noise from 60-cycle hum & such.
     
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  13. Scott Baxendale

    Scott Baxendale Senior Stratmaster Gold Supporting Member

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    I think the Kinnman pickups and the Fender vintage noiseless do a much better job at that than either the Lace or Zexcoils at least from my experience.

    The best thing I’ve found is to wire a dummy coil that is reverse wound and doesn’t have a magnet. This is similar to the Fender Elite wiring schematic but without the preamp. It can live in the tremolo pocket or under the pickguard.

    However, I don’t really have an issue with the noise from vintage style single coil pickups, so I don’t have the dummy coil in any of my guitars. It’s just something I’ve done a few times and it works well.

    If I get a customer who wants a vintage sound but without the noise Lace Sensors or Zexcoils are about the last thing I would recommend. They sound too sterile for me
     
  14. CalicoSkies

    CalicoSkies Most Honored Senior Member Gold Supporting Member

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    Interesting.. Kinmans are some of my favorite hum-canceling pickups (and I have a set in my partscaster), but I think Lace Sensors sound great too. I thought Zexcoils also sound pretty good, but the set I had tried (which were made to sound like vintage Strat pickups) sounded a little bit "harsh".
     
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  15. Scott Baxendale

    Scott Baxendale Senior Stratmaster Gold Supporting Member

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    This is all so subjective. They sound harsh to me as well.
     
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2021
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  16. Scott Baxendale

    Scott Baxendale Senior Stratmaster Gold Supporting Member

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    My sense is that really clean sounding pickups work best in a rig that is heavy on front end processing to achieve tone and traditional pickups work best in a rig that depends much more on the amp itself to produce the tone. I don’t use heavy front end processing so those really clean pickups don’t cut it for me.
     
  17. Bakelite1

    Bakelite1 Strat-Talker

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    The guitar is beautiful!

    Zexcoils and Lace products are like Lawrence, clean and uncolored. I use Lawrence in my teles but I like other stuff (Rose and Bootstrap) in a strat.
     
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  18. Scott Baxendale

    Scott Baxendale Senior Stratmaster Gold Supporting Member

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    “Uncolored” is audio speak for “Toneless”……lol.
     
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  19. Bakelite1

    Bakelite1 Strat-Talker

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    I didn't think of it as toneless but I take your point. Teles still sound like teles and all the finger stuff comes through. Strats don't work as well because you can hear the mechanical too much.

    I guess it follows the earlier point about clean signals. I like very clean on a tele but I use pedals with a strat.
     
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  20. Scott Baxendale

    Scott Baxendale Senior Stratmaster Gold Supporting Member

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    I was mainly making a joke.

    I played in a band where the other guitar player had a Strat with lace sensors. He used a blues deville amp, but he needed a pedal for tone manipulation on every song and used a multi effect device.

    I used a Tele through a Ampeg Gemini 1 and I could get all my tones with the controls on my amp and guitar and didn’t use any pedals other than a TS9 tube screamer. My tone was always much better.

    From a luthier’s point of view it seems like most players who like these pickups use a lot of processing before the signal hits the amp. I have always seen these pickups best used in that type of setup. A Strat with lace sensors plugged straight into a twin is ear bleedingly harsh to me.