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Alnico Rods in Ceramic Coils

Discussion in 'Squier Strat Forum' started by MrYeats, May 15, 2019.

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  1. MrYeats

    MrYeats Senior Stratmaster

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    I have been trying to find a use for those ceramic pickups that I have pulled off every Squire that I have bought.
    I pulled the magnets off and pulled out the rods that were in the coil. what I do like about these coils is that they are one piece plastic bobbins. The rods come out without interrupting the coil itself.
    I then inserted Alnico III rods and used no magnets, since they are already magnetized.
    Here is a demo of that very deed....Ignore the single coil noise on positions 1,3,and 5...I am too close to and right in front of the amp.

     
  2. CB91710

    CB91710 This is a Custom Title Gold Member Strat-Talk Supporter

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    Supposedly, Page added ceramic magnets to the bridge pickup on his "Dragon" Tele, as did Fender on their CS version.
    Couple of square ceramic magnets in the middle and a couple of round ones on the ends.
    Not exactly the same thing... you went from ceramic to ANP, Page went the other way but didn't remove the ANP... but I'd say you're in good company ;)
     
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  3. effy

    effy Strat-Talk Member

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    That's neat, didn't know you could pull the rods out on those squier pickups. Sounds pretty good actually.
     
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  4. MrYeats

    MrYeats Senior Stratmaster

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    This did not work out because of the way the bar magnets are charged. The north and south are on the ends of the bar, so, the magnetic field cannot work right. You will get both north and south on each pickup. This is why I just went to alnico rods, which worked out fine. Get the size .195" diameter and about .700" or so length. The first ones, the ones in the guitar on the demo, are .187". I had to use a dab of glue to hold them into the bobbins. I ordered the .195" for the next sets I will build. They should fit tight.
     
    Last edited: May 15, 2019
  5. hobdybob

    hobdybob Strat-Talk Member

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    where did you buy them?
     
  6. MrYeats

    MrYeats Senior Stratmaster

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  7. hobdybob

    hobdybob Strat-Talk Member

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    thank you. i think a good source when you would want to mix some alnico in 1 pickup ore use different magnets in a strat set.
    but expensive and shipping is to.
    so i think when i see ads like this
    http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-5...0001&campid=5338148356&icep_item=202367054593

    you are cheaper out, and hopefully have a better match with magnet/winding combo.
    because you don't know the effect off the magnet strength with the combination off the windings in de old ceramic pickups?
     
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  8. MrYeats

    MrYeats Senior Stratmaster

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    alnico III has no cobalt so the strength is lower than other for example alnico II or alnico V. This allows the string to not be interfered with because of too much pull from the magnet. The sustain and natural tone will be better. Plus I like the way they sound. On my meter the strength is about 3.5k.
     
  9. jaxjaxon

    jaxjaxon Strat-Talker

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    good stuff Mr. Yeats, I all ways enjoy your post's.
     
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  10. martinmj

    martinmj New Member!

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    Hi.
    Like the original poster, I have a heap of pickups ex-Strat-o-like guitars, including Squiers. I have also been playing with converting them to alnico rods of varying types-usually v, iv, iii and ii, sometimes combining them in the same pickup to balance the sounds across the string range-effectively a 'hybrid' pickup, which would normally cost you considerably more than the cost of the alnico rods!
    If you choose 5mm dia, and about 15mm length ,they work out fine, with an opportunity to stagger the poles if you wish. Obviously the results are dependent on the original pickups, and how they were made, but so far I have found no duffers-and a great improvement over the originals with their ceramic bar magnets. Keep your original pickups as sets and you can be pretty sure they will be balanced when converted. Interestingly most of these cheap pickups are wax-potted, which enables the original steel rods to be drifted out easily and similarly replaced. The 5mm diameter also means the rods can be easily adjusted and readjusted for height and stagger if you want to-some of mine just need a slight push, and height is adjusted. And no the rods don't drop out-as yet!
    I have also recently obtained some samarium cobalt rods ( 5mm dia and 10mm length), and although the rods are short-they cost more to manufacture than the alnico-they are completely enclosed by the coils. Although they are a great deal stronger than alnico v's, I have not found they need lowering any more than the alnico pickups. Sound is very full range, with deep bass, and bell-like highs. Not that different to alnico v, but with a touch more presence and an a/b test in one of my 'mule' guitars shows this. In fact I am getting so interested in the possibilties regarding the different alnico variations that I now have two Strats that have been adapted to enable quick-change pickups, with split pickguards, tremolo removed and plus removing the thin timber above the spring cavity plus a sliding pickup arrangement ( using rails pinched from photograhic close-up bellows!). If you go down that route, then a piece of spring steel will hold the pickups on the rails, and a humbucker frame can be used to adjust the pickup height, as well as aiding sliding. I have also found the Squier Showmaster and Stagemaster enable easy pickup change because the controls can be accessed via the bottom plate.
    One word of caution-when knocking out the pole-pieces be careful with the flat plastic plate at the bottom of the pickup-it is quite brittle, and you need to retain the use of the pickup mounting holes when installing. Also beware of catching the pickup-wires-the leads can be resoldered back to the coil wire, but it is akin to soldering a barge-pole to a piece of spider's web!
     
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