#1
I recently purchased an original 1985 Gibson flying v. Not sure what kind of pickups the guitar has in them, i think they may be original Gibsons, but I'm not sure. The seller mentioned the brand...etc, but i forgot. Getting to the point: The current pickups have a pretty decent tone, really amazing for thrash metal (what i mostly play; personally, and with my band) but the problem is that the pickups don't have too much sustain, especially when doing harmonies. When playing chords...etc, it's fine, but when playing harmonies for dive bombs/pull ups, the note dies within 5 (more or less) seconds, which is not good as i like to do some crazy dive bombs when soloing.

SO! here what I need help with: I want to change the pickups, but i don't know if i should struggle with installing EMGs (No routing required for batteries, theres lot's of room in the pot compartment) which i'd like 'cause those have an amazing amount of sustain (i know cause i have an LTD MH-400 with EMG 81) but again, not too sure if i wanna deal with the whole bullshit of rewiring the whole guitar/getting pots/switchs. So instead i want some recommenedations from you people, I want really high-output passive pickups, that have just as good (if not better) sustain than active EMGs do. Price is not an issue, and as brand... Seymour Duncan's would be nice, but I'd look into Dmarzio, or other brands.

Thanks, and please reply to this.
#3
emgs would be too generic for such a nice axe, any overwound seymour duncan or dimarzio would be better also ive played dimebuckers before and theyd have more sustain than the previous two but not as good clean tone. Also like the previous said Barenuckle pups do kick ass.
Last edited by DukeFame at Jan 29, 2012,
#4
There's the CrunchLab/Liquifire or D-activator combo from Dimarzio...

From Seymour Duncan, there are Blackouts, the Hot-rodded set, the Duncan Distortion set...

EMG 81/85 or 81/60 combos are very good.

And of course Bareknuckle Pickups are VERY high output, as well as passive. Personally I think they have a weird sort of timbre to their tone, but I know a lot of people use them.
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#5
EMGs aren't hard to install. If you buy them new, they come with the pots and jack all prewired. I only had to solder a wire from the battery clip to the jack and the pickups to the switch. The rest was done. Distance between pots isn't an issue on a Gibson style guitar. The newer X series is all solderless, you just plug them into their respective places. It's not a hard modification to do at all. Your toggle switch will work with active pickups with no change. It's just a switch, nothing more.
#6
Bareknuckle pickups actually sound really good, ill look into them. Again main genre: Thrash Metal, so as long as it can give me that old school thrash tone like Metallicas Kill 'em all, megadeth, ill be happy. Keep the replies comin' anything helps.
#7
Also from Bareknuckle, can you guys give me a specific model that you have in mind? Or just bareknuckle in general?
#8
Love the Blackouts, though they seem to be prone to feedback on stage with a high-gain amp, DiMarzio's Breed rocks!
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#9
Have you properly adjusted the height of the pickups in it, and setup the guitar properly? I'm more than willing to bet the problem isn't the pickups.
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#10
I wouldn't change those pickups. I'd have it checked out first before I did anything.
If the pickups are setup ok, it's probably wiring, a bad switch or connector.
Last edited by 667 at Jan 29, 2012,
#11
From Dimarzio, Super distortion would be funny. But you know what, the thing changing the sustain isn't only pickup. Change the brdige and tail piece, maybe tuners, then go for a better pickup so you'll have even more sustain. But if you change pickups with EMG, go for JH set. They are awesome looking for a flying V
#13
Quote by MatrixClaw
Have you properly adjusted the height of the pickups in it, and setup the guitar properly? I'm more than willing to bet the problem isn't the pickups.

+1

In my experience sustain has a lot to do with how well your guitar is setup and how you EQ your amp and how much volume and gain you use - and next to nothing to do with your pickups.
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#14
kirk and hettfield both play the emg combos. i think they both play the 81/60 combo. but as mentioned before, the JH set would probably be ideal to get you the tone that your looking for. if i remember correctly, they are voiced to sound like a passive but perform like an active.

this should help a little.
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#15
Ya sounds like a set up issue. Maybe action too low,or the strings are dead.You said pull ups and dive bombs......must have a floyd set up? Maybe he swapped out the tone block for a bad one....maybe its not all oe like he said.
What the hell!!!
#16
Regardless if it's a set-up issue or not, I would never put EMG's in it. That would straight up ruin it.
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#17
Quote by steven seagull
+1

In my experience sustain has a lot to do with how well your guitar is setup and how you EQ your amp and how much volume and gain you use - and next to nothing to do with your pickups.


Heres what i can tell you guys that might be affecting the sustain:

- It has a Kahler licenced Gibson tremolo bridge with brass rollers, and a locking nut of course

- the bridge pickup is slightly slanted (so its not straight like it should be)
#18
Hmmmm. Maybe its not the right pickup ring for the guitar. They make different rings slanted/non slanted and different heights too. maybe if it is a 4 wire pup maybe its not wired up right or half of the humbucker isnt working. Like I.E. I bought a used dimebucker and found out it didnt work AFTER I put it in the guitar. I checked the ohms after I took it back out and it had half the resistance it was supposed too.So checking the ohms before buying used stuff is something I learned. If the pickup checks out ok then move to the other wiring. Maybe the volume pot is bad. But to do this type of stuff you need an ohm meter.
What the hell!!!
#19
Sometimes worn tremlo springs can cause that too. You say the bridge is angled all funny. Sounds like it needs to be set up correctly also, you never said how old the strings are?? Old strings will sound dead and not ring out or sustain long. I always tear down a used guitar and check them all out fix the broken junk clean it,oil the fret board put them back together and restring. Takes a few hours some times but well worth it. At that time it is easy to pull the pups and see whats going on inside the cavity. And replace that ring if it is the wrong one. Maybe the wires are bunched up behind the pup and getting pinched. Thus causing the angle you have and explain the low output.
What the hell!!!
#20
Quote by danvwman
Sometimes worn tremlo springs can cause that too. You say the bridge is angled all funny. Sounds like it needs to be set up correctly also, you never said how old the strings are?? Old strings will sound dead and not ring out or sustain long. I always tear down a used guitar and check them all out fix the broken junk clean it,oil the fret board put them back together and restring. Takes a few hours some times but well worth it. At that time it is easy to pull the pups and see whats going on inside the cavity. And replace that ring if it is the wrong one. Maybe the wires are bunched up behind the pup and getting pinched. Thus causing the angle you have and explain the low output.


Strings are brand new. about a day old
#21
Quote by PRSseSinglecut
Also from Bareknuckle, can you guys give me a specific model that you have in mind? Or just bareknuckle in general?


Any of the "Contempory" range should cover thrash, just a bit differently. Having said that, the ceramic models are probalby more what you're after. You can check over on their forum or contact them directly for advice for your setup - they know them a lot better than I do.
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#22
If you want EMG's, get EMG's. They have a very specific sound, that you won't get out of any other pickup. Any other pickup will disappoint you, if it doesn't have that sound, whether it's a $20 GFS pickup or a $150 BKP pickup.
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#23
the duncan sh-6 is the best humbucker for thrash metal .. and overall .. if you want more output than the sh-4 ( JB ) or the Dimarzio super distortion which are good for classic rock , hard rock /metal of the 80's but still dont want something that too much output and lose all clean and too much feedback like the Duncan invader or dimarzio super 3 . its the right choice for in between .

but the pinch harmonic will never come out as strong on a Duncan sh-6 then on an active EMG 81 or duncan invader . but otherwise its a very good humbucker with high output that handle metallica, megadeth and thrash metal tone well but still have a good sound when roll back for Acdc /rock .

But if your really after the active emg sound .. Zakk wylde's pinch harmonic that scream forever ... EMG's are the way to go .

If you feel emg's than trust your feeling . they're great . for pinch hamronics and sustain that last forever

Go emg .. cause the only humbucker strong enough to scream like beast are like the duncan invader sh-8 which is too bassy for your guitar and feddback get out of control . and the super 3 form dimarzio which is more a "specific" pikcup to beef up a strat and wont sound good in your Explorer .
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Last edited by Skysc at Jan 29, 2012,