#1
So I've been wondering how pickups are made recently. I did some research and decided I'd like to try doing some single coils for my strat since I'm getting a new guitar and I'm going to use the strat for a project guitar for practicing random stuff. I was looking at the single coil kit on stewmac and it says that you have to magnetize the magnets they supply you with. The question is: how do you know how many passes it takes through the strong magnetic field before you're done? It says to get a magnetometer so I can measure it to see when it's between 20-25 gauss but I don't want to spend $80 on something I may not use but 3 times. Do any of you guys that wind pickups measure this? Is there a place that sells properly magnetized alnico 5 magnets?

Thanks for the help.
My Gear:
ESP LTD KH-202
Peavey Triple XXX
#2
I've made the single coil kit, i don't have anyway to measure the guass i just ran it through the magnets around 7-8 times. It worked and sounds good.

The magnets from ampge are magnetised, but because i can't measure it yet I could tell you to what level.
#3
Stewmac isn't really giving you the gauss of the magnet. They are giving you the pull force which is a little different. Alnico V magnets charge up to about 1200 gauss (give or take) when you touch your gauss meter to the surface of the magnet. If you hold the meter a little bitte away from the magnet then you get the type of reading that stew mac gives. Both the surface gauss and pull force are change the tone, but for a beginner there is no need to measure either one. I made pickups for a very long time before I ever measured gauss. It wasn't untill I decided to start trying to redesign something that I bothered to get any of the expensive testing grear.


When you get your stuff from stewmac, don't throw your money away on the pole tester. Just use a compass. If the north needle points to the magnet then that is the north side.

I would suggest make a lot of passes over the magnets to charge them. Get the magnets fully charged and then after you have the pickup installed in your guitar, if it's too bright, then use one of your rare earth magnes to degauss the pickup. If the top of the pickup is the north pull then swipe the north side of your rare earth magnet past the pickup 1 time. If you pickup is still too bright then do it again. If you go too far then flip your magnet over and bring the gauss back up. When doing this it is possible to reverse the magnetic pull of the pickup so it's not a bad idea to check that every once in a while as well.
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