#1
I've got myself 2 guitars....

Michael Kelly - humbucker humbucker

American Strat - Humbucker Single Single

I wanna mod one of them eventually both. A lot of people tell me about bare knuckle pickups but before i drop the cash(and theres a lot of it) i wanna know whats good for what im looking for.

Im all about sustain because i do a lot of heavy bending(think David Gilmour)... Clean channel is very important to me because i play a lot of blues and spacey pink floyd type ****. I want my bridge pickup to scream on solos but be able to handle a really damn good rock and roll raunchy sound(think Angus Young, Eddie Van Halen, Iron Maiden, Dave Mustaine) For my middle and neck pickup i want a really warm yet chimy bright sound(think gilmour, SRV, hendrix)

for my Michael Kelly im looking more for a Slash type sound in the neck pickup and for the bridge something hotter than what i would put in the strat.... more of a hard rock/metal guitar...
On the Subject of Hitlers resemblance to Emos


Quote:
Originally Posted by Muphin
No. Emos can't grow facial hair, not to mention their inability to invade Poland
#2
for the strat try the seymour duncan jb ,invader or distortion
for the kelly try a seymour 59
if you want the gilmour sound get a ehx bigg muff and put emg sas in the strat
#3
It sounds to me like you need the Irish Tours. That should be best for SRV but for hendrix the mothers milk would be better. Does the strat have a rosewood fretboard?
Last edited by Dave_M at Feb 20, 2008,
#4
For the Michael Kelly I'd guess at a Holy Diver bridge, Abraxas neck...for the Strat two Irish Tour singles with an Emerald in the bridge.
Actually called Mark!

Quote by TNfootballfan62
People with a duck for their avatar always give good advice.

...it's a seagull

Quote by Dave_Mc
i wanna see a clip of a recto buying some groceries.


stuffmycatswatchontv.tumblr.com
#6
Sustain happens when you pluck a string and it rings for a long time. Pickups don't have anything to do with that. Good sustain comes from a good bone or Tusq (man made ivory) nut and quality bridge saddles.

Having a shorter scale length (like a Les Paul) helps, as does a really dense guitar body. The denser the body, the less energy the body absorbs from the string.. which means the string will ring longer.

My pickup recommendations would be for a 'Slash' style tone in the Michael Kelly, drop a Seymour Duncan '59 in the neck and a Seymour Duncan Alinco II Pro in the bridge. I'm pretty sure the Alinco II Pro is the pickup Slash is using nowadays anyway.

I personally prefer the Seymour Duncan SH4 JB in the bridge.. it's like a cross between the Alinco II Pro and the Pearly Gates pup.

For the strat.. i'd go with a 'trem spaced' Seymour Duncan SH4 JB in the bridge and probably something like Texas Specials for the neck and middle position.
#7
Don't forget the magnets pull on the strings. According to some people, if you go with a weaker magnet such as Alinco III then you will get better sustain.

For humbuckers you could just go with a calibrated set of mules and I'm sure you will be happy with them. That will rock... if not hard enough then you could go for Abraxas or VHII instead.
#8
They're not really worth it if you live in the U.S. Get some SD's.
Quote by doggy_hat
This chick that looked like shrek ****ed me while I was passed out on xanax. I screamed when I woke up.
#9
You know, one of the things I love about Seymour Duncan is on their website you can listen to audio clips of all their different pickup models, in various body positions.

They play the same little riff for each sample, so it's easy to A/B the tonal differences between models. Just make sure you're listening to the samples with some decent speakers, and you have any EQ settings on your speakers set 'flat' or 'neutral'.

I've tried several 'boutique' brand 'hand wound' pickups.. Fralins, WCR, etc.. and they've all been great pickups, but I just don't think they're any better than what you can score from Seymour Duncan for a lot less and have it shipped today.

But then again.. i've had real PAF pickups that I pulled out and stuck on eBay because they were selling for $1000 a piece.. I replaced 'em with Duncans for $79 a piece and they sounded just as nice to me.

Actually.. I think the Duncans probably sounded a bit better.

IMO, you have tiers in pickups.. like many other things.. shoes.. clothes..cars.. fuel.. you got:

1) Entry Level Crap
2) Mid Grade Stuff
3) Top End Stuff

Once you reach the 'top end' plateau, everythings pretty much the same. Duncan, Bare Knuckle, Fralin, etc are all top end stuff.
#10
Seamore Duncan pickups are designed to be mass produced and down to a price. They are not top end stuff.

Is paying for handwound pickups really worth it? I don't know. Fralins are hand wound but going by the reviews on harmony central they are not as good as bareknuckles. There is something about bareknucles that make them special... maybe the best in the world? They are expensive but that doesnt stop people buying american fender when they can have a mexican fender for a lot less money. You want bareknuckle because you want to sound good If you get seamore duncans you may upgrade to bareknuckles one day anyway.
#12
Quote by Dave_M
Seamore Duncan pickups are designed to be mass produced and down to a price. They are not top end stuff.

Uh, you're thinking of Duncan Designed. Duncans may be mass produced, but they are excellent pickups. DiMarzio, EMG ,and a lot of others are mass produced. They all are nice sounding units. So what you basically just said is anything mass produced isn't top end.

I sometimes think the mystique of Bareknuckle is people pay $400 for a set of pickups and make themselves think they are $380 better than a set of Duncans when they really probably aren't. Now in the UK its a bit different story as they don't cost much more than Duncans, but over they aren't worth it.
#14
Quote by forsaknazrael
They're good pickups, for sure...But just not top end stuff, to be placed in the same tier as Bareknuckle, Lollar, or Fralins, or anything.

True. For what its worth, Duncan Custom Shop pickups are supossed ot be as good as those, but they aren't much cheaper; a calibrated set over here is only $80 or so less than Bareknuckle.
#16
This is why BKP sound better than most (but not all) other hand wound pickups

Quote by an email send to me from tim


Hi Chris,

we control the wire from the spool onto the bobbin with our fingers.It's
the way we've always done it and the way we always will.We don't use
automated machinery of any kind-no auto shuttles or pretensioners.The
bobbin is rotated, the speed of which I control and then I guide the
wire onto the bobbin through my fingers controlling both the tension and
direction as well as the number of turns.I'm more than aware that alot
of the other so called handwinders are not handwinding at all-it's sad
that they have to mislead customers in such a way as that and it's not
how I would choose to run my business.You can rest assured that _*ALL*_
Bare Knuckle Pickups are individually handwound and handmade-we even
make all our own parts.Only pickups wound truly by hand attain true hand
wound tone-anyone who says otherwise is not only misleading their
customers, they're kidding themselves too.I handwind pickups for the
simple reason that I honestly think they sound better that way.At the
end of the day I wouldn't spend the extra time doing it if it really
made no difference at all.I'm only interested in making the best
sounding pickups and that means scatterwinding every coil by hand.

kind regards

Tim


There are 2 things in that email. 1 is that he guides the wire with his fingers. The other is that he tensions the wire with his fingers. The combination of these things make a huge difference. Most so called 'hand widers' don't actually wind by hand anymore but they still lie to the customers and say they are handwound.
Not taking any online orders.
#17
Quote by CJRocker
So what you basically just said is anything mass produced isn't top end.

That's true by observation. It's the laws of business. Save a few quid here and there trying to cut corners where possible and when you are shipping 1000s of units of whatever you are selling then that adds up to a big chunk of money.

Barenuckle are trying to make the best sounding pickups in the world. No compromise.
#18
.. Only pickups wound truly by hand attain true hand
wound tone-anyone who says otherwise is not only misleading their
customers, they're kidding themselves too.


Spoken like a true salesman trying to sell you a $100 pickup for $200.

People. There isn't any voodoo magic involved in pickup making. A pickup is a coil of wire around some magnets. The kind and type of wire effect the sound, the number of turns and the pattern in which it's wound effect the sound, the quality and type of magnet effect the sound.

But a human hand keeping tension on the wire as the bobbin spins around isn't any different than a tensioner doing the same job.
#19
Quote by FiddleMoor
But a human hand keeping tension on the wire as the bobbin spins around isn't any different than a tensioner doing the same job.



It is different. It's more labour intensive and i'm sure takes longer to make the pickups. That makes them more expensive which explains the retail price. Is it worth it? Well lets just say they are not good value for money. But then again an American Strat is bad value for money compared to a Squire Strat. But which would you buy? I'd save up for the better one always.

BTW on price... if you live in USA then you shouldnt have to pay the 17.5% VAT.
#20
Quote by Dave_M
BTW on price... if you live in USA then you shouldnt have to pay the 17.5% VAT.


Sounds like no matter where you live, if you want 'boutique' pickups and the prestige of being able to brag to people, "Oh these pickups were hand wound!" then you get to pay what I call a 'Fan Boy' tax that's a lot higher than 17.5%.
#21
What have you got against bareknuckle? Don't think anyone buys them for braging rights; they buy them looking for "that tone".

The american way is cheaper is better. They quality of SD is good enough to please most people. Bareknuckle is better tone but they cost more. Neither manufaturer is better they are just different. You can go for value or quality. SD is somewhere in the middle.
#22
I don't have anything against Bareknuckle, or any other 'boutique' builder.. I just feel from my experiences with all this 'hand wound' vs. 'machine wound' mumbo jumbo is nothing but marketing b.s.. and their assertion that a guy hanging onto the wire and keeping tension on it as it winds as opposed to a machine keeping the same tension on the string as it winds makes the tone is total bullsh!t.

I'll bet money that in a blind test, 9 out of 10 people wouldn't be able to tell the difference between a Duncan and a Boutique pickup.
#23
Not that 9 out of 10 people play guitar......... but yea most wouldn't know the diference....

My amp is a Peavey xxx half stack

and

A 1965 fender twin reverb
On the Subject of Hitlers resemblance to Emos


Quote:
Originally Posted by Muphin
No. Emos can't grow facial hair, not to mention their inability to invade Poland
#24
Quote by Metal_Man666
Not that 9 out of 10 people play guitar......... but yea most wouldn't know the diference....

My amp is a Peavey xxx half stack

and

A 1965 fender twin reverb

Well, you're going to have a hard tiome coaxing early EVH or AC/DC out of either of those amps...Just saying.
Quote by Metal_Man666
Im all about sustain because i do a lot of heavy bending(think David Gilmour)... Clean channel is very important to me because i play a lot of blues and spacey pink floyd type ****. I want my bridge pickup to scream on solos but be able to handle a really damn good rock and roll raunchy sound(think Angus Young, Eddie Van Halen, Iron Maiden, Dave Mustaine) For my middle and neck pickup i want a really warm yet chimy bright sound(think gilmour, SRV, hendrix)

for my Michael Kelly im looking more for a Slash type sound in the neck pickup and for the bridge something hotter than what i would put in the strat.... more of a hard rock/metal guitar...

You'd be better off looking for Slash and AC/DC out of the MK, and get what you can out of the Strat.

Popping in a Seymour Duncan SH-11 into the bridge of the Strat would give you EVH with the right amp, and Iron Maiden with the right amp.

Using a Seymour Duncan Alnico II Pro in the neck of the MK for Slash, and use a Seymour Duncan SH-14 in the bridge for AC/DC.
#25
Quote by FiddleMoor
I don't have anything against Bareknuckle, or any other 'boutique' builder.. I just feel from my experiences with all this 'hand wound' vs. 'machine wound' mumbo jumbo is nothing but marketing b.s.. and their assertion that a guy hanging onto the wire and keeping tension on it as it winds as opposed to a machine keeping the same tension on the string as it winds makes the tone is total bullsh!t.

I'll bet money that in a blind test, 9 out of 10 people wouldn't be able to tell the difference between a Duncan and a Boutique pickup.

he does more then that dude he winds it by hand not just keeps tension as it winds, their is a diffrence
Member #5 of the UG Luthier's club.
member #3 of the vermont cult
Member of the Frank Zappa Fan Club. PM deadhead313313 to join"

Quote by LightningRider
T Heff, No shit I'm a n00b

Quote by Will_Minus

EDIT: t heff wins the for the best response.

Quote by carousel182
i im gonna have to agree with t heff
#26
Quote by FiddleMoor
I don't have anything against Bareknuckle, or any other 'boutique' builder.. I just feel from my experiences with all this 'hand wound' vs. 'machine wound' mumbo jumbo is nothing but marketing b.s.. and their assertion that a guy hanging onto the wire and keeping tension on it as it winds as opposed to a machine keeping the same tension on the string as it winds makes the tone is total bullsh!t.

I'll bet money that in a blind test, 9 out of 10 people wouldn't be able to tell the difference between a Duncan and a Boutique pickup.

Tim custom builds EVERY pickup so you get the exact sound not close but EXACT sound you want out of your pickups.

In other words your saying an ESP custom guitar is the same as a LTD guitar. if you believe that you've done more than jump off the deep end you jumped off angel falls(thats the tallest waterfall in the world in case you don't know anything about geography either)

But don't cry because you're dumber than a
The nice part about being a pessimist is that you are constantly being either proven right or pleasantly surprised
-George Will

Also caught her playing fallout boy on my guitar, changed my strings and cleaned it the next day.
#27
for all of those who bks have you even played them if not kiss my
The nice part about being a pessimist is that you are constantly being either proven right or pleasantly surprised
-George Will

Also caught her playing fallout boy on my guitar, changed my strings and cleaned it the next day.
#28
Quote by CorduroyEW
This is why BKP sound better than most (but not all) other hand wound pickups


There are 2 things in that email. 1 is that he guides the wire with his fingers. The other is that he tensions the wire with his fingers. The combination of these things make a huge difference. Most so called 'hand widers' don't actually wind by hand anymore but they still lie to the customers and say they are handwound.

r u one of them lying to the customers chris?
Call me "Shot".

ShotRod Guitar Works

Custom Hand-wired Amplifiers and Effect Pedals.

Est. 2007


Source to everything I say about Guitars, Pedals, and Amplifiers: I make them.


UG's Best DIY PedalBoard
#29
hand winding does add a unique and IMO better sound but what makes bks so great is Tim he custom makes every pickup and will help you out no matter the hardship
The nice part about being a pessimist is that you are constantly being either proven right or pleasantly surprised
-George Will

Also caught her playing fallout boy on my guitar, changed my strings and cleaned it the next day.
#30
Quote by FiddleMoor
Spoken like a true salesman trying to sell you a $100 pickup for $200.

People. There isn't any voodoo magic involved in pickup making. A pickup is a coil of wire around some magnets. The kind and type of wire effect the sound, the number of turns and the pattern in which it's wound effect the sound, the quality and type of magnet effect the sound.

But a human hand keeping tension on the wire as the bobbin spins around isn't any different than a tensioner doing the same job.


Spoken like somebody that has no clue how a pickup works. Different scatters change the inductance, capacitance, and the AC resistance of the pickup and all of these things cange your tone. I have an experiment for you. Grab yourself a bass player have him bring his bass you your house for a jam session and when you plug your guitars in, twist your least together. The longer the lead the better this experiment will work. Now, turn the volume on his bass amp way down and the volume on your amp up. Then the two of you start playing and listen for the interfearance. The windings within the pickup interfear with each other in this same way which creates spikes in your frequency responce. If the wire is scattered more the signal the bleeds from 1 winding to another will be less and the spikes won't be as evident.

As for hand tensioning. When everything has a consistant tension and the wires are tight enough to not be microphonic, the pickup will be pretty solid, the wires inside the pickup will not move and everything will probably sound pretty good. When you tension the wire by hand you can't get it 100% consistance. You will end up with small spots inside the pickup that are a bit loose and patches that are a bit tight. If you are good at hand tensioning the patches will be small. The small loose patches make the pickup sound more airy and alive. They vibrate with the guitar for better harmonics and help the guitar to sing but these patches are small enough that microphonics isn't an issue. You also get tight patches. The tight patches will hold everything together and keep the wire close to the magnets. I guess thats not an issue if you are machine winding but if you are hand winding then it makes a huge difference in your overall sound quality and the pickups output. They also streatch the wire a bit which causses a little bit of compression which reducess the spikes I was talking about earlier.


Quote by ECistheBest
r u one of them lying to the customers chris?

Nope. I have a laith that I mount the pickup on, I set the spool of wire on the floor, pinch the wire between my fingers, hit the power button and go. Ormsby was criticizing me for that a while back saying it was proof that my pickups would be inconsistent garbage.
Not taking any online orders.
Last edited by CorduroyEW at Feb 21, 2008,
#31
Thanks for the insight. That must be how Tim controls the tone on some of them. Such as Nailbomb for example is supposed to have screaming harmonics. Must be by not winding so tightly and adding those loose patches. You can order the pickups without wax potting if you want. It is supposed to have a slightly different tone because it will change the frequency it resonates at.

Bareknucle is about the personal touch. You can talk to the guy that winds the pickups and describe what you want out of them. If he doesn't have quite the right one you can have a custom one made such as overwinding or underwinding an existing pickup. Or having a different type of magnet. All at no extra cost I believe. Then you can have custom finnishes on it such as flamed raw nickel. But that you have to pay extra for.
#32
I actually do have a question has any one played the bk sinner single coil pickup
if so how is it
The nice part about being a pessimist is that you are constantly being either proven right or pleasantly surprised
-George Will

Also caught her playing fallout boy on my guitar, changed my strings and cleaned it the next day.
#33
For reference sake, my Nailbomb's do have a richer harmonic content than any other pickups I've ever owned, they're also more "airy" sounding. They transition into feedback a little bit easier as well, but I like it that way.
ESP LTD EC-256 and a Fender Deluxe VM
#34
While your at it, check out Stephens Design Pickups

http://www.sdpickups.com/products.shtml

I have a set of his single coils in my strat and they are just awesome. He makes all kinds though and will work with you for the tone your after. Plenty of clips to listen to on his site.
Fender MIM Strat
Stephens Design Mojos
Analogman Silver TS-9
Teese RMC 2 Wah
Blues Jr.
Microcube
#35
^I do think his PAF style pickups are some of the most authentic sounding that I've heard. He doesn't hand wind anymore but for true PAF tone you need a winding machine. In fact, I like his silver series PAF's so much that I link to his webpage from mine.
Not taking any online orders.