#1
I recently bought an Epiphone Limited Edition Alpine White G-400, which I'm loving as a stock guitar, but I know it could be so much more with a few 'simple' upgrades. My problem is I've never modded a guitar before in any way, and though I've read every tutorial and FAQ out there, I'm still left with a few questions which I'd like answers too before I go drilling into my new baby.

1) Installing a neck pickup out of phase. My Joe Perry Les Paul has the neck pickup installed in reverse polarity or something, so the middle position has this great airy tone that you don't normally get. I rely on this tone quite a lot, and I'd like my new SG to have it too. I don't know how to wire the new pickups in this way though, and I can't find any wiring diagrams for it either. So anyone know how the wiring should be to have an out-of-phase/reverse polarity neck humbucker?

2) I want to move the front strap lock from behind the neck join on to the top horn. Will this be okay though? Are the SG's slim horns able to take this kind of thing? Anything I should know about protecting the guitar when doing this (as it will involve drilling into the horn for the straplock's screw)?

3) Anyone know where in the UK you can buy Seymour Duncan humbuckers with gold pickup covers? I want to have an Alnico II Pro in the neck and I think a Custom Custom model in the bridge, and the SD site lists them both as being available with gold covers, but I can't find a single site that sells them like this, the only ones I can find are uncovered black.

4) Similarly, gold bridges. I want to change both the tune-o-matic and stopbar for decent quality gold versions. I've heard though that Epiphone use a different way of measuring their screws or something than other brands, so other bridges won't fit them. Can you buy gold Epi bridges separately? Or have I been sent on a wild goose chase, could I just buy any old gold LP bridge and it'd work?

5) I want to strip some of the high-gloss finish off the back of the neck. I don't want it to be completely matte, but I'm used to my heavily used Epi LP which over time has lost a lot of it's shine on the neck, and I find this more comfortable than either full gloss or full satin finishes. What would be the best way of replicating this on the SG? I'm basically looking to quickly wear in the neck as if it's been played for a few years - I don't want to strip the finish off, I don't want it to lose all it's shine, I just want to take off the very thinnest top layer of the finish. Would a fine sandpaper do, or steel wool?
Yes, I know everything. No, I can't play worth a damn.
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