[Tech] EMG 707 --> Lundgren M7 swap

Discussion in 'The Sevenstring.org Workbench' started by AVH, Jan 10, 2007.

  1. AVH

    AVH avhguitarrepair.com Forum MVP

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    Decided to document the installation of a newly aquired, and much praised Lundgren M7. The outgoing EMG 707 is a very good sounding, balanced, and chuggy pickup, but there was still...something....lacking. Too even, little dynamics....something.




    The subject guitar: my '00 LACS D1.

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    The outgoing 707

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    The incoming M7

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    A measurement is taken of the pickup height for mounting reference later...this measures 5/16" bass side and 1/4" treble side. I will likely add a sixteenth to the new pickup.

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    The opened cavity reveals this slightly messily-wired, but spacious layout in the classic Gibson style 2 Vol/2tone/3-way toggle arrangement - which is unusual for an Ibanez RG. This also solves the mismatched active/passive pot value problem, because it's basically two different pickup signal paths from the toggle switch onward. So all we do is swap the bridge pots from 25k to 500k, and that's it. Each pickup has it own dedicated, correct pot values, which works out to be the perfect compromise.

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    String removed and ready to remove the pickup and pots

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    Before doing any soldering work, make sure to cover the back with a rag. Accidental finish pock mark burns are possible from burning rosin spatter and or dripping solder.

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    After disconnecting the bridge pickup and swich leads from it's volume and tone pots, take out the pots ...

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    Remove the 707

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    I have some high-density charcoal colored foam that happens to fit the cavity ends perfectly, both in width and depth.

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    I place the M7 on the foam and trace each end. This foam will later act as cavity filler because the new pickup is slightly shorter than the 707, leaving a small open cavity hole. Not a biggie, but asthetically meh...this makes it look cool, and also helps solidify the already solid setting even further. The pickup does not move. I hate wobbly pickups.

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    Bottom pickup support foam

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    The M7 baseplate mounting tabs were made flat from Lundgren, so they were too long to directly fit into the existing cavity. Oops. Routing a tab channel on this special guitar is, needless to say, out of the question. So after taking some depth measurements (referring to our original #) I bent the tabs into the usual "L" mounting arrangement. I also matched the mounting hole locations so no further holes would have to be drilled - and best of all this whole job is completely reversable with no ill-effects to both pickup and guitar alike.

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    Mounted in, and looking good...

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    Now we put in our cut-out foam end pieces, and using a blunt, thin object to stuff the foam into the end cavities.

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    After installing two new 500k vol/tone mini pots ready to go, opening the M7 four conductor cable reveals a colorful group: green and red for one coil, and blue and yellow for the other coil.

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    Series (full humbucking) wiring: green/braid to ground, yellow/red soldered together and taped, with the blue wire as the hot out.

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    I hate messy, rats-nest wiring. All wired up and ready to go!

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    Strings on....

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    ALL DONE! :metal: (whew.)

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    Now to take a few days to sonically evaluate this bad boy.....
     
    Alekke, Battousai, Ryan and 7 others like this.
  2. Drew

    Drew Forum MVP

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    I require A/B clips. :D
     
  3. D-EJ915

    D-EJ915 Forum MVP

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    Lol, the way the strings converge from the bridge pickup to the neck looks like a big difference but it's just bc the pickup is giant in comparison.

    Nice wiring btw.
     
  4. WayneCustom7

    WayneCustom7 Paolo Contributor

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    Nice, when I scrolled quickly it was almost like watching a vid!
     
  5. zimbloth

    zimbloth Nick // Axe Palace Vendor Forum MVP

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    I'm not trying to be rude, but couldn't you have just gotten pickup rings or something? The ones they make for people who have EMG 707s who want to revert back to passives? That foam stuff looks kinda cheesy. Once again I'm not trying to be disrespectul, I just can't get over how weird that looks. Then again tone > looks :) Can't wait to hear what you think of the pickup :yesway:
     
  6. The Dark Wolf

    The Dark Wolf Contributor

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    Wow. Does that look ugly as hell (707 neck with M7 bridge). :ugh: What an odd choice. And those Lundgren pickups are ass ugly. Sure hope it sounds good. :lol:

    Great wiring, though, and terrific picstory/tutorial/whatever! You always do such nice work, Dendro. The foam idea was brilliant!

    I'm with Drew. Clips!
     
  7. AVH

    AVH avhguitarrepair.com Forum MVP

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    Hey guys, yeah, the foam is really just a quick thing I thought of at the last second while doing it because I just had some lying around. Besides it's still better than having the open holes. I do like solidity it gives though. I may look into those rings too....:yesway:

    I care more about how it sounds first and foremost, with looks being secondary...my picking hand is directly over it most of the time anyway.
     
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  8. Rick

    Rick ALL HAIL DJOD Forum MVP

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    Cool. Can't wait to hear what it sounds like!
     
  9. Metal Ken

    Metal Ken Hates the Air Contributor

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    If he decides he likes the EMG more, he can put that back in and not have pickup ring screw holes on the body ;D
     
  10. metalfiend666

    metalfiend666 - Forum MVP

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    Cool picstory dude! What's the bobbin on the Lundgren made of?
     
  11. AVH

    AVH avhguitarrepair.com Forum MVP

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    That was essentially the idea anyway. I had thought about some rings, but it would mean doing exactly that. This way i also achieve a solid, direct to body mount rather than a floating ring mount, which I think sounds just a hair better. Better feedback resistance as well, due to lesser pickup vibration, I feel. As a compromise, I may still look into those rings as just a cover, which I could just attach with some good double-sided tape. Maybe.
    In normal lighting though, it still looks pretty good, and the foam blends in with the finish better than in stark, horrid flash lighting.
     
    Ryan likes this.
  12. The Dark Wolf

    The Dark Wolf Contributor

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    It would look tight with another normal neck humbucker. :agreed:
     
  13. AVH

    AVH avhguitarrepair.com Forum MVP

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    Thanks! The bobbins appear to be made from the same, or similar, resin-impregnated fibre board material as the earlier Telecaster bridge pickups were made from. It's slightly gnarly look is kinda cool, I think. Definitely lends itself to the whole 'boutique/hand' vibe that seems come with pickups like these.
     
  14. metalfiend666

    metalfiend666 - Forum MVP

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    Maybe you could stick the rings to the foam so you don't risk damaging the finish?
     
  15. jtm45

    jtm45 SS.org Regular

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    This guy does some really cool anodised black aluminium 7 string pickup rings.I think he does them in a matte-black finish too.
    http://www.fretsonthenet.com/other_parts.htm#7_string_string_pickup_rings!
    He also makes chrome (they're actually polished stainless)Edge tremolo arms which are handy if you have an Ibanez with Chrome hardware as Ibanez only make them in black.

    I think the double sided tape thing would be the way to go for this guitar.You don't want screw-holes in this beauty.
    You could always saw the heads off some black screws and glue them into the pickup ring holes so they look like they're screwed down.

    Those LACSD1's are an awesome looking guitar!
    I love those sure-grip knobs too man.:metal:
     
  16. noodles

    noodles Contributor

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    ^ Exactly who I got my pickup ring from. I was the first-and as far as I know, only--person to request a pickup ring to move from active to passive.

    Before:

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    After:

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    Dave, the owner of the site, fabricates his rings out of solid billets of plastic. They absolutely do not flex, bend, warp, or crack.

    Not to be argumentative, but there is no sonic difference between direct and ring mounted pickups. Case in point: Mike, my co-guitarist, had enormous feedback problems with his direct mounted bridge pickup. He wound up stuffing an entire factory's worth of foam under the thing to cut down on the howl.
     
  17. AVH

    AVH avhguitarrepair.com Forum MVP

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    Hey Noodles, thanks for the tippage and example pic, I had a good look at those, and it looks like he makes a superb product. I have some flat 1/8" matte black plastic at work that I think I'll make a similar thing - just minus the mounting holes. I will need to make a slightly larger one as well for the new 8 string (I also bought an M8 at the same time), so I'll wait til that time and make both.

    The feedback resistance thing with foam insulation is only a helper, not a substitute for proper wax potting. I'm so gated on my signal that i never get feedback anyway, so to me it's more of a solidification thing - I just hate a wobbly pickup, it bugs me.

    There is no question of the slight tonal difference between body/pickguard mounted pickups, I've directly done this test with one of my UV's, and the results, to me, sound better direct body mounted - a little tighter and more pronounced bottom end. And working full time tech in a large store, I get to install and test a lot of pickups. After setup work, pickup swaps are the next most requested job, constantly.

    BTW - nice Jackson mang...I still think your KXK V walks all over it though ;)
     
  18. Stitch

    Stitch Banned

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    :scratch: I got the impression he didn't want to use pickup rings because he doesn't want to tap holes into a LACS Ibanez...he said that when he was talking about the tabs
    Just my interp.
    Nice job dude! Don't like the look, but fuck it, it isn't mine, so what opinion do i have? :p
     
  19. Ryan

    Ryan SS.org Regular

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    Dude Al, that looks nuts man. GOtta be the cleanest wiring ive seen in a while.
    I bet that M7 owns hard.
     
  20. Leon

    Leon {##[====:::. Contributor

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    sweet job man! time to throw an AN7 in that neck position :D
     

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