[Tech] Soldering Pickups 101

Discussion in 'The Sevenstring.org Workbench' started by Digital Black, Aug 1, 2005.

  1. brae2009

    brae2009 SS.org Regular

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    nice man keep going
     
  2. Digideus

    Digideus SS.org Regular

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    Im surprised that no-one mentioned good ventilation when Soldernig. The white smoke caused when melting solder is actually hazardous, an in California (i believe) its a legal requirement that some solder is registered as a hazardous substance because the fumes are believed to aid the onset of cancer.

    ALWAYS TIN YOUR WIRES BEFORE SOLDERING!!!

    One other thing, its good practice to heat the exposed wire from insulation to tip as you can leave a blob of solder on the end of the wire while tinning it and cut it off with a pair of clippers. Not essential for installing pickups, but if youve ever tried to push a tinned wire through a small hole and it wont go, youll know what I mean!
     
  3. dhanypartner

    dhanypartner Guest

    [FONT=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Well... what can I say? I've seen some nasty solder joints in my days - by "professionals" as well as DIY Joe - and quite frankly they sometimes scare me. I frequently find myself wondering how on earth someone can make a complete mess of a <layer id="google-toolbar-hilite-1" style="background-color: Yellow; color: black;">soldering</layer> joint and then say "Good job - it's sorted." It scares me even more when I know that almost all of the nightmare <layer id="google-toolbar-hilite-2" style="background-color: Yellow; color: black;">soldering</layer> jobs I've seen have been performed on other people's stuff...[/FONT]


    <table style="border-collapse: collapse; width: 487pt;" border="0" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" width="649"><col style="width: 487pt;" width="649"><tr style="height: 15pt;" height="20"> <td style="height: 15pt; width: 487pt;" height="20" width="649">Lexus LX450 Parts</td> </tr></table>
     
  4. evil toki

    evil toki SS.org Regular

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    Dude you would probably shriek if you saw my cavity right now lmao. Luckily I found this thread and my pickups came with two extra pots though, so I plan on doing a much cleaner job when I get the time and a little more insight. For my first time I don't think I did too bad...The joints are a tad messy but the wires are routed cleanly.
     
  5. drgordonfreeman

    drgordonfreeman On vacation

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    Yep. First time I ever soldered pickup wires, which was actually just a few days ago (ha!), I read the warning on the side of the soldering iron box. It said something to the effect of, "Soldering fumes are known carcinogens in the state of California." I said, "Screw it! This isn't California!" Haha. I soldered inside. Yea... found out that hard way on that one. My sinuses are still seared with the smell of burning solder. Ugh. After that little incident, I solder outside now. Back in college, I was always under a ventilation hood when I soldered circuit boards for lab. I sort of forgot all about that little detail...:rolleyes:

    Yep, this is the way my first pickup soldering experience went a few days ago. I just finished desoldering everything and cleaning it all up. I'm about to resolder it all back together very nicely. I've taken some progress pictures, so I plan on posting a thread about what all I've done. Anyway, desoldering can turn into a real trying experience very quickly. The desoldering guns or pumps sold at Radio Shack simply do not cut it. I purchased a professional desoldering pump, and it made all the difference in the world. When you get to that point, and if you're interested in some suggestions for decent pumps to buy, then please let me know, and I will do my best to help you.


    I have some advice I've learned very quickly, specifically related to pickup replacement, despite my newbie status here.

    It's really important to work with a badass soldering iron, as it makes all the difference in the world. I was using crap from Radio Shack that was rated at 45 watts or less, and I was quickly going nowhere. I jumped to a professional grade soldering iron rated at 260 watts, and all of a sudden, I was rocking and rolling all over the place. Too much heat can ruin components, so it's important that you're careful. However, from my experience soldering circuit boards (which is almost endless, as some of my science labs back in college were brutal), 260 watts will set the damn thing on fire. I have found that this is not the case with guitar components. Maybe it's because I have a more steady hand from the circuit board soldering training. I don't know. Nonetheless, I would offer the advice to go with more juice than less in your soldering iron. Feel free to rebut my advice.

    As a side note, Bain Capital (a Harvard boys' club) is making a move to buy Radio Shack. Believe it or not, Guitar Center was once a great place to go for gear (A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away... in the 1990's). Then Bain Capital bought them. Just a heads up of what's probably to come with Radio Shack.:noplease:
     
  6. ibznorange

    ibznorange Chief Officer/RHLC © Contributor

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    Radioshack has been invalid for years dude :lol:
     
  7. guitarneeraj

    guitarneeraj WindMarp Contributor

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    Just wanted to add a couple of notes:

    1) Investing in a soldering kit, which comes with a soldering helper and heat sink tongs, is very useful when rewiring pickups, especially when you need to solder, for example, multiple wires to the back of the volume pot to ground them.

    2) When soldering pickup leads on switches, less solder can go a long way. Don't be tempted to keep on adding solder metal, as it can drip down the switch terminal and cause a short with the body of the switch!
     
  8. conjurer_of_riffs

    conjurer_of_riffs SS.org Regular

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    What I have found the most useful is to tin the tip of the iron before and after each joint. What I do is tin the the tip, wipe it clean on the sponge, and then tin it again. At this point I make the solder connections. The components are pre-tinned. After the connections are made, I clean the tip on the sponge. Repeat process as needed.
     
  9. metalhguitarist

    metalhguitarist SS.org Regular

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    One thing I've done that helps massivley, was to take a cardboard box and punch holes in the top to stick the pots into, in the exact layout of the holes on the guitar.

    Very easy way to wire it as it exactly as it's laid out in the guitar, without the walls of the cavity getting in the way!!
     
  10. gogolXmogol

    gogolXmogol SS.org Regular

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    I've heard this advice before, should make soldering much easier!:metal:
     
  11. 7stg

    7stg SS.org Regular

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