Discussion in 'Other Guitars' started by ChubbyFingers, Nov 25, 2020.
My blue MIM Tele bought earlier this year and brand my new MIM Strat..
What a stunning color. I would have bought it for that alone
So as soon as I got it home, the original tuners, which, like the Tele, weren't all screwed down tight into the head, were junked and replaced with genuine Fender locking tuners. The pressed steel string tree that had no spacer underneath was junked and replaced with an aftermarket roller one, which, unlike the genuine Fender article, has roller that actually, un, roll, and a set of d'Addario pure nickel 9s was fitted. A bit of tinkering to get rid of a low e string fret buzz and setting the intonation, and I'm good to go.
I'm booked in next week for a curly perm too.
1 - is the middle pickup supposed to be much quieter? Mine is and raising it up hasnt made much difference.
2. Recommendations for replacement pickups? Looking for neck and middle only to start, bridge with a coil split switch or push-pull later.. and looking for a classic Strat sound, but not surf, please NOT surf! Think Tears for Fears or similar 80s pop, possibly classic Gilmour in quiet mode tone. The SG is for the headbanger stuff.
PS current pickups are HSS configuration. Not set in stone about that or going classic SSS.
That colour and the flame top finish are what sold me on the Tele and when GC brought out a matching Strat...
BTW - After playing with the middle pickup to no great avail, I went ahead and took the pickguard off to have a look "under the hood" as it were.
Glad to report nothing was amiss router-work wise and the cavity is painted with some sort of black paint, which I can only assume is electrically conductive, at least enough to stop static buildup. Also, the pickguard itself has aluminIum foil on the back, so thats good. The pots are CTS branded, the switch Fender branded and I think this one came with the treble bleed mod already installed.
Its a four wire humbucker in the neck, so a coil split mod should be possible. I just need to find a suitable push-pull or an iddy biddy switch and a wiring diagram to follow. The Dave Gilmour mod (neck single coil plus bridge single coil in a kind of long distance humbucker arrangement) seems a bit superfluous given the bridge pickup us a humbucker anyway.
Anyway. Finding nothing obvious, I screwed everything back together and now the middle pickup works just fine. Maybe some gunk in the switch or maybe a bad solder joint or wire that somehow got "bent into good" I don't know. And I won't worry unless / until it starts acting up again.
We paid $760 and change for this including the locking tuners and tax (8.25% in TX), so definitely another thumbs up for MIM Fenders.
PS if you buy one, check all the original tuners are screwed down tight. That is the 10mm A/F nut on the front face of the headstock. On both my Tele and my Strat they weren't, which may be why some are reporting issues keeping things in tune.
Strat middle pickups are a huge PITA, I'm no strat expert but the output is low cuz something about getting a "quack" sound in the #2 position (neck and middle).
To add to the confusion the humbucker in the bridge is split when used with another pickup.
Maybe a true strat fan can chime in.
Very nice guitars, LOVE the color!
Again not a strat guy, but the middle pickup is the least important one to replace.
A dimarzio HS-2 or HS-3 in the neck and leave the stock middle would be good for starters.
maybe a hot rails in the bridge later? Maybe a Bill Lawrence if you keep it a humbucker?
Fender Samarium Cobalt Noiseless pickups, Bill Lawrence stacked humbuckers with a splitter switch. You'll never go back.
Here's the finished article:
That's lovely! If they would have done that colour in the UK i'd have had one. Just ordered a MIM black Tele.
Be sure to check the tuners are tightened down properly, that is the big nuts on the front of the head. They were loose on both my MIM Tele and my MIM Strat.
You'll probably need to make minor truss rod, string height and intonation adjustments unless the store sets it up for you, but really there is NOTHING wrong with the MIMs for the price.
I would also fit new (better) strings once you get it home.
The stock pickups are fine, the Fender noiseless ones are better but not "night and day". You might want hotter or even humbuckers, I don't know.
One appeal for the Tele was that it was different to the SG, pickups sound fine at the mo. I'll do a bit of reading around setting up everything else though, thanks.
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