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Firebird pick up question

 
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Mr Brew



Joined: 14 Jan 2010
Posts: 20
Location: Sandviken, Sweden

PostPosted: Wed Aug 25, 2010 12:38 am    Post subject: Firebird pick up question Reply with quote

I have this '91 Gibson Custom shop edition FB1

How do I know if the original PU is ceramic or alnico?

What PU would you recomend if I would like a more "vintage-tone", SD Antiquity, lollar etc? Question
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Old Black



Joined: 18 Jan 2006
Posts: 1975
Location: Minneapolis

PostPosted: Wed Aug 25, 2010 8:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm pretty sure they are not ceramic.

I have a SD Antiquity that I like very much but I have heard great things about the Lollar, also. I think it kind of depends on how "vintage" you wanna be. Firebird pickups are very trebly at high gain, which is part of their character. Some of the early Firebird pickups were lightly or unpotted and along with the treble comes microphonics (which can be good or bad, depending on your point of view). I think some microphonics in a Firebird pickup is a really good thing. SDs are vacuum potted and are not microphonic at all. But I think you could have Lollar make you a Firebird pickup that is lightly to unpotted, if that is your inclination.

BTW I have a Lollar P90 that I just love.
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Travst



Joined: 15 Jul 2008
Posts: 9535
Location: Birmingham, AL

PostPosted: Wed Aug 25, 2010 9:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Curt Novak also makes a good Firebird pickup, and uses vintage specs. He'll also custom wind. I have one to go into a build, but have only tested it a bit in another guitar. It seems to be a great pickup. There's good info in this link:

http://curtisnovak.com/pickups/firebird.shtml
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Mr Brew



Joined: 14 Jan 2010
Posts: 20
Location: Sandviken, Sweden

PostPosted: Wed Aug 25, 2010 1:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for your input!

I'm looking for the vintage tone, the Novak seems interesting, anyone with experience of these pups?
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dougk



Joined: 11 Dec 2007
Posts: 9440
Location: About to lose his head in Sacramento

PostPosted: Wed Aug 25, 2010 9:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Every OE Gibson Firebird mini made since the late 70's is a Ceramic mag wound to like 16k. Get rid of them asap.

I just got a triplet from http://www.kleinpickups.com/ that I'm really looking forward to trying out.
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Nathan



Joined: 21 Aug 2003
Posts: 828
Location: Montreal

PostPosted: Fri Aug 27, 2010 6:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

These pickups are expensive because there is not a huge demand for them and they are not made from off-the-shelf parts. Having said that, I think $150 for a single pickup is a LOT of dough. I have a set of used Antiquities waiting to go into a project. Even those are $117 new, but should sound excellent. My advise is to look for used ones or try the Duncan SM-1 set if you can get over the ugly logo. Or just grab some Lollars, Kleins, Novaks, etc. if you have the cash. What do I know?
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Kris NH



Joined: 10 Feb 2009
Posts: 204

PostPosted: Sat Aug 28, 2010 8:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Or there's the GFS set on the cheap. I have a set that I'm going to try in my Firebird project.

http://www.guitarfetish.com/Firebird-Style-Metal-Trim-Ring_c_236.html

Kris
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RandyM



Joined: 10 May 2008
Posts: 6716
Location: Austin Texas

PostPosted: Sun Aug 29, 2010 6:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

This is an Epiphone that I modded to get rid of the terrible gold hardware and Epi Vibrola. The pups are from GFS and they actually wound really good in there.

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Travst



Joined: 15 Jul 2008
Posts: 9535
Location: Birmingham, AL

PostPosted: Mon Aug 30, 2010 1:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Randy, I just bought one of those Epi Firebird VII's too. I actually bought it because it was fitted with a gennie Gibson vibrola with the lyre cover and vintage Firebird banjo tuners. I sold the tuners and will sell the lyre cover to make up the cost of the guitar. I actually like the minis in mine. Epi's pickups are all over the board, but occasionally I find some good ones. I still haven't decided whether to keep the guitar and refinish it, or sell it. I'm not much on the cardinal red and am having trouble adjusting to the neck heaviness of the guitar.


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dougk



Joined: 11 Dec 2007
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Location: About to lose his head in Sacramento

PostPosted: Mon Aug 30, 2010 5:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

John- check the outputs on the Epi's. The rumor is those are still Alnico's. If they are under 10k they probably are.
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Travst



Joined: 15 Jul 2008
Posts: 9535
Location: Birmingham, AL

PostPosted: Mon Aug 30, 2010 8:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Randy, do you still have the vibrola? Very Happy Will do, Doug... but my understanding is that yes, they are alnico pups.
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Mr Brew



Joined: 14 Jan 2010
Posts: 20
Location: Sandviken, Sweden

PostPosted: Tue Aug 31, 2010 12:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ok, so I measured my pickup yesterday evening, it reads 21K....
I had to double check and make sure there was no problem with my ohm-meter

No wonder I feel it does not have the vintage sound then..
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Mr Brew



Joined: 14 Jan 2010
Posts: 20
Location: Sandviken, Sweden

PostPosted: Mon Sep 06, 2010 2:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ok guys...

I got the SD antiquity today and replaced the original gibson pu
At last I have the sound I was looking for when I bought my "bird", what a difference!!! Can't understand why I waited over a year to do this...
Very Happy Very Happy Very Happy
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Tenafly Viper



Joined: 12 Jan 2010
Posts: 1695
Location: Gloucester, MA

PostPosted: Mon Sep 06, 2010 5:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Antiquity line from SD is really great. Underrated pickups.
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dougk



Joined: 11 Dec 2007
Posts: 9440
Location: About to lose his head in Sacramento

PostPosted: Mon Sep 06, 2010 5:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mr Brew wrote:
Ok guys...

I got the SD antiquity today and replaced the original gibson pu
At last I have the sound I was looking for when I bought my "bird", what a difference!!! Can't understand why I waited over a year to do this...
Very Happy Very Happy Very Happy


Awesome!

Why Gibson is is still using those way over wound, ceramic magnet pickups in Firebirds is beyond me.
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TresGatos wrote:

Did I mention Doug is right?

Mr. Clevername wrote:
Did I mention Doug is right?

marksound wrote:
Doug is not always right.

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