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Thread: AlNiCo V unoriented

  1. #1
    Member JazzBluesRock's Avatar
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    Thumbs up AlNiCo V unoriented

    Some times ago I was reading an old article named .. Keeping the flame alive.. by Walter Carter about the Les Paul history particularly about the flame top ones..

    There I found Tim Shaw's analisys results about the old magnets he gathered up from some original PAF and I was particularly interested into this AlNiCo V isotropic he said he had found into them.
    So , as some of you Knows, I'm really obsessed by mags and thanks to a friend well connected at the university of my country I even ask to melt magnets at my needs.. and so also this time I ask to melt this particular AlNiCo for me..
    Shaw said that this particular alnico V sounds like an A2 but in my opinion it's not true .. the sound was so different that I decided to analyze it again also if it was melt by a job order thinking that someone wrong the alloy.. but ..
    that is the results of this isotropic mag analisys :

    Al : 8,4 %
    NI : 14,7 %
    Co : 25.9 %
    Cu : 3.2 %
    Cr : 0,39 %
    Mn : 0,24 %
    Zn : 0,37 %
    Fe completed the 100 %

    It's surely an alnico V unoriented and probably some of you is interested to check it..if someone wants I'm agree to send a free sample but naturally shipping cost is by your side. Your skilled pareer is a way to compare our (perhaps) different opinion about this magnet and it's sound..

  2. #2
    Supporting Member belwar's Avatar
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    Where did you get the magnet that you melted? How did you know it was isotropic? There should not be any chemical composition between oriented and un oriented as the unoriented only refers to the magnetic field applied during the early cooling stages.

    Very good work!

  3. #3
    Supporting Member JGundry's Avatar
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    JazzBluesRock,

    Are these the same magnets you were selling a year ago? Also curious if you have a BH curve chart you can post of this magnet?
    They don't make them like they used to... We do.
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  4. #4
    Supporting Member Dave Kerr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JazzBluesRock View Post
    Shaw said that this particular alnico V sounds like an A2 but in my opinion it's not true .. the sound was so different that I decided to analyze it again also if it was melt by a job order thinking that someone wrong the alloy.. but ..
    that is the results of this isotropic mag analisys :

    Al : 8,4 %
    NI : 14,7 %
    Co : 25.9 %
    Cu : 3.2 %
    Cr : 0,39 %
    Mn : 0,24 %
    Zn : 0,37 %
    Fe completed the 100 %
    for the sake of posterity

  5. #5
    Member JazzBluesRock's Avatar
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    Ciao

    Jon:
    ===

    this magnet is really different from the one i sent you last time.. if you want to check it you're welcome , buddy..
    about the magnetic curve .. sorry but I still have not.

    Belwar:
    =====
    To do this magnet I start from metallic powders.. This magnet is isotropic becouse it is magnetizable in each directions.. it is chilled without a magnetic field (like the A2 and A3)

    Anyhow I'm sure that the sake of posterity that Dave means is my great love for the rare vintage alnico alloys now faded.
    Last edited by JazzBluesRock; 08-06-2009 at 11:02 PM.

  6. #6
    Old Timer Possum's Avatar
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    Hi. the magnets you sent me did not hold their charge, sitting in the envelope they lost almost all their charge, it was not a good formula.

    What is this magnet you had analyzed, long magnet, short magnet, what pickup was it from, what year?
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  7. #7
    Old Timer Possum's Avatar
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    ....

    Jon had some non-oriented alnico 5 made, maybe he can add something here....
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  8. #8
    Senior Member NightWinder's Avatar
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    ??

    The Magnets I recieved from a forum member here were from you and are still holding a charge very well, and in fact have really settled down to almost exact gauss per side as well- I belive these were the A 4 shorts

  9. #9
    Member JazzBluesRock's Avatar
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    Ciao Possum..

    what you said is really strange..
    the mags I shipped to you and other forum members last year still keeps the original charge.. how much your gaussmeter show ?!!?
    you can even charge them with neodimium mag .. and you will listen what a sound-
    anyhow they keep the charge very well and i don't think it's a bad formula-
    also if i continue to melt mags It don't means that It's a bad magnets..
    on the contrary It's one of the best vintage sound I reach.. it's not the bee's knees but one of the best I've hear.. and not only becouse are mine.

    as I have the possibilities to melt mags at my needs I think I will never satisfied .. Simply I like to experiment new alloys so I ask an alnico 5 unoriented.. this time It don't comes from a mag.. Tim Shaw's articles intrigue me and so .. here we are.

    It's interesting to compare our alnico V opinions but .. to share all the informations it's not easy also becouse my efforts are worth the money i spent..

  10. #10
    Supporting Member JGundry's Avatar
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    Hi Jazz Blues Rock,

    I would love to try a pair. I can either pay or trade a set of the unorieted A5 I had made by a company that once supplied Gibson here in the US. I also got unoriented A5 samples from a Chinese magnet maker but they could never make an unoriented A5 that would hold a charge. I think Alnico is actually heat treated in a separate process from casting to give it magnetic properties. That is when it is not exposed to a magnetic field and therefore unoriented. Apparently unoriented is tricky enough to make that it can be messed up to the point of not holding a charge.

    You mentioned yours started with metallic powders. Are they stintered?
    They don't make them like they used to... We do.
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  11. #11
    Old Timer Possum's Avatar
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    I still have them here, one seems ok and read about 300 gauss, the other one read 35 gauss, almost totally dead. Something wrong with that. Some early chinese magnets had the same problem, over several months they would just die. If you want to sell magnets, no one is going to pay $5 apiece like you were asking for, to me no magnet is that special. Over time I've bought alot of magnets from different manufacturers and different types, rough cast ets. They are all extremely different and I just try them in each design and match them to the product. I have a hard time believing there are magnets that are special or magical. I tried one of the DR. V magnets that was supposed to be some magical attributes and to me it sound rather boring. Chinese magnets these days are very good. Arnold still makes alnico in America, one of the last to do so, but they are also the ones I've not found a good use for yet, they are alnico 2 and just sound wierd and somewhat dull.

    One thing you shouldn't take for granted is that Tim Shaw is some kind of genius, he's not an engineer, he's a guitar builder and those tests were done back in the 80's and he gives no data on what exactly they did, so he could totally be wrong. Some of those vintage formulas were so sloppy those magnets could very well have been between alnico 2 and 5 or even 4 and he misidentified them. The other thing is that there is no recognized standard mix for any of the alnicos, every company uses their own formula and each alnico has several grades within one category at some places. All the alnico I have all sound different within one category, I have alnico 3 that holds a strong charge and is very bright and some that is very low power and very dark, both are alnico 3 and they both sound great.

    If you want to sell magnets you need to be competitive with the Chinese products in my opinion. If you copied a vintage magnet formula at least we know if will probably hold a charge over time, the ones I got I wouldn't risk money on for sure. Any of us here can have a vintage magnet analyzed and the Chinese are only too willing to duplicate vintage formulas without charging high retail prices for the products. Anyway, thats my opinion. I'd like to hear some sound samples compared to modern factory products and compared to the vintage magnets you are copying....

    I used to think Shaw was onto something, so you are doing good research in finding that information. I study PAFs and still continue to do so, and the truth is that there isn't some magic thing thats happening, its all about getting details right and tailoring modern materials to hone in on the tone, the magnets to me don't seem all that important except that you find ones that sound good and work in the design. As Jon said lets see a B/H curve, any magnet manufacturing place should be able to do that for you. If you can get your prices down to $2.50 each I'd consider it but lets seem proof that they are better than what we already can get for much cheaper. And FWIW I admire your tenacity in going deep into the subject....
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  12. #12
    Member JazzBluesRock's Avatar
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    What we're talking about It's a cast mag, not sintered.. and its sound don't make me crazy.. perhaps yours alnico V unoriented its quite the same.. that is few presence in basses and the difficulty to have it with a reasonable charge.. I'm agree with you Possum.. Shaw perhaps told something wrong.. But as regarding my mags .. perhaps you receive mags not from my hands.. someone could make something on it.. perhaps it's not the same .. i don't know , really.. mine keeps the charge without any problems since 2 years-

    I remember that Spence was convinced that I buy mags from Mills and that they have the same sound.. I tryed to explain him that it wasn't true but.. some people are deaf. They were different and not few also if they were both alnico IV.

    I like to hear your alnico V Jon .. I'm curious to listen yours too.. perhaps in these days I will leave for some holydays but.. I will try to sent you a couple of mags before leaving.
    I can't post a magnetic curve of this magnet becouse I take it from a place not equipped for it.. anyhow I think that the curve I will post is quite near to its features.

    As about the chinese factoryes i can say that they have their standards and they have some difficulties to depart from them. They have no flexible methods and also few serious ways to do.. mostly they sell magnets that are not what you ask also becouse they buy powders already pre-mixed.. I make some cross check and often the results is that magnets weren't what I ask.. very far from it.. They never produce me what I ask .. and they waste my money and my time..

    as an example the modern AlNiCo IV (LNG 16) anisotropic have this formula :

    Al 9 Ni 18 Co 16 Cu 6 Br 8000 Gs Hc 600 Oe BH-max 2.0 MGOe

    and it's really far from the alnico IV vintage..

    If you Think that at the Arnolds factory people that works there don't remember how to do the same old magnet they produced for Fender in the past.. you understand what I'm looking for.. they sent me some magnets really bad also if I told them ( and they know this wery well) the precise curve and chemical percentuals of it.
    I think they have no more interest producing these types of magnets.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails alnico-v.bmp  

  13. #13
    Senior Member NightWinder's Avatar
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    mags

    Quote Originally Posted by JazzBluesRock View Post
    What we're talking about It's a cast mag, not sintered.. and its sound don't make me crazy.. perhaps yours alnico V unoriented its quite the same.. that is few presence in basses and the difficulty to have it with a reasonable charge.. I'm agree with you Possum.. Shaw perhaps told something wrong.. But as regarding my mags .. perhaps you receive mags not from my hands.. someone could make something on it.. perhaps it's not the same .. i don't know , really.. mine keeps the charge without any problems since 2 years-

    I remember that Spence was convinced that I buy mags from Mills and that they have the same sound.. I tryed to explain him that it wasn't true but.. some people are deaf. They were different and not few also if they were both alnico IV.

    I like to hear your alnico V Jon .. I'm curious to listen yours too.. perhaps in these days I will leave for some holydays but.. I will try to sent you a couple of mags before leaving.
    I can't post a magnetic curve of this magnet becouse I take it from a place not equipped for it.. anyhow I think that the curve I will post is quite near to its features.

    As about the chinese factoryes i can say that they have their standards and they have some difficulties to depart from them. They have no flexible methods and also few serious ways to do.. mostly they sell magnets that are not what you ask also becouse they buy powders already pre-mixed.. I make some cross check and often the results is that magnets weren't what I ask.. very far from it.. They never produce me what I ask .. and they waste my money and my time..

    as an example the modern AlNiCo IV (LNG 16) anisotropic have this formula :

    Al 9 Ni 18 Co 16 Cu 6 Br 8000 Gs Hc 600 Oe BH-max 2.0 MGOe

    and it's really far from the alnico IV vintage..

    If you Think that at the Arnolds factory people that works there don't remember how to do the same old magnet they produced for Fender in the past.. you understand what I'm looking for.. they sent me some magnets really bad also if I told them ( and they know this wery well) the precise curve and chemical percentuals of it.
    I think they have no more interest producing these types of magnets.
    Arnold are notorious cocks to deal with.....Jazz...The A4 magnets I recieved From Kevin T here are quite nice sounding after over a yr......Possum, maybe you just got a "Possum" magnet- Its playing dead but it really is'nt

  14. #14
    Old Timer Possum's Avatar
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    Someone else said that the magnets they received also lost its charge, I don't remember who it was. Its possible some customs scanner or something demagnetized it or it was never magnetized before it was sent, but it was sent directly to me from Italy, one is charged the other is almost dead. That makes me real nervous and why I didn't buy any, plus they are priced for retail not for pickup builders.

    Who did you deal with in China? Some of them are more flexible than others. I pestered a bunch of them about doing rough cast magnets and they all refused to do so, then Shea had some made at my request and now everyone over there seems to be making them :-) I think if you want the Chinese to make a custom mix you would probably have to buy a very large lot of magnets and tell them up front you are going to need a sample to analyze before have them ship to you. You have to cover your ass with them because its still the Wild West of infant capitalism over there and they do anything to get your bucks. This is why I say I buy alot of different magnets from different manufacturers and use them where they are best used. Its nice to have a wide variety of magnets around to play with.
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  15. #15
    Supporting Member JGundry's Avatar
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    I think for low quantities of a custom Alnico magnet $5.00 is reasonable even for makers. I have done 2 custom rough cast Alnico orders for bar magnets with US magnet makers. I got a bunch of quotes with different specs. and I could never get a price below $3.61 per magnet and that was for a 1200 piece magnet order. For smaller quantities $5.00 per piece is not out of line.

    The problem with the Chinese magnets seems to be reliability when it comes to meeting your order specs.. If you get what you want one time from a Chinese maker it is anyone's bet if you will get what you asked for the second time around. Even if it is the exact same order specs. as the previous order. When you factor that in paying more than double for peace of mind does not seem so bad.
    Last edited by JGundry; 08-09-2009 at 06:24 AM.
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  16. #16
    Old Timer Possum's Avatar
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    Well, its the same thing with magnet wire, MWS won't cherry pick wire for anyone no matter how much wire you buy, so you get the luck of the draw, I'm not getting the same stuff I was getting six months ago. This one really threw me for a loop but I also figured out how to adapt to the change and I learned something from it. If one element changes or you can't get that stuff anymore you change something else to compensate and stay in the same ballpark.

    I found that Shea's alnico rod stock is very consistent and have been using that stuff for years. Buckers are more sensitive to small changes though. Some middlemen switch around their suppliers without telling anyone, I think All Star is using SensMag these days, or maybe they always did, dunno.....roll with the punches.....
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  17. #17
    Senior Member madialex's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=Possum;115482]Someone else said that the magnets they received also lost its charge, I don't remember who it was. Its possible some customs scanner or something demagnetized it or it was never magnetized before it was sent, but it was sent directly to me from Italy, one is charged the other is almost dead. That makes me real nervous and why I didn't buy any, plus they are priced for retail not for pickup builders.

    Who did you deal with in China? Some of them are more flexible than others. I pestered a bunch of them about doing rough cast magnets and they all refused to do so, then Shea had some made at my request and now everyone over there seems to be making them :-) I think if you want the Chinese to make a custom mix you would probably have to buy a very large lot of magnets and tell them up front you are going to need a sample to analyze before have them ship to you. You have to cover your ass with them because its still the Wild West of infant capitalism over there and they do anything to get your bucks. This is why I say I buy alot of different magnets from different manufacturers and use them where they are best used. Its nice to have a wide variety of magnets around to play with.[/QUOTE

    IT WAS ME POSSUM, THE ONES HE SENT ME BOTH LOST ALL CHARGE. THE WAY I FOUND OUT WAS ME AND A FRIEND WERE TRYING TO REPRODUCE A HUMBUCKER I HAD MADE SEVERAL YEARS AGO AND I KEPT WINDING AND WINDING AND RIPPING OFF THE WIRE AND REWINDING AND SOMETHING WAS ALWAYS WRONG WITH THE SOUND, FINALLY GOT MY HEAD TOGETHER AND CHECKED THE MAG AND IT WAS ALMOST DEAD, SWITCHED OUT THE MAGNET AND THE pu WAS FINE. NOT SAYING ALL WERE BAD BUT THE 2 I GOT THE LONG AND SHORT BOTH LOST ALL CHARGE

  18. #18
    Old Timer
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    To eliminate all questions about were they originally charged and/or were they somehow mishandled in transit, I would charge the dead magnets and age them on the shelf, measuring and recording field strength every so often, and plot the result. It should be very clear and inarguable if the magnets are dying.

  19. #19
    Old Timer Possum's Avatar
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    Thanks, I knew someone else had the same experience. If I recall the magnets were both charged when I got them, all I did was let them sit in the envelope over about 3 months, took them out and they wouldn't cling to eachother. I'll charge them up and check them in a few months and see that one dies again....
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