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Thread: Removing Crusty foam from Vintage Jaguar Pickup

  1. #1
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    Removing Crusty foam from Vintage Jaguar Pickup

    Hi, I've got an old Jaguar PU that's dead and hardened foam needs to be at least partially removed to get lead off.

    Any suggestions for a solvent or heat and scrape?

    Pics attached.

    I'm all ears. Thanks!


    64-jag-pu2.jpg64-jag-pu1.jpg

  2. #2
    Woodgrinder/Pickupwinder copperheadroads's Avatar
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    I think I would apply some heat to that claw (air dryer or soldering iron & try to keep from directly getting too much heat at the foam ) & see if you can warm up the adhesive to get it to separate from the foam .
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    Single sided razor blade.
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    Senior Member jack briggs's Avatar
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    naphtha

  5. #5
    Senior Member Jim Darr's Avatar
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    Bobby,

    I'd suggest trying to remove just enough of the gunky foam with an exacto or razor to just expose the ground solder connection on the claw. Then desolder that connection on the claw and remove the claw from the bobbin...that way you can deal with getting the foam off the claw with heat, naphtha or some other method without worrying about damaging the bobbin or original wind.

    The pickup might come back to life by checking the eyelets, re-flowing them if necessary, or finding a break on the outside winds. I use a soft tooth brush on the winds to see if a loose end comes up on the finish winds if I can't see the problem with magnifying glasses.

    Anyway, my two cents.

    Good luck & let us know how it turns out.

    Jim
    Last edited by Jim Darr; 12-19-2016 at 02:12 AM.
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  6. #6
    ken
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    Bobby,

    Try cutting as close as you can with a single edge razor blade to remove the foam, then wash off the stickum with lighter fluid. Jim is right, you can try to resolder the eyelets but many times if they are at all loose the coil wire breaks *right there*.

    Good Luck,
    ken

  7. #7
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    Thanks everyone!

    It came off easy-peasy. I used the back edge of a box cutter to scrape it off the solder connection & desoldered. Then most of it just cracked off. Soaked the claw in naphtha and the rest came off easy. I ended up needing to rewind it. It's already been shipped back, installed and being played.

    Another question for those with a lot of experience repairing vintage Fender pickups: If you can't find a break do you take the bobbin apart/ie pull the bottom flat work off and fish for the break? Down sides/risk? If you do, this do you repot or apply a bit of superglue when putting back together?

    Thanks,
    Bobby

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Beef Coon View Post
    Another question for those with a lot of experience repairing vintage Fender pickups: If you can't find a break do you take the bobbin apart/ie pull the bottom flat work off and fish for the break? Down sides/risk?
    I say never try removing the flatwork to try and fix a pickup. You will probably tear off a lot of wires in the process and if the magnets start to move they can cut even more wires.

    Using a magnifier, I look at the outside of the coil to see if there are any visible signs of a break. Look for green corrosion, as that is a sure sign of the copper being exposed to moisture. I also check to see that there is continuity at the eyelets where the coil winding starts and ends.

    In my experience, unwinding the coil from the bobbin is the only safe way to find a break, and if the coil has been lacquered or waxed too heavily the odds of getting the wire off without breaking is even less likely.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 52 Bill View Post
    I say never try removing the flatwork to try and fix a pickup. You will probably tear off a lot of wires in the process and if the magnets start to move they can cut even more wires.

    Using a magnifier, I look at the outside of the coil to see if there are any visible signs of a break. Look for green corrosion, as that is a sure sign of the copper being exposed to moisture. I also check to see that there is continuity at the eyelets where the coil winding starts and ends.

    In my experience, unwinding the coil from the bobbin is the only safe way to find a break, and if the coil has been lacquered or waxed too heavily the odds of getting the wire off without breaking is even less likely.
    Thanks Bill. That's what I do. Reflow solder at the eyelets then look for breaks with a magnifier LED lamp. Then unwind the finish in that order as needed.

    I like Jim Darr's use of a soft tooth brush, and will do that as well for now on. My 10 yr old son came in yesterday and saw the tooth brush on my bench and was like "what the heck is that doing here?" So I explained and showed him as a lesson on repurposing tools.

    I've seen photos and read about guys pulling apart flatwork, just seems like a bad idea.

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    actually if its a Fender pickup and it was wax potted if the inner lead is broken and completely gone or only has a tiny bit still sticking out you can pull the bottom plate off and the inner start is easily visible and you can unwind it a couple of turns pop the bottom back on and resolder. the rest of the coil usually remains amazingly intact. Done it many times on 50's and early 60's fenders. Youll want to dip the pickup back in a potter for a short time so the wax sticks to the bottom plate again.

  11. #11
    Senior Member Jim Darr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lollar Jason View Post
    actually if its a Fender pickup and it was wax potted if the inner lead is broken and completely gone or only has a tiny bit still sticking out you can pull the bottom plate off and the inner start is easily visible and you can unwind it a couple of turns pop the bottom back on and resolder. the rest of the coil usually remains amazingly intact. Done it many times on 50's and early 60's fenders. Youll want to dip the pickup back in a potter for a short time so the wax sticks to the bottom plate again.
    I've never tried the procedure that Jason described. Seems logical and finding the start seems like it would be easy if wax potted, and assuming the rest of the coil stays intact....I'll give it a try next time I get a SC with that problem.

    I've only taken the bobbin apart when the rod magnets were so badly corroded they needed to be polished or that same problem (broken inner winds of magnet wire) would reoccur down the road. My reason for trying not to take the bobbin apart is just to preserve the integrity of the original build. But, trying Jason's technique would preserve even more of the original build. Definitely worth a shot.

    Thanks for sharing.

    Jim
    Last edited by Jim Darr; 12-22-2016 at 10:52 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lollar Jason View Post
    actually if its a Fender pickup and it was wax potted if the inner lead is broken and completely gone or only has a tiny bit still sticking out you can pull the bottom plate off and the inner start is easily visible and you can unwind it a couple of turns pop the bottom back on and resolder. the rest of the coil usually remains amazingly intact. Done it many times on 50's and early 60's fenders. Youll want to dip the pickup back in a potter for a short time so the wax sticks to the bottom plate again.
    Thanks Jason. That's what I've heard people doing.

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    I tried it a long time ago and it didn't work out very well. Maybe it was a lacquered coil.

    Jason has much more experience in doing this, so I'd trust his advice over mine.

  14. #14
    Senior Member Jim Darr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 52 Bill View Post
    I tried it a long time ago and it didn't work out very well. Maybe it was a lacquered coil...
    Thinking about the suggestions/advice in this thread and trying to remember why I came to certain positions, or conclusions, on repair protocols -- I do recall having encountered several separated flats, which came into my shop that way, where the actual coil stuck to "both" the bottom and top flats causing the coil to break into a messy rat's nest. Like you said, these may have been potted with lacquer or sanding sealer as they sometimes did...not sure what the potting material was as this was decades ago. This experience caused me to remove the coil on subsequent repairs with broken start leads.

    As I said in my earlier post, I think trying Jason's technique on a wax potted example is in order the next time I run into this problem on a truly wax potted SC.

    Happy Holidays to all.

    Jim,
    Last edited by Jim Darr; 12-24-2016 at 05:05 PM.
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  15. #15
    Senior Member Jim Darr's Avatar
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    Here is another procedure that I've heard about. I actually tried this but with no luck!!

    Pushing the rod magnets on a F style staggered SC with a fiber bobbin to adjust the output of a particular string. Supposedly some people have the special touch to do this, but apparently not me. I broke the windings when I tried this a few times. They say never try this on the high and low "E" string magnets, but the other magnets are fair game. Not! I don't suggest, recommend, or condone this at all. My experience says this is a sure-fire way to "ruin" a good and possibly vintage pickup.

    Now moving the magnets on a molded bobbin is another story, but some of the molded bobbins actually expose the magnets directly to the windings, so I don't recommend this even on molded SC bobbins.

    Have others tried this or heard of this? Have you gotten better results than me or the same?

    Are there any other techniques or other procedures anyone has heard of worth discussing?

    Jim
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  16. #16
    ToneOholic! big_teee's Avatar
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    I've done the moving the rods up and down for years on my new strat pickups.
    It only works on new pickups, not vintage pickups!
    Tape the magnets well.(I use wax floral tape)
    Wind the pickup, and wax pot thoroughly.
    Put the pickup in the freezer, or refrigerator, for a little while.
    Take out, and use a small mallet to adjust the rod up and down, while it is cold.
    The rod will move, and the hard cold wax in the coil will support the coil and tape.
    If the magnets aren't taped well this won't work.
    It works slick !
    Like mentioned earlier I mainly do it on the 4 middle rod magnets, not the ends.
    After you are done, check with a ohm meter to see if any rods are shorted.
    Try it if you want to, if you are scared of it, then don't try it.

    T
    Last edited by big_teee; 12-25-2016 at 07:58 AM.
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  17. #17
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    Jim, you jogged my memory a bit - my prejudice against pulling the flatwork apart comes from getting a number of vintage P90s in for repair that had split bobbins - where the flange has been separated from the core a bit.

    I think every time I've gotten one of those, part of the coil was stuck to the flange and the magnet wire was all torn up - always on the outside of the coil, with what must be tape adhesive residue crusted up. The usual story is that theyr saw that it was separating, even if still working, pulled on it to investigate and in so doing tears the magnet wire and/or out pops the coil like a scrunched up slinky.

    Wax potted Fender stuff obviously doesn't have that same same issue, so I'll give that a go for now on.

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