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Thread: Winding a humbucker with 40awg wire. Any thoughts?

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    Winding a humbucker with 40awg wire. Any thoughts?

    I'm have a customer that wants a humbucker for people who hate humbuckers. I have some 40 awg on its way. Also I plan to use A/8 for the bridge and A/5 in the neck. Any suggestions?

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    Member Alberto's Avatar
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    I've never tried awg40 on humbuckers, but if you want something different, you may go with alnico rods instead of steel pole screws.

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    ToneOholic! big_teee's Avatar
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    I tried 41 once, on a neck strat SC.
    It was fine, but pretty bright.
    I also tried 41 on some bass pickups, it worked fine for that.
    40 is even bigger, and would be hard to get many turns on a regular HB.
    Please let us know how it turns out?

    I've wanted to try in the smaller other direction, and try some 42-1/2.
    Remington Industries now sells it.
    Had several circumstances where I thought the in between 42 & 43 would be ideal?
    Also, since wire seems to come on the small size these days?
    Todays 42-1/2 would probably be nearer to the 43, they used in days of old?

    T
    **https://www.remingtonindustries.com/...5-spool-sizes/

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    Last edited by big_teee; 03-02-2018 at 06:36 PM.
    “When you find yourself in a hole, quit digging.” WILL ROGERS

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    Woodgrinder/Pickupwinder copperheadroads's Avatar
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    Not sure if you will get 3000 turns of awg 40 on a bucker bobbin but may be interesting .

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    "UP here in the Canada we shoot things we don't understand"

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    It will be heavy whatever you come up with, not that anyone cares about weight. There are some taller bobbins out there that might give you a few more turns. I would try this out with ceramic mags just to see what a $.40 magnet can sound like with 2500 turns.

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    These are the my own design they are taller than standard hb bobbins. I hope to get more 40
    awg wire on. Click image for larger version. 

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tikiman View Post
    I'm have a customer that wants a humbucker for people who hate humbuckers. I have some 40 awg on its way. Also I plan to use A/8 for the bridge and A/5 in the neck. Any suggestions?
    I had made a few Strat pickups, all with the same turns count, but with different wire gauges, and found the that one with the thickest wire I used, had a higher intrinsic capacitance than the ones with the more common gauges. It stands to reason, larger wire = more overall surface area, while having similar to the same inductance. The only real benefit that I can think of for thicker wire is a lower series resistance, which renders a higher Q factor, though a higher Q factor is something guitarists usually don't want.

    If the customer hates humbuckers, what do they like instead? Fender pickups? P-90s?

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    He basically wants an el Rayo clone.
    I'm pretty sure the taller coils and
    12 screw pole pieces will suffice ��

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tikiman View Post
    He basically wants an el Rayo clone.
    I'm pretty sure the taller coils and
    12 screw pole pieces will suffice ��
    Given the fact that there's not much of an apparent benefit to using larger gauges of wire, the low DC resistance of the El Rayo probably means that it's "under wound" similar to a Filter'tron. Filter'trons have a rather high output despite the low DC resistance, with 42 AWG. Their power (and of side-by-side humbucker in general) comes mostly from the fact that two coils are placed near the strings, and not necessarily the turn count. Filter'trons have less DC resistance, less inductance, and less flux at the string than a Stratocaster pickup, and yet you get a much louder output with them. I suspect the El Rayo is largely similar to a Filter'tron, but that's just a guess. They could be achieving low DC resistance through larger wire as you suspect, or by wiring the coils in parallel internally.

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    Senior Member LtKojak's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Antigua View Post
    Given the fact
    Antigua, thread lightly here. Nothing what you've just said is ***FACT***. Just your ***OPINION***. And a completely wild guess in this specific case, I may add, as you, by own admission, never even encountered a "El Rayo" p'up, so ***YOU DON'T KNOW*** what the actual specs are, nor how it's constructed and/or assembled and/or what materials are used. All you know is what the DC reading is.

    So, what are you even talking AT ALL here, uh?

    Not a personal attack. Just because you keep preaching that ***you're all about the facts***,uh? OK, I just gave you ***THE FACTS***. Just the way you like it! And that'ìs a fact. Pun intended.

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    Pepe aka Lt. Kojak
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    Senior Member jack briggs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Antigua View Post
    Given the fact that there's not much of an apparent benefit to using larger gauges of wire, the low DC resistance of the El Rayo probably means that it's "under wound" similar to a Filter'tron. Filter'trons have a rather high output despite the low DC resistance, with 42 AWG. Their power (and of side-by-side humbucker in general) comes mostly from the fact that two coils are placed near the strings, and not necessarily the turn count. Filter'trons have less DC resistance, less inductance, and less flux at the string than a Stratocaster pickup, and yet you get a much louder output with them. I suspect the El Rayo is largely similar to a Filter'tron, but that's just a guess. They could be achieving low DC resistance through larger wire as you suspect, or by wiring the coils in parallel internally.
    Huh??

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    I am fully aware that these will be low dc. That is the point but my design has more steel in it with two keeper bars for the screws. My biggest concern is he wants four conductor wire. The coil tap will get thin in the skin I bet.

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    I have a nice big roll of #41, and wound a SC with it like yourself. Sounded fine to me. I wouldn't personally go to #40 unless I was intending to produce a low-impedance pickup and had no intentions of making something in a conventional footprint or form factor.

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    I took a guess with the 40 I’m hoping the taller humbucker coils I made will allow me to apply more wire.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tikiman View Post
    I took a guess with the 40 I’m hoping the taller humbucker coils I made will allow me to apply more wire.
    How have you determined how much wire you require to begin with? I suspect the El Rayo has standard sized bobbins, based on the overall dimensions of the pickup.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tikiman View Post
    I am fully aware that these will be low dc. That is the point but my design has more steel in it with two keeper bars for the screws. My biggest concern is he wants four conductor wire. The coil tap will get thin in the skin I bet.
    What's the intended outcome of having more steel in the pickup?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Hammer View Post
    I have a nice big roll of #41, and wound a SC with it like yourself. Sounded fine to me. I wouldn't personally go to #40 unless I was intending to produce a low-impedance pickup and had no intentions of making something in a conventional footprint or form factor.
    Is this is regard to my post about the higher capacitance with 41AWG? The difference was about 70pF to 80pF in my case, not that much, but it can add up.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jack briggs View Post
    Huh??
    I'm not sure what you're unsure of about my post. Take a solid body Gretsch with Filter'trons and a Strat with average 6k single coils, make sure there pickups are set to the same heights relative to the string, plug both in and play them, and you should find that the Gretsch with Filter'trons gives you a somewhat higher output.

    Using TV Classics as an example, their bridge pickup has a DC resistance of 4.8k and an inductance of 1.8H, and the top of the filister screws, a Gauss reading of about 350. A typical Strat pickup by contrast, 6k resistance, 2.4H inductance, and flux density of 600 to 1100G at the tops of the AlNiCo pole pieces.

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    Last edited by Antigua; 03-03-2018 at 06:03 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LtKojak View Post
    Antigua, thread lightly here. Nothing what you've just said is ***FACT***. Just your ***OPINION***.
    There's some facts in there.

    Quote Originally Posted by LtKojak View Post
    And a completely wild guess in this specific case, I may add, as you, by own admission, never even encountered a "El Rayo" p'up,
    There are things that are known, such as the DC resistance the overall pickup layout and dimensions, and a description of the sound it results in compared to other pickups offered by the pickup maker. From that some things can be inferred, but there is guess work involved, and I'm not pretending there isn't.

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    ToneOholic! big_teee's Avatar
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    You can take your bobbin internal dimensions and run it through the coil estimator.
    You will need Internal bobbin core length, width, height, and flange width diameter.
    Using 50mm paf dimensions of 2.25L, .256w, 25h, .69 flange.
    Aprox. 1800 ohms, and 3500 turns of 40S wire, .0035" diameter wire, per bobbin.
    Up the bobbin height to .35"Height? (all other specs the same)
    Aprox. 2500 ohms, and 5000 turns of 40S wire, .0035" diameter wire, per bobbin.
    Those figures are at 90% TPL, near machine wind specs.
    Keep in mind that normally as bobbin height goes up, the pickup becomes brighter sounding.
    If you are building a guitar you can offset that by moving the bridge pickup further from the bridge.
    IMO if the large wire, tall bobbin pickup is close to the bridge, like in a LP guitar, it will be at its brightest!
    You can also try different magnets, like A2, & A3.
    It will be interesting to see what you come up with.
    Please keep us posted!
    GL,
    T

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    Last edited by big_teee; 03-03-2018 at 06:01 PM.
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    I don’t have a coil estamator. I am using 50 mm string spacing. Basically I’m using the A/8 in the bridge and A/5 in the neck because that’s the specs they advertised. Thanks big tee for the info.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tikiman View Post
    He basically wants an el Rayo clone.
    I tell customers if they want a clone of something, then they want the original.

    Maybe you'll end up with something that's good in its own right that the customer likes. I recently rewound wound a s/c bass pickup with 40AWG as an experiment and it came out at 3.8K. I was about to strip it off as I thought it would be disastrous, but the guy wanted to try it and used it on his next gig. He really liked it - he said it had a 60s Danelecro sound. When I asked about low output he said he'd never noticed anything and used the same settings he always uses.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mick Bailey View Post
    I recently rewound wound a s/c bass pickup with 40AWG as an experiment and it came out at 3.8K. I was about to strip it off as I thought it would be disastrous, but the guy wanted to try it and used it on his next gig. He really liked it - he said it had a 60s Danelecro sound. When I asked about low output he said he'd never noticed anything and used the same settings he always uses.
    Was it the same number of turns of 40AWG as you would have used of 42?

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    I did tell the builder it will be in the spirit of the elrayo but by no means will it be one. My opinion is quality parts good workmanship and attention to detail will produce a fine pickup 😬

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    ToneOholic! big_teee's Avatar
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    Coil Estimator
    IME large wire works for bass pickups?
    Bass players usually like bright pickups.
    Big wire, and tall bobbins = bright pickups.
    Usually the opposite is desired for a guitar bridge pickup.
    But, as with everything, YMMV!
    T

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    Click image for larger version. 

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    If nothing else they will be beautiful I think lol!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Antigua View Post
    Was it the same number of turns of 40AWG as you would have used of 42?
    The original pickup was wound with 46 and the owner said it sounded like mud and wanted something completely different. There was plenty of room (I thought) and should have calculated it. My first thought was to use 42, but I had a spool of 40 right by me that I'd been using to rewind some reverb transducers and decided last-minute to see how that would turn out. In the end I had to fill the bobbin to get anything like a workable DCR. This is a lesson in doing the calculations before getting stuck in. As it turns out it worked really well, but it's not the right way. I would still have got a low DCR with 42 and would have ended up with more tuns than with 40, probably filling the bobbin just the same.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mick Bailey View Post
    The original pickup was wound with 46 and the owner said it sounded like mud and wanted something completely different. There was plenty of room (I thought) and should have calculated it. My first thought was to use 42, but I had a spool of 40 right by me that I'd been using to rewind some reverb transducers and decided last-minute to see how that would turn out. In the end I had to fill the bobbin to get anything like a workable DCR. This is a lesson in doing the calculations before getting stuck in. As it turns out it worked really well, but it's not the right way. I would still have got a low DCR with 42 and would have ended up with more tuns than with 40, probably filling the bobbin just the same.
    46AWG, that would be crazy thin. I was just going to say that that output should track with the number of turns, so if you managed to get roughly the same number on there, that would explain it being plenty loud. The DC resistance itself doesn't factor into the output level very much.

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    More with reference to the challenge of fitting a traditional number of turns on a standard-sized coilform that fits inside a standard-sized pickup cover. The wire circumference is not THAT different between #40 and #42. BUt after a few thousand turns, even tiny differences add up.

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    Hello.

    awg40 is used to wind lowZ bass pickups; here in italy a couple of winders builds Lowz Pickups with that gauge.
    300-400 ohm range and a buffer/preamp to increase output

    Diego

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    IClick image for larger version. 

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ID:	47497 They fit pretty good I think.

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    Woodgrinder/Pickupwinder copperheadroads's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=Antigua;481802]46AWG, I was just going to say that that output should track with the number of turns, /QUOTE]
    Does this mean 10000 turns should equal 10k ohms ?

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    "UP here in the Canada we shoot things we don't understand"

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    They are complete. 5.7 bridge & 5 in the neck. Click image for larger version. 

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    Nice. Let us know how your customer gets on with them.

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