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Pickup Cavity Needs Extended/Widened

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  • Pickup Cavity Needs Extended/Widened

    I have a 1999 schecter c7. I believe its the first year they made a 7 string. Replacing original pups with bare knuckle aftermaths which have covers. The cavity is too small. Too shallow and narrow. Do I go with chisels or router? And what is best approach?

  • #2
    A router will always leave a cleaner finish, but free-handing it could lead to disaster. How much material needs to be removed?

    I often use a Dremel with a router base to do this sort of work. Much easier to handle without using templates and roller guide bits,

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    • #3
      I think a dremel would work but what attachment would I use? I don't need more than an 1/8 taken off in a few spots and deepened where the adjustment screw go.

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      • #4
        Sorry, for some reason this refused to post a couple of days ago...I had the presence of mind to copy it into notepad before shutting down though...

        Dremel might work, but might take a while, they are not designed to take off lots of material in a hurry because you need to use light pressure. More easily managed though, for sure.

        I would go with router, but I've been using one for a while and know how to control it. I use one to cut door hinge slots. Masking tape on the base is a requirement, that metal base will scratch your finish...been there done that. Also make sure the surface is clean, any dust and grit is an invitation to scratching. I like to masking tape the guitar too.

        Either way, you need a wood rasp type tool for the dremel, and something that will do a flat cut on the bottom to deepen the screw hole. You can get flat bottom drills, and bottom cutting router bits, be extremely careful if you try it with any kind of drill. Mark the shank with masking or electrical tape if you don't have a yellow metal marker first. For the screw hole I would prefer a router, bottom cutting bit about 1/2 inch diameter because you can set a specific depth. For the sides, Dremel might work well but most people don't realize they are not designed to work well under heavy pressure, so they take a long time. There I would use a router too, and be very careful about holding it steady. Always make a test cut on some scrap wood first. I know how to use a router and I still never touch my working piece until I make a test cut and get the feel of it first.

        Mark the surface before starting, you need to know exactly how much to take off, don't guess at it. Standard #2 pencil should work fine. Depending on finish color of course...

        Also if you can get a round rasp type tool for a drill, that may work for the sides too, still takes some time, but may be faster than dremel. I have a couple I use, straight and tapered. In a cordless drill it works well, you can use more pressure, doesn't grab the material and try to run away with you like a router can, but is also still slow at removing material. The main problem with a router is trying to move it the wrong direction. It revolves clockwise, and if you try to move it the wrong way it can (and will) grab, dig into the wood, and run away with you, making a huge ugly cut in the wrong place. Trust me on that one...hehe...That's the idea behind a test cut or three on some scrap wood.

        Come to think of it I have to do this soon. My Peavey Patriot fried a pickup switch a while back, the Les Paul type switch was all I could find locally and it sits horizontally, across the slotted hole originally cut for it, so it's turned the wrong direction. I'm planning to use my round rasp and a cordless drill to cut a notch out for the switch so it can sit in the right direction. If I touch it while playing, it switches to a different pickup position...not good...I'm waiting till I have to change strings to do it.
        Why do I drive way out here to view the wildlife when all the animals live in town?

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