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  • Mustang pickups same as Strat pickups?

    Does anyone here know if there are any differences between early Fender Mustang pickups and early Fender Strat pickups, other than the cover?

    A friend of mine thinks there is isn't from what he has seen. He also had the thought that he couldn't see Fender making a special Mustang pickup that is essentially identical in size and structure to the Strat pickup when it would be more cost effective to just increase the size of the material order for Strat pickups and use them in the Mustang.

  • #2
    Can you be a little more specific when you say 'early'?
    sigpic Dyed in the wool

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    • #3
      The pre-CBS 1964 Mustang and the CBS Mustangs that followed from 1965 through the 1970s. The theory that was put forth to me was that those Mustangs use Stratocaster pickups.

      I have had 1965 Mustang and a 1971 Mustang. Those pickups looked very Strat like to me but having never owned a Strat from that time period I had nothing to compare them with.

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      • #4
        No, they are not the same. The bobbins are a little smaller, the magnets are the same height and almost flush with the top flatwork.

        The notes I have say the Mustang has 7600 turns (5.5K) while the 50's Strats range between 7956 (5.76k) to 8293 (6.33k) for a 1960 pickup. Also the Mustang is wound CCW while the Strat is CW. The Mustang is south up. Early Strat pickups are North up.

        The Duosonic pickups were different from both of them. Mustangs are very nice guitars though.

        It wasn't a whole lot of work for them to make a pickup.
        It would be possible to describe everything scientifically, but it would make no sense; it would be without meaning, as if you described a Beethoven symphony as a variation of wave pressure. Albert Einstein


        http://coneyislandguitars.com
        www.soundcloud.com/davidravenmoon

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        • #5
          So what about Musicmaster Bass pickups? I have an old one that looks like a Strat pickup. I surprised to see 6 poles when flipped it over.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Tele-Bob View Post
            So what about Musicmaster Bass pickups? I have an old one that looks like a Strat pickup. I surprised to see 6 poles when flipped it over.
            Same specs as the Mustang pickups.
            It would be possible to describe everything scientifically, but it would make no sense; it would be without meaning, as if you described a Beethoven symphony as a variation of wave pressure. Albert Einstein


            http://coneyislandguitars.com
            www.soundcloud.com/davidravenmoon

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            • #7
              I've seen one that had a second layer of flatwork on the top, presumably to keep the poles from popping through and distorting the cover. All of the old Musicmaster/Mustang/Duo pickups sound just peachy and cost like an 8th of a similar year Strat pickup. .....um, wait! no! they're completely different and sound horrible. Who has one?

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Sweetfinger View Post
                Who has one?
                I have a '72 Mustang. It's a very nice guitar. I had replaced the pickups with Lawrence L-250s though, but I have the original pickups (which are now dead).

                Here's one of the pickups, sans wire. I'm going to get around to rewinding it one of these days.

                It's hard to say if the pickups sound like a Strat, since it's a short scale guitar. I haven't tried the pickups in another guitar.

                It would be possible to describe everything scientifically, but it would make no sense; it would be without meaning, as if you described a Beethoven symphony as a variation of wave pressure. Albert Einstein


                http://coneyislandguitars.com
                www.soundcloud.com/davidravenmoon

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                • #9
                  Did you gauge the coil wire by any chance? I'd be curious to know what was used now that I know that they were actually different pickups than the strat.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Busterdawg View Post
                    Did you gauge the coil wire by any chance? I'd be curious to know what was used now that I know that they were actually different pickups than the strat.
                    No, I didn't. I don't have anything to gauge the wire with.

                    But here's the other pickup, which it turns out is still good. It looks like PE wire, and I'd guess 42 AWG. It reads 5.73K.

                    Also I compared it directly to a Strat pickup, and they are indeed the same size. I don't know why I thought it was slightly smaller.
                    Attached Files
                    Last edited by David Schwab; 06-02-2010, 07:55 PM.
                    It would be possible to describe everything scientifically, but it would make no sense; it would be without meaning, as if you described a Beethoven symphony as a variation of wave pressure. Albert Einstein


                    http://coneyislandguitars.com
                    www.soundcloud.com/davidravenmoon

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by David Schwab View Post
                      Also I compared it directly to a Strat pickup, and they are indeed the same size. I don't know why I thought it was slightly smaller.
                      So basically Fender could have used the same bobbins they used for a Strat as well as the same mags (although only one height to keep the poles flush) and to give it a bit of a twist, a CCW wind with the south up orientation and slightly under-wound as compared with Strat pups.

                      I really appreciate the detective work, David. I have been fascinated of late by some of Fender's less popular guitars - Mustang, Duo, Jaguar, Starcaster.

                      The Mustang is a great guitar and really is under-rated. I'd throw the Jaguar into that category as well.

                      I just thought of another question for anyone tapping into this thread-

                      Other than the metal "claw" and different pickup cover, is an early (1964 thru 1970s) Jaguar pickup similar to a Strat also, meaning magnet type, coil wire, bobbin size?

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                      • #12
                        bobbins are different on a jag- there is no bump out where the eyelets install like on a strat pickup- there is an eyele on each end near the height adjustment screws.

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                        • #13
                          I used to have a real 1956 Duo Sonic that I've since sold.....the pickups on it were similar to a Strat, but a little weaker, with flush poles on top, and they sounded fantastic.

                          Greg

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                          • #14
                            Hi all,
                            FWIW, I own a fully original 1969 "Competition" Mustang in candy apple red (with matching headstock), if you guys deem it useful, I will remove the pickguard and post the pickup specs (along with some pics), only, I ask you all to be patient 'cause I'm dealing with very serious problems at home and don't have much time to spare for playing with my beloved toys, so it could take a little time.

                            I seem to remember the pickups looked exactly like a couple of strat pickups when I took a look "under the hood" years ago, but I can't be 100% sure.

                            Best regards

                            Bob
                            Hoc unum scio: me nihil scire.

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                            • #15
                              Here are the specs for the pickups from the 1957 Duo Sonic if anyone wanted them?

                              Bridge Pickup

                              DCR = 5.75k
                              ACR @ 1k = 8.53k
                              ACR @ 120Hz = 5.93k
                              Inductance @ 1k = 1.794 Henries
                              Inductance @ 120Hz = 1.99 Henries
                              Q @ 1k = 1.266
                              Q @ 120Hz = .259

                              Neck Pickup

                              DCR = 5.75k
                              ACR @ 1k = 8.7k
                              ACR @ 120Hz = 5.95k
                              Inductance @ 1k = 1.839 Henries
                              Inductance @ 120Hz = 2.14 Henries
                              Q @ 1k = 1.276
                              Q @ 120Hz = .2646

                              These used 42 gauge heavy formvar, the gauss at the poles at the top of the pickup were around 650, and they were flat polepieces on the top rather than staggered like some other Fenders of the time. Hope that helps anyone looking for specs.

                              Greg

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