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Fender Samarium Cobalt Noiseless neck pickup intermittently cuts out

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  • Fender Samarium Cobalt Noiseless neck pickup intermittently cuts out

    Long story short is that my friend who gave me the guitar (Deluxe Strat), would tell me that every so often he neck pickup wouldn't work. I never experience it until the other day when I was doing a final audio test on an amp repair, when the sound cut out. After a short moment of anxiety when I thought it was the amp, I realized it was the neck pickup that was causing the problem.
    I could get the sound to return momentarily when I would tap or mess with the pickup cover.
    The pickup cover seems to be set pretty tightly and I wanted to check in with the pickup guys and what you guys thought before I go further.
    My main concern is obviously breaking the magnet wire in the process of removing the cover. But, I cut the three hookup wire leads at the pickup and removed it to do a bit of probing around and taking some measurements on my bench. I took a couple of pictures with measurements written out so they could be easily read.

    The first picture shows that outside the guitar, all the DC resistance measurements looked where fine across the coil and across the copper traces on the bobbin.

    Click image for larger version

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    .
    In the next photo, the listed resistance is from the corresponding pole piece to the center conductor/solder pad. There was no measured continuity to the coil.
    .
    Click image for larger version

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    Is it weird that the bottom of the B string pole piece shows almost a dead short compared to the others?

    One other thing is that several yeas ago we removed the S1 switching from the guitar and wired it for a stock strat 5-way switch. It was a pretty hazy time back then, so I can't remember how we did it.
    (Although, I have flashes from a my memory that I think we actually opened up one of the pickups because we needed to work on it?? But beyond that I cannot remember how we did it, only that whatever it was, we got away with it and it worked.)
    So, I look forward to hearing from you guys before I go further.
    Thanks
    If I have a 50% chance of guessing the right answer, I guess wrong 80% of the time.

  • #2
    Your Ohm measurements don't indicate a problem - but the cutting out is intermittent. Your most important value is the 6.47k between the 2 outer wire solder pads and that there is no connection to the center pad which is ground. (The different resistances between pole pieces and ground are irrelevant.)

    I would use some heat from a hairdryer or use some freeze spray to see what changes between the wire pads.
    - Own Opinions Only -

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    • #3
      (The different resistances between pole pieces and ground are irrelevant.)
      Okay good to know. Thats what I suspected.
      i was able to remove the cover carefully and slowly. Just by looking at where the solder connections are made, the solid core going into the board really has no room for any kind of expansion or contraction. And it looks like there might be the smallest of a hairline fracture beginning around the perimeter of the solder joint(s).
      I’m gonna reflow the solder connections. But I hate having the cover off and exposing the internal assembly to any kind
      of debris or metallic dust. I wish I had a clean-room for this. Plus Plus it’s so easy to damage the wire I would think.
      look t this:

      Click image for larger version

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      If I have a 50% chance of guessing the right answer, I guess wrong 80% of the time.

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